We don't blame you for falling hard and fast for K-beauty, especially for their skincare. Those glow-inducing options are hard to resist, given that they offer a variety of impressive formulas that are perfect for Asian skin. This is probably why many people with oily skin tend to prefer Korean skincare, which often have lightweight textures that are perfect for layering. Not to mention, most products come at a reasonable price point so you can build a powerhouse of a routine without exactly breaking the bank. And to prove that point, here's a curated list of oily skin-friendly picks should you need to give your routine a K-beauty makeover:
Korean Skincare Routine for Oily Skin
Step 1: Makeup Remover
Instead of relying on your face wash to remove your makeup, opt for a double-cleansing method—a popular technique in K-beauty in which you have a separate makeup remover and cleanser. This helps achieve a deeper clean without being too harsh on your skin. For your first cleanse, opt for a cleansing oil that'll melt off traces of foundation and waterproof mascara and rinse off easily with water.
DEAR KLAIRS Gentle Black Deep Cleansing Oil, P1200, Beauty Bar
Step 2: Facial Wash
There's only one rule of thumb with cleansing for all skin types—the gentler, the better. No matter your skin type, your face wash should never make your face feel dry and squeaky clean, because that will only force your skin to product more oil. For oily skin, a gentle foaming cleanser with a low pH (around 5.5) works the best. This kind of face wash is actually quite common in K-beauty now, so it won't be difficult to find one!
THANK YOU FARMER Back To Pure Daily Foaming Gel Cleanser, P1299, Beautymnl
Step 3: Toner
You have a choice between two types of toners: a bland, hydrating, one that's only meant to restore your skin's pH balance, or a toner with acids like AHA and BHA that lightly exfoliate and get rid of dead skin. You can use both and alternate them, too, depending on what your skin is feeling that day. Just try to avoid anything with too much alcohol, as it could dry your skin out!
Exfoliating: COSRX One Step Original Clear Pad, P900, SM Makati; Hydrating: PYUNKANG YUL Mist Toner, P580, Go Bloom and Glow
Step 4: Mask
Your face mask should serve as your treatment step, depending on what your skin needs at the moment. Feel like your pores are clogged? Slather on a clay mask for a few minutes to absorb all the gunk. But if sheet masks are more your vibe, choose an alcohol-free one that claims to help control your sebum production while also providing your skin with extra nutrients.
MEDIHEAL HDP Pore Stamping Charcoal Mask, P149, Watsons
Step 5: Essence
Essences resemble serums in a way that they both contain potent ingredients, but the former has a thinner (often watery) texture that's perfect for oily skin. In fact, an essence could give you a strong skin boost if you're feeling a little too oily to apply an actual serum. Ones with fermented ingredients like galactomyces have amazing anti-aging properties and provide lightweight hydration, but you could also opt for formulas with snail mucin to help prevent breakouts.
COSRX Galactomyces 95 Tone Balancing Essence, P1000, Beautymnl
Step 6: Serum
When it comes to your serums, avoid thick, oil-based ones that could overwhelm your pores. Stick to ones with a lightweight, fast-absorbing texture but with an efficient list of ingredients. In the morning, you can go for a vitamin C serum that'll give you extra UV protection and brighten your overall complexion. But if you want an instant glow and to fight dehydration, a hyaluronic acid is the way to go!
Step 7: Moisturizer
Hydration is a must even for oily skin types. Choosing the right texture for you is key—a water-based or gel moisturizer would be a comfortable option for you, provided that the product has humectants that hold moisture in your skin longer. (See more oily skin-friendly moisturizer here!)
MIZON Snail Recovery Gel Cream, P550, Beautymnl
Step 8: Sunscreen
At this point, you might already feel that adding another layer of skincare would feel too heavy and greasy for you, but believe it when we say that sunscreen is a step you can't skip—especially in the daytime. It's your ultimate protection against skin damage from the UV rays and pollution, which will definitely benefit you in the long run. That said, the cool thing about having oily skin is you can actually use your sunscreen as moisturizer in the morning to save yourself from having an extra layer. Luckily, most K-beauty sunblocks have extra skincare properties and can even give you a subtle glow!
MAKE P:REM UV Defense Me. Blue Ray Sun Gel, P1260, Freyja Glorietta 2