Revealing Faces: Korean Facial Masks

Sephora Photo 1
Photo by Kiana Kuns

One of the biggest beauty trends right now is the Korean paper face masks and they are going mainstream in the USA.

Last summer, as I wandered the streets of Waikiki, I stumbled upon a Korean skincare store called Nature’s Republic. It looked like a mash-up of Sephora and Kiehls selling cosmetics, lotions, creams and makeup. When I walked inside, something caught my eyes – neatly displayed from floor to ceiling on the wall were a selection of face masks.

They were not your typical clay or mud mask sealed in a jar, but serum or gel infused paper mask touting solutions to your everyday skin problems. I saw unique names such as, Bee Venom Mask, Snaytox Anti-wrinkle Hydro Mask, Gold Snail Hydrogel Mask and more. It looks like the new skincare is the Korean facial mask.

I thought to myself hmm… I wonder what these facial masks actually do. They claim to moisturize dry skin, shrink pores, clear acne, brighten dark spots and tighten loose skin. These masks looked like the something out of the Phantom of the Opera with holes for eyes, nose and mouth. You place this sticky gel or lotion infused product on for 15 to 30 minutes, peel it off, rub the remaining lotion on your face and voila! Your face should feel fresh, relaxed and smooth to the touch.

Photo by Kiana Kuns
Photo by Kiana Kuns

Back home in California, I have noticed a rise in this type of Korean product.  I’m finding them everywhere from drugstores to major retailers like Sephora and Bloomingdales. On the store shelves next to the Korean products, American brands are jumping on  the bandwagon such as SKI-II, Lancome, Garnier, and Clinique with own versions of these products. Laneige, imported from Korea can be found on the shelves at Target.

Korean paper face masks are relatively inexpensive ranging in cost from $5 to $50. What do I think about these face masks, have you tried them?

Well, it’s been 30 minutes, time to take off my face mask and let me tell you it feels pretty great. I think they are here to stay.

By Kiana Kuns

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