Thanks to South Korea's skincare innovations, we’ve all been introduced to and have been able to get our hands on gentle and natural ingredients that can help rejuvenate, moisturize, lighten and brighten our skin.
Apart from reaping the benefits of aloe vera, pomegranate, and beeswax, K-beauty also derives their skincare secrets from out-of-the-ordinary ingredients.
1. Snail Mucin
Let’s start with something a little more familiar. Snail mucin contains protein, glycolic acids, and elastin that snails naturally produce to heal cuts they get from rocks and rough surfaces. By incorporating it into our skincare routin, snail mucin functions similarly on human skin as it helps fade acne scars, improve complexion, and control hyperpigmentation.
2. Pig Collagen
We’ve been acquainted with taking collagen supplements to help boost our skin. However, according to Marie Claire, South Korean women have claimed that applying pig collagen topically on the skin "boosted firmness and elasticity. But because pig collagen can't penetrate the skin barrier, collagen-packed creams tend to sit on the skin and smooth fine lines only temporarily."
3. Bee Venom
Beeswax definitely makes sense, right? How about bee venom? Applying products with bee venom actually tricks your skin that it has been stung and triggers a reaction in which the skin increases circulation. This allows the skin to produce collagen and even relax the facial muscles, which gave bee venom the title of nature’s natural botox.
NATURE REPUBLIC Bee Venom Cleansing Foam, P595, SM North EDSA
Makgeolli is a fermented rice wine that Koreans drink in a small pan-like dish. According to Charlotte Cho, it's rich in vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. While common alcohol is proven to not do anything good on your skin, a freshly brewed bottle of Makgeolli actually contains 100 cups of yogurt’s worth of probiotic cultures, amino acids, and Vitamin B which aids in firming and brightening up your skin.
Now, as Koreans continue to innovate ways to take care of our skin, a DIY Makgeolli face mask should be done at your own risk. But, we advise you opt for a pre-made Makgeolli sheet mask to get all the skin benefits you're looking for.
TONYMOLY I'm Real Makgeolli Mask Sheet-Skin Purifying Mask, P78, Glorietta 2
5. Donkey Milk
Donkey milk contains the highest amount of protein and fatty acids compared to normal milk, and the loss of these two particular items is what causes skin aging! Donkey milk can do much more than just moisturize your skin, it can also improve your skin tone.