When it comes to pioneering skincare techniques, Korea is often at the forefront. From snail serums and sheet masks where K-beauty brands take founding footsteps, other markets quickly follow. And while we’re all au fait with ten-step skincare and can identify our essences from our ampoules, what exactly is the 7-skin method? We asked our founder, and expert in all things skin, Jin to shed some light on it.
The 7-skin method simplified
‘The 7-skin method is, quite simply, the art of layering toners and essences,’ explains Jin. ‘You apply the product after you’ve cleansed and before you moisturise to deeply rehydrate, lock-in moisture and nourish skin. It’s especially effective during the hot, summer months and I find it offers a refreshing way to ‘feed’ the skin.’
Although the official party line is to layer your essence or toner on 7 times, Jin explains that you don’t need to gung-ho when it comes to perfecting this technique. ‘Try not to get fixated on numbers or the amount of times you layer your essence on,’ she says. ‘You can layer only a few times if you want to and that’s how your skin best responds. My advice would be to always try to read what your skin wants and needs by how it feels. Maybe you’ve layered your essence on 3 times and it still feels like its crying out for moisture, if so, feel free to apply additional layers. But if your skin feels happy after 2-3 layers, it’s absolutely fine to stop there. Just see how your skin reacts and go from there.’
It’s time to tone up
So now we know what the 7-step skin method is, is there anything to watch out for when adding it to your own regime?
‘In Korea, we put toners into two camps,’ explains Jin. ‘There are wipe-off toners – these are formulas that help to remove impurities and any residue after cleansing. And there are toners and essences that are designed to be absorbed by skin. These are the more hydrating toners and essences that are filled with actives and nutrients,’ explains Jin.
‘The most important thing to avoid when adopting this method is to bypass formulas that contains alcohol as layering this on will inevitably dehydrate skin and instead focus on gentle and nourishing ingredients,’ she adds.
What to pick for your kit
‘While it’s totally up to you how you enlist the 7-skin method – you could stick to a single hydrating formula, for examples – I would always recommend using a wipe-off toner first to remove any traces of makeup and impurities as they generally also have a gentle exfoliating effect which preps skin for the next steps of your skincare. Simply soak a cotton pad and swipe it over skin,’ adds Jin. ‘I use either of these as the first step in my 7-skin method:’
‘After removing impurities with a wipe-off toner, I would then move onto layering with a hydrating formula,’ suggests Jin. ‘You can either stick to the same one for each layer, or work with a variety of toners for an extra hydrating, nutrient-rich hit. Start by applying the wateriest formula first before moving onto the more viscous formulas. I love mix-and-matching the hydrating toners below based on what my skin needs that day,’ adds Jin.