A Different Take On Mainstream


HELLO EVERYONE! I need to first address, before I begin, that this is my first ever beauty post. Not only is it my first beauty post– it is my first Kbeauty post. I actually want to start blogging more about Korean skincare and makeup brands because there is such a lifestyle, almost a cult following, behind Korean beauty brands and frankly– it’s a lot of fun to blog about. Honestly, I am so happy that for my first ever Kbeauty post, I get to work with one of my favorite Korean skincare brands— Nature Republic.   I even have a 20% discount code for you guys, so read onwards to find out what it is! [Or you can just scroll to the bottom].     

I have been in a full on loving relationship with Nature Republic products ever since my year in NYC last year when I stumbled upon their flagship store in Union Square.  What makes them so special, is that though they are technically a high street brand, as most of their products are extremely cheap, the quality is excellent. (Well, most of their stuff is excellent, there are a few misses here and there). Indeed, there is a difference between Korean high street and Western high street, as while our drugstore brands are all lumped together in a dinky CVS next to the diapers and potato chips, Korean drugstore brands actually each have their own individualized shops, each with their own flavor. Also, their stuff tends to be sometimes a fraction of the price of American drugstore products, and often better quality as well. (*Not always obviously–that’s why I use words like often, and sometimes).


Aloe Vera Soothing Gel

Honestly, I was so excited when Nature Republic sent me one of their Aloe gels, because I literally go through 2-3 of these tubs per year. Guys– this tub is a magic tub. It has so many uses– you can of course use it for sunburns and irritant eyes, because it is aloe vera, but you can also use it as body cream, shaving gel, as part of a face mask with some oil–but I generally use it as hair cream. Believe me, as a genuine curly top, I have gone through tons of hair moisturizers and gels trying to find one that won’t crust up my hair. This Aloe gel is one of the only hair products I know that styles my hair without crusting it up, actually leaves my curls feeling soft– and makes my hair smell good.

Going price: $6.60

 The Real Comforting Mask Sheets

One thing South Korean skin care is really known for are their sheet masks. If you are new to sheet masks, they are  these extremely awesome face shaped gauze masks as thin as paper that you spread over your face for 15-20 minutes, and instead of having to wash off all the guck from a regular face mask, you simply take off the sheet mask after 20 minutes, pat the remaining essence into your skin, and you are good to go. While I have not yet tried either of these sheet masks that Nature Republic sent over, I do know that the results usually feel wonderful. They leave your skin feeling so soft, and hydrated–which is hard to do for me as my skin type is naturally dehydrated. The orange one they sent me seems to be a skin balancing mask with essence of vitamin E as its core, while the blue one is more for moisturizing purposes with a hyaluronic acid base.

Going price: $1.35 [from Style Korean]


California Aloe Vera Hand Cream

Can we first please discuss the packaging? It’s shaped like an aloe vera leaf. I simply cannot, it’s too adorable. The cream itself is water based, so it doesn’t have that heavy oily texture that oil based creams have. I will say that the smell is very pleasant– it’s subtle, and it smells like greenery. However, for this hand cream, I don’t believe that the product justifies the price ($7.90). I have seen much bigger, and much better hand creams coming from Nature Republic, for quite cheaper. Indeed if you really want a good Nature Republic hand cream, then go for the Hand & Nature hand cream series. A bit more expensive at $8.90, but way more moisturizing, and much more fragrant. Though, I will admit that this packaging is adorable. I give it Duchess points for the packaging.

Discount code: Also, from now until the end of May, if you go into the NY flagship store on Union Square, and show them this blog post, they will provide a 20% off discount on your purchase!

For those who are NOT in NY: order from them online or order by phone– using code Cynical Duchess— They will provide you with a 20% discount.


Phone number: 1 (646) 952-0856

Link to their site

And that is all for today folks! Tune in next time for a little fashion shoot I’ve prepared showing off some of the matte lipsticks and eye shadows they sent me!


Cynical Duchess

What do you think of the Kbeauty trend?

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