The 10 Step Korean Skincare Routine has become popular lately and even one of the stores in Denmark has a 10 step skincare routine display with suggested products for each step. However, most of the products are for normal, dry, or all skin types and not for oily skin. After reading Hunida’s 10 Step Korean Skincare Routine post, I decided I would like to find products that would work for my skin type and see if the 10 Step Korean Skincare Routine is effective for oily acne-prone skin.
There are many benefits to having a Korean skin care routine, and Simply Woman Magazine has a great post on the Top 7 Reasons to Try a Korean Skincare Routine, and I personally wanted to try new skin care products that were customized to my needs. Also, all the products I included in these steps are cruelty-free and some use natural ingredients. I follow these steps in the morning and evening with the exception of sunscreen in step 10 that I only use in the morning.
Step 1: Oil-Based Cleanse
The first two steps of the Korean skincare routine are to double cleanse with the first step being to use an oil-based cleanser. I use the Matas Micellar Water for normal skin as they only offer micellar water for normal, dry, or sensitive skin. I use the micellar water by putting some on a reusable cotton round or a MakeUp Eraser and removing all my makeup if I am wearing any that day. If I am not wearing makeup, I will wipe my whole face with the cotton round. The micellar water is an effective and easy way to remove any makeup, dirt, and oil.
Step 2: Water-Based Cleanse
For the second step of the double cleanse, a water-based cleanser is used to ensure all of my makeup is completely removed and my face is clean. I use the Murad Acne Control Clarifying Cleanser, which as the name suggests is for acne-prone skin. I use the cleanser by wetting my face, applying the cleanser to my fingers, rubbing the cleanser all over my face, and finally rinsing with water. I do like using the Murad cleanser because it contains salicylic acid and it makes my face feel clean while helping control acne.
Step 3: Exfoliate (1-2 times a week)
After doing the double cleanse, the next step is to exfoliate. However, an exfoliator is supposed to be used at most 2 or 3 times a week because exfoliating every day can be damaging to your skin and can lead to dryness, irritation, and redness. I use the Alba Botanica Acnedote Face & Body Scrub twice a week, usually midweek and at the end of the week. The scrub is gentle, but effective, and it also contains salicylic acid to help fight breakouts.
Step 4: Toner
The next step is to use a toner. I use The Body Shop Tea Tree Skin Clearing Mattifying Toner, which is suitable for oily skin. I apply the toner on a reusable cotton round and wipe it all over face while avoiding the eye area. The toner removes any residue from the double cleanse and exfoliator, and it prepares my skin for the remaining steps. Before moving onto the next step, I let the toner dry.
Step 5: Essence
The only step out of the 10 that I do not follow is to use an essence. I have not found any essences that are beneficial for oily acne-prone skin because the main purpose of an essence is to provide extra moisture and hydration. However, if you have dry or mature skin, Karen recommends The Body Shop Intensely Revitalising Essence Lotion in her Skincare For Women Over 50: The Body Shop Oils of Life post.
Step 6: Serum
After I use the tea tree toner, I use the Balance Me Vitamin C Repair Serum, which is suitable for all skin types. I apply the serum to my fingers then spread it all over the face, and it hydrates my skin. I use the Repair Serum for the time being, but I have previously used the Balance Me Congested Skin Serum, which I would like to repurchase after I finish this one. The Congested Skin Serum does help control oiliness without drying out the skin.
Step 7: Sheet, Mud or Peel-Off Mask (1 time a week)
In the regular 10 step routine, it is recommended to use a sheet mask once a week, however, sheet masks are not that effective at helping oily acne-prone skin. Sheet masks are great for normal and dry skin because they instantly hydrate, moisturize, and brighten the skin. I will use a sheet mask if I feel like my face is a little dry, but that has not been the case lately. For oily skin, I do recommend using other masks such as a mud mask or a peel-off mask. My favorite mask of all-time to use is the Lush Mask of Magnaminty because it exfoliates, reduces the redness, and controls the oiliness of my face. I also enjoy using mud masks and peel-off masks from Montagne Jeunesse/7th Heaven.
Step 8: Eye Cream
After using the Balance Me serum, I use an eye cream. As far as my under eye area, the main problem I have is with dark circles. I have been using the Ole Henriksen Banana Bright Eye Creme as it helps with dark circles as well as with fine lines and wrinkles. The eye cream also preps for under eye concealer, which makes it great for when I wear makeup that day.
Step 9: Moisturizer
After the serum and eye cream are absorbed into my skin, I move on to the next step, which is a moisturizer. My go-to moisturizer lately has been The Body Shop Tea Tree Mattifying Lotion for the day and the Wheesht Balancing Day Cream for the night. The Body Shop lotion is lightweight and it does hydrate my skin while controlling oiliness. Using a moisturizer will also help prevent mask acne as it reduces irritation when wearing a mask. The Wheesht cream is thicker, which makes it great to use in the evenings. The cream is suitable for all skin types but especially for oily skin, and even though it has day cream in the name, it can be used in the mornings and evenings.
Step 10: Sunscreen
As far as the last step, I only use sunscreen in the morning. I use the Matas Natur Facial Sunscreen with SPF 15 that protects against UVA and UVB rays. The sunscreen also has added hyaluronic acid to moisturize the skin and reduce wrinkles. The sunscreen does not feel greasy, and the pump makes it is easy to use and apply to my face and neck. Since Matas is a Danish drugstore brand, I suggest reading Ebun & Life’s 18 Best Drugstore Sunscreens post for recommendations of sunscreen for all different skin types..
Overall, I feel like following a 10 step skincare routine has improved my skin. My face feels cleaner because I am doing a double cleanse, which I did before starting this routine, but now I am also using a tea tree toner. My face also seems less oiler, and I have fewer blemishes because I am using multiple products that are suited for my skin type. Furthermore, the weather is just now warming up, but in colder weather, my face can get drier, and I have not experienced any dryness due to using the serum and moisturizer. I have also been regularly using an exfoliator as well as mud masks and peel-off masks, which has helped my skin as well. As a final disclaimer, even though these products have been effective for me, everyone’s skin is different. Even if you have the same skin type as me, the products I use may not work as well for you.