Whether mired in the midst of the madness that is the holiday season or just trying to get out the door on time every morning, we can all use an extra minute (or 1,000!). And for all the hype around the 10-step skin care regimen, Korean women are just as stretched for time — there’s a reason why ppal-li ppal-li (“hurry hurry”) is such a common phrase in the land of the morning calm. Thankfully, Korean scientists understand this all too well, and there’s been a boom in skin care technology that doesn’t just multi-task but addresses this need for effectiveness in an easy, quick and portable package. Here, we offer five skin care hacks that’ll save you time and possibly even turn back the clock on aging.
- Switch your foundation and sunscreen for a cushion compact
Given the dermatological consensus that the most important step in anti-aging is protecting skin from damaging UV rays, cushion compacts are arguably the biggest innovation out of Korea to date. Created by Korean scientists to address the problem of reapplying sunscreen on top of makeup, a cushion compact is a lightweight sunscreen-foundation hybrid, soaked in a sponge within a compact. Due to the special formulation of the sunscreen-foundation, it feels lighter and is more durable than other sunscreens, and yet it offers more coverage, which you can build without caking. Just “stamp” (don’t rub) on with the special puff on top of makeup for easy midday reapplication. Hera’s UV Mist Cushion with an SPF of 50 PA+++ takes it one step further and offers the hydrating benefit of a mist.
- Switch from your hydrating toner to a facial mist
Pat, dab, press, repeat — from cleansing to sunscreen, however many steps that may be, Korean women are on a schedule. Case in point: After cleansing, no more than 20 seconds should pass before you replenish with a hydrating toner; you don’t want your skin to dry out for even a minute. That’s why many Korean women are switching out their hydrating toner — twist, sprinkle, pat, pat, pat — for a mist, which lets you immediately hydrate after cleansing with just a few pumps of the finger. Sure, it may only shave seconds off your regimen, but consider this added bonus: Many mists are portable and won’t disturb makeup, so you can take your skincare with you for a hydration boost throughout the day. How’s that for multi-tasking?
- Switch out your serum for an ampoule
Tired of waiting for your serum to work? Need an extra boost during the holidays? Think of ampoules as the Tesla of serums: They’re sleek, they’re efficient, and they’ll get you to your goal in 0 to 30 (days). Ampoules come in smaller bottles because they’re more highly concentrated than even your typical serum and are meant to work in a shorter period of time. It’s like a supercharged skin boot camp, the CrossFit to your everyday cardio. Just replace your serum with an ampoule for a few weeks, and you’ll be glowing in no time. The nutrient-packed Vita Propolis Ampoule by LJH will even help keep blemishes at bay.
- Switch your 20-minute mask for a splash mask
For mask-crazy Korean women, the patting splash mask just may be the biggest beauty hack of all. “The splash mask is a completely revolutionary way to mask and is completely different from a typical toner,” says Glow Recipe co-founder Christine Chang. Splash masks are an evolution of the time-honored tradition in Korea of splashing the face after cleansing with water steeped in rice or botanicals, she adds. With a blend of lactic acid and botanicals, splash masks instantly re-texturize skin in only 15 to 30 seconds. All you do is pour a capful into your palms while in the shower, and pat onto your face, using the water from the shower to dilute. I love Blithe Patting Splash Masks; the Energy Yellow Citrus & Honey one brightens skin for a nice youthful glow.
- Switch up your night cream for a sleep mask
If all else fails, and you don’t have time for an hour-long facial or a 20-minute sheet mask, at the very least, incorporating a sleep mask into your routine may be the easiest hack of all — all you do is apply as the last step of your nighttime ritual. Since sleep masks are thicker and meant to seal in moisture throughout the night, especially important during the dry winter months, it gives an extra boost to your regimen, making sure all the vitamins and antioxidants you applied don’t just up and evaporate.The Anti-Wrinkle Want Night Sleep Cream Pack by Korean brand Goodal takes the sleep mask one step further by loading it up with argan oil, macadamia extract, and lavender oil. Macadamia nuts are known for their rich reserves of oleic acid, vitamin E and linoleic acid, so you practically don’t need anything else.
Except for your eight hours of sleep, of course. And for that, I’m afraid, there is no substitute.
Adapted from a story written by me, originally published on Glowrecipe.com.