Travel Diary: KCON 2017 in N.Y.C.
By: Qun Bond
It has taken a little while to get our blog out about our trip to KCON in N.Y.C., but it’s better to be late than never!
We arrived at the convention on Friday morning. Weather was sunny and scorching. But before we applied a generous amount of sunscreen to prevent any harmful UV rays from aging the skin. When we got into the convention, the first place we stopped at was a Korean skin care booth. The vendors were Masksheets.com (Besfren), Beauty Shop, and Botanic Twenty. We were surprised when Min shouted out to me. I had met Min during a meeting with Skin Food in N.Y.C. and now Min is working with the company Besfren that owns a k-beauty multi-shop in New York. I highly recommend checking out their website!
Walking around, we saw another interesting vendor with a company called Medical Korea. Their booth had free medical examinations. During the examinations they determined your BMI with a scale. Then after a Korean doctor would do a routine medical check up. The check up followed up with a consultation where the doctor would highlight health concerns. They also included an informative chart on health statistics gathered by the BMI scale and check up. Behind the front vendor they also had some Korean skin care for sale. We purchased Elizavecca`s Carbonated Bubble Clay Mask and received a few free Sur. Medic Masks for free after following them on instagram.
While waiting for the short presentation from Joan Kim, youtube beauty blogger, and Christine Chang, owner of Glow Recipe, we snacked on some tteoki-bokki. During the presentation you could see how perfect their skin is, and the work they put into researching and testing products. After the presentation everybody sitting was given a bag of k-beauty samples. Here are a few tips they shared:
1. 7 SKIN METHOD
This method has been circulated throughout South Korea for awhile but has recently gained speed in the USA. This skin care routine is designed to be quick and easy as well as extremely hydrating for the skin.
1. Choose 1 - 7 appropriate toners. These toners must not contain alcohols or astringents. Alcohol toners will dry out the skin and destroy the moisture barrier on the skin with repeated usage. Astringents which contract the skin should also be avoided. Popular astringents include witch hazel, green tea, and rose water.
2. After carefully selecting your toners. Apply with the first layer with the patting method. After the layer dries apply the second layer and continue this pattern 5 more times.
2. UV PROTECTION
Always wear sunscreen when you can. Even during cloudy days or during the winter season harmful UV rays can effect our skin. Preventing skin aging and keeping even skin tone is much easier than reversing damage that has already been afflicted.
3. OIL & ACNE DURING SUMMER
The sun can be unbearable during the summer. For some the pores on the skin are overactive in releasing oil. This oil can clog and cause acne or just produce an unflattering sheen on the skin. To prevent this try using a sebum reducing translucent powder during the day.
4. DULL SKIN TO DEWY SKIN
For those with dull skin or those who are looking for a dewy look, cutting powder from your makeup routine creates a natural sheen. If you have dry skin, carrying a mist with you is a quick fix to create that dewy skin look.
Charlotte Cho, owner of Sokoglam, had her presentation after Christine Chang and Joan Kim at a separate location. Her skin was absolutely glowing, both the complexion and fullness of her skin was perfect. Before going on stage we saw her using the First Essence Treatment by Missha and a Dear Darling Tint by Etude House.
She had an interesting slide on the shopping district of Myeongdong in South Korea. She mentioned that it was an upbeat district, and the shops there had all the latest things in skin care and cosmetics. There Etude House had a store called the Color Factory. In this shop customers could customize their own makeup with a color they created. In the video we watched, they even let customers customize which lip stick case they would prefer.
Stylenanda was another Myeongdong store that Charlotte Cho mentioned. Each floor in the store sells different types of products. The first floor offers customers a chance to win a few cool things. Customers can purchase a keys which open separate rooms that house different products, like 3CE cosmetic bags. On different floors customers can buy clothes, skin care, spa treatments, cosmetics, coffee, and even cotton candy.
The last Myeongdong store she mentioned was the Olive Young flagship store. This store is a super sized Multi-shop that sells skin care and cosmetics. In a walkthrough video we watched, there were isles of masks and a large selection of any type of beauty supply.
Charlotte Cho`s skin care tips:
DIY SHEET MASK
WHAT YOU NEED
1. Layered cotton pads, you can find them online or in our store.
2. Essence or serum of your choosing
1. Choose desired essences and serums based on different skin care needs.
2. Soak each pad in an essence or serum of choice
3. Place the cotton pads on the desired areas of the skin
- For maximum results choose separate essences to target different areas of the skin. Ex: the T-zone might need an alcohol based essence, while the cheeks may need an essence or serum for hydration and brightening.
After the presentations, we went to the other half of the convention. There was such a large amount of food vendors, it would be impossible to try them all in 2 days. We went ahead and picked out a vendor by the restaurant called Bowllin’. They offered 2 selections, short ribs and pork belly. We chose both, and they were both delicious with their homemade spicy chili. We decided to eat inside the mobile gaming area, which was indoors and had AC, a nice retreat from the heat of the day.
After we ate, we decided to browse around the small vendors that sold K-POP fan t-shirts, albums, and other small cute trinkets. We decided to buy a cute tea thermos and a few stuffed animals. Before we left the convention we were able to catch a glimpse of some traditional Korean sword dancing!
We around 4:00 we left to take a break from the heat at our hotel. Then at 6:00 we left for Little Korea in Manhattan. We ate first at Miss Korea, a Korean BBQ restaurant. We ordered Prime Seng Kkotsal (marbled American Wagyu) and Kimchi Mandu Jeongol (Hot Pot). We also had to add some Chum Churum Soju during our meal. The marbling in the meat was absolutely succulent and the pickled vegetables were crisp and delicious.
Later, after, we shopped around Little Korea in Manhattan, we returned to our hotel. The day was long and we all pretty tired from the heat and day long exercise but with all the new products and oil build up on our skin we had to do our night skincare routine. I ended up using one of the new A'pieu sheet masks.
We arrived in the afternoon and we decided to go back to the Korean skin care booth and buy a few more products. We got a chance to talk with a few of the booth workers, and I got a picture with the Instagram frame from Botanic Twenty.
Outside of the convention area, we got a chance to walk in and check out the Innisfree booth. They had a very clean and cute layout showcasing new products coming to the USA. They will be releasing cushions that have 14 different shades. Which is quite the transition from the usual 2-4 shades that most Korean cosmetic brands have. These cushions are made with American consumers in mind. They will be exclusively released in the USA.
Before we left, we got a glimpse of a few K-Pop dancing events! Anyone and everyone could participate, and it was cool to see everyone dancing in sync.
After leaving KCON we decided we had to check out a few stores in Flushing N.Y. Once we got there we stopped by Coco to get some bubble tea for our store browsing. We got a chance to look through a different Face Shop store as well as Skin Food and a multi-shop called Everyday Beauty. We ended up purchasing the History of Whoo Essence, which came with a starter toner, emulsion, and cleanser.
Before leaving NYC, we stopped to eat at a restaurant. We found a Sichuan style restaurant we are familiar with that is called Szechuan Mountain House. I recommend checking out this restaurant if you have the chance and are in the area. If you love spicy food you are in the right place!
That concludes our trip to KCON in NYC. We have quite a k-beauty haul from our trip. If you have questions or are interested in any of the items above and would like us to review one, just comment below, email us at email@example.com, or message us on instagram, twitter, or facebook.
Wishing you great skin,
Poppy & Daisy