Saturday, March 7, 2015

#749 - South Korea: Till We Meet Again - South Korea's Summary / Loots/Haul from Korea / Tips for Korea

Taking a breather from FYP report and studying for CA, I am here to update my dusty blog.

It's about time too, my previous entry was like nearly a month ago? :/ Though this entry will be a wordy one.

CNY / F.A.M. entries maybe next time? Have always update about them annually and I don't want the routine to stop for I need something to look back to next time. How CNY changes for me as time passes.... And also, I paid for the storage space yearly so might as well use right!!

I started w the first entry with Busan: The Beginning and thought I could end w South Korea: The End but it sounds so bad so nope not gonna do that. Anyway, this entry consists of my travelogue in South Korea, together with my loots as well as some observations and tips (somewhats) to prepare anyone for Korea hahaha.




Loots/Haul from Korea!
We all know how people head to Korea to stock up on their skincare products and I am not afraid to admit I am also one. That time I am not a skincare "addict" yet so this bit was considered very little already! In fact I am regretting not discovering some of the awesome skincare products early and am already thinking what to get the next time I head to Korea. :P

My beauty purchases, with a few from friends' requests!
One of the highly requested items are Nature Republic Aloe Vera Gel which can't be found in Singapore (then) and I believe even if so, it would be rather expensive. It can be used on any parts of the body and is rather moisturising!

Another would be the Innisfree Volcanic Pore Clay Mask. Pictured is the Super Volcanic version which is more suitable for people w oily skin! They don't sell the 200ml ones here in Singapore by the way. However, I would recommend getting the 100ml ones instead unless you use this often. The shelf life is only like 9months and I don't think one would use that much! 200ml is really a lot.

I am not sure if I have mentioned this before, but I managed to influence some of the guys on the trip to get this because it really works well in reducing and drying up your pimples! :)

This was expected on the list right!
Laneige Water Sleeping Pack! Haha I only bought 1 to try because that time I wasn't sure if my skin was able to take it.

Now I used quite a fair range of Laneige's products other than this sleeping mask, like their Firming Sleeping Pack, Lip Sleeping Mask, White Plus Renew Original Essence as well as Time Freeze Eye Serum, so I guess I will definitely stock up a lot the next time I go Korea!

Favourites would be their Lip Sleeping Mask as well as the White Plus Renew Original Essence which deliver what they promise! :)

 Innisfree Masks, assorted range plus some hand creams.
I bought a lot to give out to my friends! The masks are way cheaper than compared to the ones in Singapore, so if you really like them, please stock up there! :D

 Leaders Insolution Masks - Tea Tree Relaxing / AC Dressing
One of my favourite brands for masks! Managed to spot a shop in Myeongdong selling this and knew I had to get it. A piece of this is very costly in Singapore (found in Watsons) at like about $3plus. The price in Korea is about half of it.. BUY.

I like that the masks really work and the material used is super fitting for the face and doesn't tear. So far I have only tried this too because of my pimply and full-of-scars face that time and they worked. :)

I will probably try their other ranges next time!

Other than skincare products, I also brought back some food too! Didn't get a lot because my luggage was bursting already.

The purple box w the wafer sticks are yummy, please go buy! And stock up on the grape gummies, hi-chews if you are there because they are super cheap! And their pepperos may have sales sometimes too, so you can keep a lookout.

Ramen wise I would recommend Jin Ramen which is cheaper there as well as Paldo ones. Or the Samyang Buldak Bokkeum Myeon otherwise known as Fire Noodles

Oh and if you are a fan of TOM N TOMS Green Tea Latte, they sell the GTL powder in Korea!!! At about SGD10 for a big packet which also comes w a scoop like those milk powder ones. Singapore's outlet doesn't sell it, I have checked. Just add milk and you can have your GTL at home already. Please go buy. Hahaha.

That's all for the loots side, now on to...
What I observed in staying in Korea for one month (based on what I experienced):

1. Wifi is everywhere
Though some requires logging in or signing up.

2. No GST or service charge for meals
 Super easy to count and split costs.

3. Flushing of toilet papers in toiletbowls are not encouraged, instead, you throw them in the bin next to the toiletbowl
 Reason from what I heard from my Korean friend was that Korea's pipes are narrower so it clogs easily. Took me a while to get use to and to me, it's actually quite gross lahh.

4. A variety of side dishes and they are free flow
Not just kimchi, but they like other variations of kimchi like radish or cold kimchi for example. And yummy ones like odeng (Korean fishcakes which are damn niceeee) or potatoes (like those cai png kind). I think that's where Koreans get their dietary fibre from? Hahaha. Like side dishes is a must have in every meal. I am not complaining... :D

5. Many convenience stores near each other along the same street and the stuff are cheap
I LIKE LOVE. Singapore, please learn LOL. Other than the typical 7-11, they have CU and GS25 as well. Can compare prices also! And they always for 2 for the price of 1 or 3 for xxxx won deals. That was where I discovered a super yummy chocolate ice-cream which I had consecutively for days.

*hearts in eyes*
This was soooooo good and cheap also! Like convert to SGD around $1.60? Can't believe I never post this photo up during my Korea adventures lehh!

And they also have a lot of kimbap w many flavours to choose from! And onigiri wraps (woo spelt correct at first attempt) too! SGD1.60 for that long roll above! Like that lunch gaotim already sia if wanna save money.

6. It's hard to find a dustbin along the streets
I have no idea why. If I recall correctly, my korean friend said they have a habit of "collecting" the rubbish in their bags/pockets and then throw everything at one go,

7. They have long flight of stairs instead of escalators at the subway
Their subway are underground and to get down, the only way is stairs. Let's not talk about getting up uh, especially w luggages. Very thankful for those who helped me carry my luggage up the stairs. :')

8. Most of the Koreans I met are really rude and pushy (like literally)
To be honest, I was quite shocked. I mean I really like how they have different terms to call their seniors/juniors and that there is formal and informal languages as well, so yeah that came as a shock. Most of the rude people are those who are 40 years old and above and I am guessing it is due to the respect they get which got to their heads? :X

But there are still nice people lahhh, like a train story I dayre-d the other time in Korea.

*straight copy paste*
Train story: I saw a seat and wanted to sit down but then there was an old lady so I let her have the seat. She said "Just sit, it's okay." in Korean and even pat on my back insisting. I gave her the seat anyway and she said thank you. This ajumma is the first courteous lady I have ever seen. No I am not exaggerating. Everyone in train (actually everywhere) pushes/hits you to get their way not caring about you but only themselves. So rude. Excuse me doesn't work here at all.

9. They have too many skincare brands you'd go crazy
Innisfree, TheFaceShop (which I heard is considered one of the lower end brand amongst all), Etude House, Nature Republic, The Saem, Skinfood, MISSHA, Laneige, Too Cool For School, IOPE, Holika Holika, TONYMOLY, Hera... The list is endless.

Not to mention the prices of their products are definitely cheaper there. Stock up on the popular items like Innisfree Volcanic Clay Mask and Laneige Water Sleeping Pack. :D Those who are interested in Leaders' Insolution masks, can also get them at half the price compared to getting in SG!

Oh, and there are some useful links where the cosmetics stores/places of interest offer coupons. I had them printed out before heading to Korea so that I can get to purchase items at e.g. 10% off, or get free items.
Link 1:
Link 2:

10. For caffeine lovers, they have a lot of cafes (w numerous outlets)
Starbucks, Tom N Toms (get the green tea latte powder there, super good, Singapore doesn't sell), Caffe Bene, Twosome Coffee, Paris Baguette, Tous Les Jours, Angel-In-Us Coffee to name a few.

Okay that's all I can remember so far, will add on if I have any!

Yeah this entry basically summarised what I did in Korea for a month.

There were many laughters, fun, tears along the way. Do I have any regrets? Yes. There were some places not ticked off my must-go list, so Korea, I will definitely be back.

Till then,
South Korea: Till We Meet Again.

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Be nice, rude people suck.