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How to make K-beauty self-care a habit during the quarantine

By CAMILLE SANTIAGO Published Nov 18, 2020 5:50 pm Updated Nov 18, 2020 6:13 pm

It's nearly the end of the year, and we've been quarantining for about eight months already. Now, a lot of you have been noticing some changes in your skin or mood (hello, maskne and WFH stress!). You’re not alone.

If you ask us about what we’ve learned during isolation, it's that taking care of oneself and devoting more time for "me-time" are essential. Stress brought by the quarantine can be helped if you make time for yourself.

“We all need that one moment on the day when we take a break—we distress, we are mindful, we get more centered. I think self-care is probably the best way to do that,” said Bianca Cancellara, chief marketing officer of Carver Korea during a self-care conversation with K-beauty brand, AHC.

But with that in mind, many still don’t know how to do self-care or even use proper skincare; others think that they don’t need it, while some admit that they are intimidated by the 12-step Korean skincare regimen.

“Self-care is very central to K-beauty. All of you have heard before the 11 steps regimen that Koreans go through. And to be honest, it is very intimidating.” But she also shared that it’s because self-care is ingrained into the fabric of South Korean life (research shows that 96% of Korean women believe that skincare is a necessity as compared to America, where only 65% women agree, Cancellara shared).

“Korean women believe that beauty is not about putting a lot of makeup to cover your face. It’s really about cultivating the beauty of your skin, making sure your skin can reach potential,” Cancellara explained.

Now that we’re (still) in quarantine, AHC believes that today is the perfect time to take on the “Better in 21” habit of learning how to do self-care. As studies say, it takes 21 days to form a habit, and to this Bianca adds, “We want to hold people’s hands along these 21 days, and share learnings to establish this new habit. Better in 21 is bigger than skin results, it is about holistic self-care that will help love yourself more.” 

To help you create a skincare routine (if you don't have one yet) and to teach us more about Korean self-care, PhilSTAR L!fe talked to a panel of skincare experts from AHC.

Skincare shouldn't be complicated

We have a lot on our minds already, so why complicate things? According to Vietnamese beauty vlogger, entrepreneur and AHC's guest speaker Hannah Olala, skincare doesn't have to be difficult. “You just need to have fun with it and if you do it, like Bianca said, if you do it 21 days in a row, then it becomes your habit, and once it does it becomes so simple— it’s just like brushing your teeth.”

Be patient. Beauty is a self-discovery

These days where everything is almost instant, most people demand for instant results (*ahem* filters *ahem*). But where’s the fun in that? Cancellara  sees this as a challenge for most women. “In AHC, we believe in something very different. We believe it is not a destination, beauty is really a journey, and it is a beautiful journey of transformation and you really dedicate time to yourself; you dedicate time for self-care, then you see the results coming, then you love yourself more, and then you keep doing it.”

Korean women believe that beauty is not about putting a lot of makeup to cover your face. It’s really about cultivating the beauty of your skin. — Bianca Cancellara

Never neglect skincare while indoors

The biggest misconception about staying indoors and skincare is that we are protected from the harmful UV rays and pollution outside. We hate to break it to you but, that’s not true. “It affects your skin,” Kim says. “Blue light could be equally harmful as 12 o’clock sunlight,” Cancellara confirms. “Even [during] daytime, under blue light, sebum is working on our skin,” says Kim.

What to do? Cleanse, tone, moisturize, and don’t forget your sunscreen.

Try Korean ladies’ new ‘skip-care’

12 steps? We don’t know her. AHC’s master aesthetician Jenny Kim says we can always go back to the basics. “It’s AHC’s skip-care, a consolidated skincare routine that only includes three easy and effective steps––cleansing, hydration, and protection.”

You can also try to use products that have multiple uses and benefits, such as AHC’s award-winning Eye Cream For Face, a best-selling 2-in-1 anti-aging cream that can be used for both eyes and the face.

Photos courtesy of AHC. Banner image from Shutterstock