To me, Korean beauty is fascinating because Korea has such a fast-paced culture of efficiency and convenience, often called the "빨리빨리 문화" or "bbal-lee bbal-lee moonhwa", where people are always busy, always on-the-go. It's crazy. I mean, this is a place where you can walk in for an eye exam and walk out with a brand new pair of glasses or contact lenses within the hour! Other craziness... you can get any restaurant to deliver any food, anywhere, anytime... for those all-nighters you're bound to pull at work, school, or the club...
To know that these elaborate beauty and skincare rituals arose in that kind of environment, makes Kbeauty even more compelling. Why would a modern day Seoulite hit pause on the rest of their busy day for a 30 to 60 minute self-care session when there's so much to be done? Why is there such an emphasis on health and beauty? I'm guessing maybe because it's a really nice way to slow down, and stop and smell the roses (in your rose petal adorned toner or cleanser) in the midst of a busy urban lifestyle. Okay, so I don't really know, but what I do know is that this emphasis on self-care is starting to look hella appealing to the rest of the world.
Korean beauty has been rising slowly and steadily in the West for a little while now, but I wouldn't go so far as to say it is a part of the norm. Part of the reason for that is that there isn't as much coverage or information out there as there is on say the latest Sephora brand release. Today's TG2KB is all about how to fill this informational void. I'll be talking about 25 sources for your Korean beauty news. Other than this blog which, I hope you'll keep in your blogroll. ^^
The blogs and Youtube channels featured in today's post are all currently active, written or filmed in English (at the very least transcripted or subbed in English), and boast a wide catalog of Korean beauty related content.
KBEAUTY BLOG ROLL
Fashionista is more like an online magazine. They've taken on multiple Korean beauty correspondents such popular Kbeauty blogger Jude Chao from 50ShadesofSnail and editor Cheryl Wischhover. They have done their own rendition of this list HERE which reads like the greatest hits of Kbeauty blogs. I agree with each of their picks. You should definitely check all of them out. Since that list was so well done, I'm going to focus on other excellent blogs and channels that weren't featured in that article.
Refinery29 is another online publication that is an excellent place to get your Korean beauty news. They do their diligence in terms of writing pieces that are not your usual magazine fare of product features that read like ads, meaning... the pieces are actually super informative! They have also taken on a dedicated Kbeauty correspondent Joyce Kong, who if I'm not mistaken actually lives in Korea, and have several others giving their take on this new beauty trend.
3. Berries in the Snow
Skin Type: Dry in Winter, Dry-Normal in Summer
Laven of Berries In The Snow has a huge catalog of Korean beauty product reviews. I'll be Googling for reviews of a specific product, and her blog will pop up a lot of the time. She has a really adorable site design and I enjoy her equally cute rating scale.
Skin Type: Dry-Dehydrated
The gorgeous Sam of Colorcrrush has an equally gorgeous site where she does detailed rundowns of Korean and Japanese skincare products. Her Korean and Japanese shopping guides and vocabulary lists are insanely useful, should you ever be lucky enough to travel to either beauty Mecca.
Skin Type: Dry-Normal / Combination
I have no idea how long Lily from Iamabeautyjunkee has been blogging, but my guess is a long time. I found her channel when I was scouring Youtube for skincare reviewers. She's been into skincare from Korea, Japan, France, England, just all over the world, before it was cool. ;P
6. Jolse Beauty Blog
Skin Type: NA
Jolse, the online retailer has a beauty blog that they keep up-to-date with reviews on their newest products. It's a great place to check out how the products look and perform. They have their own in-house reviewer that gets reviews up quickly. Her/Their English is a bit spotty, but their pictures are high-quality. Warning: viewing her skin may be bad for your self-esteem.
7. Skin and Tonics
Skin Type: Dry / Normal
Skin and Tonics is by and far one of my favorite blogs ever. I consider her somewhat of my skincare sommelier. She's tried so much that her 'skincare palate' is super refined, and she's also really into cosmetic chemistry. I'm always learning something new when I read her posts.
KBEAUTY ON YOUTUBE
8. Beauty Bible - Korea has beauty shows on network television. I repeat, Korea has beauty shows on network television!! This one is hosted by supermodel Kang Seunghyun, Kpop stars ZE:A's Hwang Kwanghee, and Secret's Jun Hyosung, and they regularly bring on world-renowned makeup artists, stylists, and dermatologists on the show. It's similar to Get It Beauty, which is also a great show, but hasn't been subtitled for an English-speaking audience in a few months. Edit: I'm not sure why the video is now set to private, but if you go to this link, it will take you to a full playlist of public Beauty Bible videos.
9. KStyleTV - KStyleTV is another beauty show, this time hosted by model and Estee Lauder brand spokesperson Irene Kim, Kpop star Miss A's Min, and Sarah Watson-Baik. It is more of a lifestyle show that also does beauty and fashion, the episodes are kept short and sweet.
10. Glow Recipe x Dramafever - The founders of Glow Recipe, a retailer that sells natural Korean skincare products, Christine Chang and Sarah Lee, teamed up with Dramafever (think the Hulu.com of Korean dramas) to create a series around Korean skincare and Korean beauty secrets. Most of the products featured on the channel are, as to be expected, stocked at their site.
11. Beautifymeeh - Angel of Beautifymeeh has been beauty vlogging for a few years. She skews a bit more towards makeup than skincare, and covers both U.S. and Korean products as she is based in Texas.
12. Dayeong's Beauty Drawing - Unph. Dayeong is a total trendsetter and her channel deviates from the gliterry ulzzang / Kpop looks and simple Korean Drama looks that dominate so many other channels. Her tutorials are done in Korean, but have English subtitles.
13. Jungsaemmool - Jungsaemmool is one of the premier makeup artists in Korea. She works with the A-list and runs her own makeup artistry academy.
14. Koreanlovesbeauty - Janie of Koreanlovesbeauty films her videos in English, and has some great tips for girls with monolids.
15. KyungSun - I wasn't going to include KyungSun in my roundup because until recently her videos were filmed in Korean without any English subtitles. But the past few have been popping up in my feed subbed in English! I'm ecstatic to be able to include her in this roundup!
16. MakeupbyDamee - Damee is fluent in both Korean and English, and films videos in both languages. She's fun and energetic, and she has a lot of experience with both Asian and Western beauty products, so I trust her recommendations.
17. Meejmuse - Jen of Meejmuse is a Korean-Australian that was until recently a Korean beauty correspondent on a news show as well. She has a HUGE catalog of Korean beauty reviews, and has also branched out to lifestyle videos like polling Koreans on their health and beauty preferences, in case you are interested in that kind of stuff.
18. Pony Makeup - Though her channel seems new, Pony has been a Youtube makeup artist for awhile, as a contributor to the inSiteTV channel. Her former catalog of tutorials and beauty tips is available here. She's arguably one of the most famous Korean makeup artists. It's impossible to watch her without learning a thing or two. She's also the one that has multiple product lines with Memebox.com
19. Soyoung's Beauty Room - You may have seen the below video by Soyoung before. It went viral in 2014 with a bump from a Buzzfeed.com feature, but Soyoung is one of the Korean beauty gurus that have consistently good content, with tutorials, hauls, and product roundups and comparisons.
20. SSIN NIM - Korean Youtube veteran SSIN NIM is a favorite of mine as I find her personality hilarious. She's heavily influenced by cosplay makeup and does these majestic transformations into Kpop stars, leaning on her short hair to even emulate the men of Kpop. She also does a bunch of very useful product roundups.
21. Sunny Channel or "써니채널" - Sunny hails from (or lives in) New York, but her videos are filmed in Korean and subbed in English. She also does vlogs in English. Her specialty is spot-on Kpop-inspired tutorials, like this flawless imitation of EXID's Hani's makeup.
22. Sunnydahye - Sunny Dahye films her videos in English, and does a ton of tutorials and skincare reviews.
23. TheBeautyBreakdown - Morgan of TheBeautyBreakdown has a specialty. She's great at breaking down Korean beauty products! I particularly love her in-depth reviews about products like the one below, but she also does a lot of hauls, informational videos on things like the differences between BB, CC, and DD creams... The list goes on.
24. UrbanWit - Sarah of UrbanWit should look familiar to you, as she is one of the hosts of KstyleTV (which came in at number 9 listed above). She tends to have the latest news on brand and product line launches. I also love her filming style and on-camera demeanor.
25. WishtrendTV - Kbeauty retailer Wishtrend.com has their own Youtube channel where they do beauty and lifestyle videos. They do a lot of informative videos, like this guide to sunscreens below. But of course, as to be expected, most of their product recommendations are the ones they have in stock.
What are your favorite Kbeauty blogs and Youtube channels?
Part 1. Introduction to Korean Skincare
Part 2. Introduction to Korean Makeup
Part 3. The BrandsREAD THE NEXT TG2KB INSTALLMENTS
INTRO TO KBEAUTY
Part 1. Introduction to Korean Skincare
Part 2. Introduction to Korean Makeup
BRANDS & STORES
Part 3. The Brands
Part 4. The Retailers
-> Link to a Price Comparison Search Engine (Results from verified sellers only)
RESEARCHING KBEAUTY PRODUCTS
Part 5a. Researching Products; How to Figure Out What You Want to Buy - CosDNA, Popular Products w/ International Stockists
Part 5b. Researching Products; How to Figure Out What You Want to Buy - AllofCosmetics, Korean Products w/o Strong International Presence
Part 5c. Researching Products; How to Figure Out What You Want to Buy - Blogs and Youtube Channels
KBEAUTY STARTER SKINCARE ROUTINES
Part 6. My Skincare Routine & Reasoning
Part 7. Wishlists, or "Make Me a Routine"
Part 8. "Advanced" KBeauty - Buying Services & Korean-Korean E-tailers
Using Avecko by SnowWhite&thePear
Using 11st by SnowWhite&thePear
Part 9. Navigating the Korean web: Naver Blogs, Korean Youtubers. Coming soon.
Part 10. Guide to the Hwahae App
Part 11. Beauty Shopping in Seoul