Although essence is the most important step for every Korean woman it is still quite a mystery in Western culture. The easiest way to define essence is first to figure out what it is not. This is not a toner, although they have a similar slip to them – in fact You don’t apply essence with the cotton pad, but you pat it onto your face. It is also not meant for cleaning. With higher doses of active ingredients, essence is meant to deliver nutrients deep into the skin after you’ve gone through the process of double cleansing. Affecting your skin on a cellular level, essence helps you get smoother and brighter skin.