Korean vs. Western Makeup 4 Differences Between the Styles
(Photo : Vecteezy / DC Studio)

Beauty practices from every corner of the world differ in many ways. Let's compare two of today's most prevalent styles on social media: Korean and Western makeup. 

South Korea is about 6,700 miles away from the United States, but are their respective makeup cultures also that far apart when it comes to style?

Beauty standards and makeup trends in each location depend heavily on culture. One appealing feature in Korea might not be a sought-after trend in the U.S. 

Let's find out how Korean and Western makeup differ. 

Base and Contour: Dewy and Flushed vs. Flawless and Chiseled

The contour shades in Korean makeup are only very slightly darker than the foundation or skin tint to give a dewy base. Soft, light pinkish blush is added to give a youthful look.

On the other hand, Western makeup is associated with a flawless look, using concealers for blemishes. Highlighters are significantly lighter than the base, and contours are significantly darker. This gives a chiseled finish.

Eyebrows: Soft and Straight vs. Strong and Arched

Koreans go for a more natural look, with their eyebrows shaped and colored until it is straight with soft edges. Finished Western-style eyebrows call for sharp lines that result in the arched brow shape with a strong and clean edge.

Eyeshadow: Feathery and Neutral vs. Sharp and Colorful

Korean eyeshadow techniques call for a soft sweep of neutral shades on the eyelid. The edges are smudged for a feathery look. In contrast, Western eyeshadows have sharp dramatic lines and won't be complete without pops of color.

Lips: Thinned and Gradient vs. Solid and Overlined

Gradient lips, a trend in Korea, are popular among the younger demographic. This look is done by putting lipstick only on the center of the lips and smudging it to get an ombre effect.

In the West, overlined lips are preferred over natural-looking lips. It is finished with a solid color that makes the lip look pouty.

Differences, Mood, and Confidence

The differences between Korean vs. Western makeup comes down to the intensity of lines and color. Although each style originates from their respective locations, there is no limit to where they can spread and who can use them. Each style emanates a mood that you can work with to figure out which one to use. For example, you can use Korean-style eyebrows for a regular office day and then choose Western lips tomorrow for a meeting. The important thing is that you are confident and comfortable in your chosen style.