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what is glass skin

How to Get Glass Skin: The Ultimate Glass Skin Routine

Intense hydration is key to ‘glass skin’ – the Korean beauty trend now popular around the world. With a focus on radiant, reflective and plump complexions, knowing how to get glass skin comes down to the care given to your skin’s needs. Whether your skin type errs towards oily, dry or sensitive, every skin type can utilise glass skin products. The final result reflects skin at its healthiest.

We've detailed the thought-process and method behind this cult-favourite trend. View which ingredients and glass skin treatments can help you achieve dewy skin and how to have glass skin naturally with the right morning and evening routine below.

What is glass skin?

As the name suggests, glass skin refers to luminous, pore-less and reflective complexions that have a ‘polished’ or glossy feel. In terms of final results, a glass skin routine should achieve long-lasting glow and an even, bouncy feel across skin. The terms glowy skin or dewy skin are often used interchangeably. As with many K-beauty trends, the process for how to get dewy skin does require some commitment, but glass skin products work to address a range of separate skin concerns, for uniform and radiant results.


The crystal effect of the glass skin routine results from the encouragement of new cells and deep application of hydration. To attain the best results, a morning and night time routine should be adhered to daily – the full result is usually visible after a few weeks of regular application. Layered moisture, facial oils and strategic exfoliation all feature in a dewy skin care routine. To support skin’s health for a natural glassy appearance, glass skin products include the following ingredients:

Alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs) 

The dual function of AHAs like glycolic acid and lactic acid are integral components of dewy skin products. As exfoliants, AHA’s gently clear dead skin cell layers to reveal fresher skin underneath. That, alongside their ability to improve moisture content helps to achieve a ‘bouncy’ skin texture and reduces the appearance of fine lines.

Hydrating ingredients

You'll notice multiple moisturising steps within a dewy skin routine. The layering of hydrating skincare formulas helps to ‘steep’ skin in moisture, so that deep layers are able to support a brightened and dewy glow. Ingredients like squalane and hyaluronic acid help to implement moisture and strengthen the skin barrier so that it can retain water content for longer.


When seeking how to get glass skin for the long-term - protection against external stress is an important step. Antioxidants help to protect skin and reduce oxidisation, which can result in uneven, discoloured or dulled skin tones. Vitamin C, ferulic acid and plant extracts like turmeric and peony extract all feature in our glass skin care routine steps.


Skincare formulas established in Korea, like facial essences and toners, feature heavily across glass skin products. To clarify, brighten, plump and even skin tone, we recommend using a consistent skincare routine focused on skin clarity & hydration. See our dewy skin care routine below for how to get glass skin that lasts.

glass skin brightening cleanser

Step 1: Brightening cleanser

A universal brightening cleanser is included in both your glass skin morning routine and evening regime. Visible skin stress is often caused by environmental pollutants. An important first step in how to have glass skin naturally is through cleansing - to clear impurities and prepare skin for nourishing formulas. Clearly Corrective™ Brightening & Exfoliating Daily Cleanser gently purifies with antioxidants and nutrients to assist skin clarity.

Apply a small amount of Clearly Corrective™ Brightening Exfoliating Daily Cleanser to wet skin and massage upwards in circular motions before rinsing face

glass skin routine balancing toner

Step 2: Balancing toner

To balance and prep skin, a skin toner should be applied directly after cleansing or masking. Cucumber Herbal Alcohol-Free Toner is suitable for all skin types and is one of the best products for glass skin, thanks to its comforting and balancing ability. Saturate a cotton pad with the cucumber extract-rich formulas and pat across skin.

glass skin routine brightening facial essence

Step 3: Brightening facial essence

Facial essences are a mainstay of K-Beauty, and are considered an important glass skin treatment. Ferulic Brew Rejuvenating Facial Essence visibly boosts radiance through the use of efficacious AHA’s alongside squalane. Facial essence also prime skin to better absorb following products like serums and moisturisers. This dewy skin product should be used both morning and night. Where the toner is swiped across skin, a facial essence is absorbed into skin. Gently press a few drops in – focusing on cheeks, forehead and chin area.

glass skin routine plumping serum

Step 4: Boost clarity with Vitamin C & Retinol serums

Facial serums are especially potent at visibly improving the appearance of complexions to achieve hydrated, glass skin. The effective combination of Retinol and Vitamin C can help promote a clear, youthful appearance. Retinol benefits skin by accelerating the skin cell cycle and improves the appearance of fine lines while Vitamin C helps to protect the skin and reduce oxidation to help minimise the appearance of dark spots & discolouration. We recommend using a Vitamin C Serum in the morning like the Clearly Corrective Dark Spot Solution, and a Retinol Serum at night. These ingredients can be layered with a hydrating & plumping serum like the Hydro-Plumping Serum Concentrate, which penetrates deeply to provide a ‘filling effect’ to skin, with the inclusion of glycerin and epidermal hydration filler.

glass skin routine nourishing moisturiser

Step 5: Nourishing moisturiser

As a dewy skin routine is predominantly focused on moisture, an intensely hydrating formula should be used. Clearly Corrective™ Brightening Smoothing Moisture Treatment combines vitamin C with AHA glycolic acid to correct the appearance of discolouration across skin and continuously hydrate for 24 hours. Rather than single application, layers of moisturiser are encouraged in the glass skin routine. Apply around 2 thin layers of universal Clearly Corrective Brightening Smoothing Moisture Treatment to skin in the morning. At night, apply slightly thicker layers to ensure skin is steeped in moisture as your sleep.

Step 6: Apply a Firming Eye Cream

Step 6: Firming eye cream

The skin around your eye area is more delicate than the rest of your face, and is prone to unique skin concerns like dark circles and crow's feet. To help promote the appearance of dewy under-eyes, use an hydrating eye cream like the Creamy Eye Treatment with Avocado. This formula includes Avocado Oil, Beta-Carotene and Shea Butter to gently moisturise the delicate under eye area for a youthful-looking glow.

Step 7: Nourishing Face Oil

Step 7: Radiance-boosting facial oil

Facial oils can be added to your glass skin routine to help further add a dewy, hydrated feel and look to skin. Perfect for nighttime application, we recommend the Midnight Recovery Concentrate - a replenishing facial oil that helps restore skin overnight. The result: radiant, younger-looking skin by morning. Apply 2-3 drops into hands before bed, and gently massage into skin.

Step 8: Never skip the SPF

Step 8: Never skip the SPF

Applying SPF is an important step in preventing the signs of ageing and protecting the skin from damage. Apply an SPF as the last step of your morning skin routine - even in winter!

glass skin routine exfoliating face mask

Step 9: Exfoliating face mask

For bright, glass skin complexions, dead skin cells need to make way for new skin. To promote visible levels of hydration in skin, we recommend using a brightening facial mask 3 times per week. Turmeric & Cranberry Seed Energising Radiance Mask exfoliates skin with antioxidant cranberry seeds, while the inclusion of turmeric encourages radiance and evened skin texture. At night, place Mask across skin and wait 10 minutes before rinsing with lukewarm water, massaging into skin as you go. The cranberry seeds should be felt across skin – be sure to move your fingers in a gentle, circular motion.

discover how to get glowing skin

Discover How to Get Glowing Skin

For glowing skin, hydration is a must. Moisturiser formulas are tailored to skin types and needs to ensure optimal hydration is achieved. For glowing, dewy skin, read the key to skin hydration and then view our range of moisturisers and face masks.


Explore the Kiehl’s range for glass skin every day.

Frequently Asked Questions

Answers to Your Frequently Asked Questions About Glass Skin

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