Gifting cosmetics and skincare of any sort is tricky because it is such a personal thing. I have tried to recruit friends to join the Asian Beauty club in the past only to have messed up by doing things such as overhyping cushion technology or introducing snails and horse oil waaaay too soon.
As such, I’ve refined my strategy this holiday season. Instead of trying to force feed my hobby onto anyone else, I have carefully selected a few gateway products to pique their interests without being too pushy. The key, I think, is to emphasize how cosmetically elegant and FUN Asian skincare products can be! In honor of Singles Day / Pepero Day, which is the largest shopping day in the WORLD, here are the very affordable and user-friendly items that I would include in a Vanity Rex curated starter box for friends:
Skin Food Black Sugar Strawberry Mask Wash Off
This scrub looks and smells like strawberry jam and is a fairly gentle physical exfoliant. This was one of the first skincare products I bought when I first discovered Korean skincare and it’s a product that people are fascinated by and sometimes even eager to try. I even caught a girlfriend using this without asking when she was staying over once!
Biore Aqua Rich Watery Essence SPF 50+ PA++++
Before discovering Japanese sunscreens, I had accepted the fact that all sunscreens are sucky and miserable to wear. They smell terrible, frequently sting my skin, and leave a thick, sometimes visibly white layer of product on my skin. Japanese sunscreens changed all that. Whereas I prefer the Biore watery gel to the essence, the essence is definitely the crowd pleaser. This sunscreen emerges from the tube as a luxurious yet lightweight and watery cream that is incredibly easy to spread on the skin and absorbs like a dream. This will turn even the staunchest of sunscreen haters into believers.
FUN Sheet Masks!
Some people love sheet masks immediately, but that is definitely not the case for everyone. When I first tried sheet masks, I did not get the appeal at all. I thought they were wet, slimey, and left my face uncomfortably sticky. Even today, I don’t love all sheet masks and generally stick to the ones I know and love. However, this all changes with printed sheet masks. Put a panda face print on anything and I’ll want to put it on my face. If you have friends who are into anime, get them one of these Attack on Titan inspired masks. For everyone else, these Mediheal dress code masks with masquerade mask prints on them, complete with RHINESTONES, are an easy win!
Mamonde Rose Honey Sleeping Pack
This sleeping pack is apparently a very good dupe for the much more expensive Fresh Rose Face Mask. It smells like roses, is lightweight, not too sticky, and extremely moisturizing.
Alternate sleeping pack:
Tony Moly Magic Banana Sleeping Pack – I haven’t actually used this and from what I have heard and know about Tony Moly, this product is more of a novelty item than Serious Skincare, but it’s a pretty awesome novelty item and apparently smells like banana custard!
Holika Holika Baby Silky Foot One Shot Peeling
These masks contain exfoliating ingredients and will cause your feet to shed like crazy. It’s kind of freaky and gross but so much fun! If you are like me and need a good foot callus-removing session (sorry if this is gross) every once in awhile and feel very self-conscious getting it done at a nail salon, this is an awesome alternative. There are plenty of other foot peeling “masks” available, but these are the only ones I’ve tried and they work well for me!
Etude House Etti Headband
This is one of my favorite K-beauty purchases and it’s not even a cosmetic product! I use these to keep my hair out of my face when I’m washing my face, applying skincare, or putting on makeup. If it wouldn’t be weird, I would also probably wear this to the gym. It’s so convenient and cute!
None of these things contain snails, animal ingredients, or scary sounding acids! What are your favorite “starter” Asian Beauty products?
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. You an see my full disclosure policy here.
source of title image: http://thecoachellavalleyartscene.com/2010/12/30/holidaze-laze/christmas-snail-escapeprocess-blog/