Beauty in Korea (Olive Young)

Korean beauty has been on the rise all around the world for a while now. Coming to Korea, I knew I wanted to purchase a multitude of Korean beauty products – from toners, moisturizers, and face masks to cushion foundations, mascaras, blushes, and eyeshadow palettes. Not only are they cheaper here because of no international shipping, the Olive Young experience was also something I looked forward to living out. 


The easiest way I can think of explaining Olive Young is like a Korean equivalent to an Ulta. They have all the makeup and skincare products you can think of and the staff there is always super friendly (from my experience). My first time visiting an Olive Young was quite overwhelming, to be quite honest. I went to the location on Hongdae’s shopping street which meant it was extremely crowded there. There were maybe 10-15 staff members working there and every 2 minutes, they will let you know to tell them if you need any assistance or have any questions. It was very helpful that they all knew English, making my experience much smoother as my limited Korean vocab does not cover cosmetic products. 

One of my favorite things about Oliveyoung is the deals they have. Products will often go on sale weekly. Many, if not all, of the products are already much cheaper in Korea but they often will include deals with each product. For example, I got a full sized oil cleanser on sale and it came with a travel sized facial cleanser in the same box. Many of the toner pads and cushion foundations will also come with free refills in the same box. Sometimes, there will even be a 1+1 deal on certain products which is equivalent to a buy one get one free deal! Buying products with these deals makes purchases much more worthwhile. My friend got free gifts with her purchase as well after spending a certain amount. We got home and realized half of the products we came back with weren’t even an intended purchase, they were just given to us for free. 

I later found out that the specific Olive Young I first went to was so crowded because they have all of the best selling makeup and skincare at their location. I went to a couple other locations later on during my first week in Korea and they were definitely much more peaceful but also smaller. If you are looking to make one quick stop at an Olive Young to purchase everything you want for your trip, I would recommend the Hongdae location. However, if you are just popping in to roam around and browse, I would recommend other locations as they tend to be smaller but easier to spend a longer period of time in. I highly recommend experiencing Olive Young when you are in Korea. Whether or not you have an interest in cosmetics, many of the skincare items and makeup products will make great gifts for friends and family back home! 

Written by