I was in the Korean Market yesterday trading stories and beauty secrets, and discussing the massive influx of K-beauty in the mainstream. My friend (whose daughter now buys Kinky Curly Curling Custard by the tub and says that I saved her hair… did I tell ya’ll about this lovely child and her hair issues?) talked about how some of the best items are still reserved off the beaten path for customers who know. I’m inclined to agree. When we (Westerners) get hold of something, we tend to go nuts and completely dilute the product and the process. It’s kind of our way. And since a lot of the mainstream stuff is geared to younger consumers (although I admit I have every single Dinoplatz Lip Balm because they are AWESOME), mature patrons who want products guaranteed to work past the age of 20 are going to hunt for something more significant beyond Sephora and Nordstrom.
I still get my makeup wipes, clarifying shampoo, random makeup items and emergency fixes from my local mart. I’m constantly absorbing information on techniques, application, and a deeper understanding of each product. Same with Indian and Japanese beauty. The Eastern market is head and shoulders above us… and I think that particularly in the US, because of our Euro beginnings (think of the massive influx of French and Swiss skincare)… we are blown away by how much we don’t know about hair and skincare on an intuitive (versus scientific) level. At least I am. As a woman of color, Western skin care does precisely jack for me (which is why I started making my own)… same with hair care. I remember when I first found Komenuka Binjin for my hair. Changed everything.
One of the perks of living in Los Angeles is the access. You touch so many cultures here, and I’m always thirsting to learn new ways, traditions, and general things about things. I’m thankful that I don’t take it for granted, and have not lost my sense of wonder. Without the close quarters of New York and weather that makes you want to go outside and stay there… I’m grateful.
Makeup for this lil’ post is appropriately East & West: Laniege BB Cushion in Dark and Elegance Blush in Orange. No those are not false lashes (don’t sleep on Armani Black Ecstasy Mascara)… and they’re boosted with a smudge of powdered kohl (the real stuff from my favorite Indian spot on Venice) along the lashline. Lips are Aurora 24hr Lively Lip Stain in Kate, and IPKN My Stealer Lip Gloss in Tiffany Pink.
I love everyone. Namaste.