“It Doesn’t Matter How Great Your Genetics Are”: Why You Will Never Be Able To Get Glass Skin Like A K-Pop Idol

South Korea and skincare are practically synonyms now. Especially with K-Pop idols’ clear, glass skin that appears poreless on our screens, naturally, we hope that if we follow 10-step skincare routines using K-beauty products, we can achieve the same look.

MONSTA X’s Hyungwon

Yet, it might not be possible for the average person, even if you buy quality products.

IVE’s Wonyoung | Innisfree

TikToker Lily (@designalily on TikTok) explained in a video that although we might attempt it, we likely won’t be able to achieve skin quite like K-Pop idols’ because there is another step in their skincare routines that is unrealistic for everyone.

Lily hired a Korean makeup artist who has worked with celebrities, including K-Pop idols. The makeup artist revealed the secrets to Korean celebrities’ glass skin.

A few months ago, I hired a Korean makeup artist in Seoul to help me improve my makeup game, and she taught me a lot of beauty secrets that celebrities do. And now I know that all those celebrities selling Korean skincare is basically just like a marketing scheme because how they actually get their skin to look like that is not because of the skincare they use.

— Lily

According to Lily, A-list Korean celebrities visit dermatologists’ clinics daily for treatments. They would receive such treatments from injections to lasers to maintain their “perfect skin.”

She told me many of the A-list Korean celebrities go to the clinic daily to get treatments like lasers, injections, you name it. So, it’s almost impossible to have bad skin at that point if you’re seeing a dermatologist daily.

— Lily

After just one treatment of Rejuran, which is not available worldwide, Lily was glowing. However, you need to do it regularly to upkeep it. So, you’d need to get it every few weeks to maintain the look. Additionally, it’s expensive and painful.

One of those famous injections is called Rejuran, which is made from salmon DNA. Unfortunately, it’s not FDA-approved in the U.S., so you can’t get it here. But in Asia, you can get it.

— Lily

Lily explained that while sleep and a healthy diet are often encouraged for skincare, too, many Korean celebrities are able to achieve the glass skin look due to treatments even if they’re not resting and/or eating regularly.

That’s why many of them have this glowy glass skin. It’s not because of the sleep because we know they don’t sleep a lot, and it’s not because of the diet because a lot of them are put on really strict diets.

— Lily

The makeup artist told Lily that some of the best skin comes from privilege. Some start regularly visiting a dermatologist at an early age if their family has money.

She told me that most of these Korean celebrities have perfect skin partly due to privilege as well because many of them start at a really young age since her family has money. So, like, at the age of three and five, they’re going like the dermatologist already.

— Lily

Yet, these visits to the dermatologist are much more affordable in Asia than in other parts of the world, such as the United States. So, even Korean and Japanese office workers get laser treatments.

In general, laser and skin treatments are a lot more affordable in Korea and the rest of Asia, and even Japan, I saw workers would come in with like laser marks on their skin, and that’s why all the women had flawless skin because women regularly get lasers. That was like a known thing.

— Lily

Unfortunately, for average people, especially internationally, achieving Korean celebrities’ “glass skin” is nearly impossible due to time and money.

So, don’t feel bad if your skin doesn’t look like that. No one’s skin can look like that unless they go to those clinics and get lasers and treatments. It doesn’t matter how great your genetics are, your skin does not glow like that without enhancement from technology.

— Lily


Spilling the truth on glass skin. It’s not snail mucin lol. #salmondnatreatment #rejuran #koreanskincare

♬ original sound – Lily | Product designer

On the other hand, some K-Pop idols, such as BTS‘s RM, have said they can’t afford to visit dermatologists as some of the treatments negatively impact their skin. Read more below.

“My Skin Gets Worse”: BTS RM’s Skincare Routine Is Not What You’d Expect

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