As you have probably know if you’ve ready any bit of the blog, I don’t just enjoy purchasing skincare, I enjoy researching it. I like poring over ingredient lists and reading other people’s reviews. I like to feel in control of what I’m purchasing and what it’s going to do for my skin. I think that’s why my past forays into subscription beauty boxes ended after about 6 months: I hated not really knowing what I was going to be sent.

So, no one was more surprised than me that when I saw Beauty in Hanguk’s Bespoke Beauty box, I knew I had to order it. (Hanguk is the Korean name for South Korea.) To be clear, this is not a renewing subscription box; it’s a one-time order. Your box will come the month following when you ordered it. I ordered mine in June in anticipation of my birthday in July. (Whooo! Getting old over here.)

Shereen is the founder and owner of Beauty in Hanguk, which is an online k-beauty retailer. (They sell more items than just the bespoke box.) And in the interest of full disclosure, she and I are friends on Instagram, but I purchased the bespoke beauty box with my own money. Perhaps it was the description of the box drew me in.

“We want to embrace that you are a real person with realistic needs and we are very passionate about picking out items that you like to the best of our ability. Thus every box you order will be tailored to you.

Perhaps this month you need a new shampoo. Perhaps you have run out of toner or want to try a new one. With the season change perhaps you are looking for a new sunscreen option. From month to month, based on your personal profile that you can keep updating according to your needs, we try to send you not only things that you want, but things that you need and will hopefully use and enjoy. We also like to introduce a variety of brands from popular to indie in your parcel.” (Beautyinhanguk)

I think the last piece of the description is what appealed to me the most: While I love discovering popular and new, up-and-coming brands on Instagram and other blogs, I know there are tons of brands in Korea that I’ve never heard of that have fantastic products. So, I wanted to have Shereen pick out some for me!

How it works

The first step in getting a bespoke box is spending time filling out the beauty profile. Beauty in Hanguk has created a very in-depth form with lots of questions about your preferences. I’ve screen-shotted just a few:

Screen Shot 2017-07-25 at 12.16.56 AMScreen Shot 2017-07-25 at 12.17.28 AM

The more time you spend on the form, the more tailored your box will be. I gave lots of specifics about products I have, ingredients I like and ones I avoid, as well as what types of products I was interested in receiving. (The form also asks for any IG handles or blogs where you post pictures of your products so she can check out the types of products you already have.) This form is the step that sets the Beauty in Hanguk Bespoke Beauty box apart from pretty much any other subscription box out there.

I let Shereen know I love niacinamide, honey, and propolis and that I was looking for hydrating products for my normal to dry skin (dry in the winter). I also wrote that I try to avoid alcohol and witch hazel in products. I requested only skincare, and specifically noted that I was looking for more essences; I know there are a ton of adorable non-skincare products and pop culture characters that folks love, but as I wrote on the form, I’m just here for the skincare. I do have quite a large stash filled with lots of different products and brands, so I asked Shereen to find me skincare brands that I may have not heard of but are popular in Korea.

After filling out the beauty profile, you add the bespoke box to your cart and check out.

So, how’d she do? Read on, dear reader.

My Bespoke Box

When my bespoke box arrived, I was shocked at just how perfectly everything in it fit my needs. Shereen knocked it out of the park.

Asis-Tobe Avena Enriched Cream: A cream for dry, sensitive skin that contains oat meal extract, niacinamide, and ceramide! I’ve never heard of this brand before and am very excited to try it in the dead of winter when my skin is dry and needs more TLC.

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I’m in love with the very clinical packaging. This cream demands to be taken seriously!

Labiotte Linden Blossom Deep Moisture Essence: This essence looks fantastic. Aside from my trusty Cosrx Snail 96 essence, I shockingly don’t have that many. This essence soothes, calms, and hydrates. I’d only heard of Labiotte via their lip tints, but I’m really interested in how this will perform.

IMG_3444

 

Shigmulnara Propolis Refresh Toner (decant): You can choose whether or not to receive decants. This toner is packed with centella, honey, propolis, and royal jelly extracts. It’s everything I love and I’m so pumped to try it.

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You can’t see it, but on the other side of the label is a use-by date.

Sheetmasks: It’s like Shereen looked into my soul (and my sheet mask stash) and sent me a selection of masks I have coveted from afar but have never actually tried. Along with my two full-sized products and one decant, I received one of each of the following:

  • A’pieu NonCo Tea Tree Spot Patch
  • Sixteen Brand Spirulina Mask Pack
  • Etude House Manuka Honey Mask
  • A by Bom All in 1 Ultra Perfect Cream Mask
  • Package Don’t Worry Healing Mask
  • Bano White Jade Injection Mask
  • CNP Laboratory Propolis Energy Ampule Mask

IMG_3443

 

In total, my order was $39.90 (including shipping). The value of the products in my box–if I use the average prices that I could find online of the products–is about $70 (and that doesn’t include any shipping costs). Clearly, this is a fantastic value, further enriched if you factor in that I’ve been introduced to brands I never would have otherwise known existed.

If I sound almost over-enthusiastic in this review, it’s because I couldn’t believe how well all of my wants were met. It was more like I had a personal shopper! I’ve never been this thrilled with a subscription box.

So, will I buy this product again?

Rating Scale: 

  • Did you not read the review? Yes, of course. I will spend all of my money on this product!
  • Yes. I enjoy this product enough to purchase again in the future, especially if it’s on sale.
  • Meh. Maybe. I mean, I bet there are other, better things out there. I’d use it if someone gave it to me.
  • No. I won’t use this again and will probably bad-mouth it to others.
  • Hahahahaha. Nope. Noooooooope. Not even if you paid me.

The Verdict: Did you not read the review? Yes, of course. I will spend all of my money on this product!

 

While I won’t be ordering this on a monthly basis, I will definitely be ordering it again as a treat to myself in the near future.

Here’s what’s the best part: Beauty in Hanguk now offers three different tiers of boxes so that you can find one that best suits your budget:

  • $19.90 Trial
  • $34.90 Standard
  • $49.90 Luxe

If you’re still not convinced, you can also check out some of the items that went into other bespoke boxes via Beauty in Hanguk’s Instagram account, @beautyinhanguk.

Let me know in the comments if you have any questions about the process!

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