Basic Skincare Routine for Combination Skin
I admire others' cultures. Most notably, the Parisienne je ne sais quoi and the hot and trending Korean skin care routine, coined the term K-beauty.
In a recent book I read, How to Be Parisian Wherever You Are, which I loved, they talk about the beauty of an au-naturale look and how healthy skin is sexier than full-faced makeup.
Essentially, there's power in pout rather than the length of lashes. A woman with a pop of color on hydrated lips and light coat of mascara is much more desirable than a woman with long, luscious falsies and chapped lips.
Skin care is an emphasis, as a woman's appeal is in the wellness and health of her appearance.
While reading through this I thought, LOL my skin is an atrocity by default. I grew up with teen acne and have struggled with adult acne throughout my late-teens and early twenties. I constantly and consistently have a cluster of hormonal acne colonized on my chin and jawline, and that's just the way it's always been for me.
Concluding the book I tried to cut back on sugar and salt, cut out most diary products, drank more water (I weirdly drink a TON of water at bedtime, like a whole water bottle throughout the night), but to no avail my skin was the same: a combination of extremely dry and oily, with large clogged pores on my nose, and stubborn hormonal acne.
I also tried every skin treatment under the sun. Countless dermatologist appointments just led to more inflamed and irritated skin from prescription creams and cleansers. Facials, dermabrasion, microdermabrasion, chemical peels, extractions - you name it, I probably tried it. And it probably didn't work, at least not for me.
I guess it's only appropriate my testy skin matches my unwavering personality.
I recently discovered the popular Korean beauty trend via Snapchat. It's where I get all my news, obviously. In the video Charlotte Cho of Soko Glam was talking all-things K-beauty and I was like a sponge. I used to work for a luxury day spa where aestheticians would focus on corrective treatments for skin problems (again, el-oh-el even those treatments didn't help me) and so I'm familiar with what ingredients to look for and their placement on a list to determine the product's potency.
Taking the leap into Korean skincare, I personalized my own skincare routine with Soko Glam products. I decided I would NOT jump head first into the deep-end that is K-beauty and focused my products on the basics to start. After all, I was starting from scratch with no previous skincare regimen. You don't really want to introduce 10+ products with 10+ steps to a new routine. You'll never know what's working and what might not!
Note: I have COMBINATION SKIN, meaning I'm oily on my nose, chin and brow but dry on my forehead and cheeks - so this routine can be for those of the same skin type. For those of other skin types, check out these starter packs of the same routine, but with specialized products for your skin type:
Also good to know, these products have (by US terms) "spa-line" ingredients meaning the ingredients, and the potency of these ingredients, are equivalent or better to what you might find at a spa, and so much better than what you'd find at a drugstore or Sephora/Ulta.
I remember paying over $400 for the Dermatolgica line from Ulta. It didn't clear my face at all and I still felt like my face was dull. So I basically paid over $400 for water (usually the first ingredient listed in US products, which means that's what it mostly consists of). Soko Glam's price for my full 10-step personalized routine? $250.
Below is my EXACT skincare routine, as of now - I just bought a few other items that I'll introduce slowly. I've followed this regimen almost daily (maybe missing a night here, or a rushed morning there), and it has been tried-and-true...and WORKS. My skin has never felt this healthy, plump and glowing, and from doing this for about 2-3 weeks I've noticed a significant difference in the size of my pores and chin acne.
Step 1 (first-cleanse, night only)
Cleansing Oil & Blackhead [PHA] - look up and describe the ingredients, its use, and how-to, make a e-book or guide. I recommend printing out the product description on their website for any product you buy because when you get it, it's all in Korean lmao. This oil-based cleanser is like unreal for blackheads, oily T-zone and larger pores. On my second use of this my skin is super soft, hydrated, non-oily, smaller blackheads and visibly smaller pores in my T-zone!
Step 2 (day/night for double cleanse)
Green Tea Real Fresh Foam Cleanser - a-m-a-z-i-n-g for acne-prone skin. It's also super light! It's a water-based cleanser so you'll want to use after the oil-based cleanser.
**note - I only double-cleanse at night. The water-based cleanser (Step 2) becomes my Step 1 for daytime.
Step 3 (day/night)
Time Revolution Clear Toner - also a pore-minimizing and tightening toner.
Step 4 (day/night)
Zeo Brightening Emulsion - brightening and oil control moisturizer! Read the description of this on the site, it's great! You can literally feel the product working on your face.
Step 5 (day only)
Brightening Up Sunscreen SPF 50/PA+++ - because, wrinkle prevention.