K-Beauty Does A Pretty Good Job With Hair Care Too: 10-Step Korean Hair Care Routine

Categories : Hair, Hair Tips

It is undeniable that the best beauty rituals come from South Korea. As it turns out, the greatness of Korean beauty does not stop at skincare and it extends to all facades of personal care, including hair care. Enter the Korean hair care routine, your next favourite beauty regimen for K-drama worthy locks. Beauty Insider lets you in on everything you need to know about this trending hair care routine

Scalp Scaler

Most of us go to shampoos as our all-in-one solution for clean hair. However, the Korean hair care routine takes cleansing up a notch. Enter scalp cleansers — or scalp scalers —  the secret to glossy and thick hair. Korean hair experts say that by getting rid of dirt, dead skin and product build-up, your scalp can produce thicker and healthier hair, which is why it is an essential step in the hair care routine.

Innisfree Green Tea Mint Fresh Scalp Scaler

Kick off your hair care routine with the Innisfree Green Tea Mint Fresh Scalp Scaler! Formulated with green tea and mint extract straight from Jeju island, this scalp scaler deeply cleanses and soothes your scalp. Plus, the mint formulation controls excessive scalp sebum so you can say goodbye to oily scalp. Check out this product review by YouTuber Becca M here!

This scaler is the perfect addition to your hair care routine to reveal a healthier scalp. Apply this product directly onto dry scalp right before shampooing your hair. We also recommend using this scalp scaler once or twice every week.

Price: $25 at Innisfree stores


Every hair care routine is not without a shampoo. As the main hair cleanser, shampoos thoroughly clean your scalp and hair to get rid of all the grime caused by pollutants. Plus, there is a shampoo for every hair type and hair concern! Whether you need more volume or you just need to protect your fresh new hair dye, there is no shampoo that cannot meet your hair needs.

PHS Hairscience ADV Soothe Shampoo

This shampoo is the perfect tool to give your scalp some TLC. As its name suggests, this shampoo soothes your scalp and relieves scalp irritation and inflammation. Plus, this shampoo is formulated with patented stem cell ingredients to strengthen the scalp’s immunity and protect the scalp from harmful bacteria.

Here is why we love this product

  • Cooling sensation
  • Leaves hair feeling much softer
  • Reduces scalp sensitivity over time

With its rave reviews, this shampoo has definitely lived up to the hype. If you want to adhere closely to the Korean hair care routine, shampoo your hair everyday! Celebrity hairstylist, Park Je Hee, who has styled the likes of Blackpink’s Jennie, suggests shampooing your hair between 10pm to 1am for the best results.

Price: $48 at PHS Hairscience outlets

Scalp Massager

Take your shampoo session to the next level and incorporate some scalp massaging into your hair care routine! Aside from being relaxing, scalp massaging is a key step in the Korean hair care routine to getting rid of any grime or excess sebum on your scalp. Plus, scalp massaging also promotes hair growth.

Maxsoft Scalp Care Brush

The Maxsoft Scalp Cleanser is built with a perfect grip and soft, thick silicone bristles to gently cleanse your scalp. What’s more, this scalp massager enhances blood circulation to the scalp and deeply exfoliates the scalp for a thicker head of hair.

Here is why we love this product

  • Gentle on scalp
  • No need to worry about long nails again
  • Easy to use

Whether you have dry or frizzy hair, this scalp massager is perfect for all hair types. It has even received over thousands of glowing reviews on Amazon! Use this scalp massager whilst shampooing your hair.

Price: $6.98 at Amazon


Conditioner and shampoo go hand-in-hand in any hair care routine. Shampoos can get rid of all the buildup on your scalps, but they can also leave your hair in a frizzy mess. With conditioners, this problem can easily be fixed. These bad boys are known to replenish moisture in the hair for less frizz and allow for easier brushing. So you can say hello to smooth and silky hair!

Nature Republic Argan Essential Deep Care Conditioner

This conditioner is a life saviour for extremely damaged hair. Made with organic argan oil, this antioxidant-packed conditioner hydrates and softens the hair to fight off frizz. Plus, it restores shine to full hair and improves the strength of hair thanks to the Vitamin E in argan oil.

Here is why we love this product:

  • No greasy finish
  • Smoothens frizzy hair
  • Delivers long-lasting moisture

Reviewers are loving this conditioner as it does deliver on its promise on nourishing your hair, making this a must-have in your beauty arsenal. Pro tip: Let the conditioner sit in your hair a little longer if your conditioner is not working for you. 

Price: $15.28 at iHerb

Hair Mask

When it comes to the Korean hair care routine, conditioning is everything to achieve those silky tresses. Amp up your conditioning routine and use a hair mask! These are a favourite in Korea for their deep nourishing and hydrating powers. They work like leave-in conditioners to quench parched hair and add an extra high-shine to hair!

Etude House Silk Scarf Double Hair Mask

This quick and easy-to-use hair mask contains Calendula extract and Hohobassi oil to leave your hair feeling unbelievably soft and shiny. Also, it balances out the oil production on your hair for a healthier scalp. Even beauty YouTuber kimdao is raving about this product!

Here is why we love this product:

  • Does not weigh down hair
  • Leaves hair with high-shine gloss
  • No greasy finish

We recommend using this hair mask once a week for that quick pampering session. Coat your hair with this product before putting on the plastic cap that comes with it. Then, leave this mask in for 10 to 15 minutes before rinsing it off with lukewarm water.

Price: $9.90 at Lazada

Vinegar Rinse

It looks like vinegar does not only belong in the kitchen. Although it might sound unconventional, Koreans swear by using vinegar rinse in their hair routine as it balances the pH level of the scalp and brightens dull, lifeless hair.

Yves Rocher Rinsing Vinegar

Radiant hair is on the way! Made with raspberry vinegar, this vinegar rinse-off treatment repairs your hair cuticles while cleansing your scalp from mineral build-up, leaving your hair feeling much smoother while promoting a healthy scalp.

Here is why we love this product:

  • Amazing scent
  • Revitalises damaged hair
  • Leaves hair with a softer texture

Although there are stray reviews, reviewers have said that they have seen significant differences to their hair after using this product! Apply this all over your scalp and hair after rinsing your conditioner. After that, rinse your hair with lukewarm water. 

Price: $18 at Sephora

Scalp Tonic

You cannot miss out on a scalp tonic if you want the full scalp care experience. As the scalp is often exposed to harmful environmental aggressors, this leads to thinning hair and slower hair growth rates. Scalp tonics aim to fix this by repairing damaged and thinning hair by delivering nutrient-packed formulas to your scalp.

Aveda Pramasana Protective Scalp Concentrate

korean hair care routine

Infused with the tonic’s synonymous concentrate, this scalp tonic nourishes the deeper layers of the scalp and balances sebum production to soothe your scalp for all-day comfort. It also fortifies the scalp’s natural protective barrier to combat free radicals and harmful environmental aggressors.

Here is why we love this product:

  • Soothes itchiness
  • Reduces dandruff
  • Non-greasy finish

The secret to keeping your scalp healthy lies with this product. Reviewers say that this product has worked wonders for their hair and resolved their dandruff and itchiness woes! Apply this tonic on a clean scalp after blow-drying your hair and massage the product in.

Price: $83 at Tangs

Hair Serum 

Hair serum is the equivalent of a facial ampoule. The aim of this step is to provide long-lasting moisture to the hair to tame greasy and frizzy hair. Most serums come in an oil-based form for instant shine and hydration without leaving any thick product build up on the hair and scalp

Innisfree Camellia Essential Hair Oil Serum

The Innisfree Camellia Essential Hair Oil Serum is our best pick for hair serums. Suitable for permed and dyed hair, this serum contains camellia oil, which is known to rejuvenate damaged hair and strengthen the hair’s ability to retain moisture.

Here is why we love this product:

  • Easily absorbs into hair
  • Fixes damaged hair
  • Restores hair shine

Hundreds of reviewers have left positive reviews for this product and we are not surprised! From fixing brittle hair to softer hair texture, this hair serum provides the solution to all your hair concerns! Use this hair serum every other week.

Price: $15 at Innisfree stores

Overnight Hair Treatment

If you think your damaged and frizzy hair is beyond saving, think again. Overnight hair treatments are your best friend if you need intense hydration. Unlike hair masks, you can leave them in for a few hours when you are sleeping so you can wake up with luscious locks instantly.

This Works Sleep Plus Hair Elixir

This hair elixir is perfect for sleepless nights. Infused with pure essential oils like lavender and chamomile, this hair elixir simultaneously promotes better sleep while nourishing your hair so you can wake up with smoother hair while feeling well-rested at the same time.

Here is why we love this product:

  • Super relaxing scent
  • Softer hair texture
  • Non-irritant

Manageable hair and a good night sleep? Count us in! Reviewers also swear by this overnight hair treatment as it works like magic overnight! Spritz this product every night before you head to bed!

Price: $47 at Sephora

Hair Essence

Like your face, your hair needs a boost of hydration too, so give your hair the TLC it needs with a hair essence. Hair essences are made to moisturise your hair without feeling heavy on your hair for silky and shiny hair. They usually come in a mist form, so you can spritz at any time!

BEOLOGY Aqua Hair Essence Mist

Expect soft and bouncy curls with this hair essence mist. This antioxidant-packed hair essence contains deep sea extract and herbal plant essences to deliver intense hydration and improve the strength of hair from the roots to the ends of hair.

Here is why we love this product:

  • Weightless on hair
  • Moisturises dry hair
  • Non-greasy

This hair essence mist is your answer to rejuvenating dry hair midday. Keep this hair mist essence close to you at all times It is no wonder this product has been highly rated by reviewers.

Price: $25 at Watsons

Hair Mousse

The last step to the Korean hair care routine, hair mousse adds that final touch to soft and bouncy hair. Celebrity hairstylist Park Je Hee even says that humidity can be combatted by hair mousse, which is perfect for Singapore’s hot climate!

Giovanni Natural Mousse Air-Turbo Charged Hair Styling Foam

Bring your hair to new heights with this hair styling foam. Made with Giovanni’s own Eco Chic Technology, this hair mousse delivers long-lasting stay-power and adds volume to your hair so you can style your hair any way you desire.

Here is what we love about this product:

  • Strong hold power to keep your hairstyle in place
  • Smoothens hair frizz
  • Adds high-shine gloss to hair

This hair mousse has gained cult status among many beauty junkies as it does deliver on its promise to elevate your hair game. Plus, reviewers have even said this works on both thick and thin hair, making this a staple to own in every hairstyling routine.

Price: $9.82 at iHerb

How is the Korean Hair Care Routine Different from Other Hair Routines?


For most of us, a nifty shampoo and conditioner are our only tools in our hair care routines. However, the Korean hair care routine focuses on taking care of the scalp to encourage luscious locks at the (literal) root of it all. Thus, many of the steps involve deeply cleansing scalp debris to maintain the scalp’s health.

Tips to Take Care of Your K-drama Worthy Locks

Apply Heat Protectant


Heat styling tools can give us those red carpet-worthy tresses, but they can be the biggest enemy to your hair and often leave your hair in a frizzy mess. Combat this by applying a heat protectant spray to keep your hair safe from the heat damage.

Always Brush Your Hair


Leaving your hair in a tangled mess without brushing can cause a lot of damage to the hair in the long run, according to celebrity hairstylist Lee Bumho. That is why this basic hair care step cannot be overlooked! Aside from detangling your hair, brushing your hair can also restore the shine in your hair as it redistributes the hair’s natural oils evenly.

Stay Away From 2-in-1 Shampoos


Although 2-in-1 shampoos may seem like a quick and convenient fix, Koreans are not huge fans of them. This is because 2-in-1 shampoos often do not cleanse the scalp and hair thoroughly. Therefore, we suggest sticking to using separate products to take care of your scalp and hair.