The 7-Skin Method: Explained

Dec 21, 2020

Did you know that your toner can give your skin a much bigger hydration boost than you thought possible? Thanks to the innovative minds of Korean skincare lovers back in 2016, we were introduced to a special method of combining the power of a nourishing toner and the layering capabilities of the K-beauty routine. 

Voila, the 7-Skin Method was born!

(You can sometimes see Korean skincare products refer to toners as “skin”, so that’s where that name comes from.)

What is the 7-Skin Method? 

If your skin is oily or combination type, you might have struggled to find a good moisturizer that won’t feel too thick or gloopy on your skin, or cause your T-zone to become even more oily. 

The 7-Skin Method only uses a toner, in 7 layers, to provide the skin with much-needed hydration without the thickness. Because the toner is liquid, it penetrates the surface of the skin easily, making it plump and hydrated without feeling greasy or sticky. 

Properly-moisturized skin should always feel plump and supple all throughout the day. If your skin feels papery, or feels smooth but not bouncy and supple, then your skin may be dehydrated. This may cause a lot of problems like oil and water imbalance, excessive sebum production, and eventually, breakouts.

With the 7-Skin Method, you’re already getting the necessary hydration from the toner step of your routine so you can just use a lightweight moisturiser afterwards. Or you can even choose to skip it altogether if you feel like it’s enough, especially on hot and/or humid days. You may find that using the 7-Skin Method + sunscreen during the summertime is enough to provide your skin the necessary hydration it needs without greasiness, oiliness, or congestion, especially in the daytime.

During wintertime, the 7-skin method becomes super handy especially for dry skin types, as the cold air and temperature makes the skin feel dry and dehydrated. Go ahead and check how your skin feels right now, and see if it’s craving for some more moisture!

NOTE: You may think that only oily skin is prone to acne—but dehydrated skin can cause the sebum glands to go into overdrive, producing excess sebum to make up for the dryness. This can lead dry skin to become excessively oily and more acne-prone. (Also, to those with oily skin, hold off on too much blotting paper because you might be drying up the healthy natural oil levels of your skin and triggering it to think it’s dehydrated!)

woman doing skincare

How to do the 7-Skin Method

  1. After cleansing, put a dime-size amount of toner on your palm.
  2. Gently rub both palms together.
  3. Pat the toner first on the U-zone (cheeks and chin), followed by the T-zone (forehead and nose). By doing so, most of the toner is applied to the dryer area of the face that needs more hydration and then the leftover toner goes to the oilier part of the face. This is the optimal way to apply, especially for combination skin types.
  4. Don’t forget to apply on the neck. Massage or gently pat the neck on an upward motion.
  5. Pat gently until fully absorbed by the skin. Once you feel that the toner has been fully absorbed, repeat the procedure for up to 7 times. Adjust the number of layers as needed—you know your skin best! 
  6. Avoid the eye area when doing this method, as toners, essences and serums are not usually formulated for the application in the eye area.
Moisturising and hydration: What you need to remember

Toners are humectants or hydrators. This means that they tend to draw out moisture from our skin when the weather is dry and parched, which is what happens during winter time. So don’t forget to apply a moisturiser to seal off the hydration and ensure that it stays on the skin! (Sunscreens are also good to use as moisturisers during the day.)

You can also use oils over humectants lock it in. This makes oils perform better, too. And again, don’t forget your sunscreen! For dry skin types, it’s okay to use oil, moisturiser, and sunscreen during the day. Your skin needs all the help it can get, especially in winter.

The best toners for 7-Skin

We recommend using only hydrating toners for the 7-Skin Method. Try these out!


NOTE: Do not use these toner types below for 7-Skin! 👇👇👇
  1. Toners with a fair amount of alcohol, as it will end up drying your skin out more
  2. Toners with actives/acids like AHAs and BHAs, or Witch Hazel
  3. Toners with any ingredient that is astringent, such as alcohol and parabens

I am a newbie. How do I start with the seven-skin method?

  1. Start with 3 layers and work your way up gradually. Feel your skin to know how many layers your skin is comfortable with. If you want to start with 3 layers, you can use a more viscous toner to maximise the layering effect.
  2. Use lighter, more liquidy toners. If you want to layer more than one toner (or an essence with a toner), start with the lighter one and work your way to the toners with more viscous/thicker consistency.
  3. Not enough time? You can also start with a mist toner that you can spray and pat down for a quicker 7-Skin Method!

Try doing this routine a few times a week, perhaps every other day, and start feeling the difference.

7-Skin Tips for different skin types

For oily skin types: Use watery texture toners. They are easily and quickly absorbed into the skin, giving you that radiance and glow.

For dry skin types: Use more viscous texture toners.

You can layer different toners and/or essences to customise to your skin type and skin concerns. (Alternate these toners between layers so your skin can get all the benefits!)

If after using the 7-skin method, your skin has difficulty absorbing the moisturizer to seal off the hydration, try applying the moisturizer in smaller amounts. You can layer your moisturizer application too until you feel like you’ve achieved the right amount your skin needs.

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