You know you can shop all your K-favourites at STYLE STORY. But what if you want to know which K-Beauty products everyone else is obsessed with?
Get our list of the best K-Beauty apps and websites in Korea to keep up with the latest Korean skincare, makeup and beauty trends with user generated content.
Keeping up with the latest products and trends isn’t always easy, with so many new products being released each week and each looking more insta-worthy than the last.
Making it even harder, many bloggers and YouTubers these days are paid by companies to say that they love a certain product, and have no obligation to share that information.
Given that, what better way to verify which products deserve pride-of-place on your beauty cabinet than real reviews generated by real people.
These are a few of our favourite sites to find user generated reviews and rankings of K-Beauty products:
Launched in 2013, HwaHae is a Korean beauty app that boasts hundreds of thousands of cosmetics reviews and ingredient analyses. It’s an independent third party source of information on cosmetics that enables beauty lovers to find their perfect match.
The name “Hwahae” (화해) is short for “화장품을 해석하다”, which literally means “to analyse cosmetics”. Nearly a million Koreans (and three million people in total) use Hwahae to search for information on beauty products’ ingredients and see how safe they are for the skin. Hwahae has become a must-visit destination for beauty lovers with sensitive skin, eczema and hair loss. The app produces weekly rankings for products and features the hottest trending products by users for each category. The app promotes smart buying, not only in terms of budget and cost, but also by enabling users to tailor their skincare routines to take into account their own skin types.
It uses a scale to help users choose the best products for them based on:
Blue (rating 1-3): products needing the least concern / caution, namely those that contain the most common ingredients that are generally okay to use on all skin types;
Yellow (rating 4-7): products needing mild or medium concern / caution, with ingredients that may be harmful to certain skin types or in high concentrations;
Red (rating 8 and above): products needing high or heavy concern / caution, with high concentrations of ingredients that should be avoided because of their potential to harm skin.
The app focuses mostly on Korean skincare and cosmetic, meaning Korean manufacturers also keep a close eye on it. Not only do they use positive reviews to promote their products, manufacturers also use negative reviews as a learning experience.
As a result of negative reviews on Hwahae, AmorePacificand LG Household and Health Care (two of the biggest names in K-Beauty globally) made an effort to downgrade the irritancy level of their products, particularly with the use of fragrances.
Korean consumers are particularly attuned to newer brands, and are conscious that brand value is no guarantee of quality. As a result, many new brands have managed to make a brand for themselves for releasing quality products that skip out on the harmful ingredients.
If you don’t speak Korean, take a look at these two blogs (here and here) for a step-by-step tutorial on how to navigate the app.
If you’re not keen on translating Korean sites, head on over to newly launched K-Beauty review site Bling Dear– the first English language platform in Korea with its own user-generated reviews of all the most popular K-Beauty products.
Unlike other sites, Bling Dear gives you the chance to win products in exchange for honest reviews as well. The site features product rankings, reviews and links to local sites where you can buy popular products from a verified store in your own country.
Boasting over half a million users and tens of millions of website hits each day, Glow Pickis another site (with a linked app) where you can check beauty rankings, read user reviews and even write your own reviews.
The site allows you to search popular products by brand as well as categories, with a large range of categories including masks, skincare, makeup, skin concerns, hair, nails, fragrances, female products, salon products and many more.
Glowpick’s ranking process is somewhat different to other platforms as it runs an algorithm to establish which reviews are credible and genuine.
Another beauty tool with nearly a million users is Korea’s Memebox.
To see what’s popular and trending in Korea based on category and user reviews, this easy-to-navigate website lists hundreds of thousands of products based on scores. Even if you can’t speak Korean, you’ll easily be able to see which products and brands are trending thanks to the pictures on the front page.
If you’re in Korea, don’t forget to check out Memebox’s offline stores as well, in popular locations like Sinchon and Gangnam.
What are the best K-Beauty apps and websites you’ve found? Let us know in the comments
"Want to know what's actually popular in K-Beauty in Korea? Check out Hwahae, Bling Dear, Glow Pick and Meme Box"- STYLE STORY
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