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In Korean culture, having flawless skin is a sign of beauty and health. K-Beauty adopts a holistic approach to turning skin care rituals into self-care and wellness. With the number of innovations launched over the decades and those expected to launch in the market, the terms "Korean Beauty" or "K-Beauty" have become a part of every conversation in the personal care industry.
When it comes to your skin, there are a host of challenges to consider, from dry, oily, or sensitive skin to a combination of all of these. With COVID-19 at the forefront of our lives over the past two years, we can add another skin condition to the list called "maskne", aka mask-related acne.
We look at the latest innovations that allow K-Beauty routines to tackle everyday skin care issues and remain the in-demand skin care routine globally.
Latest Innovations in K-Beauty
When you study the history of K-Beauty, it is evident that this beauty routine has consistently been evolving and adapting to the times. COVID-19 has had two impacts on this practice.
First, it has made people more aware of the concept of K-Beauty, and with people spending more time indoors, a five to ten-step routine becomes very doable. Second, the pandemic has showcased to the world the importance of following and maintaining sustainable practices, especially in the personal care industry.
Today, K-Beauty is adapting to the call for sustainability and is promoting clean, plant-based ingredients. We are seeing the traditional ten-step routine give way to a more minimalist approach as consumers are more conscious and vocal about sustainable practices and the impact of excessive packaging on the environment.
Here are a few innovations in K-Beauty to look forward to:
Products free of chemical additives and artificial ingredients or fragrances are the need of the hour. Brands have realized the importance of clean beauty and are even focusing on plant-based ingredients as consumers are more aware of what they are putting on their skin.
There is a growing trend towards simplifying routines. This does not mean that we expect the multi-step regime to be abandoned, but rather, multi-use items to be more attractive. A product that pampers the skin and saves time simultaneously would be the most desired.
Linking Skin Care and Health
K-Beauty is known to adopt a holistic approach to skin care. However, brands that focus on inner and outer wellness will gain more popularity. For example, pre-, pro-, and post-biotics, microbiome-friendly products, and supplements can benefit your skin and health.
Consumers can look forward to brands developing more products containing fermented components, such as fermented tea and kombucha. These are becoming increasingly popular as they are also known to have anti-aging benefits.
Centella Asiatica (Cica)
Centella Asiatica or Cica is an herb grown in Asia known for its anti-inflammatory properties. The extract reduces skin irritation by repairing the skin barrier function. Its soothing effect is exactly what is needed, especially with the excess stress the pandemic has caused.
At-home care is another popular trend emerging due to the pandemic when stepping out into a salon was not an option. Products that are easy to apply at home have a clear preference. Skin care has a functional element to it as well. Routines or products that provide meditative, soothing, and spa-like moments will be in demand.
K-Beauty for Men
According to Allied Market Research, the global men's personal care market size was valued at USD 124.8 billion in 2020 and is projected to reach USD 276.9 billion by 2030. The report adds that the increase in concern among men about their health, body image, self-grooming, and hygiene is the primary factor driving the men's personal care market growth.
The popularity K-Beauty is gaining among men and is one factor that proves, contrary to popular belief, that men do care about personal care regimes. There are already a handful of K-Beauty products designed specifically for men who tend to have rougher skin or even sensitive skin, especially after a shave.
With the latest innovations we see in the K-Beauty routine, we can be sure that this skin care practice will only get more popular as it adapts to different situations and reaches a broader customer base across the globe.
DKSH offers a wide variety of innovative ingredients that cater to the latest advancements in Korean Beauty and the personal care industry. Our international teams of technical specialists collaborate across borders to develop innovative solutions for companies looking to tap into the latest and growing consumer trends.
Contact us to learn more about our innovative personal care solutions.
Tris Shin is based in Seoul, Korea. He is currently the Technical Service Manager, Personal Care Industry, Performance Materials at DKSH Korea.