Clothing & Accessories
Fashion trends in Korea change as quickly as the weather; there are new styles blooming with the passing of seasons, giving a variety of options to choose from when shopping.
Many fashion districts such as the Edae (Ewha Woman’s University) area, Myeong-dong, and Dongdaemun Market offer great clothes and accessories, where one can get quality products at reasonable prices. The streets of Apgujeong or Cheongdam-dong not only have separate shops for international brands, but also multi-brand stores that showcase popular items from international brands all in one place.
Sinsa-dong Garosu-gil Road, Hongdae, and Samcheongdong-gil Road feature unique fashion items made by local designers. Itaewon, often called the “foreign country within Korea,” is known for its large ex-pat population and its huge selection of international products. Because of its large number of international visitors and residents, Itaewon has gained a reputation for selling colorful items with unique styles in a wide range of sizes.
Along with the rise of Hallyu, “K-beauty,” or Korean beauty products, is very popular among tourists. Korean cosmetics are popular due to their low cost in comparison to their high quality. Many efforts have been made to reduce the price of cosmetics by simplifying packaging and reinventing the distribution process.
K-beauty includes basic makeup, nail, body, and hair products, to more specialized products such as hanbang (traditional Korean medicinal ingredient), wrinkle treatment, whitening, moisturizing, and anti-aging. Face masks, BB cream, and whitening products are most popular among tourists and can be found in department stores, large supermarkets, and duty-free shops. In particular, the streets of Myeong-dong, Edae, and Sinchon have cosmetic brand shops with staff who can provide assistance in foreign languages.
Eyeglasses can be a great fashion item and Korean eyeglasses are especially known for their unique and stylish designs. The majority of Korea’s optical stores are concentrated in Namdaemun Market and Myeong-dong. Eyeglass shops in the Namdaemun area provide a wide range of products, from locally made to international brands, all at greatly discounted prices.
In Korea, opticians are not permitted to practice without a license, so customers can be assured that they are getting nothing but the best in care, from exams to fittings. There are many eyewear stores with the latest trends along Sinsa-dong Garosu-gil Road, Itaewon and Hongdae.