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We’ve got our ear to the ground when it comes to K-Beauty news. Here, an at-a-glance quick guide to the latest K-Beauty trends and innovations in skin care and makeup.
Trend Definition: While lipstick powder sounds like a counterintuitive product – applying dry powder on moisture-hungry lips – the latest lipstick innovation is a long-lasting lipstick in finely grounded powder form that liquefies upon contact with lips.
Seen In: Rire Cosmetics’ Lip Powder is a powder emulsion that transforms into a gel lip stain upon application, delivering vibrant color, superior hydration, and staying power minus the stickiness.
Trend Definition: Filter creams are billed as ‘Snapchat filters’ for the face (hence the name). They moisturize skin, blur imperfections and make skin look flawless with a dewy finish. Formulas are based with pearl powder or pearl extracts that aim to make skin look smooth and radiant.
Seen in: Son & Park’s Beauty Filter Cream is said to instantly brighten dull complexions “as if using a beauty filter app.” Formulated with a vitamin liposome complex, the cream hydrates skin with a tone-up effect. Erborian’s Pink Perfect Crème acts as a primer for makeup, refining skin texture thanks to a cocktail of horsetail extract, pumpkin seed oil and leaves of Diospyros Kaki (Japanese persimmon). The result is a ‘soft-focus’ looking effect to skin.
Trend Definition: The “Hawaii of Asia” is a volcanic island called Jeju, located off the coast of Korea’s peninsula. Like Hawaii, Jeju is known for its lush ecosystem including breathtaking waterfalls, forests, pure spring water, mineral-rich volcanic soil and abundant plant life packed with concentrated nutrients. No surprises that Jeju holds a coveted spot in Korean skin care for the purity and diversity of its skin care ingredients.
Seen In: Camellia oil is the signature ingredient of Blossom Jeju’santioxidant-rich, natural skin care range, found in Jeju’s Gotjawal Forest. A red blossoming flower, the camellia reputedly has more antioxidants than almost any other botanically derived oil. Amore Pacific’s Innisfree brand is entirely positioned around “the gifts of nature in Jeju Island,” including its new Jeju Lava Seawater Essence, a deep-hydration anti-aging essence.
Jamsu (the makeup-setting trick)
Trend Definition: Think of jamsu as the Korean beauty equivalent of the water bucket challenge, a make-up setting trend that involves dunking one’s face in a bowl full of ice water. Jamsu means submerging or diving, and the simple technique promises a long-lasting, matte finish to freshly made-up skin. After applying primer, concealer and foundation on clean skin, the face is coated in baby powder. Then it’s dunk time! (Mascara-free eyes are advised). The powder and water is said to lock in makeup, preventing it from melting or fading. Skin emerges looking flawless.
Trend Definition: Birch juice has been dubbed the next coconut water due its concentration of amino acids, antioxidants and hydrating minerals. Extracted as a sap from birch trees, the ingredient is increasingly being used instead of purified water for hydrating and nourishing skin care. White birch sap, known in Korea as a mystical life-giving water, is a brightening agent that also delivers fast-acting moisturizing benefits.
Seen in: E Nature’s Birch Juice Hydro collection of products contain birch juice (birch tree sap) with high moisturizing power. The brand’sBirch Juice Hydro Sleeping Pack contains 74 percent birch juice, which works overnight to transform dry skin. Seed & Tree utilizes 100 percent pure white birch sap that is easily absorbed into the skin.
Trend Definition: The double-cleansing method advises washing one’s face twice (first with an oil, then with soapy water), but now single double-cleansers combine both steps in one time saving product.
Seen In: Neogen’s Coconut Milk Pure Mild Cleanser is a milk-to-foam cleanser that works as an oil-based cleanser when it is first applied to dry skin, and then it froths up into a foam when water is added to the face, removing impurities just like a water-based cleanser.
Adjustable Mascara Brush
Trend Definition: Multitasking mascara wands are the newest eye makeup innovation. When the adaptable bristle brushes are elongated, the bristles become evenly spaced and pick up more pigment for a fuller lash effect. When they are retracted, the brush becomes densely packed with bristles, so that they lift and curl lashes.
Seen In: 3 Concept EyesVariety Moving Mascara boasts adjustable bristles that create both volumizing and curling eyelash looks. Twisting the dial at the tip of the cap changes the bristle density: adjusting the brush for wider gaps creates thick and voluminous lashes, and adjusting it to smaller gaps curls lashes.
Trend Definition: The term “polluaging” is a confluence of the words pollution and aging, a source of particular concern for women living in Seoul’s urban areas. In Asia, levels of pollution, smog and pollen can be extremely high in the spring, and this has led to the development of a new category, anti-pollution treatment, that goes far beyond simply cleansing away dirt and grime on the skin’s surface.
Seen In: South Korean skin care brand Blithe has created anti-polluaging technology with strong antioxidant benefits to combat free radicals. Blithe’s plant ingredients come from uncontaminated areas that are far from big cities, such as Jeju Island. Blithe’s Anti-Polluaging Himalayan Pink Salt Cleansing Water detoxifies and purifies skin from pollution with over 44 percent mineral-rich Himalayan Pink Salt, a rich source of detoxifying minerals. The brand’s Patting Splash Masks are described as ‘the perfect daily workout for mature skin’, blending antioxidant-rich purple berries with resurfacing lactic acid.
Trend Definition: Contouring, Korean-style, creates the illusion of a defined, V-shaped jawline, as opposed to the American makeup trend of contouring cheekbones. To achieve the desired V-line, a darker cream contour is applied to the jawline, thereby shadowing the edges of the face.
Seen In: Etude House’s Play 101 Stick Contour Duo is a double-ended duo stick that features a bronzer and a highlighter to define and ‘sculpt’ the face. The light base is used to create a bright and clear base. The darker shade is added for sharp and clear contouring.
Trend Definition: Hailed as the next big skin care ingredient, donkey milk is intensely moisturizing with its ample proteins and ceramides, providing rich nutrition to damaged skin.
Seen In: Freeset’s Donkey Milk Skin Gel Mask Aquaintenselyhydrates skin and brightens the complexion. TonyMoly’s Natural Bubble Donkey Milk Foam Cleanser is a moisturizing cleanser, recommended for soothing sensitive skin.
Sparkling Skin Care
Trend Definition: Sparkling skin care is a sensation in Korea, with effervescent products said to provide a deep clean. Carbonated water, infused with clarifying vitamins and minerals, promotes circulation, eliminates dull skin cells, boosts oxygenation, and reveals a radiant glow.
Seen In: Mizon’s Vita Lemon Sparkling Powder is described as being like a ‘spring clean’ for the epidermis. The sparkling powder, when poured into a bowl of lukewarm water and patted onto skin, helps cleanse the skin of residue, leaving skin luminous. Skinfood’s Fresh Apple Sparkling Pore Emulsion contains carbonated water and promises to tighten pores and control excess sebum, as well as refresh and tighten skin.