I learned a lot in Korea. I learned how to read a new alphabet, I learned that I shouldn’t be a teacher, that I love spicy food and that most people making good craft beer abroad are either American or Canadian.
Korean women taught me a little something, too. They taught me how to layer clothes like an absolute goddess. They’re pros. It doesn’t matter the season, it could be freezing cold outside or 100 degrees with 90% humidity, girls be layered to the nines.
They taught me that it’s okay to check yourself out in a passing mirror, or any reflective surface for that matter. They taught me to use my front camera on my phone to apply my lipstick and how to care for my eyebrows properly.
I loved shopping in Korea, I loved the flowy fabrics, girly shapes and different lengths of the pieces. I loved the makeup sections in different department stores. But mostly, I loved people watching in these places, picking up styling tips from the girls on the street.
Different Length Pieces
The cardinal rule of layering, I’ve found, is to make sure your pieces are different lengths. Otherwise you look like a big old pile of puff underneath whatever your top layer is because no one can see you’ve got more going on under there. Long t-shirts with short sweaters or long sweaters with cropped jackets.
I thought that layering long pieces would make me look short, but with a pair of heels (another Korean essential), you can have a long leg and rock the tunic pieces.
As soon as the sun lost it’s strength, even more layers were added. In the winter, when gale force winds blow in from Siberia, the blanket sized scarves and cute knitted beanies were out. Like the jacket, the scarf and hat are an accessory that needs to be changed often. If you wore the blue hat yesterday, you surely cannot wear the blue hat today, what would people think?
It didn’t matter if it was 100 degrees outside, Korean women had on a jacket. It wasn’t about utility baby, it just looked good. I once asked a Korean girlfriend of mine how many jackets she had, I had never seen her in the same one twice, “19 I think”. After a little bit more counting in her head she nodded, “yes, 19. Why? Is that too many?”.
Makeup is not taken lightly in Korea. From the first layer of BB Cream to the top coats of blush and lip stain, Korean women do makeup right. The one thing you’ll never see a woman of any age without? Colored lips. Korean women have this perfect way of applying lip stain to make it look like they’ve just finished a lollipop. They are ever so slightly colored to make it look almost natural.
Like I just mentioned, high heels are a necessity in Korea. Even sneakers have wedges in them. Most Korean girls I knew were about my height (5 feet) or a little bit taller. They have no problem, even from as young as high school, wearing heels all. the. time.
Glasses aren’t geeky, they are chic. The right frames can bring out your eyes, accentuate a narrow face or create a jawline where there isn’t one. I met so many Korean girls that didn’t even need glasses, so they would buy regular glass lenses. Glasses are a fashion accessory the same way that sunglasses are in the summertime.
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