Short Trip To Seoul - MOTD & OOTD
Second try for this blog post! It went online a couple of days ago but then disappeared from the face of the internet for yet unknown reasons. Fingers crossed for this one!
I love going on short trips - the feeling of packing the bare minimum and using products that normally get ignored because they're just a tad too fancy or time-consuming to use in daily life.
Seoul is a bit of special case since the metropolis is full of fun fashion, shopping opportunities, pretty coffee houses, with exhibitions and museums galore!
But at the same time, whenever we leave Jeju Island to visit Korea's capital, I have to squeeze in business meetings (I do design work for a local music label), quiet hours to actually draw and catch up on work time lost during the flight - and we're staying at our in-laws a good 90-minute drive away from Seoul's center, so our time is filled with family events, cooking and babysitting the cutest nephews in the world.
That means my wardrobe has to be flexible and minimal enough to fit into a tiny backpack, squeezed in around my laptop, graphic tablet and external hard drives. Clothes that fit all occasions are key.
There are some basic tips for choosing outfits in Korea.
1. Beware the Kimchi
And all other spicy red food. If you're not totally confident in your chopstick skills, white blouses are your enemy. So if you'll be eating out a lot it's safer to stick with darker tops.
2. Down to Earth
Or rather down to the floor. Depending on what sort of restaurant you visit, having to sit on the floor is a possibility. For that reason, I prefer wearing dresses or loose clothing in general to skinny jeans and short skirts. Especially if you'll be eating traditional Korean food a lot.
3. Shoes are made for walking...
It depends on your pain tolerance, of course, but personally, I hate wearing high heels in Seoul. Taking the metro and generally walking long distances can quickly get uncomfortable and I always underestimate just how much time I'll be spending on my feet.
Also, again, depending on the restaurant you'll have to remove your shoes on entering. Koreans seem to have some supernatural speed skills when it comes to putting on and taking off shoes, so to keep up I make sure to wear nothing that requires binding shoe laces. Best are ones you can put on without the help of your hands.
4. Clothing Etiquette in Korea
While skirts can be as short as you can imagine (and shorter), Korean fashion tends to be more conservative when it comes to chest and shoulders. While shoulder-free blouses were a trend last summer, I rarely see low cuts or tank tops, even at the beach. It's perceived as sexy or sensual where exposed legs aren't. You can, of course, wear whatever you want! Just be aware that outside of clubs and bars you'll probably attract looks.
On that note: While some looks are timeless, Korea has been moving away from cute clothes towards more shabby chic or vintage styles over the last five years. There were a lot more pastel blouses, flared short skirts and lace to be seen when I first came to Korea, but maxi and midi skirts, loose fits and darker colors have taken over since then.
Korean Travel Makeup
For the actual trip from Jeju to Seoul (including not only the short flight but several hours of driving and metro), I went with a simple look, especially since the morning was hectic enough without elaborate blending.
- Innisfree Ampoule Intense Foundation in #13
This foundation is cheap, my perfect shade (in winter at least) and most importantly very moisturizing - ideal for dry airplane air!
- Aritaum Micro Eye Liner Brush
Precision is key - and this brush liner is really easy to use even for beginners.
- Innisfree Mineral Cream Blusher in #3 Peach
... Since powder blush can look overly dry when contrasted with that glowy foundation.
- Innisfree Vivid Tint Rouge in #6 Summer Sun Red
As a staining base to make sure my lipstick won't fade unevenly even after eating.
- Innisfree Cream Mellow Lipstick in #8
This red color is surprisingly wearable even during the day, and a nice mix between moisturizing and well-adhering.
- Innisfree Eye Contouring Stick Round in #5
For a super quick attempt at both eyeliner and eyeshadow.
- Aritaum Mono Eyes Shadow Palette
This palette is the sturdiest I own, so I feel perfectly comfortable just throwing it into my bag. For simple eye makeup, I love the shade 'Earth' and 'Ginger Powder'.
That's it for my first day in Seoul! I'll be doing quick diary drawings and food logs for the following five days - but those will have to wait until I'm back at my calm, wifi-equipped desk.
Have you been to Korea? It's a paradise for shopping, but my personal preference when it comes to clothes is on the boring side (lots of black and white - and most of all cheap!) so I keep it simple. :)