Listen, being devoted to a multi-step skincare routine day and night is nothing short of impressive — you wouldn’t believe how many people brush off a question of what skincare they use with an answer like “Some random bar of soap.” But skincare isn’t black and white — there are a million shades of grey in between.
One thing is consistent for all walks of skincare — the sticky, stifling heat of summer and how it affects your usual routine. Even the most hardcore skincare devotee can feel lazy in the warmer months. We get it — nothing sounds less appealing in 80+ degree weather than applying 10 different products to your skin, no matter how lightweight and easily absorbed they are.
But that doesn’t mean you have to give up your usual K-beauty skincare routine completely. We went to the pros to learn what you should keep and what you should cut for the summer without sacrificing the clear, glowy skin you’ve come to expect with Korean skincare. Follow these tips to pare down the amount of products you use and the time it takes so you can actually go experience the summer in all of its glory.
Cut the oil cleanser in favor of a water-based or foaming formula.
While oil cleansers are efficacious in removing makeup, they leave a microscopic hydrating film behind on the complexion — often why a second, foaming cleanser is employed as the next step in a K-beauty routine. Ginger King, a cosmetic chemist based in New Jersey, suggests that “foaming cleansers are better at removing any excess grime, pollution, and sunscreen that builds up from spending more time outdoors.” Try Whamisa by Glow Studio Green Tea Foaming Gel Cleanser ($20), which is rich in antioxidants that provide environmental protection.
Skip toner and move straight to an essence.
King suggests skipping the toner step and moving straight to essences, which are considered by many to be more efficacious versions of toners (with a few notable exceptions, that is). These liquid lotions, she says, “help to increase absorption of skin products layered on top while also actively hydrating the complexion.” For example, Ithe Blithe InBetween Makeup Prep Essence ($38) helps to nourish, hydrate, and perfectly prep skin — in this case for a smooth, foundation-ready canvas. Ingredients like squalane and ceramides hydrate and smooth without clogging skin, too.
Choose one serum for day and one for night — max.
King’s recommendation is simple when it comes to summertime and serums: “Use a smaller amount, like a pea-sized dose.” Plus, you should reach only for what your skin absolutely needs. Generally, a daytime antioxidant serum works for all skin types in its work protecting from free radicals, such as Wish Formula I’m Pro Vitamin C Ampoule Pads ($4/each).
At night, opt for one that repairs and helps calm inflammation, such as Yuripibu Asiatica Calming Ampoule ($48), which is rich in cica, a super-effective ingredient to soothe redness; it’s great for rehydrating after long days in the sun, too.
Switch to a chiller moisturizer for daytime.
When it comes to summer hydrators, King’s favorite is a gel-cream formula, which is lightweight, less likely to make you break out, and cooling to the skin. “Gels are water based — as opposed to a heavier humectant ingredient — so it physically feels lighter on the face, too.” (Hot tip: Keep it in the fridge for a seriously sweet summer treat.) Try J. One Jelly Cream ($42), which brightens, plumps, and protects the skin from daily pollution and has that featherweight gel texture, too.
Make your night cream work really hard.
While a regular moisturizer can effectively work for both day and night, why not reap multiple benefits from your PM formula the way you will be with your day cream? Try Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask ($45), a hybrid does-it-all treatment drenched in soothing watermelon extract, plus hydrating hylauronic acid and pore-diminishing alpha-hydroxy acids. You fall asleep with dry, congested, irritated skin and wake up to smooth, glowing, clear skin. Magic!
Categories: Glow Recipe