Korean Skincare Routine for Oily Acne Prone Skin: Step by Step Video Guide

Time needed: 20 minutes.

Acne prone skin is usually oily and when you try to control the oil, it just makes it worse. If you have this problem, the Korean skincare routine for oily acne prone skin might be helpful for you! Here’s a step by step video guide.

It’s a comprehensive video on how to accomplish this effective routine. I go over each product I use, how I’ve chosen them, how to combine them well, and tips and tricks to make it easy and inexpensive.

As I get older, my skin has changed. A few years ago, I rarely broke out or had any skin issues. Now my acne is back and I have also noticed that younger people are also experiencing the same issues. This is especially true for girls in high school and college. Acne is a problem for everyone. The solution to clear acne depends on your lifestyle and diet but one thing that will work is by following a Korean skincare routine for oily acne prone skin.

In this blog post, I’m going to give you step-by-step instructions on how to create your own Korean skincare routine for oily acne prone skin. This guide illustrates just how important it is to make a detailed skincare routine.


    The first step in any Korean skincare routine is cleansing. Your skin is packed full of natural oils and impurities so this step is often combined with the next to create a double cleanse.

    The first step is to cleanse the skin to get rid of all the makeup, dirt and other junk that’s clumping up your pores. You can use any facial wash of your choice; however, I always recommend using a product with natural ingredients. Be careful not to pick something that will dry out your skin!

    In the morning, I cleanse my face with COSRX Low pH Good Morning Gel Cleanser. It cleanses thoroughly, but it doesn’t strip my skin and help it maintain its natural oil balance. I don’t need to use a lot of product either, just one pump and a little water does the job. Plus, it’s really gentle around the eyes, so you never have to worry about getting up close and personal with those. The gel lathers up nicely once you get the water in there, but it doesn’t feel thick or gloopy on your skin.

    Cleaning your face will not only remove your makeup but it will also help to get rid of any dirt or impurities. It brings out the natural glow that you deserve to flaunt. If you want beautiful looking skin, don’t forget to cleanse your skin at least twice a day.

    One of the biggest beauty mistakes you can make is skipping a daily cleanse. (Actually, one of my biggest beauty mistakes was using to much cleanser and drying out my poor skin, so make sure you don’t do that!) Before your morning shower, it’s important to cleanse your face and remove your makeup. A thorough facial cleanse will keep away pesky acne-causing bacteria, blackheads, and excess oil.

    Using the right cleanser will make the difference between your acne problems getting worse and getting better.

    Credits @alessa.miki


    The second step of your Korean skincare routine is mist for hydration. While many people may not think that mist is a skin care product, I would argue that it is an essential part of a complete Korean skincare regimen. There are two important types of Korean mist moisturizers to select from: hydrating and anti-wrinkle.

    Mist is the second step of your skincare routine. I believe it’s very important because there are several things to keep in mind when you choose your mist. Most Korean mist and toner, or simply called treatment, contains alcohol as preservatives. If you’re using product with alcohol then you should find a mist that doesn’t contain alcohol.

    Did you know that using a mist in your skincare routine is one of the best ways to help boost your skin’s hydration? What a lot of people don’t realize is that hydrating the skin not only gives it a more dewy, youthful look, but also helps prevent premature signs of aging. Plus, keeping your face hydrated can help put your complexion back on track if you’ve been experiencing dry patches or breakouts due to both weather and cleansing products.

    This is a simple step as this is done after cleansing and before the essence and serum. The mist has alcohol in it, which would further dry out your skin, so make sure it’s got hydrating ingredients. It’s not so much a necessity, but it’s definitely worth a mention.

    This is a common step in every single darn K-Beauty routine out there, so this really makes sense to me. Basically, you are adding moisture back into your skin with misting. By doing this your skin will be softer and smoother because it will be better hydrated which will lead to fewer dead skins cells.

    One of the most important steps to my Korean Skincare Routine is misting. When it’s hot and humid, my skin tends to get oily super quickly and sometimes it can feel like all I need to do to get ready for work is wipe my face with a towel! Preparing your skin for the day starts with hydrating, cooling products that will soothe and help balance your skin.

    Credits @alessa.miki


    Toner is one of the most crucial, yet often times overlooked, steps in a Korean skin care routine. The purpose of toner is to reset skin’s pH after cleansing and to prepare the skin for better absorption of serums and moisturizer. It also refines your pores by removing excess sebum and dead skin cells, reduces appearance of fine lines, controls oil production temporarily, and contains skincare active ingredients that prolong your current skin care routine as well as improve the efficacy of future products

    After using toner, the skin surface is fixed and it becomes easy to absorb other skincare products. Furthermore, the inside of the pores is tightened to limit sebum secretion.

    Because it has a pH level that is close to skin, it tightens pores and creates a smooth texture. It can be used to clean off residue from the cleanser or other products.

    The proper technique for applying toner is to hold your skin taut and pat it in with circular motions until it is fully absorbed. The key is to avoid rubbing the skin which will cause irritation and redness. Once applied, leave the toner on for a few minutes before continuing with your moisturizer.

    Following the cleanser and emulsions, toner is a vital step of your skin care routine! This is because your skin’s pH balance can be disrupted by the cleansing process, but applying a toner can help restore the pH balance and stop further moisture loss. And what exactly is toner? “In cosmetics, the toner serves several purposes: it helps make-up go on smoothly and evenly and post-cleansing it prepares the skin for the next skincare steps.

    Credits @alessa.miki


    The fourth step in the Korean skincare routine is essence. Many people call this step “serum” or “ampoule”, and although they are all from the same family, they don’t serve the same purpose. Essence absorbs into the skin seamlessly, and it is a vital part of your skincare routine!

    Now that the whole face is moisturized, the next step is to put essence. There are many kinds of essences. They contain active ingredients like moisture, antioxidants, vitamins, and so on. Some of them make your skin bright and some of them help with aging. It depends on your skin condition and skin goals. You can also create your own formula.

    This an even more crucial step to take care of your face if you want it to be clearer and healthier than ever. Skincare routine that contains essence should be the best option to keep your face clear, as it will help your skin from within.

    An essence evenly penetrates all the layers of skin, providing moisture and nutrition. These high-potency essence often contains brightening or anti-aging properties as well as plant extracts, amino acids, or vitamins for a more specific result.

    It shouldn’t be applied after a moisturizer unless it’s an oil-based one. Generally, Western toners are applied before serums and essences because Korean toners are lighter and less astringent than their Western counterparts.

    Credits @alessa.miki


    Since you have cleaned your skin, it is now time to apply the serum. This is your fifth step towards having radiant skin. The serums work by penetrating deeper into the epidermis and supplies moisture to the lower layers of the dermal layer. It also even helps keep pollutants away and heal damaged skin cells so that you do not end up with an acne breakout. The serums can be easily found in any Korean Skincare store.

    Certain serums can be helpful for oily acne prone skin types. There are a number of serums you can choose from for your Korean skincare routine. Depending on how your skin is feeling, or what you need that day, there are multiple types of serums that can help out.

    I use a serum in step 5 of my routine rather than a sleeping pack. I’m not the only one either, I’ve noticed that starting from earlier this year many Korean skincare enthusiasts have been recommending serums in the last steps of their routine. The popularity of this trend seems to be increasing and now it has finally been recognized by the Korean beauty world.

    Instead of relying on heavy products which are packed with hydrating and nourishing ingredients most people are looking for something lightweight for these hot summer days.

    Credits @alessa.miki

  6. Moisturize

    The 6th step of the Korean Skincare Routine is moisturize your face. We’ll talk about why you should do this and how to do this correctly with the 13 dot technique. Most of us want to avoid having oily skin (especially acne prone oily skin). This is usually where having a moisturizer comes in handy. Moisture helps reduce oil on the face which reduces breakouts of all sorts.

    The 13 dot technique involves patting on your moisturizer onto problem areas where you might want to hydrate more such as the sides of your cheeks, nose area, forehead and chin.

    Moisturize with a light weight moisturizer like Innisfree Volcanic Lava Tinted, or A’Pieu Air Fit 15. This was the hardest step for me with my pores clogged, but I think its great for those who have skin that just tends to be oily. Apply to your face and neck using a patting and rolling motion. First pat on the moisturizer then use a rolling motion to get it deep into your pores. If you tend to be more of an oilier skin type like me, take a look at the 13‐dotted cotton technique as described below.

    You want to make sure that you are moisturizing in the right spot. Fail to do so and you could be emphasizing any other skin issues on your face such as breakouts. Make sure you don’t miss this piece!

    In my last post, I mentioned the importance of moisturizing. However, it can be a little tricky when you have oily and acne prone skin since most moisturizers are too heavy for the skin or worsen breakouts. To find a moisturizer that works for oily skin, make sure that it has as few ingredients as possible and oil free/water based formula.

    Credits @alessa.miki


    A good sunscreen is the next step in a Korean skincare routine for oily acne prone skin. While this might seem last, this step should be your first and most important when it comes to protecting yourself from skin cancer, wrinkles, and sun spots. Sunscreen is important all year long, not just during summer months.

    Sunscreen and Sun protection. This one is super important for people with oily skin as sunscreen helps block the UV rays that make your face look like an oil slick.

    There’s nothing better than the dewy skin and natural glow that you get from following a proper Korean skincare routine, but there’s one thing that seems to be missing in even the best of routines: sunscreen.

    Oil based sunscreens are the best for people with oily skin, but in my opinion the Innisfree No Sebum Mineral Powder is just as good and gives you light to medium coverage. You can use this over your BB cream.

    It’s important to use a sunscreen that protects your skin from both UVA and UVB rays. Also, find a sunscreen that is appropriate for your skin type. For example, if you have oily or acne prone skin, it’s best to stay away from any product with heavy oils like sunflower seed oil, almond oil, olive oil, coconut oil, sesame oil, etc.

    Sunscreens are vital to adding a layer of protection between you and the sun, but all sunscreens are not created equal. How many times have you bought a sunscreen with good intentions only to forget to apply it or slather it on incorrectly? By the end of the day, it’s probably worn off anyway. The result? You’ve made your acne and redness problems worse, all while increasing your chances of getting skin cancer down the line.

    If you wear makeup, be sure to put it on before the sunscreen.

    Credits @alessa.miki


    Most lip balms only moisturize your lips and for some that’s enough, but for those of us with dry or flaky lips, a good lip balm is also meant to seal in moisture. That is the main focus of my Korean skincare routine (at least when it comes to my lips).

    Lips are often forgotten but they do have their own special needs, especially if you’re a dry peeler like me. Let’s take a look at how to take care of our lips properly so that they won’t get too dried out and eventually crack.

    Alright, we have just about finished our Korean Skincare Routine for Oily Acne Prone Skin. In this step, we’re going to need a lip balm that is designed specifically for oily skin. This will help with the excess oil and hydrate your lips at the same time.

    If you have oily skin you probably already know how much lip balm is important for you. I know it’s difficult to use sun cream and lip balm in the same time because of greasy feeling on your face!

    Once the rest of your face is fully moisturized, you’ll want to focus on your lips. This is step 8 in the long process that is Korean skincare. Your lips are one of the dryest body parts, and because they are exposed to harsh temperatures, it’s important to take proper care of them.

    Before I started applying my lip balm I usually applied a moisturizing mask just on my lips or cut a small section from a sheet mask to apply on my lips.

    Last but not least is the lip balm. I have to use a lip balm because my lips tend to get dry, flaky and cracked. Usually I use a very basic lip balm that has SPF 15 and that’s it. It’s cheap, reliable and just gets the job done. The Lanolin in this product has helped out my lips immensely, which is crazy considering how bad they used to be.

    The final step in this Korean beauty routine for oily acne prone skin is lip balm. Lip care is very important and especially at this stage of skincare where you are already struggling with a really oily complexion. You need to constantly battle the oiliest areas of your face, so don’t forget your lips!

    Credits @alessa.miki

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