Today I want to talk (complain-ish) about why having white or very fair skin is considered to be more attractive and why Korean women and men obsess over having very light skin. This was something I wanted to address for while. I’ve been living Korea for almost 5 years and I still can’t get over the fact that most all beauty commercials and ads push the idea that light skin is more beautiful than lets say tan skin. I might start to generalize in this post a little bit but I’ll try to be as specific as possible.
My mom is always telling me to buy foundation lighter than my skin. There are usually only 2 shades of light to choose from when you’re buying foundation or BB cream in a Korean makeup store. Most all Korean products feature whitening as a formulation in their products. I see women with foundation that does not match their skin tone. White is beauty in Korea.
It really bothers me in lots of ways. As a beauty consumer it is such a pain to find shades that are perfectly matched with my skin tone. It’s always a shade to two lighter. So whenever I buy foundation or any face makeup I have to warm it up with bronzer. Even when it’s not a Korean brand let’s say Revlon the stocker only purchases two to three colors that matches the Korean equivalent.
Another way it bothers me is that it promotes one kind of beauty. Having fair or light skin. Yes fair skin is beautiful but so is your natural skin color! I’m so over Korean ads promoted by Korean beauty bloggers covering up their natural skin tone with a foundation or a cover product that is way too light. If I put it on I would look ridiculous. People can do whatever they want with their makeup and preferences to how they want to look, but why would you promote a brand that only considers the lightening/whitening is skin as beautiful or attractive.
I know that there must be a business aspect to only having two shades to choose from. But c’mon! These businesses need to understand the reality that people have different skin tones that don’t fall into the 21 or 23 category. I think this will be a battle I will have to face whenever I go purchase from a Korean brand. I know that many non-Koreans and Korean gyopos have such a hard time finding a foundation that is the right color in Korea. They have to spend quite a bit of money on foundations from department store brands.