Photo Tour: Innisfree Union Square, New York City

Photo Tour: Innisfree Union Square, New York City

Much loved eco-forward brand, Innisfree, opened it’s first flagship in New York City. This will be the first location out of five to eight planned openings in the next year! Innisfree sources all their ingredients responsibly from Korea’s richest natural resource, Jeju Island. Jeju is unique because it’s a volcanic island which makes the island’s soil dense with minerals and vitamins. The island’s climate, soil richness, and preservation efforts from being a UNESCO World Heritage Site gives the island the ability to grow incredibly potent and lush plant life. Although many of you may have already ordered your precious Innisfree products online, there are store-only offerings like customizing your own mix-in clay masks, building your own palettes and BB cushions, and not to mention using the store’s digital shade finder tool to help you choose your perfect foundation shade out of 14 choices! Click through to tour the entire store and see my first YouTube video!

NYC Union Square Address: 862 Broadway (b/t 17th & 18th Streets), New York, NY 10003

Hours:

  • Mon – Fri 10am – 8pm
  • Sat 10am – 9pm
  • Sun 10am – 7pm

Contents:

  • 360 Photo Tour
  • First YouTube Video (with Voiceover)!
  • New York City Flagship Details
  • USA “Exclusive” Formulas
  • Innifree Brand
  • Recycling Program (Earn More Reward Points)!
  • Loyalty Rewards Program
  • Customized Offerings
  • Home, Body, Hair
  • Best-Sellers Wall and Trial Kits
  • The first Innisfree flagship opened in September 2017 in the heart of Union Square, NYC. Around the area, you can also visit Club Clio (I need to update with new remodeled pictures) and Nature Republic. Innisfree is under the parent company Amore Pacific which owns other power-player Korean brands such as Sulwhasoo, Laneige, IOPE, Primera, HERA, Aritaum and my favorite pink princess brand, Etude House. Not in NYC? You can always visit their newly launched USA website!

     

    360 Photo

    Isn’t 360 always a better view? Click to view the entire 360 in one full sweep.

     

    YouTube Store Tour!

    Check out my FIRST YouTube video! This took hours to make, give it a like and subscribe for more content! I won’t know if this is doing well unless I see views or engagement so I’ll come out with more videos if you like them!

     

    New York City Flagship Details

    Innisfree_Union_Sq_NYC

    Walls are organized by skin concern

    The New York City flagship is two-stories tall and features a 24-foot tall vertical plant wall that contains nearly 10,000 plants with eleven different tropical varieties making it the city’s largest public “live wall”. The store has a custom-built irrigation system that provides all plants the water it needs and the store has been submitted to for the LEED Silver Certification (source). LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is a globally recognized certification for the design, construction and operation of high-performance environmentally sustainable buildings. The second floor will be used for workshops and special events only and the store itself totals 1,700 square feet.

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    Beautiful live plant wall supported by a custom irrigation system

     

    USA “Exclusive” Formulas

    According to Amore Pacific’s official press release, there are 900 different products on sale and apparently 150 of them are “exclusive” to the USA. By that, they mean that they’ve reformulated their bestsellers for the USA market and it includes the expanded 14-shade range for their powder, BB (blemish balm) cushion and 21 shades for their liquid foundation. There’s a huge win here. A Korean brand with cult following has finally expanded their complexion shades outside of the normal three colors (light, beige and beige-r). Darker complexion shades were non-existent because the primary consumers were Koreans. With global expansion, the brand is taking steps to recognize that their shades are severely limited to Hispanics, Blacks and even non-East Asians who have grown to love K-beauty.

    Innisfree_Union_Sq_NYC

    “You mean I might actually find my shade?!” There are 21 liquid foundation shades, Gorgeous

    However, did I also read correctly that they’ve reformulated for the US market?! Innisfree is aware that the United States is less apt to use the perpetuated “Korean 10/12/14 Step Beauty Routine” so they’ve modified their products to be more multi-purpose to fit a 5-step US K-beauty routine which is to Cleanse, Replenish, Treat, Moisturize and Protect. I was worried that they are messing up a good thing but the brand has “conducted new clinical studies to ensure their best-sellers in Asia were just as effective on skin from other ethnicities.” I’m still not sure if I’m on board with these reformulations but perhaps long-time users can tell me if they noticed any differences from using a USA exclusive bottle.

    My Duo: blushes, bronzers, highlighters. $12

    Mask Bar = favorite section

     

    Innisfree Brand

    While Innisfree’s brand image is eco-forward and all ingredients are derived from Jeju Island’s precious bounty, do not mistake them for being an organic, vegan or all-natural brand. Innisfree products are “80 percent naturally derived ingredients responsibly sourced from the pure and protected Korean island of Jeju,” however the brand uses honey and collagen (animal by-products which do not make them vegan), preservatives (which isn’t a bad thing if you don’t want mold in your skincare) as well as added fragrance. Ingredients also aren’t organic certified if that matters to you.

     

    Recycling Program

    Innisfree has partnered with Terracycle to bring a recycling program where you can drop off empties to the store and earn loyalty program points. This is part of Innisfree’s commitment to preserving the purity of Jeju Island and more programs to encourage sustainability will be rolled out in the future. I love it! I always don’t know what to do with my empty bottles and I’m never sure if my building is recycling them correctly.

    My Duo: blushes, bronzers, highlighters. $12

    Loyalty Reward Members get their pick of a deluxe sized sample from their Bite-Size Beauty Bar

     

    Loyalty Program: My Innisfree Rewards

    On grand opening day, they were giving away a mini trial kit to loyalty reward members and sign-up was so easy that I did it on my phone while waiting in line. At “Green” level, you will earn earn 3 points per every dollar spent and every 100 points = $1 off your next purchase. If you participate in the recycling program, you can bring in up to 5 bottles a month and each full-size bottle redeemed is worth 50 points. There are also double points on your birthday, holidays and special events. At a “Green VIP” level, you need to make an annual spend of $200 a year at which point you will earn 5 points per dollar spent. You’ll also receive a Birthday Kit/VIP Kit at this level.

     

    Customized Offerings

     

    Build Your Customized BB Cushion Compact

    Take advantage of Innisfree’s digital shade finder and get matched with your shade in their powder, BB cushion or liquid foundation products. After getting your shade, you have your pick out of 100+ compact designs! Then you get to choose your applicator. All of these components add up. For example the compact case itself is $10 + Aqua Fit Refill in my shade $12 + Air Magic Puff Applicator $3 = $26 total before tax. Be wary that there are “premium” cases for $11. What’s new – you can put a powder refill or a “Duo” blush/highlighter/bronzer in the compact too! These compact were always used for BB cushions in the past.

     

    Build Your Own Palette

    Build the palette of your dreams in a small, medium or large case or fug all that and just buy singles if you can’t commit. This really adds up in price. Just like the custom compact, you have to pay for the empty magnetic case to put your color choices in. Selections include Eye Shadow, Highlighters, Brows. Blush, Concealers and Color Correctors. An annoyance with making the palette is that you still have to buy the singles in the clear plastic packaging. They’re not sold in pan-only packages if you want to make the palette so it’s not cheaper since your essentially buying the singles anyway. Silver lining is that there are grooves built in the singles so you can easily take the pans out. There are also color combination recommendations of which pans to buy if you want a certain look.

    My Duo: blushes, bronzers, highlighters. $12

    The Palette Wall is INSANE

     

    Custom Mix-In Wash-Off Masks

    Finally, you also customize your own wash-off mask with topping mix-ins. You have your choice of a clay or cream mask base and then there are 10 topping packets. From the sound of them, they seem like dried up bits of whatever “flavor” you choose; this can be used for light physical exfoliation.

     

    Home, Body and Hair Care

    Innisfree really has all the bases covered. There’s a home fragrance section in the back with modern looking diffuser bottles and scented sachets. Hand creams, body, hair care and tools are also available.

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    Large sink with fragrant soaps is always appreciated in NYC.

     

    Best-Sellers Wall and Trial Kits

    Innisfree was a gateway brand into K-beauty for me back in 2014. Even though I never really bought any of their products, I was highly aware of their brand and positioning in the market. For those who want to dip with toe into K-beauty, browse their Best-Sellers wall in the front of the store. Their Green Tea Seed Serum is by far their most popular item and their Volcanic Pore line is a close second. They came out with a Volcanic Pore Clearing Mousse Mask Kit for only $19 which includes a mini travel Volcanic Foam Cleanser and Toner. The full-size mousse itself is already $19 so it’s almost a no-brainer to buy the kit. The Green Tea Seed Kit is $25 but it includes their most popular serum and travel sized cleansing foam and face cream (total value of $36). You can shop each kit by skin concern and view your options online.