Top 8 Korean Skincare of The Year – Dermatologist Dr Dray

The Best Korean Skincare of The Year – Dermatologist Dr Dray


Korean skincare products often end up getting people good results because if you look at Korean skincare and the Korean approach to skincare routines, you will notice that it largely focuses on hydrating ingredients, and ingredients that are anti-inflammatory, skin barrier soothing and support the moisture content of the skin.

Unlike skincare products in the United States, Korean skincare products do not heavily include exfoliating or peeling ingredients. Dr Dray mentions that while scrubbing and exfoliating are not necessarily bad for you, products that aim to improve the moisture content of the skin are really all you need.

When the water content in the top layer of the skin is optimized and skincare products can help to support this, fine lines and wrinkles start to smooth out, skin barrier starts turning over more efficiently, resulting in good healthy skin.

Dermatologist Dr Dray has tried a bunch of Korean skincare products and here are a few that she loves and recommends.

Note: The inserted images from Amazon are for your benefit and mine. They give you a better idea of the products I talk about; and if you use my link to make any purchase, I make a small commission from Amazon as part of their Amazon Affiliates Program.

1. The Rovectin Activating Treatment Lotion

 This product is somewhere in between an essence and a toner. It is super hydrating and wonderful for dry and oily skin. It has seven different forms of hyaluronic acid, a humectant that can help improve the moisture content of the skin. Layers of the skin smooth out and look more even. It diminishes fine lines by plumping up the skin with moisture.

If hyaluronic acid does not suit your skin, then skip this one. This product also has compounds from centella which Dr Dray has stated have been shown to help heal the skin and their antioxidants may help minimize oxidative stress in the skin.

Dermatologist Dr Dray was a little concerned about the papaya extract that is present in this product. Papaya extract can irritate the skin; however, she did not find any problem when using this lotion, which is why this made it to her list of the top 5 Korean skincare products of the year.

This lotion also has caffein which is an antioxidant and can help reduce the redness. The niacinamide helps with hyperpigmentation and oily acne prone skin. This product packs a punch, especially if you compare it to other essences and toners in the market.

How to Use it?

Take a dime sized amount of this product and apply It to a clean face while the skin is a little damp right after rinsing cleanser out. It can be used on dry skin as well if that is your preference. Bring it down to your neck, which is often neglected but needs just as much TLC as the face.

Dr Dray raves about this product and considers it a must try for all skin types, as long as you are not allergic to any of the ingredients in it.


2. ISNTREE Green Tea Fresh Hydrating Face Toner

dr dray Isntree is a brand that is killing it in the skincare market. Dr Dray hasn’t tried a single product from this brand that she hasn’t loved. Be it their sunscreens or moisturizing creams.

This is a wonderful product if you have oily or acne prone skin. This product helps reduce the overall burden of oxidative stress from environmental exposures to the skin. It has anti-inflammatory properties and it is going to be helpful for smoothing everything out.

This toner also improves the skin turnover and reduces the appearance of large pores, simply by filling up the space with the moisture content and plumping up the skin. Thus, ultimately improving the texture of the skin even if you have dry or combination skin.

How to Use It?

This toner is to be used like the one mentioned above. Take a dime sized amount and apply it to a clean damp or dry face, bringing it down to your neck.

Dr Dray does warn us of staining clothes with this product, it is brown and can leave a brown stain behind if not careful. You can wash it easily with simple cleaning products though!

3. Zeroid Regenic Cream

 This is a five percent urea facial moisturizer. Urea is naturally present in our skin and is one of the best ingredients for it. Dermatologist Dr Dray included urea in her top 5 skincare ingredients. Click here for my post on that.

Urea helps improve the moisture content of our skin, it helps soften and exfoliate dry skin which results in a smooth skin surface, thus allowing for a better skin barrier function. If your skin is rough, it means that the skin barrier has been compromised, using hydrating ingredients like urea, can help fix that.

Urea can be found in various other skincare products, foot cream for instance. However, urea present in these skincare products is quite high in percentage and therefore can get too irritating to use to the face.

The Zeroid Regenic Cream is formulated to be used on the face. Some people still find it to be irritating, so be aware of that if you have very sensitive skin. This product is safe to be used around the eyes, so it helps reduce the appearance of crow’s feet around the eyes.

This product also includes centella extract which has been shown to have healing properties. This is Dr Dray’s favorite also because it helps minimize the damage that occurs from environmental stressors.


4. Round Lab Birch Juice Moisturizing Sunscreen

Dr Dray tries several sunscreens every month, so to say that this is the best one she tried this year is a big statement. This sunscreen is very moisturizing and leaves no cast. It has a chemical filter which is good for UVA protection. This product is not water resistant so Dr Dray does not recommend it if you are going to be active outdoors and sweating, but this is a fantastic sunscreen for daily wear.

If you are looking for the best sunscreens Dr Dray tried this year, I have a post about her recommendations here.

This sunscreen has niacinamide which is excellent for anti-aging purposes, as well as hyperpigmentation. The licorice root in it is good for calming down redness as well, ideal for people with hyper sensitive skin. It does not sting the eyes, which is so important especially in the summer months.

5. Isntree Hyaluronic Acid Watery Sun Gel

Another Korean Sunscreen that Dr Dray has been using since 2021 is the Instree Hyaluronic Acid Watery Sun Gel. It is a great sunscreen that leaves no white cast and feels good on the skin.


6. Beauty of Joseon Ginseng Retinal Eye Serum

 This eye serum has been mentioned quite a few times by Dr Dray in many of her favorite’s videos. This eye serum is great if you want one for anti-aging purposes, or have dark under eyes that you need help with.

7. Beauty of Joseon Radiance Cleansing Balm

This cleansing balm is a luxurious experience, says Dermatologist Dr. Dray. It is silky, firm, easy to scoop out and melts nicely onto your face. Dr Dray uses it as the first step in her double cleanse nighttime routine. This one is affordable and effective.


8. Madagascar Centella Hyalu-CICA Blue Serum

Dr Dray originally dismissed this one as “just another hydrating serum” but quickly changed her mind after the first use. This serum, not only hydrates the skin, but also contains ingredients that address skin elasticity, skin barrier and skin brightening.

Dr Dray sees and feels her skin to look different each time she uses this serum. It makes the skin a lot softer and with consistent usage, you will notice your texture and tone improving.

Wrapping Up

So, there you have it. Dermatologically approved Korean skincare products that actually work and are worth the hype. Some of these don’t get enough hype, so don’t be afraid to spread the word!

Cheers to a calmer mind and skin!