You may know nothing about K-pop, but chances are you’ve read about Korean skincare (K-beauty) in your favourite glossy or online magazine. It’s all over social media feeds and Youtubers keep reviewing K-beauty products. Every now and then, there’s another popular piece about “glass skin” and how Koreans have that poreless, #flawless skin game down.
Personally, I discovered K-beauty through Twitter mutuals and Youtube. I didn’t really get the hype the whole 10-step routine at first, but then I attempted it with some products I could find here. It didn’t work as well as I hoped and well, I’ve made many mistakes along the way to getting somewhat clear skin.
It used to be much harder to find K-beauty products in South Africa, but more local suppliers are recognising demand. Now, you can get your hands on the products you see some beauty gurus using on Youtube. I thought I would share some online stores that I’ve come across.
Founded in 2017 by Tamsin van Tonder, Glow Theory is all about introducing K-beauty to local skincare lovers. There’s a good selection of products, from beginner kits to chemical exfoliants and sunscreen. I’ve bought from them before, thanks to a recommendation from my friend Kyla. Products are separated by their particular function and what skin issue they target, which is super helpful. Whether you’re struggling with pigmentation/scarring or just have really dry skin, there should be something for you. Pro-tip: things sell out fast! Like really fast. The downside is that you will wait for products to be restocked, but shipping is super fast (in my personal experience). If you have any comments or queries, just pop an email over to email@example.com
My goal is to stock a wide range of the most highly rated Korean cosmetics available, at the most affordable prices in South Africa. I personally test everything myself, and am always trying out new and innovative products so that I can bring you the most current and effective products Korea has to offer.Tamsin van Tonder, Glow Theory
Butterkup Beauty seems to be a relatively new brand and online store but they offer a few skincare brands I’ve been curious about. I discovered this site thanks to Instagram, so I guess targeted marketing works? I’ve yet to order from them but they’re on my radar for future products I want to add to my routine. Another nice touch is that they’ve added a request feature, where customers can ask for specific products that aren’t already on the list.
Another brand I stumbled across via Instagram, Philosophy Glow was founded by two sisters who fell in love with Korean skincare. According to their official site, PG is currently an online-only store but they are physically based in Johannesburg. I haven’t bought from them just yet, but I’ll probably try out their masks or purchase a decent sunscreen from them. If you have any questions or thoughts, you can drop them an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Hope this was helpful! Please let me know if you’ve found any other online stores?