my current skincare routine

my skincare routine changes often in the sense that I use a lot of different products but what doesn’t change are the core steps and principles. I tend to stick to Korean products but I also like to try new things and use whatever is on hand that I can find. regardless of what I use, I always cleanse, hydrate, infuse, moisturize and protect.

the core step of every good skincare routine is cleansing. in an ideal world I like to remove makeup completely. on days that I wear makeup I use wipes or micellar water to remove makeup before I start cleansing. I don’t particularly love any one specifically, but while traveling I ran out of makeup wipes and picked up this micellar water from Ulta, it does the job without any flourishes and a big bottle was around $15.

after makeup removal is a two step cleanse. first is an oil or balm cleanser with a face massage. the last cleansing balm I used for oil cleansing was this Korean brand Heimish. it’s your standard cleansing balm – oils breakdown the makeup and dirt and it rinses into a milky liquid.

second is a water cleanse with face cleanser. the cleanser I’ve been religiously using for years is this green tea cleansing stick from Neogen. it’s gentle, effective and the stick format makes it easy to travel with – it won’t explode in your luggage or count towards your liquids limit at TSA. I gift this cleanser to all my girlfriends and they love it too. it smells nice and has little bits of real green tea leaves in it.

after cleansing is toner with a cotton pad and essence to infuse my skin with hydration. I’ve used lots of toners but they all have one thing in common – they are alcohol free and aren’t astringent. my aunt gifted me this Sulwhasoo Essential Comfort Balancing Water from her skincare stash – it’s a viscous thick liquid that’s refreshing, hydrating, gentle and smells really pleasantly herbal. I like especially like using this cold – it stays in the skincare section of my refrigerator. I use this as both my toner and essence. I swipe some on with a cotton pad and pat some in.

after toning and essence is serum and ampoules. I use serum and ampoules as a step to target my problem areas – mainly uneven tone and hyperpigmentation. I’ve been using this Cellcure for months and I really love it. it’s super hydrating, lightweight texture and it brightens my complexion really quickly. it comes in these tiny vials to keep the product fresh, a box contains 4 vials and lasts a couple months if you use it everyday. Cellcure the brand behind this product is made by a Korean biomedical company that does stem cell research so the products are really both effective and gentle. it came highly recommended by the ladies at Palace Beauty in the K Town Galleria in Los Angeles and they did not disappoint. I liked it enough to start using more products from Cellcure.

I use serums as a lightweight liquid step but I like to follow up with something richer and creamier for my moisturizer step. I’ve been using this Cellcure Placenta Protein Volume Ampoule as my moisturizer and it just gives my face a nice glow and bouncy texture. I have no idea if it actually has placenta in it, I’m guessing since the company does biomedical research around stem cells it’s a possibility but I prefer to imagine that they’ve synthesized placenta protein and incorporated it into this cream so it’s like rubbing newborn stem cells on your face.

after my layers of skincare products sink in and dry down I put on a chemical SPF 50 sunscreen. this is the latest one I’ve been using from Beauty of Joseon. it’s lightweight, skin calming and brightening, relatively affordable and doesn’t leave a white cast on my face. I also feel like at the $18 price point you can apply it everywhere liberally and not feel too guilty about wasting it.

for sunscreen throughout the day I love this sunscreen stick also by Beauty of Joseon. it’s non-greasy, mattifying, can be applied over makeup without messing up your makeup. it’s one of those sounds too good to be true products but it’s real. worth keeping in your bag throughout the day.

what does your daily skincare routine look look like?

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claudia cho

writer creator mind behind