Not too long ago, my skin-care morning routine is close to nil. Yes, it’s almost nonexistent. I figured, I just slept and did not wear any makeup to bed or walked around town, so why do I need to have a skincare routine in the morning? Those precious hours, I can use that time to grab some extra z’s, right? Plus, I take a shower before going out. So… Skincare isn’t my top priority in the morning. Well, I was faced with the cold-hard truth, when my skin started looking dull and flaky, even when I just woke up. And I’m not even close to being 30. Why, oh why? Aargh!! (￣ヘ￣)
Now, I should let everyone know, I’m a total Korean-Drama Series FANATIC!!! When one watches enough K-drama series, one would notice how the actors and actresses seems to glow off the TV/computer screen. They have the dewiest skin that even a baby’s bottom would look dull compared to them. Then there are my Asian friends, who are in their late 30s and early 40s looking even younger than me with their glowing youthful skin. Unfair world, right?
With just a little bit of research, I found out how well-known Korea’s Beauty regiments are even in the western part of the globe. So, armed with my credit card and product lists, I splurged on new sets of skincare products. That was last year. After trying out many products, I finally dwindle it down to my top favorites.
Just, a reminder, the products below are from items I’ve tested and currently using. I’ve chosen the following products based on what I like and what my skin likes. You may notice, I like to mix and match products from different brand and different places. This is just a guideline and not a fool-proof list. Each person should find the right product for their skin type, based on their needs, and of course budget. However, the steps are non-negotiable.
THE MORNING BASICS
STEP 1: Cleanser
You’re probably like me, asking if cleansing is necessary in the morning. The answer is yes. After a full night of tossing and turning, sweating and sebum production, we need to rid those to start our face fresh, like a clean palette. However, remember to use a light cleanser in the morning. What I’ve been using is Skin Food Lemon Brightening Morning Cleanser. It’s light and smells citrus-y that just wakes up my senses. I can’t really say much about its brightening effect, but it does even out my skin tone. I do this step either while I’m showering or after. So, typically my cleanser is shelved along with my shampoo and body wash in the bathroom.
STEP 2: Toner
Don’t use astringents. Those products dries out the skin, sucking all the moisture out of you. Actually, any product with alcohol in it dries out the skin. Well, I guess if you have an oily skin, that would work better. However, what’s in right now are toners called ‘lotion’ or ‘softener’. They are toner’s milkier version. It’s meant to hydrate and prep the skin. For my needs, I went ahead and used Pond’s White Beauty Pore Conditioning Toner. Yes, I know, this one isn’t a Korean Product, I got it from Philippines. But, just like I mentioned in my intro paragraph, I choose products based on my needs. This specific product helps tighten my big pores and it smells divine.
STEP 3: Eye Cream
We all know, the skin around the eye areas is much thinner than the rest of our face and is prone to early sign of aging or blemishes. With eye cream, it will not only nourish the delicate skin around our eyes but it will also protect the area from facial serum. Since, not all facial serums are meant for eye area and may even cause irritation. To be on the safe side, apply eye cream before applying facial serum. I use two different eye cream alternately. Some days I feel like using Secret KEY Snail Repairing Eye Cream (I use this on my nightly skincare routine as well) and some days I may opt in using Holika Holika Jewel Light Under Eye Essence. Both products are specifically for the eye area that will help and protect it.
STEP 4: Serum
Interchangeably, I use Serum and Essence products on my face. Well, if you ask me, serum and essence are basically the same thing. They are both moisturizing agents. The only difference is their makeup. Typical serum products are a bit thick in consistency, more oil-like. While typical essences is more light, opaque and feels more lotion-like. (Although, I’ve seen a few serum product already looking more like essence, so it’s harder to differentiate between the two.) My skin gets oily in the T-zone, so using an oil based serum isn’t ideal for my skin. So, I opted on a newer type of serum. The one that crosses over the threshold toward essence and that is Skin Food Watery Berry Serum. It runs watery, light, and partially opaque. After applying, it does not leave any white oily strikes, instead the skin absorbs it right away and penetrates deeply to treat the skin.
STEP 5: Moisturizer/Emulsion
Some Korean trend uses a milkier moisturizer called ‘emulsion’ and then layer a cream on top. However, recently more have been choosing one or the other. Since, it’s for a day use, I went with an emulsion with an SPF, Shiseido White Lucent Brightening Emulsion SPF 15. One may not think SPF 15 isn’t enough, that is true, since according to Skin Cancer Foundation, we need at least a minimum of SPF 30 to block nearly 97 percent UVB radiation. Well, not to worry, there’s another step for that.
STEP 6: UV/Sun Protection
We all know that Sunscreen with a higher SPF offer more protection from the sun’s harmful UV radiation, which is linked to skin problems. According to Dr. Steven Q. Wang, MD of Skin Cancer Foundation, Sunscreen “products with SPFs no lower than 30 and no higher than 50” is the safest bet. However, just having a high SPFs that protects us from UVB isn’t enough. Sun’s UV radiation reaches the earth in two form, UVB (which SPFs blocks) and UVA rays. With that in mind, we need to look for Sun protection with both UVB and UVA protection. What I use is Missha All-Around Safe Block Soft Finish Sun Milk SPF50+ PA+++. The PA followed by plus signs is a designation used in Japan to rate the UVA protection of a sunscreen. With my Missha Sun screen, I’m protected from both form of UV radiation. Oh Yah!!
STEP OPTIONAL: Mists
Now, this last one is an optional thing. For me, I get allergies if it’s too hot outside and if my skin feels too dry. Using mists helps my skin drinks up some moisture without redoing the whole regimen. I have two different mists. One, I take everywhere I go, Tony Moly Pocket Bunny Moist Mist and the other one that I use before putting on my BB Cream is AmorePacific Moisture Bound Skin Energy Mist. Both product gives my face an instant spritz of skin-balancing moisture. The only difference is the Bunny Mist is in an adorable small and compact bottle that I could carry anywhere.
Now, now. You may think, seriously, 6-7 steps? In the morning? Yes, 6 steps don’t take much time. For those who are skeptical, I actually timed my routine. Guess what, it didn’t even take that long.
So for those who wants to maintain their glowing youthful look, it’s best to practice this routine earlier on. I may only have started last year, but I’m already noticing the difference.
Goodbye flaky skin.
Goodbye dull skin.
Hello Glowing Me!!
How about you? What are your skincare routine in the morning? I would love to know them, comment below and feel free to like and subscribe for more stuff… Also, check what I got for my Night Skincare Routine, here. (link: ___)
Hugs, Dee ♥