Remember when I said I would do a Korea make-up haul post? Shopping for makeup in Korea was an incredible experience, especially for skincare. I have three rules when I am shopping for skincare: organic ingredients, affordable, and of course, effective. The Korean makeup industry is much more advanced, cheaper, and regulated than the US. Therefore, South Korea was a haven for a picky shopper like me!
Here are a couple of products I came back satisfied with. All the products are either from Skinfood or Innisfree, brands known to only use natural ingredients. None of these products contain harmful parabens!
Moisture Firming Skin and Lotion 36,000 won (18000 won each)
The Koreans have developed a 5-step skin regimen, essence, serum, skin, lotion, eye cream. I opted out for barest necessities, skin and lotion. The Innisfree had a nifty device that measured the moisture level of your skin. My skin was just below the ideal moisture level, so they suggested products that focused on hydrating my skin. After using it for a week, the moisture and firming lotion by Innisfree does pretty much what it says. The skin feels hydrating and the lotion makes my skin velvety smooth. The price was great too for the generous size especially considering how expensive organic products are in the US.
Jeju Clay Mask (soft) 12000 won
I ventured to buy one of Innisfree’s most popular product, Jeju Clay Mask. They suggested the hard mask for oily skin and soft for dry. If you have combination skin, you should buy the hard mask and just apply the product on your T-zone. This product focuses on cleaning and minimizing pores. At first, I was very disappointed by the size. For the price–which is a little pricey for a clay mask in Korea—I thought the size would be bigger, but after I tried the product I was pleasantly surprised by how a little went a long way. I’ve applied it a couple times so far (the instructions say use 1-2 times a week) but have not seen significant changes in my pores; I guess you cant expect instant results. However, it does feel like your skin is being purified and your face feels clean and soft after you wash it off.
Cucumber Mask 8000 won
If clay isn’t your thing, here’s a gel mask that’s easy to remove. It’s cool (as a cucumber), refreshing, and invigorating after a long day, especially if you pop it in the fridge before you put it on! It’s easy to rinse off and there’s no limitation on how many times you can use it per week unlike the clay ones. Perfect for those with dry skin!
Overall I was very satisfied with my purchases. However, my haul in Korea was not perfect. One downside to Korean make-up brands is limited skin tone shades! I was excited to also try Korea’s famous BB creams and foundation, but even the darkest shades were glaringly white on my skin. You would think they would have a variety of shades especially catered to Asian women, but in Korea, pale is in, so if you have sun-kissed skin, you wont have much luck finding your shades in Korea. Instead, the storekeepers will fill your bag with samples of whitening products! (true story)
Next time you go to South Korea, make sure you stock up on skincare–your skin will thank you! If you are willing to pay the extra price, you can order these products in Amazon or Ebay. Stay tuned for another post on hair and color makeup products from Korea!