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We Tested Out Crazy-Sounding Korean Beauty Products and Lived to Tell the Story

If you think you're obsessed with skincare and the ultimate pursuer of ultra-perfect baby skin, you haven't met the Korean beauty market.

In terms of ingredients, technology and innovation, Korea has long been ahead of U.S. cosmetic makers. Their packaging often gives you the opposite impression, with vivid cartoons, banana-shaped bottles and sheet masks that make you look like a superhero. But while they may take their packaging lightly, they are serious about ingredients. The best part of all is that most of their products are very affordable. You don't have to hop a plane or pay crazy shipping fees to get your hands on the goods either. Retailers like Beauteque specialize in getting Korean skincare to the masses. If you're on a mission to try it all, they offer subscription services like their Mask Maven and BB Bag. They sent us four of their popular products to try out and here is how it all went down!

Korean Product #1

Baviphat Urban Dollkiss Pore Bye Volcano Pack
I'm all for any beauty product with the word "pore" in it. Given the name of this product, I was hoping it would pull out impurities, but it was actually more hydrating than anything. With volcanic ash to absorb impurities, shea butter to moisturize, and collagen to firm, it certainly made my skin feel soft and smooth. Sadly, it didn't appear to do much in the way of pore clarifying. Despite its colorful cupcake packaging, the scent was very mild and fresh, not sweet or cake-like. There is a generous amount in the jar and I love that like many Korean skincare products, it includes a spatula for hygienic dispensing. It doesn't dry or sting the skin and it was enjoyable to use. I just wish I had seen more pore improvements.

Korean Product #2

Baviphat Urban Dollkiss Welcome to Korea Skin Clean Mask
This mask is literally money! The packaging design tells you absolutely nothing about the sheet mask inside, but the mask is saturated with plumping, firming, hyaluronic acid. I enjoyed wearing this mask, both for its cooling sensation and because my husband was horrified by me. After 15 minutes, you can rub the excess product into your skin but I did find it to be a bit slimy so I washed off the initial layer with water.

Korean Product #3

Tony Moly Pocket Bunny Sleek Mist
This packaging is so precious, I was bound to love pretty much whatever was inside! The Sleek Mist is a refreshing, gentle facial spray that can be used before or after applying makeup. It's best for oilier skin types. The scent reminds me a lot of baby wipes, a bit surprising as it contains pretty much every fruit extract you can think of! The spray has strawberry, peach, apple, kiwi, pineapple, grape, cranberry, raspberry, blueberry and blackberry! The main issue I have with this one is that it's loaded with parabens—four in fact. Bunnies are adorable. Parabens, not so much.

Korean Product #4

Hanaka V-Line Chin Patch
This collagen-infused sheet mask is meant to firm up the cheeks and chin. I haven't seen my jawline in a while, so I was definitely intrigued. You keep the mask taut by looping it over your ears; very smart! It was comfortable to wear and didn't leave my face feeling too sticky. Though it didn't necessarily create a visual difference, my jawline felt tighter. I'd like to use this before a special event for an extra confidence boost.

Ivy Boyd

I have a Bachelor's degree in Graphic Design, but it's creating works of art on faces that I love most. By day, I am a Senior Education Consultant for Sephora as well as a freelance makeup artist. The rest of the time, I'm creating content for my makeup and beauty blog, Wake Up for Makeup, reading product reviews, watching tutorial videos and reading makeup artist books. I live and breathe this stuff and if you could eat makeup, I'd probably do that too. I also love painting abstracts, running, attending music festivals and acting weird with my husband and our two awesome cats. I'm here to tell you what products are legit, how to better use the ones you have, give you ideas to shake up your routine and guide you through some fun tutorials I know you can dominate.

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