Korean pop culture, along with Korean food, make-up, movies etc is becoming increasingly popular, and the media has dubbed this phenomenon the "The Korean Wave".
Korean beauty (also called K-beauty) products are not only cute to look at, they are also good for the skin.
SkinFood, Glow Recipe, Laneige, Innisfree etc are Korean beauty brands which are extremely popular for their unique and high-quality products.
To get a flawless, pore-less, glowing skin, you could follow a 10-step Korean skincare routine.
The steps basically include cleanser, toner, scrubs or exfoliators, essence, serums or ampoules, sheet masks, moisturiser, eye cream and finally sunscreen or night cream.
Do not worry, you do not have to go through all the steps at the same time or on the same day.
Here is the full breakdown of the 10-step Korean skincare routine:
Step One: Oil cleanser
Even for those of us with oily skin, cleansing your face with oil removes pollutants, SPF and sebum.
You apply your oil cleanser first on a dry skin. You can skip this part in the morning routine.
Step Two: Water-based cleanser
Use a water-based, foamy cleanser with a low pH.
Applied on a wet skin, a foam cleanser will give you a deeper cleansing than oil.
Step Three: Exfoliation
After cleaning your face, twice a week you need to exfoliate to remove any dead skin cells that are clogging your pores.
This step is best done at night.
Step Four: Toner
You might think that the toner is another product to wipe more gunks off, but in the Korean culture, toner is full of botanical ingredients that regulate your skin's pH and soften your skin after the face wash.
You need to use toner every time you wash your face with cleanser.
Step five: Essence
Essence is what really makes or breaks the Korean skincare routine. It is a mix between a toner and a serum and hydrates your skin.
You can skip this step if you do not have any skin problems or if your skin is very oily.
Essence is included on both day and night routine but one can even use it once a day.
Step six: Serum or ampoule treatment
Serums are concentrated formulas with an extensive amount of active ingredients that target specific skin concerns like dehydration, age spots or wrinkles.
Ampoules are similar to serum but with a thicker texture and a higher number of active ingredients.
You can use them during the day or at night.
Step seven: Mask
Sheet masks can be found almost anywhere now, and they are easy to put on and take off.
A mask should only be used once or twice per week.
Choose one that addresses the problems your skin may be having that week.
Step eight: Eye cream
The skin around your eyes is delicate and thin, so it is a good idea to use your ring finger to apply the cream around the eye area.
Add this step in your night routine. If you do not have any wrinkles just yet, you can skip the step.
Step nine: Moisturiser
If you are doing this routine in the evening, a thick night cream is best.
But if you prefer to do this routine in the morning, a thin layer of moisture is all you need.
Step ten: Sunscreen /Night mask
In countries that receive a lot of sun, like Bangladesh, sunscreen should be worn on a daily basis.
It is important to buy a sunscreen with all-round protection from UVA and UVB rays.
It is also recommended to use a sunscreen with a high sun protection factor (SPF) of 30+ as this protects you from 97 percent of UVB rays.
Most repair work is done at night while you are sleeping and so leaving a face mask on overnight can aid the process.
Do remember that the secret to great skin is not all about following a strict skincare regime.
It is also about hydration, getting a sufficient amount of sleep and following a healthy and nutritious diet.
Where to find K-beauty products: There are many online pages in Bangladesh who sell a variety of K-beauty products. Such as The Mall, Beautiv, Classy Drugs, Korean Fawz Bangladesh, Bargaining Shop, Moon's Gallery, K-beauty Bangladesh etc.
Price range: K-beauty products usually cost between Tk700 and Tk3200. But there are product sets that can cost more.