Meet the next biggest K-beauty trend to hit America: King Swabs, also known as Aqua Peeling. Essentially King Swabs are jumbo q-tips soaked in active ingredients that rid your face of dead skin and deep-seated grime (that’s the peeling part) while also giving your skin a boost of hydration (that’s the aqua part). You can expect to hear plenty more about these miraculous q-tips in the near future and here’s why.
First, King Swabs offer an easy and inexpensive alternative to booking an appointment at your dermatology clinic. Aqua Peeling began as an extremely popular Korean dermatological procedure and, luckily for us, quickly transformed into an at-home-spa treatment. After cleansing your skin, simply use the King Swab in place of your traditional exfoliator. Using the easy q-tip applicator, simply swipe the solution over your face, focusing on troubled areas. No need to rinse, just continue with your regular skincare routine and enjoy visibly smoother, softer and clearer skin.
REVIEW: LOTUS VINEGAR KING SWAB PEELING by Kait / Editor & Producer
If these King Swabs seem like magic, then you’re not alone. Before trying, I was pretty skeptical and also a bit nervous because of the word peeling. In my mind peeling equals painful. But, putting my skepticism and fear aside, I decided to test out the Lotus Vinegar King Swab Peeling by Holika Holika, which contains 5 individually wrapped swabs.
When I first opened the package, I was surprised by how big these swabs are, about 5 times larger than a normal q-tip, and they are dripping with formula. I began on my nose and gently wiped the solution across my face, focusing on my cheeks, where my skin tends to develop bumps. The water-like formula quickly absorbed into my skin, leaving a super thin layer of solution. I was expecting to feel some sting, but instead I just felt the slightest tingle.
The lack of post-application sting is because the main active ingredient in these King Swabs is Lactic Acid, which is extremely gentle and has very few side-effects. Lactic Acid has been used in dermatology clinics for years as an alternative to painful chemical peels.This King Swab is also loaded with lotus leaf extract and aloe vera extract to heal and hydrate.
Immediately after applying the Lotus Vinegar King Swab, my skin felt noticeably softer. And then I continued with my regular skincare routine. As a note, using Aqua Peels can make your skin more sensitive to the sun, so be diligent about applying sunscreen before going outside! Throughout the day I completely forgot that I had applied this peel--I experienced no redness or drying. Actually that evening I was impressed by how soft and smooth my skin still felt.
REVIEW: AQUA PEELING COTTON SWAB by Debbie / Test panelist
I have oily/combination skin that needs regular exfoliation. Without it I suffer from blackheads and breakouts so I am always in need for good exfoliators. With many different exfoliators available, I find myself gravitating toward products that are easy to use, not too much fuss. I love Dr. G’s Brightening Peeling Gel as I can use it in the shower. Since hearing about aqua peeling and king swabs I had been looking forward to try it. No rinsing afterwards?! Sign me up.
When I pulled it out of the packaging, I just had to smile - a gigantic cotton swab! It had a pleasant scent to it. On cleansed and dried skin, I started to gently swipe all over my face with it, avoiding eyes and mouth and trying not to put too much pressure on the swab. The long handle came in handy.
After I was done, I examined the swab and found a slight tinge of yellow and lints from towel. I let it dry/absorb for a minute, then went on with toner, serum, moisturizer, eye cream.
Next morning, my skin feels supple, but the difference was felt when I was putting on my makeup. Foundation went on easily, evenly and quickly; I didn’t have to work at it as much as I usually do.