Stating the obvious here, but Korean cosmetic companies are at the absolute forefront of skin care development. And since they’re so highly specialized, Korean products are especially effective for treating chronic or otherwise stubborn skin conditions. Case in point: The best Korean moisturizers for dry skin are formulated not only to replenish dry, dull skin immediately, but to repair your skin’s moisture barrier — the root cause of dry skin — which ensures that your skin stays properly hydrated over time, as well.
Your skin’s moisture barrier is fairly self-explanatory: It helps your skin retain moisture and essential nutrients, and protects your skin from environmental aggressors that can cause or exacerbate dryness, flakiness, itchiness, and irritation. The best Korean moisturizers contain both natural and science-backed ingredients that work to actively rebuild that barrier, like ceramides, probiotics, proteins, and hyaluronic acid. But they often contain other cool ingredients, too — think hydrolyzed collagen, snail mucin, niacinamide, and propolis — which provide additional skin care benefits.
To find the best of the best Korean moisturizers for dry skin, I scoured the most obsessive corners of the internet — and, in the process, became an obsessive myself. Herewith, the eight moisturizers that made the cut (plus a science lesson or two).
We only recommend products we love and that we think you will, too. We may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was written by our Commerce team. 1. The Ultra Gentle One
ATOPALM was first developed by a doctor to heal his infant son’s dermatitis, which should tip you off to just how gentle their products are. But this Intensive Moisturizing Cream is one of their most popular offerings. In here, the brand’s patented MLE technology works to mimic your skin’s natural lipids, which tend to be depleted in dry, dehydrated, or damaged skin, and helps restore your moisture barrier. It’s also hypoallergenic and free of common irritants, like parabens and other synthetic preservatives; and although it contains a small amount of fragrance, Amazon reviewers with extremely sensitive skin (including conditions like rosacea, and those recovering from dermatological procedures) haven’t experienced any irritation. One reviewer said this even healed their cystic acne, thanks to its barrier-repairing and anti-inflammatory abilities.