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Given the ever-escalating popularity of all things Korean in pop culture, it can be hard to pinpoint the exact moment you became a believer. Maybe you first came across the term double cleansing and felt tempted to try the famed 10-step beauty routine. Perhaps a late-night Google search led you to discover all the non-boring ways in which Koreans indulge their skin with masks while lounging at home (Rubber masks! 24-karat gold masks! Masks that foam and bubble!) Maybe you even started a K-drama, promising yourself you’d watch an episode or two to see what the hype is about, but walked away with a full-blown addiction instead. The good news is that all those weekend binge sessions can double up as a handy resource for scoring firsthand intel on how Korean women keep their skin dewy, glowing and ageless at all times. These are the skincare rituals and habits that Koreans have grown up watching and learning from their moms and grandmothers, and with these k-dramas, you can get in on the action too.
1. Cheat days are for food, not your skincare regimen
Tending to the whims and fancies of a narcissistic vice chairman can be a stressful task, which is why Secretary Kim of What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim? is vigilant with her skincare routine. While her boss credits his radiance to his self-proclaimed aura, his secretary maintains fidelity to a regenerative nighttime routine. Topping her list of favourites is the Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Duo that proves it’s never too early to focus on anti-ageing in your regimen. Skincare enthusiasts also won’t want to miss the age-old Korean technique for getting the most out of your skincare products—the practice of patting in your serums to help the formula penetrate deeper into the skin and boost blood flow to activate the cells.
2. Your neck needs a skincare routine too
As one of South Korea’s top (fictional) players in beauty, Yoon Se-ri from Crash Landing On You is well-versed with the importance of a dedicated skincare regimen. Not even being stranded in a North Korean village with no access to hot running water can keep the heiress from following her nighttime routine, and thanks to a benevolent military officer, she finds herself with access to a few smuggled products from across the border. The one that catches her eye is the Manyo Factory Bifida Ampoule, an anti-ageing essence that activates deep skin cells and smoothens age-related wrinkles. While the right products can go a long way, she would like you to remember that your skin does not end at your face—remember to smoothen four-five drops of your serum over your neck like her as well to keep your skin smoother and radiant for longer.