Glass Skin Skincare For Black and Brown Skin

Glass Skin Skincare For Black and Brown Skin

K-beauty, J-beauty and Asian skincare have been around in the US for decades, but recently their influence has been stepping it up a few notches. From sheet masks to jade rollers and now 7+ step skincare routines promising glass skin, there’s a lot to keep up with.

If you’re looking to be a skincare maximalist like Serena Williams, we have you covered. In this blog we’re going to cover all things glass skin skincare for black and brown skin. Keep scrolling to learn more!

What is glass skin?

First came honey skin, then glass skin, then dolphin skin! What are they and what do they mean?

              Honey Skin – This is the OG of skin goals in Korea. If you search it on social media, it has hundreds of thousands of tags, and it’s one of the highest compliments you can get on your skin! It’s essentially comparing your skin to the “glowy” qualities of honey. It means that your skin looks extremely healthy, hydrated, plump and dewy.

              Glass Skin – The newer term on the block that is an equally high-level compliment, glass skin, focuses on your complexion. It refers to having such smooth texture and clear skin that it’s like glass.

              Dolphin Skin – Actually coined by an American make-up artist, isn’t achieved through skincare. It’s achieved through make up. It’s the process of using the right foundations and highlighters to achieve the sheen that dolphin’s have as the sun hits their skin when they come out of the water.             

How are black and brown skin different?

Since these skin trends originated in South Korea and Japan where the skin tones and types are quite homogenous, it’s important to consider how black and brown skin tones differ so you can make educated decisions in the best skincare products for skin.

A medical journal in the National Library of Medicine shares that darker skin tones have:

  • higher transepidermal water loss (TEWL)
  • variable blood vessel reactivity
  • decreased skin surface pH
  • larger mast cell granules
  • more melanin1

These differences leave black and brown skin tones more susceptible to hyperpigmentation and dark spots, acne scarring, dry skin, and inflammation. That’s why skincare specially formulated for these concerns is essential.

5 Best Ingredients for Black and Brown Skin

Since your skin has different concerns and needs, be sure to focus on skincare with the right ingredients to heal and nourish your skin for a clear, healthy complexion. Below we’ve compiled five of the best skincare ingredients for black and brown skin tones to achieve glass skin.

  • Vitamin C – a skincare hero ingredient! Vitamin C is a natural antioxidant and helps reverse sun damage and brighten dark spots. It comes in about eight different forms, and you’ll hear a lot of skincare experts rave about l-ascorbic acid. Yes, it’s effective, but it’s also extremely unstable and can cause inflammation.

Since black and brown skin types are already prone to inflammation, we recommend vitamin C in a form called Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate. It’s much more well tolerated, stable and has been found to prevent acne.

  • Shea Butter – a staple for black and brown skin. Shea butter has been used in Africa for thousands of years and has so many healing properties including anti-inflammatory, antioxidants and antibacterial. We love it most for providing maximum moisturization without leaving your skin feeling oily.
  • Licorice Root Extract – we don’t know why this ingredient isn’t talked about more, especially for black and brown skin tones. It’s brightening, softening and reduces the appearance of scars.
  • Kojic Extract – derived from mushrooms, kojic acid extract has been used by dermatologists for decades to brighten the skin. It naturally slows down the production of pigment in the skin resulting in an overall brighter complexion.
  • Vitamin E – another powerful antioxidant that protects your skin from sun damage and helps lock in moisture and soothe your skin. We love it best when it’s paired with vitamin C. Studies have found that they’re much more effective when used together.

Looking for a way to incorporate the incredible benefits of all five ingredients above? Keep scrolling as we get into the perfect brightening and clearing skincare routine to give black and brown women glass skin.

Glass Skin Skincare Routine for Black and Brown Skin

Since K-beauty and J-beauty come from South Korea and Japan, respectively, which are two very homogenous cultures, they can seem like they’re not for all skin tones. We’ve done the research to show you how the glass skin skincare approach can be used with clean products formulated for black and brown skin.

Below is the ideal glass skin skincare routine for black and brown skin:

  1. Double Cleanse with micellar water + Vitamin C Facial Cleanser

Cleansing is the foundation of all skincare routines. A good double cleanse helps ensure that first you remove all your make up, this will enable the vitamin c facial cleanser to penetrate your skin and start delivering nourishing ingredients like vitamin c, tea tree oil and gotu kola (aka tiger grass).

  1. Use Touch Up Mask to gently exfoliate 1-3 times per week

Gently exfoliating a couple times a week is essential to slough off dead skin cells which can leave your skin looking dull and lackluster. A buildup of dead skin cells can also make your more likely to have breakouts and make it harder for your skincare to penetrate the skin and work effectively. Exfoliating is great for anti-aging too since it helps with cell turnover which promotes more youthful looking skin.

  1. Use a gentle toner

Toners can help remove any cleanser that you may not have rinsed off fully and can help remove hard water from your skin. If you’re opting to use a toner, we recommend a gentle one with ingredients like vitamin e, aloe vera, tea tree oil or squalene.

  1. Vitamin C Ferulic Serum

After cleansing and toning you’ll want to use a serum. We love this one because it’s packed with Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate vitamin c (aka the gentle kind), as well as vitamin e, and hyaluronic acid to leave your skin bright and hydrated!

  1. Brightening Eye Creme

For truly glass skin, you need to be sure to treat the eye area. Women with black and brown skin tones are especially susceptible to dark circles under their eyes. This eye creme is made with kojic acid extract, licorice root extract, shea butter and aloe vera to reduce puffiness and correct under eye discoloration.

  1. Vitamin C Moisturizing Lotion

Now here’s where we start to layer on long-lasting moisture. Apply the Vitamin C Moisturizing lotion which starts to provide hydration to your skin and give it another chance to soak up some vitamin c. The higher concentration of vitamin c in your skin, the better it’s able to do its job and provide results. With a typical skincare routine, you’d stop here, but in K-beauty more is more!

  1. Natural Complexion Brightening Creme

Like we said, more is more when it comes to K-beauty. This last step will help lock in moisture for hours and help achieve the ultimate glass skin look. The Natural Complexion Brightening Creme is a rich moisturizer formulated with the heavy hitters like shea butter, licorice root extract and koji extract.

  1. SPF (AM)

Using a broad-spectrum SPF of at least 30 should be as commonplace as brushing your teeth. If you’re not protecting your skin from additional sun damage, then you’re wasting your time and money on your morning and evening skincare routine.

Sun damage is the number one cause of aging and skin discoloration. So do not skimp on sun protection!

Start your glass skincare routine today and get all six products above for 20% off with code GLASS20! Want to grow your skincare routine a bit slower? Shop individual products for 10% off with code GLASS10.

Are you looking for more tips on how to properly heal and protect your skin? Be sure to subscribe to our mailing list for the latest updates in skincare, products, and discounts!


HI;, Wesley NO;Maibach. “Racial (Ethnic) Differences in Skin Properties: The Objective Data.” American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, U.S. National Library of Medicine,


Any information provided on this website does not establish a patient-physician relationship.

The patient-physician relationship can only be established by a face to face visit where a full medical history and appropriate physical exam and testing are performed.

The content provided in this article is for information purposes only and does not establish a patient-physician relationship. A patient-physician relationship can only be established by a face to face visit where a medical history and physical examination are performed. You must seek out the counsel of a medical professional to know what care is needed for your individual concerns.