Tag: Shopping Guide

360 Photo Tour: Besfren Beauty in Korea Town, NYC

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I’m rolling out more 360 Photos to add to my NYC K-Beauty Shopping Guide! Besfren Beauty opened around September 2016 and it’s written out phonetically to sound like “best friend” beauty. This is one of the newest kids on the k-town beauty block! The interior has gorgeous marble walls, an actual sink to rinse off swatches and plenty of rotating sales (as well as kpop videos) to keep you coming back. It has an amazing sheet mask wall and they sell plenty of singles, with some on Buy 1 Get 1 Free promotion. New, trending items come in all the time and the owner says that they try to keep the prices close to the suggested retail prices in Korea. I can certainly vouch that this store is very reasonably priced as some lip products from popular K-beauty brands are marked much less than the branded brick and mortar stores across the street. For this and many more reasons, I became a regular customer at Besfren Beauty, including the Besfren (dessert & cafe) right next door! Come check them out in my photo tour!

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Photo Tour: Koreatown (Shin-Okubo) in Tokyo, Japan

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You read that right. There’s a K-town in Tokyo and it’s just like visiting Korea. Everything from the food, shopping and atmosphere – it’s just like walking over the border into Korea if you’re ever sick of ramen or sushi (God forbid). Japan’s Koreatown has K-Pop idol merchandise and K-Beauty galore. My idol merchandise buying days ended with the Backstreet Boys’ Black and Blue album so I had no interest in buying any more items with young boys embossed on them but I definitely wanted to check out the Korean beauty items and see how “Hallyu” has made its way into Japan’s city streets. I stuck to buying mostly Japanese beauty items on two week stay but that didn’t mean that I wasn’t curious about K-Beauty’s appearance on Japanese shelves.

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Photo Tour: Shiseido Parlour – Ginza, Japan

Shiseido Parlour Ginza Tokyo Japan

Across the street from Shiseido The Ginza is Shiseido Parlour, the original building of where the company was founded. Shiseido Parlour is an old-timey style confectionery shop on the ground level with Faro, an Italian restaurant, cafe, penthouse bar and banquet hall on the upper levels. You’ll naturally gravitate towards the glossy, dark red exterior of the building and be greeted by giant roses made out of lipstick bullets! Half the reason you come to Japan is for the food and there are quite a few snacks you can buy to bring back home or dine-in to enjoy the ambiance of Ginza’s high-class culture.

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Store Visit: Shiseido The Ginza Flagship – Tokyo, Japan

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One of the first brands I associated with Asian beauty is Shiseido as it was my mother’s preferred luxury brand when I was growing  up. Shiseido was also one of the most accessible brands to purchase before there was the Internet or online shopping. In fact, there were a couple of Shiseido franchise stores that opened right in Chinatown, NYC where salesladies were able to make sales by speaking Cantonese to my mom. For my epic Tokyo vacation, I naturally wanted to visit the Shiseido Flagship right in the heart of Ginza, Tokyo’s premiere shopping district. The flagship has four floors with each providing a unique beauty experience.  Right across the street is Shiseido Parlour, an old-timey style confectionery retail shop. If you’re a Shiseido fan, or at least a fan of any of Shiseido’s many sub-brands, look at through my mini photo tour to see if you’d like to step inside.

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Photo Tour: It’s Demo in Tokyo, Japan – Shibuya Location

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If you love cute character items and cosmetics, It’s Demo is a MUST-VISIT. The little kid inside you will scream with joy because it knows adult-you can buy everything you ever wanted as a child. This is getting a little meta but It’s Demo is the best store to indulge all those irrational desires for a Sailor Moon shaped compact or a My Melody phone case. At least with makeup and fashion accessories, it’s quasi-functional. It’s Demo has been described as a fashion convenience store because it also houses hair, phone and general accessories, hosiery, totes, decorative cookies and of course cosmetics as the main attraction. Their specialty is carrying almost anything with a cartoon character on it which ranges from Disney’s Frozen (and all Disney Princesses), Pokemon, Spongebob Squarepants, Doremon and even classic OG Sanrio characters like Keroppi, My Melody, Little Twin Stars, and Cinnamoroll! The store seems gears towards the 13 – 25 demo as the majority of the items were a little too kiddy for my personal taste but it was still worth a visit! I took photos from the Shibuya location where my Airbnb was located. Click to read more and peek inside.

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