The 19 Best Korean Skin-Care Products for Acne

Original Article

These nourishing cleansers, toners, serums, and moisturizers banish breakouts without drying out your skin.

Of the many acne treatments available in South Korea – countless lasers, in-office exfoliating peels, and Skin Botox, included – the country's innovative beauty products are the easiest for us to access stateside. Korean skin-care routines place emphasis on treating zits incredibly gently without drying them out. (The latter approach may be what you're used to here in America.)

In fact, when I was in Korea in 2020 (pre-pandemic, of course), I asked dermatologist Cho Yun Joo what the number one piece of advice she had for people battling breakouts, and "moisture, lots of moisture," was her immediate answer.

Lim Ee Seok, the head dermatologist at Seoul's Thema Dermatologic Clinic, shared similar sentiments with me. Typically in the U.S., the oil buildup on skin is usually focused on first instead of the fact that you probably just have dry or sensitive skin, and your complexion is trying to balance itself out.

Addressing inflammation is also key, according to dermatologist Shin Hae Won at Oracle, a major dermatology and skin-care clinic in Seoul. Seeking out soothing ingredients, like Centella asiatica (a.k.a. cica), allantoin, and niacinamide, will help calm redness while clearing up your complexion. In fact, you can probably find all three in every product from beloved brands, such as Mediheal, Innisfree, Cosrx, and Skinfood below.

With all this in mind, we gathered up the best Korean skin-care products for acne-prone skin (or any skin type) that dermatologists and editors from Allure and Allure Korea swear by. Add to your skin-care routine asap and revel in the joy and comfort of more balanced, nourished, and clearer skin.


Best Serum for Textured Skin: Manyo Factory Galactomy Niacin Essence

Soko Glam

In Korean, manyo means witch, and the skin-smoothing results Manyo Factory Galactomy Niacin Essence provides are just as magical as you could imagine. Galactomyces ferment filtrate (a yeast byproduct from brewing sake) and niacinamide team up to eliminate roughness and bumps while giving skin a dewy, hydrated glow.