The Sheet Mask: #1 Introduction to Korean Skin Care

The number one way to introduce yourself to Korean skin care is to try a Korean sheet mask! I’m absolutely loving all of the options. I have had experience with two different brands of sheet masks mostly and was lucky enough to try the latest type of sheet/gel mask from Mary Kay thanks to my friend, Melissa. Thank you, Melissa! :-*

Please watch the video below or continue to read this post to learn a little bit more about how I use sheet masks to instantly plump my fine lines and lessen signs of aging.

The mask I was using in the above video is the brand new TimeWise Repair Lifting Bio-Cellulose Mask from Mary Kay. The ads for this mask claim to give you visible results in two weeks. (I’m actually a believer after using it and you can see my honest reaction to the product in my video above.) It’s so unique in that it is completely gel, so be aware when opening the packet that it is much more delicate and fragile than a cotton sheet mask.

Let me just say this about gel face masks – I was SOO impressed! I’ve been a believer in face masks for awhile but have only used the cheaper cotton masks. Gel masks are the cotton masks’ older sisters and are much more intensively moisturizing then their younger siblings. I am so hooked and already trying to research other brands/types on the market.

I would definitely give this Mary Kay mask the top rating for my combination skin type. I noticed a reduction in redness and fine lines right away. I won’t be able to afford to use these more than once a week, but I definitely plan on adding them (and most likely this specific brand) into my Self Love Saturday routine. More on that later.


Today marks Day 7 of my Korean Skin Care Journey and I’ve begin using a “cleansing ritual” as most of my Korean products request, including Korean face masks. (The ones in the US don’t seem to be as specific about using a “ritual”.  I understand that this “skin ritual” could be intimidating to someone new to skin care. (It took me 20 minutes to finish my first night routine, so trust me, no judgement. I understand. ) Therefore, I’d recommend that if you are interested in Korean skin care and adding some new products to your skin care routine, try a sheet or gel face mask first! You can get these masks at your local Sephora or Ulta. They are also easy to find online and SUPER easy to use.

How Often Do You Use A Sheet Mask?

Most of the gel masks that I’ve researched want you to use them once a week. They tend to be more expensive and intensive then the every day cotton sheet mask. I will be looking for new gel masks to try on my new proclaimed weekly holiday, Self Love Saturday. On off days (days with no gel or sheet mask), I will just skip that step and continue on to the next step of my skin care routine. Therefore, I will be averaging between 2 -3 cotton sheet masks/ week and 1 intensive gel mask/week. I already love my results and want MORE! So, I will skip extras to have the sheet masks I need. However, having one sheet mask a week would be the bare minimum recommended and is perfect for the beginner to start seeing some results.

How Do You Use a Sheet Mask?

Want a laugh? Check out my first video where I go through how to use a sheet mask. In this video, I’m using one of TonyMoly’s cotton snail mucin sheet masks. (Find out more, here.) Cotton sheet masks are the most common types of sheet masks and the cheapest. You really don’t need to spend more than a few dollars for a cotton sheet mask and Sephora even has decent branded cotton sheet masks that are inexpensive and easy to find/buy in the states. Follow the steps below and PLEASE WASH YOUR FACE before applying! For the love of God. Wash your face – even if you already washed it this morning.

Step 1 & 2: Double Cleanse

Wash your face using a Korean double cleanse method. This involves first using an oil based cleanser followed by a gel/water cleanser.

Step 3: Exfoliator

This where any exfoliating pads, peels, manual scrubs come in depending on your skin type. I also always use my Clarisonic with my gel/water cleanser in Step 2 if I’m not going to use another type of exfoliator. I find the Clarisonic to be the gentlest form of exfoliating, especially when using the Clarisonic brush for sensitive skin.

Step 4: Toner

Use a toner to balance your skin’s ph.

Step 5: Skin Essence

Skin micro essence is a Korean must for keeping skin gorgeous.

Step 6: Serums, Emulsions, Boosters & Other Extras:

This is unique to you, so please feel free to play and explore at this step. Usually when I’m using a sheet mask, I don’t get as crazy with this step and keep it simple with a brightening emulsion.


I know… this is why you were reading this in the first place, but there’s just SO MUCH TO TALK ABOUT. I’m having issues filtering and truly believe it’s the holistic approach that Koreans take with skin care that really keeps them from aging.

  1. Slowly remove the mask from it’s container.
  2. Use any extra “juice” from the container to prime your face and get it ready to absorb the sheet mask you are using. Many estheticians explain this method of priming the face by using a wet sponge as an example. A wet sponge picks up more liquid then a dry sponge. Therefore, using a hydrator to prime your face for a sheet mask makes sense. With what we can now refer to as the “wet sponge theory”, your skin will act as a wet sponge and soak up all of the benefits of the sheet mask you are using. (I’m a believer. )
  3. Apply the mask to your face as best as you can. They are a one-size-fits-all type of beauty device, so don’t be shocked when you get told you look like Hannibal Lector.
  4. Wait 20 – 30 minutes in what I like to call “necessary rbf” until the sheet mask starts feeling a little dry and all used up. (Sorry. Rude. I know……. but throw that used up sheet mask in the trash! She’s OK with it.)
  5. After removing the mask, you do not need to rinse your face and can instantly return to the rest of your skin routine.

Step 8: Eye Cream and Retinols

Need I say more? This step is also customizable based on your skin care needs. Also, wearing eye protection (cute, oversized sunglasses) in the sun helps protect this very sensitive area from sun damage as well as any creams you may use.

Step 9: Moisturizer

If you can’t do the other steps, please do this one. If you have a moisturizer with a SPF over 30, you can knock 9 & 10 out with one product!

Step 10: SPF

Do we need another reminder of the “Tan Mom”? I think so. She’s pretty good motivation to wear sunscreen. Oh and Look! She’s joined by the newly appointed, “Tan Dad.” Sorry, Mr. President. It’s just too funny not to share.


After your cleansed and protected, you can continue on with your day, put on make up (… or not…. because you have beautiful skin girl! ) and get into whatever mischief you had planned. Have fun, be safe, and don’t forget to reapply sunscreen every 2 -3 hours.


Author: G. NA

I explore The Mind-Body-Soul Connection through Art, Self Love and Creative Expression. My blogging began in 2018 with an interest in Korean skin care and culture. (Hence, my intentional misspelling of the English word "soul" as "Seoul", the capital of South Korea. ) Follow me on IG - @geena.xo

3 thoughts on “The Sheet Mask: #1 Introduction to Korean Skin Care”

  1. Skincare order doesn’t really matter much actually. I usually go from lightest product to thickest. Usually after toner you apply the sheet mask and then serums, ampoules, and other things. At least that’s what’s common in Korea. It’s because most masks use essence, emulsion, or an ampoule as the product on the mask. Like I said, it doesn’t really matter the order as long as you feel it’s working for you 😁

    Liked by 1 person

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