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Natural Korean Beauty Products

January 05, 2021

Natural Korean Beauty Products


Natural beauty products are having a moment all over the world, so it’s little surprise K-Beauty is also turning towards nature.

But what’s prompted the change from cutesy?

STYLE STORY investigates natural Korean Beauty products.


If you were familiar with Korean Beauty products five years ago, you’ll recall the endless stream of kitsch, cutesy products: Think macaron lip balms, tomato-shaped face masks, tangerine hand creams and endless Disney collaborations.

While they all still exist, these days you’re more likely to find K-Beauty products au naturale. That is, with minimalist packaging, minimal ingredients, cruelty-free certifications etc.

So what prompted the change?

There’s no doubt that K-Beauty’s kitsch, unique packaging was one of the things that sky-rocketed it to fame. These days however the emphasis has undoubtedly shifted towards a more natural focus.

Korean Beauty brands are promising everything from toxic free skincare to ECOCERT approval, EWG certification, and even vegan certification.

Although the changes are linked to the maturation of the K-Beauty industry, one of the biggest drivers of this change is consumers.

While everyone loves the odd cute hand cream (or five), it’s what’s on the inside that counts.

The next big thing in beauty

Korean Beauty companies have been on the cutting edge of beauty for a long time, with experts estimating K-Beauty is 12 years ahead of the game compared to western beauty.

A big part of this has to do with the responsiveness of Korean companies to customer’s demands.

Most K-Beauty companies are extremely active online and on social media, taking time to directly engage with consumers, seek feedback and find out what they really want.

Case in point – COSRX.

Putting the Customer First

Korean Beauty label COSRX has made a name based on sleek, simple products. Their products contain high percentages of active ingredients that are tailored for those with sensitive, acne-prone skin.

COSRX’s direct marketing approach includes communicating with its customers through Instagram, Facebook and email.

Several years ago, the label introduced a new brightening essence, “White Power Essence“. They hoped this would identify it as a skin “brightening” product (known in Korean as “whitening”).

Western consumers however were quick to point out the negative connotations of the term “White Power”. COSRX got the message, quickly changing the name to “Whitening Power Essence”.

In the same way, consumer demand for products that are skin-friendly, environmentally-friendly and animal-friendly has also driven the demand for natural Korean Beauty products.

The ability of K-Beauty companies to quickly create, market and distribute products at competitive prices has given them an edge over other western companies attempting to do the same.

STYLE STORY’s Top Natural Korean Beauty Product Picks

If you’re looking to go natural with your skincare, these are a few of our favourite K-Beauty picks


APLB makes 7 promises to its customers:

  • the creation of products for all skin types
  • continuous research
  • natural ingredients
  • growing the science around fermented skincare
  • strict quality control;
  • results that the eyes can see; and
  • scientific prescriptions.

Pyunkang Yul

Developed by a renowned Oriental Medicine Clinic, Pyunkang Yul is a cruelty-free Korean beauty brand. It creates cosmetics designed to get skin glowing.

Based on their natural beauty philosophy, Pyungkang Yul rejects the notion of cosmetics as simply another “shopping” item. Instead, they carefully select each and every ingredient in their products to ensure they are gentle and safe for skin.


Purito believes in transparency about what its customers are putting on their skin.

It ensures its ingredients are EWG Green-level safe and toxin/chemical-free whenever possible.

The brand avoids excessive packaging and donates a portion of profits to the Korean Federation for Environmental Movement. It also works in a 100% cruelty-free environment where no animal testing is done.

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"The ability of K-Beauty companies to quickly create, market and distribute products at competitive prices has given them an edge over other western companies attempting to do the same."


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