Korean 10-Step Routine | Korean Skincare | Skin Library

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It’s time to change the relationship we have with our skin. The way we treat our skin daily will have a lasting effect on how our skin will age in the future. At Skin Library, we are here to guide you into developing a much more loving relationship with your skin. We’ll bust some old skincare myths that may be doing more harm to your skin than good and we have the answer you need for sprightly, better looking skin.

Inspired by the beauty capital of the world, the 10 STEP skincare routine, will help bring life back into your skin. We understand 10 steps may be too much for your busy schedule, but it’s fine, whether you pick 3 main steps or spend time on all 10 , by just adjusting your daily routine and trying these new techniques - you’ll start to see the benefits!


The holy grail of Korean beauty is to retain moisture and to keep your skin hydrated throughout the entire skin care process. In order to succeed, you must try and keep your face fairly moist until the end of your routine. Challenge accepted!

This first step may sound like a nightmare for people with oily skin. However, did you know the best way to manage overactive oily skin is to use oil based cleansers?

If your finding it hard to believe, here’s some science to back us up. The reason you may suffer with oily skin is because of the sebaceous glands that are overactive under the skin layer, this results in the skin producing more oil that can clog pores and attract bacteria. It can also result in breakouts and acne.

Right then! I’ll use the strongest cleanser I can find to strip my skin of oil and leave it dry and healthy, right? Wrong! Although, too much oil is bad, our skin does need some oil because our skin needs moisture to be healthy. If you overly scrub or rub your skin and use abrasive, harsh cleansers you’ll strip your skin of all the good oils it needs which will result in dry skin becoming flaky, cracked and itchy.

A lot of the cleansers currently on the market contain alcohol, which is known to dry out your skin. Oil cleansers, on the other hand, contain super oils like hydrophilic oil that binds with the oils on your skin to remove sebum, sunscreen and makeup easily.

I know we’ve been talking a lot about people with oily skin, but you’ll be happy to know oil cleansers work well on all skin types. As it’s a natural product, it doesn’t contain harmful chemicals, which is great news for people with sensitive skin. Oil cleansers are also great at narrowing pores and effectively removing blackheads.

I’m sold! But which cleanser is good for my skin?

Calming oils like rosemary and camellia seed oil are great if you have normal or sensitive skin. Whereas, grapeseed, argan, lavender and coconut oil work wonders on oily skin and those who suffer with acne. Avocado, jojoba and sunflower based oils are great for those with dry skin.


Repeat after me; moisture all the way, is sure to make your skin slay!

We weren’t joking about keeping your skin hydrated! The cleanse story doesn’t stop here, first comes oil, next comes water. The reason we follow with a water cleanse is to remove water based impurities like sweat and bacteria. Double cleansing is also great if you work in the city - our skin is constantly exposed to high levels of pollution daily, so it’s imperative that we remove every single cranny off our faces.


When we grow older, just like our metabolism, our skin regeneration slows down. This, in turn, causes the dead skin cells to pile up on the surface of our skin resulting in dull, rough and dare we say it, dry skin!

What’s worse, the excess oil from the dead skin cells can lead to clogged pores, making your skin more likely to breakout and develop blemishes. This is why the exfoliator is essential. By gently removing dead skin cells from your skin, you are free to reveal your true beautiful self and fresh glowing skin to the world!


When you think of face toners, what comes to mind?

Formerly, toners were seen as unnecessary and incredibly drying. Similar to some cleansers, toners would include high concentrations of alcohol to help strip our skin of all our makeup.

This ingredient, also referred to as ethanol alcohol, methanol, isopropyl alcohol and benzyl alcohol, is commonly used because it’s known for being good at killing bacteria which is known to bring about acne. Even though, alcohol does a good job at removing makeup, it also strips off all your skin’s essential oils which is not a step in the right direction towards healthy skin.

K-beauty toners on the other hand are packed full of hydrating active ingredients, including plant extracts and essential oils that leave your skin feeling hydrated. Natural elements like propolis and chamomile are great at fighting bacteria without damaging the skin’s pH balance.

Toners are tailored to address a variety of skin concerns for a number of different skin types. The product usually comes as a liquid-based consistency, looking very much like water, but unlike water, toners are able to remove dead skin cells and prep the pores. It is even seen as a primer for the rest of the treatment based products soon to be applied straight after. Similar to the five second rule, some experts state that the next product after toner should be applied within three seconds, so what are you waiting for? Quick!


Often referred to as the heart of the skincare routine, is her majesty, the essence.

Essences are important because unlike all the steps beforehand, this product works on a cellular level of your skin, concentrating on minimising the appearance of wrinkles, fine lines and uneven skin tones.

The active ingredients found in essences work tirelessly to regenerate the skin cells, leaving your skin looking smoother, brighter and more youthful. Essences are also great at hydrating the skin, preparing the skin for treatments like ampoules to be better absorbed into the skin and work it’s magic.


Both ampoules and serums are seen as highly concentrated skin treatments that contain active ingredients that can target specific skin concerns like fine lines, loss of firmness, hyperpigmentation and dehydration.

They may seem quite similar but usually ampoules have a higher concentration of active ingredients, making them more potent than serums.

Ampoules are great if you are in need of a little pick me up, say for instance if you’ve had a long day at work and still need to look great for evening drinks or have stayed up all night working on a project, sparingly slather on some ampoule to help give your skin an instantaneous boost. Some of the rich antioxidant ingredients include vitamin C, peptides and hyaluronic acid.

Serums work similarly to ampoules, as the active ingredients can help address specific skin problems like dark spots, wrinkles and hyperpigmentation. You do not need to use ampoules and serums everyday because of their high potency, especially if you have sensitive skin.


A lot of skin care products evaporate when you apply them to your skin, the sheet masks purpose is to work as a barrier that helps lock all the previous treatments into the skin, so your skin can fully benefit from all the nutrients and hard work you have put into to acquire healthier looking skin. Unlike clay and mud masks, that can be quite thick and drying, sheet masks help lock in all the good moisture.

In order to achieve the best results, sheet masks are worn for 15-20 minutes and you can use a mask every single day if you prefer!

If you don’t have time for a sheet mask, wash off masks can also be great. They are simple to use and are effective for controlling breakouts. They give a much deeper cleanse than sheet masks, they exfoliate better, unlike sheet masks, you can also treat your neck, hands and shoulders. After wearing a mask your skin is likely to feel refreshed, appear plump and glowy.


We spend most our day in front of a screen, at work, on our phones and at home on Netflix. The more strain we put on our eyes, the more irritable and dry our eyes become. Due to our busy lifestyles, we may not give ourselves enough sleep, increasing the appearance of puffy or panda eyes.

Have you heard of ‘screen eyes’?

The term derives from the uncomfortable dry feeling your eyes get after staring at screen too long, this may even cause you to rub your eyes a lot. Especially, before bed when you’re really tired. Also when you are busy staring at screens, you blink less causing the protective layer of moisture on your eye to evaporate.

The skin around our eyes is the most sensitive area of the face and it’s one of the first places where premature aging is most visible.

The skin around our eyes is the most delicate and needs products that can attain to it’s sensitive nature, rather than just using your everyday skin moisturiser.

Applying eye cream is a much needed addition to your daily skincare routine; creams which include niacinamide are great for under eye circles, whereas products infused with caffeine help derivative puffiness. If you have sensitive skin, it’s advised to choose a fragrance-free eye cream.


Now you have finished all the treatments, it time to seal all the newfound goodness, with an effective moisturizer. It’s important to moisturise your skin as it helps return the skin back to its natural balance. Our skin is acidic which helps protect from bacteria and environmental aggressors like pollution.

To get the best from your moisturiser, apply it when your skin is still damp so it can be absorbed better.

Fragrance has a tendency to irritate the skin, especially if you have sensitive skin, so it’s good to steer clear of products with added scents.

Now for the benefits!

Moisturiser are fab because they help reduce the chance of developing skin problems, they dull the appearance of blemishes and wrinkles.


One essential part of the skincare routine you might not expect is sunscreen. And we’re not only talking about in the summer when the sun attempts to make an appearance in the UK, but you must wear sunscreen even on the more usual gloomy days too. Yesm that’s right, all throughout the year!

Sun damage is more commonly known to affect people with lighter skin tones, as they are more likely the ones to try and get a tan or use sun beds. But if you are planning to sit in the sun for a while, it’s important to wear sunscreen to protect from harmful UV rays, although depending on the strength of the Sun Protection Factor (SPF), you can still tan, but with sunscreen applied you’ll be able to tan safely.

There are two types of harmful UV rays you should be aware of:

  • UVA rays are consistent all year round and are present at any time of day, the rays can penetrate deep into the skin and can cause premature aging and wrinkles.
  • UVB rays are the rays most commonly linked to skin cancer and can vary depending on the location, time of day and year. UVB rays are responsible for tanning, sunburn, redness and premature aging.
An inaccurate misconception is that darker skin people needn’t worry about wearing sun protection as they have enough melanin to protect themselves from the harmful rays. This is wrong. Although the darker pigment has protecting qualities, it can only protect you to a certain extent.

SPF 15 blocks 93% of UVB radiation
SPF 30 blocks nearly 97% of UVB radiation
SPF 50 blocks approximately 98% of UVB rays

When you are applying sunscreen, you should apply before you head out into the sun and after that you should aim for reapplication every three hours. If you have been swimming or sweating, it is also advised to reapply as the cream would have been stripped from the skin.

We hope you’ve enjoyed our top tips on protecting your skin to help it look it’s best for years and years to come. After you try the routine, let us know how you’ve got on in the comment section below! We’ll love to hear your skin stories and we’ll be here to help if you have any concerns.



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