It looks like 2019 is set to be another incredible year for Korean skincare.
Even large western cosmetics brands are recognising this significant trend shift and trying to get in on the action by launching their own K-beauty collections.
The sector is known globally for its innovation, so what will we see on the shelves in the next 12 months?
Here are five trends to look out for in K-beauty this year, according to industry experts.
Vegan skincare products
Veganism isn’t an entirely new idea. In fact, its popularity in the UK has never been greater. Between 2006 and 2016, the number of vegans in Britain rose by 350%, and 20% of under-35s say they have tried a vegan diet, with this popularity expected to increase further in 2019.
In the skincare industry, the trend is often referred to as ‘clean beauty’.
Writing in The Klog, Charlotte Cho, author of The Little Book of Skin Care, says that Korean skincare brands “have taken note of the global clean beauty wave and we’re now seeing more formulas that are vegan, EWG[Environmental Working Group]-compliant, and/or fragrance-free.”
This reflects a wider consumer trend towards vegan beauty products in the UK, with a 38% increase in sales in the year to January 2018.
Cho also expects to see more customisable products, featuring options that you can tailor to your skin type.
This aligns with the view of Lisa Payne, senior beauty editor at global trends company Stylus, who tells Harper’s Bazaar: “[…] in Korea we’re seeing hybrid products that tone and hydrate in one, using hero ingredients such as green tea and vitamin E.”
The ‘Double Serum’ technique
K-Beauty curators Glow Recipe are strongly backing double serum to take off in 2019.
Double serum essentially means combining two skin products to get the best results.
Glow Recipe co-founder Christine Chang says “Double serum ultimately empowers the user to cocktail custom recipes depending on her skin needs, which for many people is different from day to day.”
The sun stick
Kelly Jin writes in Vogue that 2019 could be the year of the sun stick – an alternative to applying sun cream that looks and works a bit like a lipstick. “If you’re sick of your sun cream or milk spilling in your bag, the sun stick is perfect as it’s a solid bar that you can twist or turn and apply directly onto your skin,” she says.
However, the benefits extend beyond avoiding a mishap in your bag – they’re considered among the safest sunscreens you can buy. “The sunscreen stick has come a long way,” says Dawn Yanek in Reader’s Digest.
If you are going to make the switch from your usual sunscreen, however, make sure you are still effectively protected.
Although traditionally used post-laser treatment, modelling masks could become a “permanent fixture in Korean masking life,” according to Femina’s Chanele Flanagan.
This is where natural ingredients are mixed to form a thick, goopy substance that is poured over the entire face. It then hardens and is peeled off, leaving the skin feeling soft.
Flanagan says these products are “unbeatable when reducing pore size,” while using gentle ingredients and less preservative chemicals.
She expects them to become more of a feature for Korean skincare brands alongside the slightly more conventional peeling face masks, and the less conventional foot masks.
A year for innovation
Skincare is not the only Korean beauty sector to expect innovation in 2019.
At Dorco, we are proud of our Korean heritage and we have been innovators in the shaving industry since 1955. We created the PACE 6 Plus, the world’s first six-blade razor, as well as the Dorco CLASSIC, the world’s first seven-blade razor.
We’ve got big things planned for 2019, too – so watch this space.