Korean Inspired Makeup
Happy beginning of the weekend everyone!! I think it's always fun to try new styles and looks and I LOVE how different Korean makeup is. I believe American, Arabian, Indian, and English makeup all tend to have the same patterns: similar eye brow shapes, similar eye shadow techniques, similar skin finishes, but I find Korean makeup to be so different!
Korea is leading the world with their makeup product innovation (think bb creams and compact cusions). The products and looks that are marketed in Korea tend to follow these basic principles:
- Innocent and Pure
- Light Skin finish
- Clear and bright complexion
- Skin finish (dewy skin)
There are also key Korean concepts that you will find with each look:
- Elongated Eyeliner
- Dewy Skin with a soft glow
- Straight Brow
- Aegyo Sal
- Gradient Lip
1. The Elongated Eyeliner
Let's begin with the Korean eye liner techniques. As you see from the picture above the Korean eyeliner follows the eye shape straight out and is elongated. This serves two purposes: to make the eyes look longer as well as give the innocent puppy eyed look. Example below is of T-ARA girl group member Jiyeon. She is extremely popular for her eyeliner technique to make her eyes appear longer. She also has more close set eyes, so opting for this eyeliner trick helps to balance her face.
2. Dewy Skin with a Soft Glow
Korean makeup also favors dewy skin with a nice, soft, and natural looking glow. As you see in both the images below there is just a nice and subtle glow and there is no heavy contour, blush, or highlight. Lot's of Korean products focus on skin moisture and dewiness. Koreans also really prefer to have bright skin and therefore stay away from heavy contours. The use of soft colors is most common on the brows and eyes.
3. The Korean Straight Brow
One of the most interesting, and possibly most polarizing, feature of Korean makeup is the straight brow. I've been following Korean trends since 2011 and around 2013 this straight brow trend really started to come into play. Initially I really wasn't a fan and I didn't understand why everyone in Korea had jumped on to this trend, but slowly I came around and I started to understand and even like it. The straight brow was created to make the person look younger and more innocent.
Looking at the picture below you can really see the difference in the overall look when the eyebrow shape is changed. A great article to see this is here. Overall the straight brow really does work with the Korean innocent aesthetic.
4. The Aegyo Sal
Another feature of Korean makeup is the aegyo sal. In Korea the word Aegyo means cutesy and is a very strong part of the culture. Aegyo again relates to younger and more innocent looking. In the pictures below you can see the difference between having and not having an aegyo sal. This is also the same concept as the Korean straight brows--it makes the person look younger and more innocent. The aegyo sal is also a way to show and "eye smile", which is again very popular in Korea, as it makes the person look cuter.
5. Gradient Lip
A trend that blew up in 2013/2014 was the gradient lip. When it began there was a lot of very obvious two toned lips with a lighter shade overall and a deep shade right at the center. The idea here is that innocent, flower blooming type effect. It also really plays up with the doll look that is extremely popular in Korea. To achieve this look a lighter shade is applied to the entire lip and then a more pigmented shade is applied to the middle. It can be left more blatant as the first picture below or more smudged out as in the second picture. I do find it quite flattering when it is smudged out vs the very obvious tone change.
I hope this post was helpful in gaining insight to Korean makeup, trends, and techniques. Below is a video that I made to make the look easy! Please leave me any comments or questions below and subscribe to my channel for more content!