Some time ago, out of the blue, I got bored. Bored with makeup. Not that I didn't like it anymore, but I felt like I had seen it all. Even the upcoming Spring launches and the ever flowing Mac collections weren't exciting anymore because I felt like there was nothing I liked that I couldn't dupe with my collection already. Bummer.
That's about when I was introduced to BB creams by a friend. Finally something new to discover! So I started researching them, and in the process, stumbled across the incredible world of Asian cosmetics, Japanese brands in particular.
Of course, I knew a few Asian brands : Shiseido, Shu Uemura, Kanebo, Annayake... But in my head, they were expensive luxury brands, most of them being hard to find here. And even if I had heard about those brands "owning other brands in Asia", I had never ventured into researching those.
But since the web is that wonderful place where you can find people obsessing about virtually anything - including makeup - I did find blogs that were exclusively talking about Asian beauty products. My favorite as of today is Lotus Palace, written by an Austrian girl who knows as much about Asian brands than yours faithful does know about Mac.
That's where I read about the best places to buy Asian beauty products from, and of course, I had to try! So here's my first Japanese makeup haul:
- Kate (branch of Kanebo) gel liner
- Majolica Majorca (branch of Shiseido) mascaras and
- Majolica Majorca pencil liquid liner
Those brands are sold in all Japanese drugstores.
Now talk about exotism: there isn't a single word of English on those packagings!
But with a pictogram here and there, and makeup being pretty universal, you still find your way.
Those products were ordered from Ichibankao. The website is very easy to navigate. Prices are in Japanese Yens and do include shipping. Payment are done through PayPal and converted to USD when processing.
I received my order within less than 10 days and it was perfectly packaged - I definitely recommend them and will be using them again.
Now where are these products on the price scale? Well, it depends. Some of those brands, like the ones I ordered are reasonably priced, and some are extremely expensive - way more expensive than Chanel.
When I say "reasonably priced", it also depends on the price level where you live, of course. The mascaras I got cost 1.800 Yens shipped, which is 19.50 USD. That will sound pricey for someone in the US, but for us Europeans, that's the price of a Maybelline mascara!! So for that price, I rather get something manufactured by Shiseido.
I'll be reviewing these items as I get to use them (I don't plan on opening all of them now and letting them dry up!), and there's a mascara review coming very soon.
Have you tried Asian beauty products? Where did you get these from? What did you think?