Men’s Makeup in Korea

A few days ago there was a story in the Toronto Metro about a young Canadian entrepreneur who created a makeup company for men and is now in the midst of getting it to South Korea. Andrew Grella created his company when he was in college because he recognized the growing trend for dudes to pretty up their faces.

Why South Korea? Because a large number of men there wear makeup. A year ago Katie Chang wrote for Details magazine on the subject of men and makeup, and said that around 20% of the country’s men wear makeup.

Apparently, according to Chang, this trend has been credited to the “popularity of the South Korean television comedy Boys Over Flowers—in which a plucky schoolgirl at an exclusive academy gets caught between the school’s four prettiest boys, hence the term ‘flower men’—with pushing the overly preened appearance of actors and fellow K-pop musicians—like G-Dragon, the virtual poster child of the movement—onto everyday dudes.”

The Economist reported on how almost all the major South Korean cosmetic brands now have men’s line. “The country’s male skincare market doubled in value from 2009 to 2014, according to Euromonitor, a research firm. Its men are the leading consumers of male cosmetics per capita (and buy four times more than the next-vainest, the Danes), making up one-fifth of worldwide sales,” reported The Economist.

This, in turn, created market for entrepreneurs like Grella, too.

“A lot of buyers and people interested in skin care for their stores will go to South Korea to see what’s happening and what’s coming down the pipeline,” Grella told Metro. “Being in South Korea will give you clout as a product or technology that’s on its way.”

If you are a dude and you want to try it, or you want to get your dude to try it, Huffington Post Associate Editor Kyli Singh got you the 7 Tips To Wearing Makeup Every Man Who Wears Makeup Should Know.

AJ Paris is a New York based photographer and the author of the coffee table book Men Around the World

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