Road Reviews: The Little Book of Skin Care by Charlotte Cho
It's no secret that my skin is bad.
For Christmas, I got the book "the little book of skin care" by Charlotte Cho. Super skeptical at the time, I didn't want to read it. We were visiting family over the break, and I brought the book with me because I needed something to read. Well, I fell in love with Charlotte's stories and the way she explained skin care. She has taken Korean skin care and has shared their secrets with us all. If you are not familiar with Korean skin, well they have beautiful skin. Charlotte Cho is from California, but her family originates from South Korea. She was like a lot of us in North America who believe the sun is great and who cares if it's bad for you, at least you have a tan. In South Korea, from what I understand, having a tan means you don't care about your skin. After university she moved to South Korea and learned very quickly how important skin care was. In Korea, skin care is just part of the culture.
Charlotte has some really amazing chapters about her experiences in South Korea and her stories are pretty incredible. The tone of the book is positive and really taught me the in's and out's of skin care. Trust me when I say this, I have been doing skin care wrong my entire life. There are 11 chapters, but my favourite is chapter 7, so I will go into detail about this chapter.
Basically, Charlotte demystifies the Korean ten-step skin-care routine.... It's the bomb! I was so skeptical, but then I started to see a difference in the glow of my skin. My acne is still present, so I can't say she has a fix to acne, but she does know what she is talking about when it comes to healthy glowy skin.
So the ten-step process goes like this:
1) Oil Cleanse: Find an oil cleanser, they aren't incredibly popular, but Palmers has a great one at a reasonable price, that's available in Canada.
2) Water-Based Cleanse: Charlotte explains in a different chapter that this cleanser should have a PH level higher than 5.5, but it's all dependent on the skin. Cleansers like this are really easy to find in Canada.. so use your favourite.
3) Exfoliate: Watch out for apricot exfoliatiors, they tend to rip the skin, instead of removing dead skin. (You also only have to do this step 2-3 times a week.)
4) Toner: This resets the PH levels and to be honest, I never tonned my face until I read this book. I don't know what I would do without toner.
5) Essence: This is a step that isn't super do-able in Canada if you're on a budget like I am. Fresh has a beautiful essense, but alas it is 81$. I can't afford that, so I skip this step. I always look for essence when I am out though, if someone knows of a great essence that is affordable, throw me a tweet. Essence was created in Korea and hydrates the skin. It also increases cell turnover, which gives brighter skin.
6) Serums: She also says you can use ampoules or boosters, but at the end of the day, they are all the same thing. Serums are easily found at Wal-Mart, but it's not the cheapest stuff, so be prepared to see a sticker price that is over $25. Serums can fix many problems and the one I use is targetted for aging skin, but it brightens the skin as well. It's the Olay Regenerist. At night, I don't like using a serum, I trade it in with a tone correcting oil that isn't filled with heavy oils, I like Palmers Cocoa Butter Formula.
7) Sheet Masks: I never knew how awesome these were until Charlotte raved. In Korea, these are everywhere, in Canada... It's not impossible to find. These sheet masks are soaked in essence and hydrate the face so nicely. Sheet masks are different then clay masks because with a sheet mask, you are adding another layer of moisture to the face and a clay mask is like an exfoliator, it removes grime from the face. You can find some at Sally's Beauty Supply and Sephora. I'm looking for more locations to find them. Forever 21 has a great tea-tree oil one and it sells for $1, but I'm not sure if it's available all the time. You also only have to do this step 2-3 times a week, I do it on days when I exfoliate.
8) Eye Cream: I love Clinique's all about the eyes rich. I also like Tucker Ashley's Advanced Peptide Eye Complex. Olay also makes a really great one. They are easy to find.
9) Moisturizer: Don't skip this step. My face has benefited emmensily when I started to moisturize it. Dead skin causes acne and if you keep it moisturized, then dead skin forms more slowly. During the day, I love Olay's moisturizing lotion for sensitive skin. At night, I love Aveeno's positively radiant, intensive night cream.
10) Sunscreen: If I hear one more person say they feel better with a tan, I will scream. Sun tan's are basically your skin that is burnt to a golden shade... like a marshmallow. The skin damage from tanning can be deadly and yet, people tan. I don't understand it, but whatever. I won't argue this much more, it's your decison, but if you are going to put effort into your skin care and makeup, why have your face ruined by the sun? Sun screen, even in the winter or shady days, is the most important. Apply it after your moisturizer has set... like 10 minutes after. Also, yes, you absolutly need a seperate sunscreen, sun screen mixed with other products is just a bonus.
Her book and all her steps are really helpful. The skin care market is so much more advanced in Korea... It's just not fair. I definitly reccomend purchasing her book and learning all about the Korean skin care ways.
Thanks for reading, Samantha