Hidden among all the Korean beauty products that you love are exfoliating pads. They seem confusing at first, but once you go through our guide and find the one that’s made for your skin and your concerns, you’ll wonder how you never knew they existed for so long.
Exfoliator pads are all the rage because of their easy convenience. And K-beauty has caught on too. So, we’re outlining our favorite K-beauty exfoliator pads for that extra boost of hydration and gentle exfoliation.
Neogen Real Cica Pads: The best for exfoliating sensitive skin
The Neogen Real Cica Pads are an exfoliating pad like no other. Unlike other exfoliating pads that have a rougher side and a smoother side, these are super gentle on the skin so that you’re gently exfoliating without feeling like you’re exfoliating at all. Cica, which these single-use pads are drenched in, is a super trendy in Korea, and all over the globe. It’s short for centella asiatica, and is great for calming and soothing irritated or sensitive skin, as well as repairing the skin barrier against environmental pollutants.
These pads also contain a PHA, an exfoliating ingredient that hydrates while gently ridding the skin of potential acne-causing dead skin cells and excess oil. These pads are formulated without fragrance, pigments, and preservatives, and potential skin irritating or harming ingredients, which makes them perfect for even sensitive skin.
Neogen Bio-Peel Gauze Peeling in Lemon, Green Tea, and Wine: The do-it-all pads for sensitive skin and preventing premature aging
These pads are a personal favorite of mine. They’re super gentle yet still super effective and they come in three unique styles to target your specific skin issues. All the single use pads come with a rough (but still gentle) side to slough away any impurities and dead skin cells and a smooth side to sweep away any of the debris left over. Both the wine and lemon versions are also chemical exfoliators, soaked in lactic acid to deeply clean your pores. The lemon version is loaded with vitamin C to promote brightness and even out the skin tone. The wine version is packed with resveratrol, a naturally fermented AHA that comes from red wine. This has additional exfoliating power. Plus, both vitamin C and resveratrol are antioxidants, so they help build up your skin barrier against free radicals. The wine pad does have a pretty strong red wine smell, however, so if that’s not your cup of tea, maybe steer clear of this one.
The green tea version is slightly gentler; it’s packed with green tea (obviously), another powerful antioxidant, and one that’s particularly great if with premature aging. Green tea is also an anti-inflammatory and great for soothing any irritated skin.
RE:P Organic Cotton Treatment Toning Pads: The cruelty-free option for dry and sensitive skin
These pads are perfect for the all-natural babe. With a completely vegan, organic, certified cruelty-free, and eco-friendly formulation, these pads are awesome for all skin types but particularly for sensitive or dry skin, since its free of ingredients that most commonly irritate these skin types like mineral oil, sorbic acid, animal ingredients, surfactants, parabens, mineral oil, and propylene glycol.
The formula hydrates and balances using Damask rose extract, tea tree, and calendula. Similar to the Neogen Bio-Peel, one side is threaded for some gentle manual exfoliation and the other is smooth to sweep away any impurities. Plus, they’re super easy to carry around with you for travel or after the gym!
COSRX One Step Moisture Up Pad: For gently exfoliating acne-prone skin
The COSRX pads are a wonder if you suffer from acne. They are packed with propolis extract, a naturally-occurring antiseptic that’s collected by honeybees from tree buds and flowers. Propolis is particularly effective in treating blemishes, acne, and redness. It’s also loaded with Korean skin care staple ingredient, hyaluronic acid to deeply hydrate irritated skin and lock in moisture. (Side note: Did you know that dehydrated skin can actually cause more acne? This is why it’s important if you’re acne-prone to keep your skin hydrated). The pads are softly embossed for gentle exfoliation that you can do every day.
If you’re scared of exfoliating because you’re afraid you’re going to over-do it or that it’s going to irritate your sensitive skin, definitely check out these single-use exfoliating pads. They’re a great option to gently exfoliate away any pore-clogging irritants, whilst still keeping the skin hydrated, bright, and happy!