A lot of my readers have been asking me on what I would recommend for their particular skin type and preferably those that are main stream, easy to find and affordable.
You would also notice that most of my product recommendations are asian/korean/japanese brands, simply because they are gentler to my skin in general without that overpowering artificially fragranced scent and at the same time more affordable and have better formulation than their other counterparts.
I have based these skincare routines based on my personal experience with the products that i have used in the past, or am currently using and still loving, or they are based from my family or friends’ routine, or I would personally recommend should they ask me what they should use.
*I’m not a medical professional expert in this field nor am I a licensed esthetician. These are just personal opinions based from my experience or what I would give as gifts to my family and friends on special occasions or when my random kindness strikes lol!
So let’s start with my personal combination young professional clog and acne prone skin:
oil cleanser – innisfree apple juicy cleansing oil
I breakout with a lot of oils, even with oils that are non comedogenic like mineral and sunflower oil. Most basic oil based cleansers are mineral oil based, so definitely cant use any of that. This one is by far the most gentle, affordable and takes away all my daily dirt, sunscreen, light makeup on my face, and most importantly does not break me out. It simply works, period.
foam cleanser – Cosrx low ph good morning gel cleanser
ph level – ph5-6
if you still dont know why the ph of your foam cleanser is important click here
contains tea tree oil and other patented ingredients. it bubbles up and foams nicely without stripping your skin, gently removes sebum build up and dead skin cells without that stripped skin feel.
tone – Thayers witch hazel alcohol free toner
most toners in the market have alcohol and Im trying to eliminate alcohol in my routine as much as possible as I’m not getting any younger. This toner is perfect, simple and gentle but does what it is suppose to do. I have tried other witch hazel toners but it had stripped off my skin and made it more dry and gave me hyper pigmentations on my cheek.
moisturize – Cosrx snail 92 all in one cream
I have tried a lot of moisturizers and each one gave me breakouts. There was a time when I stopped using them and finish off with just a serum then thats it, but as i walk along this skincare path addiction i really needed to finish off with a moisturizer and seal everything in and this is the first one that did not break me out. HALLELUJAH!!!…what’s more is this is 92% snail goodness.
sunscreen – Biore UV aqua rich watery essence SPF 50+ PA+++
optional step – Leejiham tea tree essence
even if you just showered or washed your face after a few hours before you know it you look like an oil slick like me then this is the answer to your prayers. this literally makes your skin look normal and fresh looking all day – basically this makes your face a decent face presentable enough to last you throughout the day.
For my teenage sister’s oily acne prone skin:
oil cleanser – Innisfree apple juicy cleansing oil
foam cleanser – Cosrx low ph good morning cleanser
tone – Etude house wonder pore freshner
used this early on when I was still starting on my K-beauty journey. This has definitely lived up to what it claims to do which is deep cleanses pores, maintain skin’s ph level, controls sebum, minimize appearance of pores, refines skin tone, and others.
moisturize – Cosrx oil free moisturizing lotion
if you breakout from most moisturizers that contains oils then this one is for you. This oil free lotion contains 70% birch sap, it is lightweight and does not leave a sticky greasy residue on your skin and smells so nice as well.
sunscreen – Innisfree eco safety no sebum sunblock SPF 35 PA+++
this sunscreen is made of organic sunflower oil and green tea extracts, it has a mattifying effect that has a sebum control porous powder and helps take away excess sebum. Gives a serious whitecast upon application but goes away after a while.
optional step – Cosrx BHA blackhead power liquid
this is used after a cleansed face. contains 4% natural BHA that will help unclog pores to dissolve impurities, debris and removing dead skin cells so you will have smaller looking and clean pores. Contains willow bark extract and niacinamide helps brighten up the skin with gentle exfoliation.
For my bestfriend’s normal dull, and hyperpigmented skin:
oil cleanser – Illi total aging care cleansing oil
this hydrating cleansing oil emulsifies easily and effectively. gentle yet removes those stubborn makeup and all your daily sunscreen and dirt. contains fruit and herbal extract for that anti aging benefits and help maintains skin’s youthfulness.
foam cleanser – Hada Labo rohto gokujyn hyaluronic acid cleansing foam
ph level – ph5-6
this comes out in a soft cloud,oohh so satisfying and fun to use. cleanses without drying your skin. no scent, cleans and also great if you’re sensitive to fragrances. Environment and budget friendly as well since they come with refills.
tone – Mamonde rose water toner
this contains more than 90% rose water. has a mild rose scent but not that overpowering. this has a hydrating effect, moisturizes and revitalizes your skin. Rose water also tones, and helps fight bacterial infections.
moisturize – Beyond angel aqua moist cream
this uses 70% mineral sprout water w/c contains energy from 3 sprouts raised with clean spring water, it also has hyaluronic acid, babasu butter and ceramides. A perfect light, non greasy moisturizer that is non greasy nor sticky yet packed with super mositurization that will last you all day.
sunscreen – Innisfree eco safety sunblock
this water based sunblock made with organic sunflower oil and green tea extracts formulated w/o alcohols so for those who are consious about alcohol in their skincare this is a light sunscreen for you. its light and non greasy nor sticky. gives a white cast upon application but goes away in a while.
optional step – Original pure vitamin C20 serum
this does a great job in brightening up the skin tone, gives that dull skin that wonderful radiant glow. helps also in fading hyperpigmentations and scars through continous use. make sure to store in a cool, dark place or in a refrigerator for longer shelf life as VitaminC quickly deteriorates in quality and if the product turns into dark orange you need to throw it out, as it does more harm than good.
For my sister-in-law’s dry and sensitive skin:
this is Banila co’s purity version for sensitive skin. Instead of the usual mineral oil base this uses evening primrose oil. do also note that primrose oil is comedogenic, do stay away if you are acne prone. a light weight sorbet-like that melts into oil as it comes in contact with the skin as it helps take away those everyday sunscreen, dirt and light makeup.
foam cleanser – Andalou Naturals coconut water foaming cleanser
ph level – ph5-6
just like the hada labo cleanser this comes out like a foam cloud that is so fun and satisfying to use. contains skin friendly enzymes, vitamin C and coconut water electrolytes. As with all andalou products its cruelty free, non-gmo, and ecocert certified.
tone – Hada Labo rohto gokujyn hyaluronic acid lotion
asian toners have such thing as a hydrating toner. So instead of those drying toners this one prepares your skin for better absorption of other products to come, since hyaluronic acid has the ability to hold 6 liters of liquid with only 1 gram of hyaluronic acid. Hada Labo’s technology contains super hyaluronic acid that can hold twice as much as the regular one. It is fragrance, colorant, oil and alcohol free.
moisturize – Cerave facial moisturizing lotion
This particular moisturizer has a patented technology that slowly releases ingredients to help repair and restore skin’s protective barrier for a longer moisturization all day. It contains non comedogenic ingredients, non-irritating, has ceramides, niacinamide and hyaluronic acid with a price point of drug store brands. perfect for the budget consious fellow.
sunscreen – Scinic enjoy mild sun essence
contains no alcohol and has a strong UVA/UVB protection yet mild enough for the sensitive skin. contains moisturizing ingredients like aloe vera, chamomile extract, green tea extract, plus 7 patented ingredients and will not give you a white cast.
optional step – Cosrx advanced snail 96 mucin power essence
contails 96% snail mucin. currently the most potent in the market. Snail mucin is packed with hyaluronic acid, glycoprotein, proteoglycans, and copper peptides and is antimicrobial, these elements help protect the snail from damage, infection, dryness and UV rays.
For my mother’s aging and dehydrated skin
oil cleanser – DHC deep cleansing oil
this helps dissolves dirt, sunscreen and makeup completely while nourishes your skin since it uses olive oil and vitamin E rather than the usual mineral oil, great for anybody who is looking for a gentle, complete clean without drying out their skin.
foam cleanser -Sulwhasoo snowise EX cleansing foam
ph level – ph5-6
this cleanser removes excess sebum without drying out the skin. it foams up really quickly and its so satisfyingly luxurious to use.
tone – Hada Labo rohto gokujyun premium hyaluronic acid lotion
this is similar to the hada labo lotion but is thicker in consistency and has 5 different kinds of hyaluronic acid to provide maximum moisture.
moisturize – Banila Co Miss flower and Mr. Honey Cream
I gifted this both for my mom and my mom-in-law. too bad I cant use this since i breakout from shea butter, olive oil and evening primrose oil but this is seriously hydrating for dry skin peeps and for those who are looking for an all in one multi tasking cream since this also contains honey ferment water, propolis, royal jelly and other super power oils for soft hydrated skin.
sunscreen – Missha soft finish sun milk
this sweat resistant sunblock has a watery texture that is comprised of helichrysum flower water instead of purified water that helps protect the skin from sun damage. does not give a heavy white cast and glides on the skin easily. This contains 5 plant extracts that helps strengthen skin’s barrier, and hydrates while nourishes. It also has thanaka that has a cooling effect on skin and antozone-rose to help protect from environment stressors.
optional step – Rosehip oil
Rosehip oil is rich in essential fatty acids that is efficient in fighting signs of aging, help fade hyperpigmentations and scars, moisturize skin, reduce inflammation, helps smooth fine lines and wrinkles, and tone up the skin. You can mix a drop of this oil together with your favorite cream or use it by itself before your moisturizer.
For my husband’s oily, dehydrated skin:
cleanser – Cerave foaming facial cleanser
ph level – ph5-6
this cleanser aside from keeping your moisture barrier healthy also contains ceramides and hyaluronic acid that help moisturize and maintain skin’s natural protective barrier throughout the day. Great option for most men in our lives who simply hates moisturizing. lol!
tone – Nivea Men oil control lotion (asian version)
this toner can also be used as an after shave. This absorbs excess sebum and prevents stickiness and shine gently since it is formulated without alcohol.
moisturize – Innisfree green tea balancing lotion
This lotion has a light watery texture applies smoothly and absorbs quickly without the sticky feel. Contains 87% green tea extract that are rich in amino acids and minerals that will help moisturize and restore skin’s balance.
sunscreen – Nivea Men Sun Protection SPF 50+ PA+++ (asian version)
This watery light gel glides on easily and sinks in quickly without the sticky feel and at the same time provides the highest possible protection for those who hate the sunblock feeling.
optional step – Innisfree forest for men phytoncide all in one essence
this helps in smoothing out skin texture and protects the skin from frequent shaving. Phytoncide helps fights the signs of stress and protect the skin from harmful environment to keep it healthy and nourished.
Sorry for this long post hope you have enjoyed reading it as much as I enjoyed writing this. How about you what are your holy grail basic products for your skin type?