Beauty Lifestyle

10 Step K-Beauty Break Down: Steps 3 – 4

If you’ve spent a lot of time on the internet in the last year or so then you have more than likely heard of the ten step Korean Beauty Routine. And you certainly don’t have to be a beauty enthusiast or guru to follow them. While it may sound a little excessive at first, if you take a look at some of the people who follow this routine, you’ll get a pretty clear picture of why it has gained global renown for its incredible results. In this series of articles, we will continue to break down the ten steps at an easy pace of two at a time. Let’s get our beauty game on.

This time we will be covering steps 3 & 4, namely, exfoliate and toner…but for an overview, here are the full ten steps.

  1. Oil Cleanse
  2. Foam Cleanse
  3. Exfoliate
  4. Toner
  5. Essence
  6. Serum or Ampoule
  7. Sheet Mask
  8. Eye Cream
  9. Moisturiser
  10. Sunscreen

If you missed out on the previous article in this series you can read it here:


© 2199823 – minree, Pixabay, 27.11.2018,

Step 3 – Exfoliate

One of the most important parts to any skincare routine is the exfoliation of the face and body. Exfoliating gets rid of dead skin cells and brightens dulling skin, it improves your blood circulation which in turn speeds up your skin’s turnover rate (the rate at which cells die and replace themselves with new cells) plus it makes your skin look younger and literally healthier. Lack of exfoliation can cause a number of skin problems for your face and body.

Here are some exfoliators that we recommend.

Korean Italy Towel – Korean Italy towels are made of 100% Viscose and are much more hygienic than the common luffa. They come in 3 different colours: pink (the least abrasive, and often used on the face or sensitive areas), green (the most commonly used Italy towel which is used for the body with the exception of ‘private’ areas), and yellow (the toughest of all the towels and generally only ever used by men).  This is a great choice for people who don’t want to use a skincare product to exfoliate.

Konjac Sponge – Made from the Konjac root, these adorably squishy sponges are amazing for the face and body. They provide extremely gentle exfoliation and are perfect for those who have acutely sensitive skin.

Skinfood’s ‘Black Sugar Strawberry Wash-Off Face Mask’ – Enriched with Strawberry, Macadamia, and Meadowfoam seed oil, this is an awesome addition to any skincare routine. Known as a sensitive skin friendly product.

Secret Nature’s ‘From Jeju Peeling Gel’ – Full to the brim with broccoli, Centella Asiatica, clove, eucalyptus, grapefruit, bergamot, and so much more. This peeling gel is definitely high on our favourites list. You can find this product in our Inspire Me Korea “Pamper Me” Beauty Box.

I’m From’s ‘Rice Mask’ – Straight out of Gyeonggi province’s Yeoju Deokpyeong village, this rice mask contains organic Yeoju rice grown without pesticides and other nasties. Why Yeoju rice? Yeoju rice contains up to 3 times more dietary fibre than any other brand of rice plus tons of amino acids and is high in vitamins B1 & B2 as well as multiple other minerals.


© 906137 – kerdkanno, Pixabay, 27.11.2018,


Step 4 – Tone

Toners are necessary and we’ll explain why. After you cleanse your face, your skin’s ph mantle is unbalanced and lacking the nutrition that it needs. Toning not only balances your skin’s ph levels but also adds light moisturization and the nutrition your skin is craving. Toning before moisturizing or even using a face mask is scientifically proven to enhance and maximize the effects of the products and the absorption into the skin.

We think these toners are awesome, check it out.

PyunKang Yul’s ‘Essence Toner’ – Containing 91.3% Milk Vecht Root extract, this toner contains only 7 ingredients; all of which are free of artificial fragrances and colours and is hypoallergenic. This toner is known for making your skin feel hydrated while leaving it looking as fresh as morning dew. Korean men & women fell in love with this product as soon as it released as a result of its amazing way of improving your skin’s look after the application of make-up.

Dear, Klairs’ ‘Supple Preparation Facial Toner’ – Probably one of Korea’s most loved toners which is now even better than ever – offering both their original toner and their newer unscented toner, it’s easy to tell that Klairs’ main concern is their customers. This toner is amazing as it is non-irritating and rejuvenates the skin; on the other hand, it also prepares your skin for the rest of your skincare and make-up routine making it a notably good buy.

Secret Key’s ‘Fresh Nature Toners’ – Secret Key has an array of different toners for different skin types and needs. Each one contains natural ingredients while still remaining at an extremely affordable price. These toners are known for brightening skin, fading and healing acne scars, refreshing your skin, and tightening pores. We highly recommend you check them out.

Zymogen’s ‘Nutri Active Ferment Toner’ – For all of you in your twenties and counting, this toner is for you. Fermented ingredients like green tea ferment, honey ferment, maesil (Korean plum) ferment, gastrodia (potato orchid) ferment, pomegranate ferment, Pueraria Mirifica root ferment, rice ferment, pumpkin seed ferment, glycyrrhiza (liquorice) ferment, and red ginseng ferment help to preserve youthful-looking skin by evening the complexion, tightening the skin and pores, stimulating your skin’s natural turnover, and preventing wrinkles and fine lines. (Anti-ageing care should start at the age of 20.)

© 3087585 – JESHOOTScom, Pixabay, 27.11.2018,

Hopefully, we have given you a bit of insight into exfoliation and toning and the importance of both of these steps.

Is there an exfoliant you prefer using? Know any great toners? Have any recommendations for us? Let us know, we’d love to chat K-Beauty with you.

Remember – when using any beauty products, make sure to follow the instructions carefully for the best results.

Got some tips to share? Tag us @inspiremekorea on Instagram.

If you have any questions regarding the 10 step K-beauty routine, the first two cleansing steps, the exfoliation or toning steps, or any other beauty queries be sure to let us know. You can find us on all of our social media.




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Featured Image Source: © 2052837 – choimingkk4, Freeqration, 27.11.2018,

Matthew Keeler

American-born Australian planning on making Korea my home. 4-Dimensional optimist :D Love life and live with no regrets. Be yourself, and treat everyone with kindness.^^



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