Australian Beauty (or “A-Beauty”) is on the rise and although it’s being touted as the “less-is-more” approach to beauty, here’s why A-Beauty is not so different to K-Beauty.
There has been a lot written lately about the rise of “A-Beauty” and how the simple skincare routine is the antithesis to “K-Beauty”, which is supposedly fussy and complicated.
While Australians are reported as “no-nonsense” when it comes to their skincare, preferring products that offer several steps-in-one, as well as natural ingredients, this is contrasted to K-Beauty and its multi-step routine.
While there’s no doubt that natural ingredients feature heavily in Australian cosmetics, the reality is that many of the Aussie skincare brands being highlighted for their minimalist approaches to skincare have been directly influenced by Korean Beauty, if not outright borrowing from it.
K-Beauty’s focus on protecting, nourishing, and soothing the skin is liberally applied by modern Australian brands, many of whom are even adopting the types of products that form a typical Korean skincare routine.
Take Zoe Foster Blake’s Go-To Skincare line for example. Not only does her range start with a traditional Korean two step cleanse, it follows up with a serum, oil, sheet mask, face cream, SPF and lip balm – all of which are commonly seen in Korean skincare (as part of the “10 Step K-Beauty Routine“).
Popular Australian brand Salt by Hendrix also has a concept that would be very at home in most Korean bathrooms, with a variety of wash-off face masks based on natural clays, facial oils, serums and even an essence – a quintessentially Korean step in skincare, which is designed to target the skin on a cellular level.
In fact, these days many Australian skincare collections contain a veritable cocktail of skin-boosting serums and masks, much like K-Beauty. You only need to look at the Instagram accounts of regular Aussies to verify that these products are much-loved parts of many skincare routines too.
The reality of Australia’s harsh climate has forced most Aussies to take a more in-depth look at the kinds of skincare products necessary to take care of our skin. Australian skin, much like Korean skin, has to put up with some of the harshest conditions on earth – being exposed to extreme temperatures, humidities and prone to sun damage (thanks to the hole in the Ozone layer, which is right above Australia). Gone are the days when most Aussies are satisfied with an exfoliator and a “slip-slop-slap”.
With more than a few faces looking more weathered than their age, with the scars of skin cancers that have been cut out to boot, it’s clear that the minimalist routines of past generations just don’t cut it in 2019.
Modern Australian skincare routines take this into account, and usually involve a few extra steps like a repairing serum, a nourishing oil and a hydrating sheet mask to counteract these effects.
Even the natural beauty trend is not unique to Australia. Although Australians are lucky to have an unspoiled natural environment and Aussie companies are well known for their no-animal testing stances, they aren’t alone.
The trend towards natural beauty in Korean skincare was well underfoot as early as five years ago, and with animal testing having been officially outlawed in Korea in 2018, the reality is that most Korean companies these days are 100% cruelty free (the exceptions being those bigger conglomerates that export their products en-masse to China).
By comparison, animal testing in Australia is still not illegal. When you take out these supposed points of difference, it’s clear that there’s not much separating A-Beauty from K-Beauty at all. In fact, some brands are even blending both A-Beauty and K-Beauty into one – take Subi, for example.
Why not do both?!
That was the thinking behind Subi Beauty, a Korea-based skincare brand that borrows liberally from the Aussie roots of its two founders.
Mixing the best of K-Beauty (design, innovation and advanced skincare solutions) with the best of A-Beauty (natural and minimal ingredients, safe skincare formulations that are made under humane conditions + cruelty-free and vegan formulas) this A-Beauty meets K-Beauty brand has been making waves in the skincare community, thanks to its Perfect Pimple Patch, which has already healed over half a million pimples in just 3 months since its release. What’s not to love?!
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