Why "Glass Skin" Is The Latest Korean Beauty Obsession

Evolving from Korean women's 11-step dedication to a baby-like complexion, "glass skin" essentially refers to a perfectly smooth and intensely hydrated complexion with an all-over sheen – just like a pane of glass. “Glass skin is this idea of transparent and translucent skin” explains Alicia Yoon, founder of Peach & Lily. “It's a sign of youthfulness and it's one of the most strived-for qualities in Korea. However, this combination of ultra-smooth texture and super translucency can be hard to achieve with products alone. It's not something you get overnight – it's consistent skincare that gives you that refined texture, the pinnacle of youthful skin.”
Achieving this coveted glow requires long-term commitment — not a quick fix. A glow of this magnitude starts from within, and you need products that will deliver actives deeper, rather than those that simply sit on top. “Getting this fresh-faced texture comes two-fold: First, you'll need an exfoliator to buff skin so it has that very smooth texture. Secondly, a hydrating serum to help give that glass-like appearance,” explains Yoon.
Interested? Click through for our favorite glow-giving heroes.
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Tony Moly Appletox Smooth Massage Peeling Cream

This multi-tasking wonder works as a massage cream, exfoliator, and mask. Gentle resurfacing fruit acids accelerate the skin’s natural exfoliation process, eliminating dead skin cells to brighten the complexion and leave the path clear for the products that follow.

Tony Moly Appletox Smooth Massage Peeling Cream , $13.99, available at Memebox. (Editors' Note: this product is currently sold out. We will update this piece when it is restocked.)
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Yuri Pibu Artichoke Power Essence

K-Beauty favorite Yuri Pibu literally translates to ‘glass skin’ in English, so expectations are high for the brand’s hero product: Artichoke Power Essence. This low-density liquid contains high concentrations of artichoke extract (60% of the entire formulation) which has been shown to increase moisture retention in the skin and to tighten pores enlarged by environmental aggressors (while you can’t shrink your natural pore size, you can reverse expansion caused by external factors.) It’s waterless, remarkably potent, and will sink in seamlessly after toner and before moisturizer.

Yuri Pibu Artichoke Power Essence , $38, available at Glow Recipe.
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Be The Skin Non Stimulus Face Polisher

This gentle gommage exfoliator is one of Yoon’s personal favourites, thanks to its light gel texture and ability to visibly smooth the skin surface. It’s gentle enough for sensitive skin – generally speaking, Korean women tend to shy away from ‘extreme’ peeling ingredients – and uses fruit acids alongside hyaluronic acid to balance cell renewal with intense hydration.

Be The Skin Non Stimulus Face Polisher, $29, available at Peach and Lily
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Shangpree S-Energy Long Lasting Concentrated Serum

Another staple in Yoon’s personal skincare routine, this super-charged serum is formulated with high levels of antioxidants to combat the negative effects of free radicals on the skin. It’s lightweight yet heavy-hitting, with a potent blend of botanicals working to kick-start cell regeneration while hydrolyzed silk and panthenol soothe the skin surface.

Shangpree S-Energy Long Lasting Concentrated Serum, $120, available at Peach and Lily.
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Tony Moly I’m Real Avocado Sheet Mask

These much-hyped masks contain a 3-layer pulp sheet soaked in a nutrient-enriched essence. Designed to deeply moisturize skin in 20 minutes, this formula contains avocado extract and macadamia nut oil to enhance elasticity for a plumper complexion and dewy glow.

Tony Moly I’m Real Avocado Sheet Mask, $3, available at Urban Outfitters.
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Cremorlab Hydro Plus Snow Falls Melting Cream

Maintaining a translucent baby-skin glow becomes trickier once winter sets in – icy temperatures and central heating can dim your hard-earned radiance. Cremorlab’s Hydra Plus Snow Falls collection is designed specifically for dry winter skin – the Melting Cream contains heavy doses of squalene and glycerine to lock the potent edelweiss extract within the epidermis.

Cremorlab Hydro Plus Snow Falls Melting Cream, $42, available at Peach & Lily.
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