These 10 Korean Essences Will Give Your Skin the Glow-up It Deserves

While we don’t typically like to play favorites, Korean essences tend to be the gold standard for this unique skincare product. After all, K-beauty is an integral part of the famed 10-step-plus beauty regimen that yields the coveted glass skin look—not to mention, Korea is mainly responsible for popularizing essences. If you’re curious about what facial essences are and how to integrate them into your skincare routine, look no further—we’ve got you covered.

Facial essences are concentrated treatments that typically pack hydrating and brightening ingredients at a low molecular weight to encourage optimal absorption of the essence and the skincare products that follow. As far as your routine goes, you should apply essence after toner and before serum and moisturizer. (Tip: Be sure to apply your serum of choice while your skin is still slightly damp from the essence to enhance the serum’s penetration and benefits.)

Want to dive into the wonderful world of Korean skincare? We’ve rounded up our picks for the best Korean essences—no trip to Seoul required.