Asia Street Style: Korea’s Fall Trends

 

Fall is settling into Korea and what’s currently trending in Seoul is becoming more evident on street style blogs. Holding on to summer a little more, skirts and dresses continue to pop up in the mix, but now paired with long sleeves and thicker fabrics. Even though it tends to stay decently warm year-round here in Southern California, shorter lengths and warmer tops are perfect for the approaching winter months. Still enamored with sporty, urban styles, you’ll see lots of sneakers and American streetwear brands being worn by South Koreans. They always show a significant amount of diversity within a single trend, which is great for all the individual personalities that exist when it comes to wardrobe preferences.

Check out the more sportier take on this fall’s early trend. Take a cue from these young women and amp up your skirts and dresses with graphic prints, a cool bomber jacket or a great pair of sneakers. The best part? You’ll still look effortlessly stylish, but remain comfortable the entire day.

Photos Courtesy of Sinsuji.tumblr.com and Imtedlike.com

Images Courtesy of Sinsuji.tumblr.com and Imtedlike.com

Image Courtesy of Sinsuji.tumblr.com

Image Courtesy of Sinsuji.tumblr.com

Image Courtesy of Iamalexfinch.net

Image Courtesy of Iamalexfinch.net

 

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Not into the sporty trend? We’ve got you covered with a splash of feminine floral prints and a clean, minimalist option to inspire those that prefer more simple styling.

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Image Courtesy of Instagram.com/streetper

Instagram.com/Imtedlike

Instagram.com/Imtedlike

 

–STORY BY MIN A. LEE

 

 


 

Study Shows South Koreans Consume More Coffee Than White Rice

 

South Koreans now drink more coffee than they eat their staple food rice, according to a survey conducted by the Korea Centers for Disease Control of 3,805 adults, according to The Chosun Ilbo.

According to the 2013 survey, the average Korean drinks coffee 12.3 times per week, followed by eating kimchi 11.8 times, multigrain rice 9.5 times, and white rice seven times per week.

The proportion of rice in Koreans’ daily diet has steadily declined over the past decade whereas coffee-related calorie intake has quadrupled due to the amount of artificial sweeteners in coffee, reported The Korea Herald.

Over the past few years, coffee culture has been going strong in South Korea. Earlier this year, Seoul was named as the city with the most Starbucks locations, beating New York City and Los Angeles. In addition, it was reported last month that Starbucks in Korea costs twice as much as it does in the U.S.

 

–STORY BY REERA YOO 
Image courtesy of The Korea Herald
This story was originally published on iamkoream.com 

 

 

Get To Know Korean Model Jang Yoon-Ju

 

Korean model Jang Yoon-Ju, known for her god gifted body and unique face, is not only one skilled and confident model, she’s also been active within the media. Jang has taken part in movies, music albums and videos and even tried her hands in books. Though she was already a well-known model, she regained the spotlight earlier this year when she was virtually married to Noh Hong-Chul on a Korean television entertainment program, Infinite Challenge.

Though Jang’s body is the subject of admiration today, it used to be a disgrace to her during her childhood. As a kid, Jang was teased by her peers for her height and skinny body, but her middle school math teacher, who saw Jang’s potential in the modeling industry, told Jang that her long legs and beautiful Asian facial features will make her an outstanding candidate as a model. Since then, her classmates started calling her a “model.”

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Photo courtesy of http://blog.naver.com/9348474/60170274147

In 1997, Jang made her debut in the Seoul Fashion Artists Association (SFAA) collection and made her first appearance on the runway. At that time, the fashion industry was alternating into a new paradigm called “orientalism” and shifted its focus more towards Asian models. Of course, all eyes were on Jang.

Since then, Jang advanced her modeling career in many ways. She also experienced countless failures along the way, but the process enabled her to understand her identity and grow as a model.

Today, Jang is the host for Korea’s Next Top Model as well as the DJ for her own radio program, Rooftop Radio. Clearly, she’s not the average model and there’s no single way to define her.

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–STORY BY MICHELLE KIM

Top 3 Lipsticks Made Famous by K-Dramas

 

Korean actress Jun Ji Hyun’s lipstick color made a huge hit during the Korean drama My Love From Another Star. But the Korean wave didn’t simply end there. Other lip trends, including the most recent ombre lips, were commonly spotted on K-Pop Stars and K-Drama actresses, which later brought wide interest even within American media.

There are countless make up trends that trace back to K-Dramas, but today, we’re focusing on three of the latest and most popular Korean dramas as well as the actresses’ iconic lipstick colors that you should get your hands on.

 


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1. Kong Hyo-Jin from It’s Okay, That’s Love

Whatever Kong Hyo-Jin brings to the TV screen is the next trend. Known for her laid-back yet unique sense of style, Kong has earned reputation as one of the most stylish celebrities in Korea. Of course, we can’t miss the lipstick she wears in the K-drama It’s Okay, That’s Love.

For those who love orange hues like Kong should try the Armani Lip Maestro in 300 to get that extra vivid and sweet look.

 

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2. Lee Yoo-Ri from Jang Bo-Ri Is Here!

Though Lee Yoo-Ri acts as the villain in the drama Jang Bo-Ri Is Here!, you can’t help but be a fan of her makeup on set. Most often talked about is Lee’s bold lip color in the drama, which is more powerful and rich than any red lipstick you might have ever seen.

The ‘limited-edition’ Seatree-Art Matt Kiss Lipstick: 03 Gorgeous Red is the answer to your curiosity and has quite the power of bringing out a soft, velvety richness appearance on the lips.

 


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3. Han Yeo-Reum from Discovery of Romance

The makeup worn by Han Yeo-Reun from Discovery of Romance is known for bringing back the man that broke your heart. What makes her makeup look different from other actresses is that she looks extremely natural. Of course, the lipstick takes a huge role in creating that look.

The Dior Rouge Baume #688 Diorette is the lipstick that makes Han’s skin look even brighter and softer than before. A touch of the lipstick will make your lips appear as if you put tinted lip balm, and two to three touches will bring out the actual rich color.

 

–STORY BY MICHELLE KIM

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Son Sings His Heart Out For Deaf Parents Who Both Have Cancer

When asked by the judges of Superstar K6 for his reason behind auditioning, contestant Kim Jung Hoon could hardly hold back tears as he revealed a heartbreaking story about his family.

“Both of my parents are deaf,” Kim said in his pre-audition interview. He added that both of his parents lost their hearing during early childhood and currently have cancer: his mother suffering from thyroid cancer and his father from colorectal cancer.

“It felt like the world was falling apart,” he said.

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Despite their disabilities, Kim’s parents came to the audition to show full support for their son.

“When we see our son, even though we can’t hear him sing, we believe that he can succeed,” Kim’s father said through sign language. His wife agreed, saying that they believe in their son whether he sings well or poorly.

Once Kim took the stage, he proved that he could sing not only beautifully but also with powerful emotion. His rendition of Lee Sun-hee’s “Fate” moved some of the judges to tears.

Watch his performance below:

–Story by Reera Yoo

This story was originally published on iamkoream.com.

Dethroned Myanmar Beauty Queen Refuses to Return Tiara Until Pageant Apologizes

Last week, Miss Asia Pacific World dethroned Myanmar’s first international beauty Queen, May Myat Noe, for alleged dishonesty and accused her of absconding with a $100,000 tiara and free breast implants.

Noe lashed back in a press conference held in Yangon on Tuesday.

“I’m not even proud of this crown,” She said after opening a blue jewelry box and setting the tiara on the table, “I don’t want a crown from an organization with such a bad reputation.”

Photo Credit: Soe Zeya Tun of Reuters

Photo Credit: Soe Zeya Tun of Reuters

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Noe said the South Korea-based pageant lied about her age, stating that she was 18 instead of 16. According to the pageant’s official website, the minimum required age to enter the contest is 18, but despite this restriction, May Myat Noe was somehow still allowed to compete.

She also denied accepting breast implants as claimed by David Kim, director of media for Miss Asia Pacific World. Kim had claimed that the $10,000 tab for the surgery was picked up by sponsors in order to enhance the teen beauty queen’s budding singing career.

“I was put under duress to undergo head-to-toe cosmetic surgery, which I refused… I didn’t have breast implants, but I don’t want to go into any details to preserve my dignity,” Noe said.

Photo Credit: Soe Zeya Tun of Reuters

Photo Credit: Soe Zeya Tun of Reuters

 

She also said she boarded a plane back to her home country before getting word of her dethronement and did not intend to steal the crown. However, now that the Swarovski tiara is in her possession, Noe refuses to return it without a “sorry.”

I will return the crown only when they apologize to Myanmar, for the dignity of our country,” she said.

Among other allegations, May Myat Noe said the organizers asked her to escort business tycoons “whenever they required” her company in order to generate funds to produce her music album.

Y.C. Choi, the president and founder of Miss Asia Pacific World, denied these claims and told AFP that the organization had photographic evidence of Noe on an operating table for the breast implant operation.

“She has been lying. She also lied at today’s news conference. She must return the crown,” Choi said, adding that his organization is ready to consider a lawsuit if Noe “refuses to cooperate.”

When The Korea Observer asked Choi what drove him to dethrone Noe as Miss Asia Pacific World 2014, he argued that Noe disgraced the organization by borrowing money from a nurse to buy $18 bras after breast implants, complaining about not having schedules sent to her in advance, and her unwillingness to pay extra expenses incurred during her mother’s extended stay.

This is not the first time Miss Asia Pacific World had a controversy.

In 2011, Amy Willerton, a contestant from Wales, alleged that the contest had been fixed after the contestant representing Venezuela was apparently named runner-up of the talent round before she even competed.

During the pageant’s four-year history, there were also other contestants who accused the officials of asking the women for sex in exchange for better rankings in the pageant.

– STORY BY REERA YOO

This story was originally published on iamkoream.com 

Photos via NY Daily News

MUST SEE: Filipino Girl Group Perform Breathtaking “Let it Go” Cover on Korean Show

 

I know, I know. You’re tired of “Let it Go” covers and I don’t blame you. In fact, when this video popped up on my newsfeed, I let out an exasperated sigh with an eye roll on the side. Again? 

But what stopped me from scrolling on was the incredible amount of attention this video was receiving. Koreaboo, a K-Pop entertainment website, posted the video on their Facebook and within 4 hours, the video gained a incredible 30,000 likes and nearly 20,000 shares.  Clearly, there was something different about this cover.

As it turns out, the video features four Pinays who were on Superstar K, a South Korean television talent show series. Trust me when I say this cover blew me away, and I’ve seen quite a handful of “Let it Go” covers.

Go ahead and check it out for yourself. I promise, it’s worth it.

 

Not tired of the Frozen mania? Check out some of our favorite Youtube Covers of “Let it Go” featuring Asian artists!


Jun Ji Hyun’s Skin Secret? The Air Cushion, Korea’s Latest Beauty Innovation

 

When Korean cosmetic brand Dr. Jart+ debuted its BB cream to the U.S. market in 2011, it caused a sensation. Every cosmetic company rushed to put out its own version of BB cream and every alphabetic permutation thereof (CC and DD, anyone?). Now there are BB creams at every price point and in a much wider range of shades. But women in Korea are so beyond BB cream at this point; they’re obsessed with something even better.

Enter the Air Cushion. The first one, Color Control Cushion Compact Broad Spectrum SPF 50+, was introduced by venerable Korean brand AmorePacific last year, but had a limited following. This summer, however, with all eyes on Iope (the Korean cosmetic line was featured prominently in the hit K-drama My Love From the Stars), their Air Cushion XP just exploded.

 

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The Air Cushion solved the problem of having to reapply sunscreen every two to three hours for effectiveness — I mean, who wants to smear on a thick lotion over your foundation or powder in the middle of the day? According to Iope brand manager Song Jin-ah, parent company AmorePacific’s scientists had been researching for a solution to this reapplication problem for years. They were inspired by a “parking stamp” and created a compact with a sponge-like material. Press on the sponge with a special ruby cell puff, which holds 1.6 times more water than a synthetic latex puff, and simply “stamp” (don’t smear or rub) on the liquid sunscreen onto your face, on top of your makeup. Since it’s tinted, the product blends in even if you already have foundation or powder on. And a bonus: the Air Cushion imparts a perfectly mul gwang (“water sheen complexion” — that chok chok wet look Korean stars favor) look with one application.

And don’t think that just because the Air Cushion is a liquid that it’s less effective or protective than a heavy lotion. According to Song, existing sunscreens were either a “water-in-oil type,” which helped them last and resist sweat and water, but felt heavy and sticky, or “oil-in water type,” which are “much lighter, but have less durability.” What AmorePacific and Iope did was create a “freshwater-in-oil-type” sunscreen for both durability and a lighter feel. 

 

 

All I know is that when our Korean art director raved about it, I had to run out and get one to try it out for myself. It truly is a skin saver — no more worrying about midday or commute-home sun exposure! (It even works brilliantly on top of powder foundation — who wouldathunk?) And with dermatologists insisting that the one thing every single person must do for their skin is wear sunscreen every single day, 365 days a year, the Air Cushion could not have come at a better time.

Though Iope Air Cushion is only currently available at Korean cosmetic boutiques in Koreatown or through smaller sites on Amazon, you can get AmorePacific (they are Iope’s parent company, after all) Cushion Compact at Sephora ($60). For a less expensive alternative, Korean line Laneige, which just debuted in the States this spring, has their own BB Cushion ($34), available at Target.

 

 

TOKiMONSTA On Being A Female DJ In A Male-Dominated Industry

Just as she steps onto the red carpet to pose for a row of photographers, what had been a light sprinkle suddenly turns into a downpour. A member of the press rushes to grab an umbrella, but TOKiMONSTA, one of the four stars being celebrated that night for the premiere of the Mnet America reality show Alpha Girls, laughs and says, “Good thing I have this hat on.” A black fur-trimmed hat sits atop her shock of blond hair — she’s been known to experiment with color over the years, mixing blues and purples at one point — and though a pair of oversized black shades cover 50 percent of her face, TOKiMONSTA stands out. It’s a part of a life she’s become used to, especially now that she’s one of the few well-known Asian American female DJs in the music industry.

Jennifer Lee, better known by her aforementioned stage name, has risen to the forefront of the electronic dance music scene with two albums, a number of EPs and high-profile appearances at festivals like Coachella and SXSW. The Torrance, Calif., native, who is of Korean descent, was ranked by LA Weekly as L.A.’s top female DJ in 2010 and was a part of the Full Flex Express Tour in 2012 that had her performing alongside electronic music gods Skrillex and Diplo. Not too shabby for a girl who began producing music in her college dorm while studying business at the University of California, Irvine.

In a crowded L.A. beat scene, Lee’s music stands out, like the recently remastered “The World Is Ours,” with its softer, chiller beats (it’s the stuff midnight dreams are made of). But what also makes Lee unique is her success in an industry that has always been dominated by males, and non-Asian males at that. It’s what made her the perfect candidate for the Asian pop culture channel Mnet America’s new web reality series, Alpha Girls.

Alpha Girls, which premiered in February, follows Lee, Korean artist and illustrator Mina Kwon, Korean American supermodel Soo Joo Park and Filipina American fashion designer Lanie Alabanza-Barcena in a series documenting their journeys in the worlds of art, music and fashion. “I joined [the show] because I loved the idea behind it,” says Lee of her Alpha Girl status. “Alpha Girls shows the rest of America that, hey, Asians can choose careers outside of the medical field, and they can still be successful.”

TOKiMONSTA (Jennifer Lee)

Lee’s segment on Alpha Girls follows her as she takes South Korea by storm, performing in her motherland for the first time. She jets around the country in stylish streetwear and looks completely at ease performing in the middle of jam-packed, ear-numbing clubs. “It was scary because I didn’t know whether Korean audiences would be used to my music,” she says, “but I ended up having a blast. I hope girls can watch this show and see us all doing our thing and know that they can succeed at whatever they want to. I didn’t discover the underground scene until college, and now here I am in Korea playing my own music!”

Catch full webisodes of Alpha Girls on Mnet America’s YouTube channel or at alphagirlstv.com. 

 

–Story by Taylor Weik

This story was originally published in our Summer 2014 issue. Get your copy here