‘Wear makeup like an actress’
Hallyu boosts interest in Korean makeup skills
By Kim Bo-eun
There was a buzz of excitement in the room, where a dozen or so women of diverse skin colors and facial features waited for the hallyu, or Korean wave, makeup class to start.
The event was held Thursday by the Seoul Tourism Organization at the Seoul Global Culture and Tourism Center in Myeong-dong, central Seoul, to meet the growing interests of foreign tourists in Korean beauty products and makeup skills.
It was the second makeup class provided by the organization for foreign visitors. The first, held last month, was also a huge success.
“I think interest is growing among foreigners in Korean beauty products and makeup thanks to hallyu, or the Korean cultural wave. As more and more foreigners become interested in Korean dramas and Kpop, they are turning their attention to the way Korean actresses and idol groups wear their makeup and style themselves,” said Lee Su-na, head of the center.
“We also got a hint from the loads of shopping bags the tourists carry when they visit our center. Based on their enthusiasm for Korean makeup, we thought it would be great if we could have a class which could teach them how to use the products.” Kim Sun-hee, a renowned makeup artist in Korea, participated in the class as a guest lecturer.
She selected two women from the audience and explained the features of Korean women’s way of doing their makeup as she applied it to each participant.
“The trend these days for Korean women is a light, natural complexion,” said Kim.
“The key point is to create the right skin texture, to give a little glow, creating a vibrant and healthy look.” She recommended using blemish balm rather than powder, to give the effect.
Unlike most makeup classes, in which participants just sit and watch, the class provided a whole set of cosmetics products for the participants, which they were able to test and apply as demonstrated.
Kim also emphasized the importance of eye makeup for Korean women.
“Since Asian women have smaller eyes compared to Western women, a lot of attention also goes into making their eyes look larger,” she said.
“Eyeliner and fake eyelashes play a big role here.” Kim added that geltype eyeliner is a must-have for summer.
“Gel eyeliner smudges a lot less than the pencil type in the hot, humid weather,” she said.
Another tip that she gave was that thicker eyebrows makes one look younger.
On one side, a stylist also touched up the women’s hair, using a curling iron to make bouncy waves for one, and a stylish up-do for another.
“At 34, I am aging, and I wanted some tips on how to make myself look younger,” said Fatima Id Said, a French woman. “In this sense, the makeup class was very helpful.”
The event was attended by 13, from countries including the United Kingdom, the United States, France, Malaysia and China. Two more sessions were held in the afternoon, the second translated into Japanese, and the last into Chinese.
The center, jointly operated by Seoul City and the Seoul Tourism Organization, has also been hosting K-pop classes, teaching songs and choreography, since March. The K-pop classes will continue through June. The center is planning another makeup class later this year.