Where to Buy What: The Best Places to Score Your K-Beauty Faves Online
A round-up of the most budget-friendly, well-stocked sites to feed your skincare and makeup shopping cravings
Here’s a thought: there’s no better time than now to stock up on your K-beauty essentials. As of time of writing, we’re down to the last few days of February, which means we’re presented with two very convincing reasons to shop: the last licks of online Valentine’s sales, and the imminent arrival of our paychecks. If by the time you’re reading this, it’s no longer February or there are no particularly life-changing sales or your pay isn’t due for another week or two––well, making a good, justifiable online purchase in the name of beauty is never really a bad idea, is it?
In the last installment of Where to Buy What, a bird’s eye view column-of-sorts where we lovingly comb over the online beauty retail space in hot pursuit of the absolute best websites to order your skincare and makeup holy grails from, we gave you a compass that pointed you to the general direction of the best Glossier, The Ordinary, Pyunkang Yul, Dear Klairs and Pixi deals. This time around, we fix a more focused lens and gaze on towards K-beauty.
Lip tint! Matte lipstick! Toner! Serum! Scroll forth and check out.
Images via Go Bloom & Glow
Take A Layer Multi-Pot
Over on K-Beauty Cafe, 3CE’s ultra-pigmented Take A Layer cream blush retails for P1200, while it’s regularly priced at P1150 over on BeautyMNL and Go Bloom & Glow. As of time of writing, the best-selling blush is on sale for P1050 on K-Beauty Cafe and P945 on Go Bloom & Glow.
Velvet Lip Tint
The sherbet-like mousse tint that inspired countless lookalikes after it is regularly priced at P950 on both BeautyMNL and Go Bloom & Glow, and at P1000 over on K-Beauty Cafe. Given that we’re right in the middle of a sale, though, we get to enjoy slashed Velvet Lip Tint Prices: P750 on K-Beauty Cafe and P765 on Go Bloom & Glow.
Mood Recipe Matte Lip Color
Despite its popularity, the Mood Recipe Matte Lipstick is available only on two websites locally: BeautyMNL and Go Bloom & Glow. On both websites, it regularly retails for P1050, but is currently on sale on Go Bloom & Glow for P891.
In terms of product range, shade availability and price point, BeautyMNL and Go Bloom & Glow closely mirror each other. However, if you consider the tempting sale the latter has going on right now, we’d say Go Bloom & Glow is the site to hit up for your 3CE shopping whims.
Images via Beauty MNL
Juicy Lasting Tint
A selection of bright yet wearable shades? Check. Long-lasting stain? Check. Non-sticky formula? Check. Rom&nd’s Juicy Lasting Tint ticks off all our boxes. Unfortunately, this product (or this brand, for that matter) isn’t the easiest to shop locally. In the Philippines, two stores carry the product: BeautyMNL where it retails for P680, and Stuff in Style where it’s currently available for just P300. That’s more than 50% off, but just a heads up: Stuff in Style still carries the Juicy Lasting Tint in its old packaging.
Zero Velvet Lip Tint
An easy favorite among K-beauty aficionados, the Zero Velvet Lip Tint is available for P680 on BeautyMNL, P500 on K-Beauty Cafe and a discounted price of P480 (from an original price of P650!) on Stuff in Style.
Zero Gram Matte Lipstick
Soft as butter and light as air, Rom&nd’s Zero Gram Lipstick is available only on BeautyMNL and Stuff in Style. On BeautyMNL it retails for P780, while on Stuff in Style, it’s available for a slashed price of P480 (from an original price of P650).
In terms of product range, BeautyMNL is the clear winner for this round. Beyond the brand’s most popular lip products, the site also carries Rom&nd blush, eyeshadow and curated sets, which is definitely impressive. Although when it comes to price, Stuff in Style is the winner with or without the major sale they currently have ongoing.
Images via Go Bloom & Glow
Acne Pimple Master Patch
Regardless of what you call ‘em—pimple patches, zit stickers, overnight nightmare eradicators—one thing’s for certain: CosRX’s are the quintessential patches of all patches. A pack of 24 patches typically retails for P200 as they do on Skincare Curator and Go Bloom & Glow, although on the latter they’re on sale for P160. Over on K-Beauty Cafe, COSRx’s classic patches retail for a regular price of P170 but are currently on sale for P160.
AHA/BHA Clarifying Treatment Toner
One hell of a multitasker, COSRx’s unique blend of AHA and BHA brightens, balances and rids the skin of dull, dead cells to unveil a better complexion all around. A 150mL bottle of the stuff retails for P680 on both Skincare Curator and Go Bloom & Glow, but is on sale for just P544 on the latter. As of time of writing, the AHA/BHA Clarifying Treatment Toner is available for a slashed price of P520 on K-Beauty Cafe.
Advanced Snail 92 All In One Cream
Snail mucin, despite how irking it can sound to skincare newbies, is something of a dream ingredient: it’s lightweight, has hyaluronic acid and is antimicrobial, which is likely why so many K-beauty loyalists swear by COSRx’s Advanced Snail 92 All in One Cream. On Skincare Curator, this well-loved product is available for P1100 a pop. On K-Beauty Cafe, a jar costs P975. Over on Go Bloom & Glow, it also retails for P1100, but is currently on sale for just P880.
There’s no disagreeing that COSRx is one of the most popular Korean skincare brands, which makes it fairly simple to find it on pretty much any online beauty store. If it’s the best deals you’re after, though, you’ll want to direct your attention to K-Beauty Cafe.
RELATED: Battle of the Drugstore Acne Patches
Some by Mi
Images via Althea
AHA BHA PHA 30 Days Miracle Toner
Undoubtedly Some by Mi’s most popular product line, the AHA BHA PHA 30 Days Miracle collection promises to eradicate acne, get rid of blackheads and tighten pores in just one month. Over on Go Bloom & Glow and Althea, the toner retails for P1100, but is currently available on sale for P632 and P660, respectively. On K-Beauty Cafe, the regular price of P1090 is slashed to P699.
AHA BHA PHA 30 Days Miracle Serum
The discounted prices continue with the next step in the AHA BHA PHA 30 Days Miracle line: the serum. On Go Bloom & Glow, the regular price of P1200 is down to P792. On K-Beauty Cafe, the original price of P749 is down to P699. Meanwhile on Althea, the serum is currently on sale for P690––P300 cheaper than the original price.
AHA BHA PHA 30 Days Miracle Cream
The big finish in the 30 Days Miracle line is the cream, which is formulated with 70% Centella to calm inflammation and improve circulation. It also repairs and strengthens the skin while it works its acne-busting magic. Over on Go Bloom & Glow, the 30 Days Miracle Cream is currently on sale for P792, from an original price of P1200. On K-Beauty Cafe, it retails for P890 but is on sale now for P690. Lastly, on Althea, the original price of P970 has been slashed down to P670.
If we’re talking discounts in light of the current sales, Althea, Go Bloom & Glow and K-Beauty Cafe all serve up pretty similar price points. When sale season passes, though, K-Beauty Cafe is easier on the wallet than the other prospects.
Images via Althea
Time Revolution The First Treatment Essence Rx
Rightfully a cult favorite, the Missha Time Revolution line is one of the most sought-after items where pasalubong or pabili from South Korea is concerned. The most popular item in the product line is arguably the Time Revolution The First Treatment Essence RX, which is available on Althea for P2000 (now on sale for P1300). Other options include Go Bloom & Glow, where it’s on sale for P1485 from an original price of P2700. On BeautyMNL, the original price of P2700 is currently slashed to P2400.
Time Revolution Night Repair PROBIO Ampoule
A perfect follow-up to the treatment essence, the Time Revolution Night Repair PROBIO Ampoule is also worth your shopping consideration. On Althea, it’s currently on sale for P1160—a considerable drop from the original price of P2000. Go Bloom & Glow’s sale has brought the price of the ampoule down to P1440. Meanwhile, the product retails on BeautyMNL at the price of P2700.
There’s no questioning it: when it comes to shopping for Missha locally, Althea comes out the smartest choice.
What other skincare, beauty or wellness brands are you looking to cash out for? Let us know what’s on your mind.
Art Mathew Fetalver