How To Achieve The Heady Heights Of Glass Skin

How To Achieve The Heady Heights Of Glass Skin

What is glass skin and how can you get it? Read on for the lowdown on this shiny, dewy skin trend that shows no signs of going away.

Skin trends are an odd phenomenon. Unlike your hair and makeup which you can temporarily change with different colors, tricks, techniques and updos, your skin is what it is. Sure, you can improve its condition with better lifestyle choices and an awesome skincare routine, but you can’t fundamentally change the structure of the skin you were born with. It’s called genetics.

It’s still kind of cool to keep up with beauty trends that concern your skin, however. But, really, it’s all about trends in skincare, not actual skin. Think skin cycling, product personalization, skinimalism (which is still all over TikTok, btw), that kind of thing.

And the latest trend we (and the rest of the world) are into? Glass skin.

What Is Glass Skin?

Originating from Korean beauty practices where dewy, hydrated, uber healthy skin reigns above all else, glass skin is all about looking after your skin so that it looks and feels its absolute best. Pop words like ‘smooth,’ ‘glowing,’ ‘crystal-clear,’ ‘plump,’ ‘radiant’ and ‘fresh’ to the top of your skincare goals and you’ll be on the right track.

Glass skin is basically the skin ideal. We don’t like to think of it as skin perfection because that’s way beyond most of our reaches, but it’s about cleansing like a pro, layering on hydration and using skincare products and techniques (rather than piles of highlighting makeup) to help your skin look radiant and luminous. Just like glass.

Of course, getting your skin to behave in a glass-like fashion is not easy. If you have oily skin, for example, it can be a slippery slope from glowy skin to greasy-looking skin. Similarly, if your skin is dry, you’re going to need some darn good layers of moisturization in order to get glass-like skin.

It’s important, therefore to listen to your skin and adapt your glass skin routine to suit you.

That being said, there are a few key steps that can help you along the road. To follow, five of our favorites.

1. Try A (Gentle) Double Cleanse

Double cleansing splits the beauty world. Some swear by it, others believe it to be completely unnecessary. And us? Well, we sit somewhere in the middle. It’s very effective for those who sweat a lot, wear a good amount of makeup or have particularly oily skin. But it can be too much for sensitive skin types and is kind of pointless if you live your life wearing zero makeup. That’s our take, anyway.

If you want to have the cleanest, clearest skin of your life, however, and take care as you do it, double cleansing can be a great place to start. It’s also another K-beauty concept, so go figure!

Double cleansing is basically the act of cleansing your skin twice – first with an oil-based cleanser or makeup remover to dissolve things like makeup, sebum and sunscreen, then a water-based cleanser to rid your skin of other impurities like sweat and pollutants. By cleansing your skin twice you ensure you completely remove all kinds of debris that may have built up throughout the day. And by doing this you keep your pores clear and your breakouts under control. Because, while pimples and in-your-face pores aren’t the end of the world, they’re no friends of glass skin.

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If you fancy giving double cleansing a go, do it at night only – when your skin has the most build-up on its surface – and use the gentlest formulations possible to avoid drying out your skin. We have plenty of incredible cleansers to choose from but our Vitamin C Brightening Cleanser is a smart option for step two as it also helps amp up your radiance at the same time.

2. Exfoliate Regularly

Exfoliation is another awesome step to do at night because it’s a fantastic way to slough away dead skin cells and accelerate cell turnover while you sleep, helping you to wake up with smoother, brighter-looking skin.

Whether you choose a chemical exfoliant like 6% AHA, BHA + PHA Liquid Exfoliant or a physical scrub like Vitamin C Gentle Face Scrub our most important advice is not to go too crazy. Be extra gentle with your skin, exfoliating just once or twice a week, and if you feel like your skin can’t handle that, cut it back to find your sweet spot.

Exfoliation is awesome for glass skin, irritated skin is not.

3. Invest In A Hydrating Toner

Toner might feel like one of those skincare steps you can really do without, but it can be a fabulous way to start boosting your hydration levels as early as possible. And glass skin is nothing without hydration.

Unlike the toners of the ‘80s which stripped all the life from your skin, modern day formulations are crafted to balance your skin’s pH levels, up its moisture content and prepare your skin to soak up all the goodness from the rest of your skincare routine. They really are the first step to ultimate skin hydration – which is basically the opposite of their predecessors!

Our Rose Water Refreshing Facial Toner, for example, contains just one ingredient – pure Moroccan Rose Water – to gently refresh, hydrate, soothe and refine your skin, while Ocean Minerals Super Toner is charged with powerful minerals, vitamin C and glycolic acid to revitalize and hydrate a dull, flagging complexion.

Apply your chosen formulation immediately after cleansing and then get ready to start building on this great hydration foundation with the rest of your routine.

4. Layer Up With Serum

Facial serums are your next port of call for the dewy skin of your dreams so don’t miss this important step – night and day. Serums are able to penetrate your skin much better than moisturizers which is why they’re often packed with concentrated active ingredients to treat your skin at a deeper level.

In terms of glass skin goals, the best ingredients to look out for are water-loving humectants like glycerin and hyaluronic acid, alongside vitamin C for brightening, vitamin E for soothing and niacinamide for smoothing texture and improving tone. Fruit acids are also a good shout for encouraging cell turnover while peptides help improve firmness and keep collagen synthesis in good working order.

Of course, you don’t want to overload your skin with too many actives (cue irritation!) so choose your serums wisely and if you want to work on a few different concerns, try using one serum in the morning and a different one at night. You could also try our incredible Multi-Vitamin Facial Serum which is fantastic way to target a whole number of skin concerns.

Just remember to apply your serum immediately after toning to help seal in moisture, and use just a small amount. More than a few drops is a total waste.

5. Finish With Moisturizer (& Sunscreen EVERY Morning!)

Last but not least, in fact last but most of all, is moisturizer – the final step in the glassification (hmm, made-up word?) of your fabulous complexion.

Now is not the time to look for mattifying formulations but instead go for the richest moisturizer your skin will take. That’s what’s going to help seal in all that hard hydrating work you’ve already accomplished. If your skin is oily, you’ll want to steer clear of super heavy creams and butters in favor of lighter lotions, but if your skin is dry, they’ll lap up all that richness.

Ingredients like fatty acids, ceramides, shea butter and sunflower seed oil are ideal for imparting a gorgeous glow and truly moisturized complexion – even better when combined by brightening antioxidants like vitamin C or the hydrating powers of aloe vera.

We’re currently loving our Firming Collagen Day Lotion in the morning and Vitamin C Deep Hydration Night Cream before bed, but we have plenty where those came from, right here.

To finish, don’t forget to generously apply SPF 30 Mineral Sunscreen with Vitamin C every morning without fail. Sun protection might not seem the obvious choice for nailing a glass-like complexion but if you allow the sun to destroy your collagen it’ll age you up at lightning speeds and your skin will never have the plump luminosity that glass skin requires.

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Georgia Gould

Georgia Gould

Georgia is an award-winning beauty writer who has been in the business for over 20 years. British-born, she began her career as a magazine beauty editor in London before moving to San Francisco, CA in 2012 where she now continues her love as a freelance writer and editor. As well as her editorial work, Georgia has created content for many high-profile beauty brands, including Clarins, L’Oréal, Procter & Gamble, Simple and TRESemmé. Her passions include retinol (obviously), golfing, skiing and walking her beloved Schnauzer, Dave.