I'm a Picky Beauty Writer—This Is the Brand That Makes Up 50% of My Skin Routine


(Image credit: @kaitlyn_mclintock )

Being a beauty writer means being blessed with the latest and greatest in skincare. I'm constantly testing new formulas and switching products in and out of my routine. With so much variety and an ever-changing lineup, I've had to develop specific criteria for determining how much I like something. 

Here it is—if I'm willing to purchase a product on my own once I run out of it, I know it's legit. (It's a simple yet effective standard). Rarely, though, do I find an entire skincare brand that I'm willing to purchase on my own. When I do, I know I really stumbled across something special. 

That's the case with Peach & Lily, a brand built around the Korean skincare philosophy. I was introduced to it through one product: a moisturizer. I fell in love at first use, and I've never looked back. That was years ago, yet I still go back to that very same moisturizer whenever my skin is dry, dehydrated, or irritated (but more on that in a minute). I've also introduced the brand's other products into my routine, and I love using them just as much. Keep scrolling to learn why I'm so obsessed with this skincare brand. Plus, shop my all-time favorite products. 


(Image credit: @kaitlyn_mclintock 

My Skin Type

For context, I want to talk a little bit about my skin concerns. If I had to sum up my skin type in two words, I'd choose "redness" and "dehydration." I have a very mild case of rosacea, and as such, my skin tends to look flushed and lackluster. While I've gotten a handle on it through a lot of trial and error, my skin still flares up when I'm tired, stressed, or testing too many products in too quick of a succession. 

Even when my skin is behaving, it's still difficult to find suitable skincare products. That's because I want to use active ingredients that can improve my skin, but I don't want the excess irritation that often comes with them. It's a conundrum that I'm constantly trying to figure out. 

That's where Peach & Lily comes in. There's just something about the brand's formulas that my skin loves. No matter how red, irritated, or dehydrated it is, my skin reacts well to the products. It's calmer, clearer, and plumper every time I use them. 

The Formulas


(Image credit: @peachandlily )

I reached out to Alicia Yoon, the founder of Peach & Lily, to learn more about the brand and ask what kind of wizardry is behind her products. As it turns out, Yoon is all too familiar with the struggles of having sensitive skin. "I have eczema and very sensitive skin and so my skin can get irritated, especially when I use products with active ingredients in them," she said. "And yet, I want to be able to use active ingredients so that they can do heavy lifting for my skin."

She intentionally created Peach & Lily to bridge the gap, combining active ingredients with their soothing counterparts. "While each of our formulas are different, we craft each intentionally to balance both the featured active ingredient with whatever specific skin soothing action is needed." Cool, right?

The Products

Now for the products themselves. I have to start out with my favorite Peach & Lily product of all time, which is this moisturizer. It was the first product I ever tried from the brand, and the one that led the way for others to be incorporated into my skincare collection.

In my eyes, it's kind of the perfect moisturizer. It hydrates my skin, it doesn't pill, and it never causes clogged pores or irritation. Plus, it soothes my redness like nothing else. 

It's all thanks to antioxidant-rich ingredients like matcha, cape lilac extract, niacinamide, and adenosine. Together, they defend against free radicals, brighten the complexion, and firm the skin. 

This is a new launch from the brand. Even though the Matcha Pudding Antioxidant Cream will always hold a special place in my heart, this moisturizer is a welcome addition to my product lineup. 

It's chock-full of peptides and amino acids, which are the building blocks of collagen and elastin. It also contains hyaluronic and polyglutamic acids, rice ferment, and tremella mushroom. Together, these hero ingredients firm the skin while supporting its natural moisture barrier. 

This might just be the most recognizable Peach & Lily product. It's the ultimate "glass skin" product, as it contains peach extract, niacinamide, East Asian mountain yam, madecassoside, peptides, and hyaluronic acid to hydrate, calm, brighten, and firm the skin over time. 

Even though it's basically bursting with active ingredients, it doesn't irritate my skin. Actually, it does the opposite. After using this serum for a few days, I can see and feel a difference. My skin feels more hydrated and looks calmer. 

Yoon specifically recommends this essence for my dehydrated skin. "It includes 2% niacinamide, lotus extract, bamboo and prebiotics to help calm skin and leave it visibly brighter, more even-toned and deeply hydrated," she says. 

Yoon also recommends this mist for dehydrated skin. "I would also add in the Glass Skin Veil Mist as it's formulated to quench skin thirst while also calming skin and reducing visible signs of external stressors on-the-go, thanks to cucumber water, reishi mushroom, ceramides and hyaluronic acid," she says. "It can be used liberally throughout the day as needed. I also love that it can be used under and over makeup or on bare skin, and it gives you an instant glass skin finish." 

At the risk of sounding dramatic, this is one of my favorite exfoliating masks I've ever tried. Because of my irritation-prone skin, certain exfoliation masks leave my complexion looking red and feeling angry. This one doesn't. The combination of AHAs, aloe vera, and blue agave extract do what they're supposed to do without causing any problems. I even recommended it to one of my coworkers who has sensitive skin, and it's now her go-to exfoliating mask as well. 

"We're so excited that even those with very sensitive skin love this mask," Yoon tells me. "Typically, this high concentration of acids would be too much for sensitive skin, but we included a bevy of soothing ingredients like chamomile, turmeric, aloe, blue agave, and eggplant to soak skin in calmness as it's resurfaced. The challenge was in keeping all of these ingredients stable and sensorially delightful in an acid peel. It took years to create this formula, but it was worth it as we can now offer a potent chemical peel made for sensitive skin." 

There are days when I wake up, open my laptop, and get right to work. There are also days when I close my laptop at 10 o'clock at night and fight the urge to just go to bed without completing my skincare routine. These all-in-one pads are for those days. They combine the effects of a toner, essence, and moisturizer, and they're formulated with vitamins, antioxidants, and ceramides. I swear they're a busy day's saving grace. 

This little eye stick makes me look less tired for surprise Zoom calls. It's formulated with kiwi and cucumber extracts, caffeine, green tea, turmeric, and niacinamide. It also imparts a subtle shimmer for an instant boost to tired eyes. 

I love oil cleansers, but I don't love the greasy residue that so many of them leave behind (or the potentially pore-clogging formulas). This one is unique in that it rinses away clean. The best part? It's formulated for all skin types. Yes, that means even oily, blemish-prone skin types can use it without issue. 

I often use this comforting face oil before giving myself a facial massage. Even though I'd consider myself a novice, I can always see a difference in my skin when I make it a priority in my nightly skincare routine. 

Facial massage comes highly recommended by Yoon. In fact, she considers it to be one of her favorite skin tips. "I'm a big believer in facial massages, so whenever I'm doing my skincare routine, I quickly incorporate even a 3-minute lymphatic drainage massage, circulation-boosting massage, or toning massage," she says. "Even though it's short, the consistency can make a big difference!"

"In case you're wondering, her other favorite skin tips are to eat anti-inflammatory foods and manage stress and anxiety. "I am all about anti-inflammatory foods like matcha tea and sprinkling turmeric onto a lot of my foods, which is easy to do and pairs well with a lot of dishes," she says. "And as someone who struggles with eczema and other skin issues, I know stress and anxiety easily show up on my skin. I love including little rituals throughout the day that fit my lifestyle at the moment that helps me feel grateful, content, and calm. Lately, I've been unwinding at night by watching an episode of a Korean drama while I meal-prep for my baby. And in the mornings, for some years now, I always start the day with tea and five minutes of total quiet to map out my day ahead to stay organized." 

Shop 5 More K-Beauty Products I Love 

Next, I'm using this $20 brightening serum to fade post-summer hyperpigmentation

Kaitlyn McLintock
Associate Beauty Editor

Kaitlyn McLintock is an Associate Beauty Editor at Who What Wear. Although she covers a wide range of topics across a variety of categories, she specializes in celebrity interviews and skincare and wellness content. Having lived in Los Angeles and Austin, Texas, she recently relocated back to her home state of Michigan where she works remotely. Prior to Who What Wear, she freelanced for a variety of industry-leading digital publications, including InStyle, The Zoe Report, Bustle, Hello Giggles, and Coveteur. Before that, she held a long-term internship and subsequent contributor position at Byrdie. When she's not writing, researching, or testing the latest and greatest beauty products, she's working her way through an ever-growing book collection, swimming in the Great Lakes, or spending time with family.