Lying off East Asia and just one boat ride apart, Koreans and the Japanese are often mistaken for each other. With both having chinky eyes, porcelain skin, and a small frame, many are fooled as to what differentiates them.
But being exposed to both cultures, you will notice the difference. Koreans, compared to the Japanese, generally have a wider jaw, a slightly darker skin, a wider nose, and a stockier built. These features are due to Korea’s climate that is beset by harsh winters and high winds all throughout the year. Thus, the natural contours of their face must adapt to this environment.
Koreans and the Japanese both do their makeup differently, accentuating the ‘perfect’ look as deemed by their culture.
Here are the top differences between Korean and Japanese-style makeup:
Korean makeup: puts a lot of emphasis on building a good base. This emphasis is because of Korea’s harsh weather that can quickly dry up the skin. It is not uncommon to put two layers before applying makeup: one for moisturizing, another for keeping the makeup stay put. To keep abreast with the latest Korean skincare tips, please drop by at: https://www.peachandlily.com/pages/korean-skin-care-routine.
Japanese makeup: a good often water-based foundation is used, but not applied as liberally as in the Korean style. What’s important is to support the naturally small pores among the Japanese; thus, a foundation where the skin can breathe is preferred.
Korean makeup: light and bubbly shades are the norms, with layers blended to create a balanced but cutesy look. Eyelids are sometimes lined with a black eyelid brush but without the upward flick at the edge of the eyes, typical with Japanese-style makeup. Mascara is subtly used. Contact lenses that make the eyes look rounder are not as common.
Japanese makeup: the overall appeal is to make the eyes look as if they are dripping, sweet and innocent yet with a particular character. This appeal is where contact lenses that make the eyes look rounder come in. You get drawn to the eyes as they seem so loud yet so gentle. The eyes are further accentuated by the Japanese signature of an upward flick on the edge of the eyelids. Japanese eyes are almond-shaped, and so this trick highlights the beauty of this shape. Usually, contact lenses are coupled with false lashes.
Korean makeup: this style can be heavy on contouring with many Koreans naturally gifted with a wide jaw and round nose. Jaws are contoured with makeup applied on the jawline, then blended evenly to the skin. Specially made nose contour powder is popular in Korea, complete with contour brush and palette, and a blender set.
Japanese makeup: most of the Japanese are endowed with small, narrow and nicely shaped noses, and small oval faces. Both are excellent complements to their small frame. Due to these features, they are not heavy on contours. The idea is not to contour but to accentuate these good attributes. This accentuation is done through light, fresh and airy makeup that can contribute to the natural skin glow.
Korean makeup: the look usually ends up with a lustrous, porcelain-like finish. Although naturally looking when done right, it is easy to overdo this Korean secret so the bright finish should be handled with caution.
Japanese makeup: a natural, fresh and no-makeup look is the overall goal of this style. The idea is to show that makeup is used just to accentuate anyone’s features.
Korea and Japan may be neighbors, but both come from different sides of East Asia with a heritage, climate, and culture uniquely its own. This uniqueness extends to makeup, and this is what makes both Korean and Japanese-style makeup beautiful.