I’ll admit, I am shallow enough to be influenced by flawless, porcelain-faced actresses in Korean dramas — I guess watching them in HD does that to a person. Their skin is so amazing and ridiculously pore-less and now I basically believe everything they say. I decided to adopt the infamous Korean 10-step beauty routine for a month and that’s the cue to things getting real.
I did some more research and basically was informed — not necessarily in a nice way — that I didn’t really know what I’m talking about and everything I thought about my skin was wrong. I also learned that a skin care routine is a huge part of their culture and is ingrained in li’l Korean babies since way before they got their first training bras, unlike the rest of us, who basically hit 30 and rush to buy a $200 dollar eye cream, hoping to reverse some damage we did to ourselves when we were teens.
It might look a bit intimidating and extreme to people looking in from the outside; but it basically boils down to cleansing, exfoliating, moisturising, treating and applying a ton of SPF in the day. I’ll spare you the whole my-skin-has-never-looked-better monologue — because frankly, that would be nonsense. The results were, however, undeniably better than most things that I’ve experienced in my (not very) long years of trail-and-error.
Most nights I had parred my 10-step commitment down to a 6-step routine, so it fits better into my #lazygirl lifestyle, and it wasn’t all that disappointing. The basic premise is that if you spend 30 minutes putting your face on, you must spend equal amount of time/effort removing it. It’s all about the double cleansing though. Start with an oil cleanser, break it up further with a foamy water-based cleanser and don’t forget to massage!
Followed by an exfoliator, a toner, and essence and an ampoule — this is when things really start to get a bit crazy. Clearly Koreans are all about that “more is more” lifestyle, and aren’t even close to being done yet. Do a sheet mask, eye cream, moisturiser and then a night cream. NOW, you’re done.
By this point your skin might be feeling a little mummified or like a 5-tiered cream cake with some ridiculous shine — and it definitely does not go unnoticed. Like most things in life, skin will hold up better if you treat it with love. So skip the harsh scrubbing, trade it in for gentle massages and thank me later. However, if you’re stumbling home at 2 am a little tipsy; barely able to change out of those impractical 4-inch heels — do yourself a favour and at least remove your day’s makeup with cleansing wipes — whether you’re in Korea or India.
Saumya R Chawla
The writer loves to over-share, drink wine & watch period dramas