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You've heard of the 10-step Korean skincare routine, which is evidence enough that Korean women take their skincare very seriously. In some cases, though, 10 is a liberal number, considering many Korean women essentially spend seven steps on essence alone. Surely, K-skincare isn't for the faint of heart.
While we can't always muster up the strength to apply seven layers of essence (let alone wash our makeup off some nights), we can get on board with a good Korean face mask to help turn our skin's fate around. These formulas, whether in sheet or liquid form, are laden with enriching ingredients that give the culture's most sought-after translucent and even-toned "glass skin." The best part? You can put them on while you take care of other errands, forget about them, and then take them off when you're done.
Scroll to discover the best K-Beauty face masks on the market.
Best Overall: Glow Recipe Watermelon Sleeping Mask
Unless you’re absent for social media, chances are you’ve heard of Glow Recipe and their ability to release products that sell out in hours (literally). The excitement from consumers is not solely based on the hype alone, but users are raving about the brand’s top-notch formulas including this glow-boosting watermelon mask.
The nighttime treatment works while you snooze to resurface and hydrate your complexion so you wake up dewy, glowing skin with no effort, literally. The formula itself is oil-free and super lightweight so it won’t be a bother while you sleep and it’s chock full of skin-loving ingredients like hyaluronic acid and AHAs, too. All in all, this fan-favorite is sure to be a staple for years to come and a great starting point if you’re new to the world of K-beauty.
Best Budget: Too Cool For School Coconut Ceramide Mask
If you’re looking for a masking option, but don’t want to break the bank, this coconut-y option is for you. It’s a sheet mask that is all about hydration with a blend of coconut water and ceramide. These two moisture powerhouses work together to give a skin burst of moisture and lock it in so you can stay hydrated for days to come. And since the first step to glowing from within is hydrated skin, this mask will give you radiance all year round.
Best For Acne: COSRX Acne Pimple Master Patch
These pimple-reducing masks are exactly the cure we need when waking up to those pesky breakouts. Unlike most masks that you apply all over, these concentrated dots were made to be placed directly on the pimple itself. They're infused with betaine salicylate and white willow bark to help reduce redness and inflammation while preventing unwanted dark spots. While these pimple patches may not magically erase your blemishes, they’ll certainly speed up the timetable for getting rid of them.
Best For Hyperpigmentation: Mediheal I.P.I Lightmax Ampoule Mask
If you suffer from hyperpigmentation, you’ve likely tried everything under the sun to lighten up unwanted dark spots. Whether it’s due to sun damage to acne-scarring, lightening and diminishing those pesky spots can be a full-time job.
Reddit users can’t stop singing praises of this mask for lightening and brightening their entire complexion. With a stable derivative of Vitamin C and Morus Alba Bark extract, this formula will not only brighten but revive dull skin after each use. Because tackling skin conditions like hyperpigmentation can take time to see results, you won't rinse to a spot-free complexion, but the brand recommends using the mask up to three times a week for the best results.
Best Sheet Mask: Dr. Jart Rubber Masks
We don't know what we love more about this mask: the unique rubber texture or its ability to improve nearly every skin concern out there. This mask comes in four variations, depending on your skin needs from hydration to acne-clearing to anti-aging. They work for all skin types and are applied in two easy-to-follow steps.
The first step is a concentrated serum. You can thank this potent potion for doing all the work. Each formula is infused with active ingredients to improve texture and tone while addressing the specific concern at hand. The second step is the selfie-worthy rubber mask. It fits snug on the skin without sliding off and helps to keep those skin-nourishing ingredients on the skin instead of evaporating away.
Check out our guide to the best sheet masks you can buy today.
Best for Minimizing Pores: Innisfree Pore Clearing Clay Mask
The key to smaller-looking pores is clearing them of dirt and debris. This clay formula is like a magnet for impurities on your complexion. After only minutes of this creamy formula sitting atop your skin, the volcanic clusters absorb dirt, oil, and sebum while sloughing off dead skin. Clogged pores, no more. You’ll rinse to a brighter, smoother and hydrated complexion. But trust us, it feels so good, you won’t want to rinse this off.
Best Hydrogel Mask: Peach & Lily Eco Your Skin Face Blanket Mask
Unlike your typical wet sheet mask, this hydrogel mask is purposely made dry so it sticks onto your face like a glove (you can even sleep with it on). We're in love with its plumping and brightening abilities and the fact that it comes with both top and bottom pieces to fit the contours of any face.
Best Peel-Off Formula: Shangpree Gold Premium Modeling Mask
Editorial director Faith Xue raves about the glow-inducing powers of this gilded modeling mask, which goes on wet and dries to a rubbery putty that you can peel right off. Watch her try it out, and see the stunning results for yourself!
Need some more help finding what you're looking for? Read through our best peel-off masks article.