Well, again, mutual concept-plagiarism is unspoken truth in Korean beauty industry for sure. It’s not a praiseworthy phenomenon I know, but as a customer’s point of view, this competitive, fast changing beauty trend in Korean beauty business definitely give us quality products for the cheaper price. 

Even though many companies bring us similar tpye of the products with exactly same concept, there is always a winner and loser. Again, as in many other businesses, winner takes all the market. So, between similar concept products, if a certain product obtimized best formula from the similar ingredients or similar texture, it will completey dominate the market. I assume this is the reason why people are rave for the Korean beauty products. While the companies war against each other cats and dogs we may enjoy the most optimized product after this bitXX fight. Anyway today I brought some products that "inspired" Korean beauty products. And let’s see how Korean brands brought some concept from other brands and make it into their own identity.

giorgio-armani-vs-missha

1. Giorgio Armani Maestro Glow & Missha Signature Super Light Oil foundation

Practically both of them are bi-phase foundations, clearly divided into organic (oil) and aqueous layer. For the people who have not so many severe skin complexions with dry skin, these highly spreadable, light- textured, moisture keeping foundations are MUST for the winter.

As always, Korean product has advantage on price - Armani is $64 and Missha is 19,800 KRW, so it will be around $18. (I couldn’t find anyone sell this in US yet.) Armani has 9 gradients from literally white to much darker tone. It has orange/pink pigment inside and makes your skin look quite naturally radiant and all skin tone can find their right color from Armani. While Missha has 4 gradients, 2 for warm tone and 2 for cool tone and mainly petal & vanilla pigments. So, color gradients are limited but if you are Asian, you will find better match in Missha. Textures are almost identical. I don’t understand why both of the companies added ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate  as sun-filter but Armani's formula is a little weird. Along with ethylhexyl methoxicinnamate and benzyl salicylate are also added for sun filter while it has titanium dioxide already. (Simply, both ingredients are quite irritating with known toxicity.)  Many allergenic fragrances such as limonene, linalool and butylphenyl methylpropional are definitely unnecessary as well. Ingredient wise, I know I  I should never use Armani, but texture is just so amazing, lol.  Missha also added ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate as sun-filter seeming for the spreadable texture but its ingredient is just so much more skin friendly than Armani. So if you have matching gradient, just use Missha. It is cheaper with improved ingreidnets. 

 

estee-vs-thefaceshop

2. Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair & The Face Shop Bifida 97.5%

Actually, the first “me-too” product of bifida based product is Missha’s Time Revolution Night Repair Borabit Ampoule.

borabit-time-revolution-night-repair-ampoule-missha

<Missha : Time Revolution Night Repair Borabit Ampoule>

However, I think more advanced Korean beauty version of replica is The Face Shop’s Bifida 97.5% All in One Treatment because of its simple, clean-cut formula. If you tried Estee Lauder’s Advanced Night Repair, you will remember its velvet-soft finish. I also used to like its gel-texture, and Advanced Night Repair gave me mositurized and conditioned look on the next morning, so I hold on to this prodcut for quite long. Who would hate the face in the next morning?

But did you know its EWG grading is 8?

Octinoxate, BHT and benzyl alcohol with methyl paraben is a bit too disappointing for this $65 for 30ml luxury cosmetic. Well, retinyl palmiate with EWG grade of 7 is a little controversial since it is an excellent cell-communicating and one of the few proven molecules to improve wrinkles, so high irritant & toxicity rating should not be literally understood.

But in terms of texture, Estee Lauder is definitely far better than the Face Shop. On the other hand, the Face Shop used 97.5% Bifida extract as its second ingredient. And the other 2.5% is made with niacinamide, sodium hyaluronate and adenosine. It’s clean as crystal. However it is much more watery than Estee Lauder, as it moisturizes and conditions skin very well. It is a little bit more expensive than conventional Korean beauty product, 30,000 KRW, so around $28, still far cheaper than Estee Lauder.