The End-All-Be-All of the ‘7 Skin Method’

The End-All-Be-All of the ‘7 Skin Method’

We know that Korean skincare enthusiasts are next-level geniuses and sometimes we wonder if every crazy thing they do is really worth it. One of the many tricks that has recently gone viral in the K-beauty community is called the ‘7 Skin Method’ where toner is applied to the face 7 (yes, the number 7) times.

The ‘3 Skin Method’ was pretty popular and it’s been used by many to maximize hydration without the use of heavy creams, serums and oils.

Just for reference, “SKIN” is the term Koreans use to describe TONER.

So here’s what goes down:

Step 1: Cleanse normally as you would.

Step 2: Apply toner with a cotton pad and sweep it all over your face. Or, use the palm of your hands to warm it up and pat gently.

Step 3: Wait 3 minutes. Do it again.

Step 4: Wait 3 minutes. Do it again.

Step 5: Wait 3 minutes. Do it again.

Step 6: Wait 3 minutes. Do it again.

Step 7: Wait 3 minutes. Do it again.

Step 8: And for the bizillionth time, wait 3 minutes. Do it again.

Major tips

If you want to use a cotton pad to apply the toner, only use it the first step—using it for each step can lead to a lot of waste buildup!

Do NOT use an alcohol-based toner—this can have a negative effect on your skin as alcohol tends to dry out and irritate your skin.

Waiting 3 minutes in between seems like a huge bother, but this step is vital to making sure that your skin is fully absorbing each layer of toner. Keep a timer next to you so you can keep track! Maybe watch an episode of your favorite K-drama while you’re at it. #multitasking

If you think 7 times is excessive, try doing it 3 times for the first time and then work your way up from there until you reach the right number—your magic number could be 4 or 6! It’s all about finding balance.

This method is highly skeptical but must have gone viral on the internet for a reason. Therefore, 2 members of the Cupidrop family tried it out for 3 DAYS IN A ROW. Here are the results!


Skin type: Dry, Sensitive, Aging

Toner(s) used: Purpletale‘s Setting the Scene Essence and Secret Key‘s Starting Treatment Essence

“I’m always going for whatever new products / new methods there are available! I try anything and everything so when I heard of the new “7 Skin Method” I had to try it. For my dry skin, it sounded like a dream!

Let me just tell you that it is definitely time consuming, as you are supposed to wait 3 minutes between the layers (I confess, I cheated and waited maybe 2 minutes after my 3rd or 4th layer). I have super dry skin so I ended my last step with a night time moisturizer to seal / lock in that moisture.

With Purpletale’s Setting The Scene Essence, I felt maybe this was a bit of a heavier toner (well, it is an essence but a lighter weight) as it was a little bit sticky. However, the results in the morning were amazing! And I didn’t get any breakouts – ( so even if it was a bit heavier in consistency, it didn’t clog my pores?)

My skin felt more plump and well moisturized.

However, I tried Secret Key’s First Treatment Essence the next night, and I definitely liked this one more as it was lighter in consistency.

It is still time consuming as I had to do the whole 7 steps (maybe I can just do 3-4 layers to save some time) but the results is amazing—Hydrated, brighter skin! Skin felt less tight and well moisturized.”


Skin type: Combination, Sensitive, Acne-Prone, Dry-Patch Prone (if that’s a thing)

Toner used: COSRX‘s Centella Water Alcohol-Free Toner

“I am usually extremely skeptical with this type of stuff, but because it has went so viral the past couple months, and because my skin has been crying for some hydration due to this harsh winter weather, I thought that this would be a good opportunity to try something new! I have very red and sensitive skin, so to be honest, I was slightly scared going into this. The first night I washed my face and went straight into doing the ‘7 Skin Method.’

For the first round I drenched a cotton pad and smeared the thing all over my face. I warmed up my hands and patted my face to maximize absorption. I waited exactly 3 minutes (yes, I did set a timer) and for the second round to the seventh round, I directly sprayed the toner onto my face—about 3-5 spritz each time—and patted my face with my hands. I was really surprised with the outcome as I didn’t think I needed to put on serum or a really thick night cream afterwards. But being the cautious weirdo I am, I slapped on a light, day-time appropriate moisturizer—JUST IN CASE. I went to sleep extremely happy and hydrated.

I woke up the next morning and skin felt very hydrated. However, I wouldn’t say that it transformed my skin or anything. As I went about my day, my skin started to feel a bit itchy and tingly….DUN DUN DUN… There was also a strange red spot on my left cheekbone (btw, not welcomed nor invited). I thought, “Oh no, maybe I shouldn’t have done this…” But I powered through and just repeated the same process that night. Except, this time, I layered on a thicker night cream instead of the lighter moisturizer I used before. I woke up the next morning and there were no signs of itchiness or tingliness, and the red spot—was gone! Happy with the results, I repeated the process for the third time and woke up the next morning with a nice glow on my face. I am usually an combination to oily gal and get major #donutglaze in the t-zone area, but I can definitely tell the difference between GLOW and straight up GREASE.

Overall, I am glad I got over my skincare fear and tried out this method. I got to achieve a nice, comfortable glow and my skin just felt really balanced and renewed. The biggest thing I could complain about, which is a common concern for many—it takes forever. When I come home, tired from work and school, all I wanna do is lay down and eat a bag of Hot Cheetos. So to go from that mindset to ultimate-skin-saving-gold-digging-life-winning-30-freaking-minutes viral method hack was a HUGE step for me. Think of all the Hot Cheetos I could have ate during those 30 minutes. Probably a lot.

Speaking of a lot, I used up A LOT of product. I started with a fresh bottle of toner and by the end of my oh-so-evil experiment (muahaha), I botched through about 1/4 of the bottle. That’s why I would not recommend doing this experiment with an expensive toner.


Skin type: Combination, Sensitive, Occasional breakouts

Toner used: Klairs‘ Supple Preparation Unscented Facial Toner

I was really excited about trying this trend out because even though it’s only autumn right now, I am already bracing myself for the notoriously harsh winters in NYC. My cheeks become tight and flaky during the arid winters so I wanted to give my skin a head start and reduce any chance of cracking. I decided to start my 7 skin journey with a cotton pad application, to just spread the product all over my face and remove any lingering residue. Then I switched to my fingers so that I can tap the product into my skin. I kept a timer throughout the routine (for the sake of science!) and found that if you keep yourself entertained by watching YouTube videos or reading online articles, the 3 minutes will go by in a flash.

On the first night, I applied the toner all over my face for every single layer however doing that made my nose extra greasy the following morning. On the second night, I applied 3 layers all over the skin but for the final 4 layers I just focused on my dry areas (like my cheeks, chin and neck.) This made the 7 skin method much more effective for me as it reduced the greasiness and it gave SUPER soft skin the next day. I could not stop rubbing my cheeks because it was really that soft.

I do have to say that this Klairs toner is on the thicker side so while I was going through the layers, my skin felt tacky and uncomfortable. This toner definitely needed more than 3 minutes absorb or maybe even less layers. On the third night, I was contemplating just stopping at layer 4 because I saw how much product I was actually using up but I powered through because the point of this experiment was to test the 7 skin method. In conclusion, I understand the idea behind this method which was to give your skin time to absorb your product so that you can reap the full moisturizing benefits however since the toner I selected was thicker and so moisturizing, 3-4 layers will do the trick.


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