I think this haul is long overdue. Before I went to Hong Kong, I had a wishlist of what I was roughly wanting to get. My focus was to buy more Japanese cosmetics since I don’t have that much experience in that field. Unfortunately, cosmetics in Hong Kong is not worth buying AT ALL. In this post, I will tell you some tips and tricks on shopping for cosmetics in Hong kong, along with what I bought personally. Let’s go!
1)Most likely it is cheaper to buy online, both Korean cosmetics and Japanese cosmetics.
I did my research before going to find out where all the free standing K-beauty stores were. I write them all down and on my first week, I actually spent the time and money getting myself to the big malls. I quickly learned going to all the fancy malls where brands such as Tony Moly, Too cool for school, Etude House, Innisfree, Laneige laid, the prices were double if not triple the Korean retail price. Japanese cosmetics at Sasa was double Japanese retail prices and I stupidly bought four products, all were double of what I could have gotten online.
2)Try to find hole in the wall stores
After the first three days, I gave up focusing on buying cosmetics since the prices were so ridiculous there. I mean for a drugstore mascara, it can run you $16 USD. Uhh…. no. Things always come to you when you aren’t looking. There was this one time where I was walking around in Mong Kok and ended up at a street where they were selling street food. Right next to it was a store random vendor selling the hottest K-beauty items such as Hera UV mist cushion, Sulwhasoo, It’s skin snail line, all for 20%-30% off Korean retail price. Selection may be limited but definitely a good place to pick up a few hot items.
I forgot exactly where this is so you will have to look for it. If you are walking around in Mong Kok’s Ladies market and see a street food stand and next to it is a currency exchange place, this place is right next to that. This store is also near one of the MTR exits so it’s hard to miss.
There is also is hidden gem that I found in Kwai Chung Plaza off of “Kwai Fong” MTR station. If you get off of the Kwai Fong station and walk across the street, there is two malls. One is Metroplaza mall on the left, which you can skip unless your looking to buy expensive retail stuff. To the right of Metroplaza is an older looking building called “Kwai Chung Plaza (葵涌廣場)” which is kind of like Fa Yuen street with all the affordable fashion and the night market street food all in one building. On the third or fourth floor (sorry I forgot which floor it was), there is this store called Vivid Beauty World. It looks like a complete and utter mess but if you take your time and look closely, you’ll actually see a lot of hot K-beauty items, along with very hard to get K-beauty brands too! Prices is also Korean retail price or cheaper, about 10-25% off at times. They even had my beloved A’pieu Air fit cushion in the holiday Doreamon case.
You’ll definitely have to take your time at looking. The ladies working there is also very knowledgeable but they are very busy, so they won’t be swarming at you, pressuring you to buy anything which I really appreciate. Look! There is even J.one, BanBan pack and Peri Pera Peri’s water cushion! And yes, they also have Sulwahsoo and The history of whoo products!
Another good place to look for a good deal is a store called “Emarket”. They have limited selection but most of the time, they will carry the hottest K-beauty items with a slight discount as well (about 15%-20%). When I went, they had the Hera Kirkwood UV mist cushions on discount along with Papa Recipe, Jayjun sheet masks just to name a few items.
3) Don’t look for beauty stores, they will look for you.
I always joke there are more Sasa stores then there are public washrooms. Actually there is almost no public washroom unless you go to a big mall. When I first landed in Hong Kong, I wanted to hit up all the cosmetics stores. When I quickly learned the crappy prices, I just gave up. As I was exploring the city more and more, all the big Korean brands were almost in every other street. Etude House, Innisfree, Holika Holika, Laneige, Sasa, Watsons, Mannings, all were congested into one little town. Every turn, there was at least four of those stores. So don’t bother looking for the stores, they will come to you.
4) Hong Kong will have Asia exclusives.
Every international brands will have country specific products that are exclusive. Luckily Hong Kong is the heart of Asia’s import and exporting business, hence being able to find Japanese, Korean and Taiwanese products. Big international brands such as L’oreal, Maybelline, Dior, Biotherma, all have Asia exclusive products. Heck, even the Body shop have their own exclusive BB creams that I have never seen anywhere else! Make sure to keep your eyes peeled!
After learning what Miniso was, I was obsessed. I bought a lot of accessories in that store along with some random items such as a belt hanger, glass water bottle for $2.50, apron for $1 and these items. The store has a lot of really cheap and affordable prices but their products actually have nice quality. I picked up an eye mask ($2.50) that has a gel pack inside which you can place into the fridge to cool and then place onto your face to relax the eye area. You can also take out the cool pack and use it just as a regular sleeping mask. They also had these DIY sheet masks that are compressed, dried and individually packaged like little candies. There was either this size for $2.50 or a bigger bag for $3.50.
I kept seeing these sheet masks everywhere and asked some people if these were any good. A lot of people said they love these sheet masks from Papa recipe, so I ended up picking a box up for $15 ($98 HKD), half the price of what you can get online for a whole box ($30). I got these in a cosmetic store called W!sh which is also a big chain in Hong Kong that has nice discount. Not as cheap as the hole in the wall places (selling for $80 HKD) but this is a good place to get your fix if you are itching to get something that isn’t triple the Korean retail price.
In the same store, I picked up some of Mediheal x Line friends amouple masks. I’ve heard these sheet masks are really good quality so I picked up a box. These were $15 HKD for one ($2.50 CDN) or $100 HKD ($16 CDN) for a box of 10.
I got to pick which versions I wanted so i got a little bit of each. The yellow ones is actually for calming acne prone skin I believe and I actually didn’t buy all those myself. My sister-in-law actually gifted me a box before I left Hong Kong, along with those dehydrated shrimp chips. Sho nice!
I knew I wanted to splurge a little on an Asia exclusive BB cushion but there were actually quite a few in the market such as Biotherm, Dior, Givenchy, YSL, Bobbi Brown and Shu Uemera. I chopped the list down to Shu Uemera because of it’s unique air puff which isn’t made of sponge but a fuzzy material. You also don’t pat this BB cushion in but swipe! Also inside, it isn’t a cushion but a weird fabic mesh type of situation. I had my mind set on only getting the cushion but came out with all this. The sales ladies can really get to you haha. I just wanted to go in, get it and go out. Instead, she was all like “Oh would you like me to apply it to your face so you can get a better idea of what it really looks like?” Now I usually don’t like sales ladies doing my make up because I know for a fact, I’m going to come out looking like a hooker. However, this sales lady seemed to know what she was doing and she was very hygienic. Any time I wanted to swatch anything, she was sanitize it by wiping the surface, then sprayed it with alcohol, washed her hands every other time, it’s crazy. I felt bad to just up and leave. Oh well HAHA.
The cushion was $50 CDN and doesn’t come with refill. I also got their eyebrow pencil in Tea Beige since it has a strong yellow color, good for when I dye my hair a lighter colour and need my black eyebrows to look lighter. I paid $29 CDN for it which isn’t any cheaper but I did save on 12% tax so I was just meh, why not. Then my eye caught their Oleo: Moist cleansing oil gel which I thought was an Asia exclusive since I’ve never seen it before, but it is just I never seen it before HAHA. You can get this in Canada as well. I bought this because I found the concept of this product to be very interesting and seems to be highly effective as well. It is a cleansing oil that is in gel formation and also leaves my skin looking slightly brightened and moisturized without any heaviness. I was going to stop there but they had a promotion where if I were to get a lip product, I’d get a free tote bag along with some deluxe sized samples. Sigh…. why are you trying to make me broke! In the end, I bought $180 CDN worth of stuff which I kind of regret since it is quite expensive. When in Rome? LOL
I’m not a big fan of Shu Uemera products since I find their color products to be lacking in pigmentation and their odd system of buying the pan and compact separately which irritates the heck out of me. Their price point is also a little too steep for decent products, hence why you won’t see me using much of their products.
Speaking of splurge, I also wanted to buy at least another BB cushion before I left. I ended up finding the Hera UV mist cushion ultra moisture at the Mong Kok hole in the wall store for $7 cheaper then retail price but they unfortunately didn’t have it in shade #23 so I settled for shade #21 and prayed it would work for me.
On my last day in Hong Kong, I was at the airport about the board the plane. I had an hour to kill so I thought I would hit up the duty free. I still had a good $800 HKD left in my budget and I would lose a little bit of money if I were ti exchange it back to Canadian currency so I just let myself pick something. I ended up getting Dior’s cushion since it came with a refill for $90 CDN. Yes I still cringe at the price tag, but I believe Dior is the only luxury branded BB cushion that offers a refill so I guess I can kind of justify the price a bit? LOL I’m still puking from the price myself but I can’t wait to try it.
I was quite annoyed that the prices in Hong Kong was so crappy but I didn’t want to leave without getting at least a few Japanese products. I was in the market for some nice false lashes since the Western lashes does not fit my eyes properly. They are either non existent looking or so long that it can touch my eyebrows. I saw these lashes which I don’t know the name’s brand not the fibers are really nice and life like with a nice thin band. I paid $16 which is steep to me so these lashes better last!
Another item I wanted to pick up was a proper eyelid glue. I’ve tried the one in Daiso and it is meh. I do have double eye lids but one eyelid is severely disproportional which I really want to fix. I found if I either put double eye lid tape or glue for a long period of time, my eyelids do even out for a good week. So if I were to do it for at least a month or two, it would be able to train my eyelids to be finally even (I hope). I paid $16-$20 for this one form eye talk which Ssinim along with a lot of people raving so I can’t wait to try it!
I also really wanted to try Canmake products since it is hard to get online. I wanted their gel cheek and lip product but it was way too overpriced, plus I have too many cream blushes that aren’t being used so no point in getting those. I ended up with a “lip concealer moist” which is like a lip balm that conceals the color of my natural lips. I’m hoping this can help me achieve a nice smooth gradation lip :P. Don’t remember how much I paid for this but I’m suspecting around $12 CDN. Another Canmake product I picked up was their “marshmallow finish powder” for $23 CDN. I know, I paid double… ridiculous. I think this is a popular product and I can definitely see why. The texture of the powder is super silky and after application onto the skin, my skin looks flawless without any detection of heavy powder or cakey skin. I’m excited to test this product out all over my face!
Habo Labo was also another brand I didn’t want to left without getting. On my second to last day, I strolled around the mall downstairs of my uncles place since it was thunder storming that day so I didn’t want to stroll too far. I was in Manning when I saw a value pack of Habo Labo which had their famous toner (I think it’s the toner HAHA) along with their AHA + BHA mild peeling for $120 HKD. On that day, they were having a promotion where if you purchased anything over $150 HKD, you’d get a coupon for $50 credit the next time you come back. Luckily for me, the coupon was valid for the next day, the day I leave. I wanted to get the Habo Labo Shiro-Jyun milk but that was another $120. So I did the smart thing, picked up this set and Biore’s gel sunscreen and got the coupon. The next day, I used the $50 HKD towards the Shiro-Jyun milk and paid only $75 HKD. 😀 Now that is a good deal haha.
The last random thing I got were these hair velcros in a hair store on Fa Yuen street. I’ve always wanted these when I wash my face and what not but never ended up getting it online so it was perfect when I saw these. I don’t remember how much these were but they were dirty cheap for a pack of 6.
So that’s it for my Hong Kong beauty haul. What do you guys think? What are you eyeing and what product do you want to see a review on the most? Let me know in the comments down below. Also if you have experience shopping in Hong Kong or any other country, leave us some tips and tricks on where to get the best deal on cosmetics in your country. Sharing is caring :).
If you found this post helpful, don’t forget to share it on your favourite social media pages. Also don’t forget to follow me on my social media platforms to see what I’m doing and what I’m getting in the mail :D. Mail time is always fun time for me. ( •ω• )