Besides the original LG flip phone with camera that your dad allowed you to get only after you wrote him a persuasive essay about why you deserved it, Korean innovation has never been more ingenious than the Chosungah 22 C&T Blend Luminous Liquid Foundation. Words besides "thingy" and "wet" fail me usually, but let me try.
Enclosed within a cylindrical case, a bottle of foundation and a bottle of manuka honey essence stand at attention. Rotate the cylinder’s top to the clockwise, and out comes foundation. Rotate it to the left, and out comes honey serum. Mix them together on the plastic palette top of the device and blend onto your face. I don’t claim to be a psychic (though I am deeply spiritual), but this is what all makeup will be like in 2033. It’s the future.
Except it’s not.
Korean beauty companies are so far ahead of American and European brands, we should be hanging our strobed-out, no-makeup-makeuped heads in shame. You see those color correcting trend pieces, like this one Racked wrote, in which we scooped those mouthbreathers at The New York Times? Korean women were applying green lotion to their chins in like, 2008. We were still applying cracking concealer to our jawline acne and doing English homework then!
Chosungah 22, a brand that launched in American Sephoras first with its Dong Dong Minn Brow Maker (which, for what it’s worth, I find extremely hard to use due to its supposedly ergonomically designed two-in-one brow brush, and this is coming from a woman who frequently chooses to groom her eyebrows over putting clothes on every morning) and then with its full line in September, is not new. Named after Creative Director and celebrity makeup artist Chosungah, the line launched in Korea 25 years ago. A drugstore priced line, 16 Brand, is soon launching under the Chosungah umbrella in the US. If you want to tweet about it, the company encourages you hashtag content with #GANGZRULEZ.
The brand’s had a bit of a sleepy launch in the US, but you can probably already tell that it’s big fun. I hadn’t used any of the line’s products besides the brow maker until Chosungah 22 threw a showroom event this week. There were small salmon crepes there! And a step-and-repeat for selfies! The packaging is playful as hell, emblazoned with emblematic 22s and bestowed names like Click Click Stick and SO TINY! and Fullmoon Party. The colors are wacko. Everything that seems to be powder ends up being jelly-textured, particularly the Bounce Up Pact Master SPF 30 foundation and the Dong Gong Minn Jello Color Kit.
But the real joy in Chosungah, I’ve found, is not their formulations (except the Ink Jet Lip Tatt, which is not fucking around; it tattoos yourself to your lips just as it claims), but the contraptions that hold them. Chosungah’s Hidden Foundation contains a real buried treasure: a inch-thick puff that holds liquid foundation. The Click Click sticks, true to their name, click mechanically. Press down on plastic top of the 24 Hour Raybeam Highlighter compact, and a bubbling well of iridescent cream babbles forth.
There are foundations and lipsticks I’ve found to be more advanced that Chosungah’s, but the future-focused packaging will make the wearer feel like an avante-garde bionic woman. The K-beauty dominated future’s coming to America fast, and you’re going to need your face to reflect that.