In recent years, a certain K-beauty trend has gained enormous popularity among skincare girlies, beauty bloggers, and influencers. It’s called Glass Skin, a South Korean Beauty import consisting of a multi-step routine that promises smooth, radiant, translucent skin. Essentially, it’s the closest you can get to achieving that “airbrushed in real life” look without a pricey trip to the dermatologist. 

If I lost you at “multi-step routine” please stick around!

As a total beginner, it sure can feel a little overwhelming with the sheer number of products and techniques out there promising perfectly-perfect skin. The plain truth is that getting a luminous, hydrated, glass-like complexion is a lot easier than you might think. 

To get started, you’ll need the following 7 products, many of which you probably already have:

  • Gentle cleanser like Micellar Water
  • Toner 
  • Exfoliator
  • Serum or Essence
  • Sheet masks 
  • Moisturizer Broad-spectrum Sunscreen with at least SPF 30 

Not going to lie, the most crucial ingredient to getting that glass skin look is consistency. Follow these seven steps, and in just a few days, you’ll see an improvement to the overall appearance and health of your skin. 

Step 1: Cleanse

A woman with clear skin stands next to a bottle of Earth Therapeutic's Micellar Cleansing Water

The first step in any skincare routine is to cleanse your skin to remove dirt, excess oil, and makeup. Whether you prefer the double-cleanse technique or a simple cleansing wipe, choose one suitable for your skin type and use lukewarm water if you need to rinse off. Be sure to avoid harsh, stripping cleansers, since these can damage the skin's natural barrier and lead to irritation or infection.

Step 2: Toner

After cleansing, use a toner to remove any remaining impurities and provide a quick hit of hydration. Toners can also help restore pH balance and prepare your skin to better absorb hydrating serums. Saturate a reusable cotton pad with toner and swipe it over your face, taking care to avoid the eye area.

Step 3: Exfoliate

Exfoliating removes dead skin cells and unclogs pores, improving the overall texture and appearance of your skin. Use a gentle exfoliator with BHAs or AHAs only once or twice a week to allow your skin ample recovery time between treatments. 

Step 4: Serum or Essence

Essences and serums are packed with powerful ingredients like Vitamin C that can help improve your skin’s overall appearance. Essences are typically lightweight, water-based, and are meant to be applied after toning and before a serum.

Serums tend to have a higher viscosity and are loaded with more potent active ingredients.

Used alone or together, they're especially useful for targeting specific skin concerns, such as dullness, dryness, or uneven skin tone. Gently massage just a few drops of serum into your skin after cleansing and toning.

Step 5: Sheet mask

Two women wear facial sheet masks for Korean Beauty Glass Skin

Sheet masks are a staple in the Korean skincare routine because they give your skin a boost of hydration and nourishment in 20 minutes or less. Masks with Vitamin E, Hyaluronic Acid, and Collagen work wonders to help plump and smooth skin’s appearance for a glowing complexion.  

While you can use a facial sheet mask every day, once or twice a week works just fine for getting the glass skin complexion. Keep a couple of the Aloe + Cucumber Clari-Gel Translucent Masks handy any time you need a quick refresh — these masks are literal magic and will have you looking red carpet ready in a flash.

Step 6: Moisturize

Finish off your skincare routine by applying a moisturizer to lock in the nourishing serums and protect your skin from the elements. Gently massage moisturizer into your skin with your fingers or use a face roller to reduce puffiness and stimulate blood circulation. Don’t forget to moisturize your neck and chest area!

Step 7: Sunscreen (all day, every day!)

If you plan to head out for the day, definitely apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 30. Do this every day to help protect your skin from UV damage and prevent the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. As with your face moisturizer, be sure to protect the delicate skin of your neck and chest, too!

Read more about getting glass skin:

  • 21 Best Face Exfoliators for Soft, Velvety Skin (The Cut)

  • 17 Best Toners for Every Skin Type (Allure)

  • The 20 Best Face Serums of 2022 (Marie Clare)

  • The 28 Best Facial Moisturizers of 2022 (Byrdie)

  • Double Cleansing: What It Is and How to Do It for Clearer Skin (Cosmopolitan)