For an effective skincare, moisturizing is a basic and essential step for everyone no matter what your skin type is. Applying moisturizer to your face helps in hydrating and especially locking all that hydration goodness from your toner, essence, serum, and other skincare products.
Koreans are meticulous in their skincare routine when it comes to their moisturizers. Unlike their Western counterparts, Korean moisturizers are well-formulated with various exotic and botanical sources. They mainly focus on organic and potent ingredients that exclusively treat different kinds of skin problems.
Searching for the best Korean moisturizers for oily skin? In this article, we are happy to bring you some useful information and buying guide about our top-rated, and highly-recommended products.
Our Top Picks for the Best Korean Moisturizers for Oily Skin
#1 COSRX Oil Free Ultra Moisturizing Lotion with Birch Sap
Are you sick of those drugstore moisturizers that have sticky feel after application? Do you want a weightless moisturizer that effectively nourishes your oily skin deep within? Containing 70% of willow bark water or birch sap, this lightweight moisturizer from COSRX will be one of your must-haves in your skincare routine.
But what is unique about willow bark water or birch sap? Birch extract is a common ingredient in Korean skincare that replaces water in the content of their products. Based on the book “Skin Care and Cosmetic Ingredients Dictionary”, this ingredient along with its other derivatives have been described as an astringent, antiseptic, cleansing, softening, and circulation stimulating.
Moreover, it appears to be effective for people who have acne and sensitive skin. Because it is mainly used for its curative effects, it is necessary for healing skin irritations due to its antioxidant properties such as flavonoids, and tannins. Research studies claim that birch sap is efficient in retaining skin moisture.
Thus, applying this lotion to your face on a daily basis for both morning and night will certainly help your skin to be refreshed and maintained its hydration levels. Bid farewell to those sticky and heavy creams that gone wrong. Try this one-of-a-kind product that is able to hydrate your skin properly!
#2 COSRX Ultimate Nourishing Rice Overnight Spa Mask
Do you want an overnight moisturizing mask that adequately softens your skin? Hate the tacky feel from sleeping creams? Looking for a lightweight yet impressive cream that works for your oily skin? Well, the wait is finally over! We present you another fan favorite from one of Korea’s leading skincare brands, COSRX!
Being highly-approved by famous and reliable skincare bloggers and YouTube beauty content creators, this moisturizer acts as a multitasking product. It can be used as an overnight mask, a daily cream, or wash-off mask. This is a great product or those people who are minimalist and want simplicity in their skincare game.
Additionally, this moisturizer is enriched with rice extract and niacinamide. Do you know that rice extract has antioxidant properties? Based on some references, “it is credited with promoting collagen formation and prevent lipid peroxidation or the process that results in cell damage. Also, this extract suppresses melanin synthesis and acts with anti-inflammatory effects.
So, this lightweight, gel-type moisturizer from COSRX is a life-saver even for those who have normal, dry, combination, and sensitive skin types. Grab this product right now! Experience a brighter and more luminous face when you wake up!
#3 Dear KLAIRS Rich Moist Soothing Cream
Do you have an irritated and inflamed oily skin? Are you looking for a simple moisturizer that is enough to solve your skin concerns? Do you want a hydrating cream that moisturizes your skin throughout the day? Dear KLAIRS provides a nourishing and soothing moisturizer that effectively works 24 hours on all skin types.
It is a lightweight and non-greasy cream that will boost your skin’s hydration levels. Do you always have redness and allergic reactions from other moisturizers? This cream is best for hypersensitive skin as it thoroughly cools and heals the skin from external aggressors. So, what makes this product really efficient?
The dear KLAIRS Rich Moist Soothing Cream has.its star ingredient which are beta-glucans. According to the article by Klog, “beta-glucans work two-fold to soothe and calm irritated skin, and as an effective anti-ager to firm and plump fine lines and wrinkles.” They are also capable of speeding up wound healing.
Also, this cream also have essential ingredients such as sodium hyaluronate, shea butter, jojoba seed oil, ceramide, Vitamin E, fruit extracts from anise, grapefruit, papaya, and tomato, herbal extracts like centella asiatica, flower extracts from lotus flower, and many others. Most of these ingredients are well-known for reducing skin inflammation, moisturizing dry skin, providing relief to itchy and peeling skin, and restoring skin elasticity.
#4 Nature Republic Super Aqua Max Fresh Watery Cream
Do you want a silky, watery texture for your daily moisturizer? Are you looking for lightweight cream that helps control the oil on your face while giving it sufficient hydration? Are you tired of having sudden breakouts and pimples on your skin due to other creams? Well, here is a wonderful product that will fulfill your dream in attaining a glowing, flawless skin!
Nature Republic formulated this watery cream which is derived from a unique source of ocean water: from the depths of 3,000 ft. beneath the ocean surface of Hawaian Kona Sea. But why ocean water? This type of water differs from others because it has significantly higher amounts of minerals such as sodium, chloride, sulphate, magnesium, and calcium.
Based on the book “Marine Therapy: Health Benefits of Seawater Minerals by Jose A. Soto”, Japanese scientists conducted and published a research study about this matter. They found out and concluded that the minerals present in ocean water can act as humectants and they may even accelerate the collagen production. This may result in the enhanced skin’s healing process.
So, using a skincare product having this kind of component will make your skin fully moisturized without the heavy and sticky feel. You can also use this for hot summer and humid days!
#5 TONYMOLY The Chok Chok Green Tea Watery Cream
Do you want a gel-type moisturizer filled with powerful antioxidants? Are you looking for a long-lasting moisturizer with just simple ingredients? Thanks to a famous Korean skincare brand named Tony Moly, they made a gentle and simple hydrating watery cream especially made for oily skin.
This lightweight cream has an intense hydrating power that comes from pure fermented green tea extract. We know that green tea is an incredible component with anti-inflammatory properties. With a rich amount of polyphenols called catechins, green tea has the ability to diminish irritation, redness, and inflammation when applied topically.
But why it must be fermented? Fermented ingredients exhibit promising and sustainable opportunities to target various diseases. They have added enhanced amounts of microorganisms which initiate enzyme production. These good bacteria are vital for further strengthening your skin barrier. Also, they break down ingredients into a smaller size so they can more easily penetrate deeply inside the skin.
So, this is an ideal moisturizer for people who have problems in their oily and sensitive skin. Compared to other high-end moisturizers, this is an affordable yet potent cream that will improve your skin’s health.
#6 BENTON Aloe Propolis Soothing Gel
It is a hot summer and you want to enjoy the warm breeze from the seashore. But, all of a sudden, your skin feels greasy because of the increased production of sebum due to the heat. It keeps on accumulating on your face. Large pores are also starting to form. Yikes! For you to become comfortable during the summer days, here is a soothing gel from Benton!
This soothing gel has cooling properties that heal your irritated and inflamed skin from the constant heat of summer. Composed of 80% aloe ingredients, this product has softening, healing, anti-microbial, and anti-inflammatory properties. Based on several research studies, aloe vera has a relaxing effect on the skin, making it valuable for sensitive, sunburned, and sun-exposed skins.
Moreover, do you know that this plant was popular thousands of years ago in traditional medicine because of its ability to heal burns? That’s why it is commonly made as gels for after-sun care. Plus, there is some indication that aloe vera has a synergistic effect when used in conjunction with other anti-inflammatory substances. So, this product from Benton is not just all about aloe vera.
Like the name suggests, it also has the power of propolis that is famous for its antiseptic and healing effects. Based on a reference from the issue of Weekly World News, propolis is also a wonder ingredient from ancient Egypt and old Europe that helps the skin miraculously renew itself even after the natural renewal process has slowed down. Therefore, with this dynamic duo, this soothing gel will create a younger, more vibrant skin than ever before!
#7 Eco Beyond Lotus Aqua Bloom Cream
Are you stressed about having fine lines and wrinkles in your oily skin? Typically, most of the anti-aging creams in the market are made with nourishing ingredients that are considered heavy and comedogenic for oily skin. So, if you are in the quest for a lightweight anti-aging moisturizer, this one’s for you!
Beyond is a skincare brand that appears to be a subsidiary of the famous company LG in Korea. They made this product for those people who hate the greasy feel from the conventional anti-aging creams out there. But what makes this cream an effective anti-aging for oily skin?
It has lotus flower extract as its main ingredient. This component is known for being rich in vitamin C, B complex, antioxidants, and other minerals. It is remarkable for controlling our skin’s sebum production, balancing out oily skin, and hydrating the skin deeply. While the lotus root has vitamin A that significantly helps in reducing inflammation and promotes healing especially for those with acne.
Apart from lotus flower extract, it has micro hyaluronic acid that is essential for replenishing moisture. It also has outstanding effect in improving the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles to help combat against signs of aging. Therefore, stop using those heavy creams and replace them with this lightweight, anti-aging cream from Beyond!
#8 Laneige Water Bank Moisture Cream
Hate those annoying petrolatum-based moisturizers that just settle on the skin’s surface? If you’re looking for a basic cream that will nourish your skin deeply throughout the day, this product from Laneige is the right product for you. It does a great job in hydrating your skin deep within with just simple ingredients, leaving you with a healthy and radiant skin minus the greasy feel.
Because of the simple ingredients such as squalane, niacinamide, vitamin E, meadowfoam oil, beta-glucan, mango seed oil, grapeseed oil, and many others, it noticeably moisturize the skin without any residue sitting on top of the skin. This means the skin really absorbs the cream pretty fast.
Having a nice creamy texture without any hint of oiliness, this moisture cream is a noteworthy product to add in your skincare essentials. In daily use, your skin will transform into plumped and smoother complexion! Simplicity is truly beauty when you have this cream in your skincare routine.
#9 MAMONDE Moisture Ceramide Light Cream
Ceramides are naturally-occurring substances that usually found in our skin. Like how the glue work, ceramides are essential in sealing the cracks between skin cells as they hold them together. They also maintain the hydration from leaving out the skin.
But, when we age, these components slowly drop. The result? The declining levels of ceramides will cause thinning of the skin. Then, as time goes by, you will see the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Oh no! What now? Stop these skin problems with this product from Mamonde!
This light cream possesses ceramides along with a combination of the natural moisturizing factor (NMF) or fatty acids from the Rose of Sharon and Hibiscus flowers. Recommended for all skin types including oily skin, this product has a perfect balance of water and oil that helps in restoring your skin hydration levels. It also helps your skin hydration and moisture long-lasting despite the cold weather during fall and winter.
Thus, if you’re looking for an amazing moisturizer for fall and winter season, this one is best for you to try on!
#10 THE FACE SHOP Chia Seed Hydrating Emulsion Lotion
Loaded with antioxidants and Omega 3 fatty acids, this emulsion lotion from The Face Shop highlights chia seed extract which gives your skin the necessary hydration without the oily feel. This moisturizing lotion effectively makes your skin soft and supple without the greasy texture.
The brand sourced the chia seeds from Southern Mexico and Guatemala. Instead of using water for the product’s content, they used 100% chia seed extract because it has the ability to absorb 10x its weight in water. The chia seed’s superior ability enables the skin to drink up all the hydration and nutrients.
For those people who have oily skin and reluctant in using hydrating creams, this is an outstanding moisturizer that prevents dehydration and overproduction of sebum of the skin. Start your moisturizing care with this emulsion that recovers your skin elasticity, revealing a glowing and nourished skin!
How to Choose the Best Korean Moisturizers for Oily Skin
Now, you already know about the best Korean moisturizers for oily skin.Then next step for you is to be well-informed about choosing the right moisturizer for your skin type. To help you evaluate and make the right decision, here are some important reminders that you need to consider before you buy:
- Ingredients: Avoid harsh ingredients and chemical ones made for moisturizing but has possible side effects. Search for potential aggressors that might potentially trigger some allergic reactions, irritation, redness, and inflammation to your skin. Look for pure, organic, and safe botanical ingredients as much as possible, such as flower or plant extracts, hyaluronic acid, herbal extracts, etc.
- Form: Lotion, emulsion, gels, gel cream, creams, and balms are various forms of moisturizers. Oily, dehydrated, and sensitive skin are recommended to use lotions and emulsions. These are suitable during hot summer days as well. Gels and gel creams are great for oily and dehydrated skin, and also appropriate during summer season. Heavy and thick creams are best for mature, dry, and aging skin. Balms have much thicker texture than creams. Used specifically for targeted areas or spots, they are lighter versions of ointments.
- Reviews: Still have no clue on what’s best to buy? Search and read dependable reviews and learn from the experiences of several reliable YouTube skincare and beauty experts and enthusiasts about the products.
What is the difference between humectants, emollients, and occlusives in Korean moisturizers?
Humectants have the ability to attract, absorb, and hold water from nearby sources, like the deepest layers of your skin and in very humid climates, the air. Applying creams with humectants such as AHAs like glycolic acid, aloe vera, glycerin, honey, hyaluronic acid, soluble collagen, sugar alcohols, urea, and many more will help you benefit from a short term plumping effect that visibly smooths out fine lines and wrinkles. When used properly, your skin will be hydrated and bright.
While occlusives create a protective barrier over the skin to prevent moisture loss. Some examples of these are dimethicone, squalane, propylene glycol, lecithin, cocoa butter, shea butter, beeswax, and many more. If you have oily and acne-prone skin, go for products that are higher in humectants but low in occlusive agents.
On the other hand, emollients are moisturizing agents that fill in the gaps between skin cells and skin flakes. These components not only make skin appear smoother but also make skin softer and increases its flexibility. Some examples of emollients are dimethicone, trisiloxane, ceramides, linoleic acid, caprylyl glycol and many more. Some of these ingredients also have dual function as they can be emollients and occlusives.
What are the different types of Korean moisturizers? What is best for oily skin?
In K-beauty industry, they have moisturizers formulated in various forms such as emulsion, gel, lotion, and cream. But there are brands that showcased their own moisturizer with a wide array of terms.
Maybe you’ve heard of water creams, gel creams, and jelly creams. These are all water-based moisturizers that have lightweight, watery, and gel-like consistency. They have bouncier textures than lotion and jigglier than creams. Also, they spread easily and absorb into the skin quickly without leaving a greasy finish and without clogging pores. They do evaporate faster than thick creams. But watery gel creams are mostly formulated with hyaluronic acid that keeps your skin well-hydrated and plump throughout the day.
Emulsions can come in various textures such as from milky to gel-like liquids. These moisturizers are lighter than thick cream but heavier than essence or serum. They are more absorbent than creams. Made with mostly water-based ingredients and some oil ingredients, emulsions help in replenishing and balancing out skin’s oil and moisture levels.
Lotions are commonly thicker than emulsions but thinner than regular creams. Like emulsions but heavier type, lotions are formulated with mainly water-based ingredients with added oil components. They absorb more effectively than thick creams.
Creams have higher oil content that is made for protecting the skin barrier. As the last step in skincare, they provide a magnificent defense system for dry skin against heat and environmental aggressors.
Sleeping packs are trending products in the K-beauty world. Also known as overnight masks, they provide extra nourishment and vitality for your skin while you sleep. They have unique occlusive agents that seal all the hydration and moisture inside the skin for a very long time. When you wake up, you will notice a glowing, hydrated skin instantly.
Balms are ultra-thick and hydrating creams that have luxurious blends of oils, waxes, and butters. They are heavier than thick creams. These are used specifically in small amounts for targeted areas or when your skin is exposed in very harsh weather conditions.
For oily skin, it is best for you to use water-based and oil-free moisturizers. You can also use light emulsions that have nourishing oils that are rich in linoleic acid and non-comedogenic such as rosehip oil, hemp seed oil, safflower oil, grapeseed oil and many more.
It is important to remember that applying moisturizer is important in making your skin healthy and well-hydrated. There is also an effective technique in applying moisturizer. Take note that for moisturizers to be activated, you must first fill up your skin with hydration from toners, essences, and serums. This is because moisturizers only work by pulling water from nearby environment like the deeper layers of your skin. Therefore, gently pat your skin with the best Korean moisturizers from this guide.