Daily Vanity Logo

Korean makeup trends are dominating the industry, and we thought we already know them all: gradient lips, straight brows, and dewy complexion, right?

Well, if this is your impression, it’s time to update your playbook. Korean makeup trends in 2018 look pretty exciting, according to what we learned from experts. Read on and find out the trends that your favourite Korean celebrities are likely to be sporting in 2018 with this guide.

Jason Lee, Chief Makeup Artist from Amorepacific

We picked up these precious tips from Jason Lee, Chief Makeup Artist from Amorepacific. Amorepacific is a South Korean cosmetics giant that owns many of our favourite Korean beauty brands, including Laneige, Sulwhasoo, Etude House, Innisfree, and Mamonde.

1. “Just-out-of-shower” skin


We’ve always known that the dewy, glowing look has been favoured by Korean makeup artists and has dominated the looks on Korean celebrities for the last few years. In 2018, the look skews towards an even more natural vibe, and specifically, skin that looks like you’ve “just got out of the shower” will be the most trendy Korean makeup look.

Jason shares that the goal is to create an “ethereal satin glow” that comes with a hint of healthy, rosy glow. This means that this is the year to amp up your strobing techniques, so that you can create the glow-from-within complexion that’s going to a huge Korean makeup trend in 2018.

2. Blooming blusher around the eyes

The Korean blush trend in 2017 was the igari look (or hangover look) where the blusher is applied and emphasised in an inverted triangle shape just below the eye area. The intention is to look slightly tipsy, like you have just had some alcohol.

korean makeup trends 2018

In 2018, Jason shares that the “punch blusher” look will be in vogue – yes, vivid blusher that looks like you’ve just got punched. This look features glowing skin with blusher around the eyes and over cheeks, creating a “blooming complexion”. He emphasised that the blusher has to be in a rich, saturated colour, and in shades such as vivid rose, magenta, and red.

3. Textured eyebrows that are natural yet defined


Looks like the Instagram-famous “feather brows” may have something on the upcoming trends. The 2018 Korean eyebrow trend to look out for involves creating textures in the brows by brushing your brow hairs.

Instead of filling in sparse areas with your eyebrow pencil as the first step of your brow routine, Korean makeup trends in 2018 dictates that you brush your eyebrows out to “fill” them in instead. Take note that the look shouldn’t be “messy” but should look naturally defined.

DV Tip: If you’d like to try this look, remember to ask your brow stylist to only trim your brow’s shape but not the length of your brow hairs. This ensures that you’ll have sufficient hairs to brush through to create textures. Use a brow gel to hold the hairs down.

4. Eyeshadow trends: 1980s chic, barely-there, and sunkissed

There are three eyeshadow looks that will command Korean makeup looks in 2018.


1980s-inspired one-colour makeup: Good news for those who can’t deal with too many eyeshadow shades at the same time. The hottest Korean makeup trend in 2018 requires you to simply blend single-colour eyeshadow across your eyelids – a look that’s inspired by 1980s’ trends.

While the challenge is to blend several layers of the same shade on, you can’t get colour coordination wrong, since it only involves one colour. We think it’ll encourage more of us to wear eyeshadow!

And if you’re up for a bold look, go for brighter colours.


Natural contouring: Just like how you contour your face, this look involves using soft earth-toned eyeshadow shades to create natural-looking shadows on your eyelids for an understated definition.

korean makeup trends 2018

Sunkissed eye makeup: Inspired by the beautiful glow from sun rays, this look features warm orange and yellow in a waxy finish. Our tip: To nail the glossy look, use a touch of lip balm or facial oil (that’s suitable for the eye area) to finish the makeup.

5. Lips trends: Natural-looking, orange/red, high shine

Jason says that while the gradient lips trend will persist in Korean makeup looks, these lip trends will also show up in 2018.


Natural-looking lips: Korean makeup trends seem to favour the natural look. This applies to face, brows, and eye makeup, and lips looks will receive the same treatment. Lightly-tinted lip makeup that enhances lips’ natural colour and texture will be seen everywhere.


Orange and red lips: If there are any colours that you should invest, they’ll have to be bright orange and red. These dramatic shades, applied in either matte or shine finish, are super in vogue in 2018.


Shine texture: Stash your matte lipsticks for now and bring out the glosses you’ve kept away in 2017. This is because 2018 is the year when you’ll see lustrous, glossy lips in key Korean makeup looks.