If you’re going to start integrating Korean skin care products into your routine, I recommend starting with one of the following categories: cleansers, essences, or masks. These are some of the most unique and impactful products that the Korean market offers, and they are available in a delightful array. Here are some of the most beloved/well-reviewed, and my favorites.
Sheet masks and sleeping packs are kind of like the dessert of Korean skin care routines: you don’t want one every night, but it’s a treat you can look forward to a couple times per week. (Also if you eat dessert every night I have nothing but respect for that. Do you, dessert-eating boo.) Sheet masks come in individual packaging and are typically cloth soaked in a serum intended to address specific concerns (e.g. fine lines, blemishes) while delivering a ton of moisture to the skin. And hello, they’re so fun.
Benton Snail Bee High Content Mask Pack $15 for 10pcs
My Beauty Diary Imperial Bird’s Nest Mask $14 for 10pcs
There are TONS of good sheet mask options, and they are growing in popularity stateside so availability is pretty good. My understanding is that the Korean brands do tend to use more highly-concentrated serums, but Sephora has some branded ones. Dr. Jart+ has some of the most beloved sheet masks on the market but they are $$$, so I’d save this for a particularly haggard skin moment (post bachelorette party, perhaps). The two I’ve listed above are my current favorites, but there are too many to stay loyal to just one: I gotta catch ’em all.
Join in on the IG fun with #sheetmaskselfie, because aint no shame in this skin care game.
This is one of my most favorite products. It’s a sleeping mask (also referred to as a sleeping pack) that you layer on top of all your other products to really lock them in with an extra barrier of moisture. It absorbs beautifully and does not leave a tacky or sticky feeling behind, but rather a suede-y feeling as if water would bead and roll off of your face (hence the name, I think?). It’s also a great value: at 1-2 uses per week, this $23 jar pot will last a very long time. AND! The entire Laneige line is now sold at Target, so you can get your K-beauty fix while getting your Nate Berkus on!
New to Korean skin care? Start here!