Active organic compounds, innovative formulas and exotic ingredients – that’s why the world is turning to Korean skincare products, and we can’t ignore this wave of beauty.
Korean beauty brands and cosmetics are available for different skin types and are designed to meet their needs. From treating irritated skin to improving blood circulation to removing dead cells and other skin concerns, using K products in a daily skin care routine can help get the best results.
Natural plant and animal extracts, such as snail mucin, have long dominated the Korean beauty market. While these ingredients maximize the effects of products that result in younger, radiant skin, curious takers are ready to go all out for perfectly healthy skin.
However, it is advisable to use the products on a small patch of skin to test if you are allergic to the ingredients or consult a dermatologist.
Worried about getting authentic K-beauty ingredients to start your own Korean skincare routine?
Here are some of the natural Korean beauty ingredients you might consider
Natural and one of the most commonly used Korean skincare ingredients, propolis is found in the walls and joints of hives. With a resin-like texture, the gummy substance has many benefits and effective uses in skincare.
Its antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory properties make it a go-to ingredient for treating acne-prone skin, blemishes, and breakouts. Abundant in antioxidants, propolis also helps calm skin irritations.
According to K-beauty expert and owner of beauty brand Glow Recipe, Sarah Lee, propolis is a multi-faceted ingredient, which leaves a subtle glow on your skin. Applying it regularly can help restore a youthful appearance by sloughing off dead skin cells.
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The sap extracted from birch trees contains nutrients and enzymes that are good for sensitive skin and help soothe skin irritations and leave a natural dewy effect.
Founder of the Soko Glam beauty line, Korean beauty expert and author of Jeong’s little book, Charlotte Cho considers birch extract an essential ingredient in skincare products. She even considers it an extremely effective natural ingredient next to “coconut water due to its high protein and antioxidant content.”
Birch juice also contains high amounts of minerals, enzymes, proteins and vitamins. An extremely nourishing moisturizing agent, the application of birch juice in the fall and winter to dry skin prevents it from becoming even rougher.
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A centuries-old herb commonly used in traditional Chinese medicine, Centella Asiatica The plant is actively used for its healing and soothing properties, which makes it ideal for sensitive skin.
Although it has other common names like “tiger grass”, “Asian pennywort” or “gotu kola”, the herb usually goes by its scientific name itself.
The key active element that makes Centella Asiatica a sought-after ingredient in korean skincare products is madecassoside – an antioxidant that helps slow the signs of skin aging, repairs skin cells, and heals acne and blemishes.
Trust the amino acids found in the herb to deeply hydrate and nourish your skin. The anti-inflammatory elements also make it suitable for treating certain skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis.
Buy Centella Asiatica products here
It may seem strange at first, but you will be amazed to learn about its qualities and effects on the skin. Snail mucin, or snail secretion filtrate (SSF), is one of the most commonly used skincare ingredients in Korean beauty routines.
SSF is secreted as the snail moves, leaving behind a slimy, watery slime, which is harvested and used in a range of skin care products – from sheet masks to serums and moisturizers.
Its moisturizing agents help hydrate the skin, heal irritations and promote the growth of new skin. Snail mucin also acts as a skin barrier and retains natural moisture, while promoting collagen production.
Abundant in zinc, antioxidants like vitamins A and E and other essential skin nutrients including hyaluronic acid, glycoprotein, proteoglycans, microbial and copper peptides, regular application can help achieve a “dolphin skin”.
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Another favorite Korean skincare ingredient, Yuza, also known as Yuja, is a vitamin C-rich citrus fruit commonly found on Jeju Island in South Korea.
Vitamin C is an essential part of daily skincare routines in Korea, as it helps deeply nourish and protects the skin from harmful free radicals such as UV rays. Instrumental in increasing cellular repair, collagen production, and reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, Vitamin C and products fortified with this nutrient help firm skin and provide a healthy “glass skin” appearance.
Beauty expert Cho is also particularly supportive of adding Yuza to beauty regimens, as it is almost three times richer in vitamin C than lemons and helps lighten skin pigmentation and eliminate dark spots. .
For centuries, bamboo extract and its powdered form have been used in traditional Asian medicine to treat irritated and dull skin. This skincare ingredient has great anti-aging properties and promotes the production of collagen, which becomes depleted with age.
According to Ginger King, owner of product development brand Grace Kingdom Beauty and founder of lip care brand fanlovebeauty.com, bamboo powder also works as a good exfoliator. The gel-like consistency of bamboo extract helps in under eye care and is also helpful in curing acne.
Bamboo extract contains excellent moisturizing elements that strengthen the skin, lock in moisture and reduce fine lines.
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Pearls have long been one of the essential Korean beauty products and the K-skin care market is quite obsessed with them.
King says the healing properties of pearls help fight acne and blemishes as well as minimize large pores. “The minerals and active properties of pearls maintain the acidity of the skin, which slows down the aging process while keeping the skin hydrated and firm.”
Masks and peel-offs based on pearl extracts are increasingly popular as they provide a naturally radiant look.
Buy Pearl Extract Products Here
Hero and featured image credit: Engin Akyurt/ @enginakyurt/ Unsplash