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South Koreans show how to look good under a mask
/ Categories: Lifestyle/Fashion

South Koreans show how to look good under a mask

From tutorials on how to wear make-up with a face mask to hats that incorporate a protective plastic face-shield, South Koreans are seeking to make sure the coronavirus pandemic does not damage their reputation for style.
In one video that has gathered tens of thousands of views, YouTuber Ssunzy, 29, gives tips for applying make-up in a way that looks good under a mask.
"It's very, very unfortunate that a mask hides your face," she says in the video. "You can't show off your charm. I'm going to do make-up that makes your face look good, even when you're wearing a mask."
She recommends that viewers use more moisturiser and stick to more natural shades rather than heavy colouring.
For example, a hydrating foundation makes it easier to touch up make-up after removing a mask, she says.
Those practices seem to be popular, with sales of more colourful cosmetics falling, while sales of skincare products have increased.
"We have seen an increase in skincare product sales this month, compared with the previous month," says Amorepacific Group, South Korea's largest cosmetics powerhouse. "Anti-ageing products show the most stable sales."
The ubiquitousness of face masks has made them an everyday fashion item for South Koreans, with K-pop music stars helping to spread their popularity.
"The public has become more comfortable with them as a countermeasure (to coronavirus) because G-Dragon wears them, BTS wear them, everybody wears them, so why can't I wear them?" says fashion designer Park Youn-hee, who often works with K-pop idols, including BTS and Girls' Generation.
"To us, and to K-fashion, the mask is a signature item," she adds.
Like many countries, South Korea has faced a shortage of face masks.
The government has imposed a rationing system to limit the number of masks each person can buy each week and placed export restrictions on masks.
In response, some South Koreans have turned to other ways of combining protection and fashion.
One item seen for sale in shops and online are hats with a clear plastic face-shield.
People of all ages have been seen wearing the hat in Daegu, the centre of the country's coronavirus outbreak.
"It goes well with all casual clothing," Ms Park says of the hats.
South Korea has reported more than 8,500 confirmed cases of Covid-19.
Ms Park adds that people should embrace some of the anonymity provided by masks and push the boundaries of their personal style.
"I think a mask is an item that can give you confidence since people don't recognise you clearly," she says. "Try bold colours and different looks."
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