Donkey Milk and Horse Oil Are South Korea’s Latest Skin-Care Trends

by REERA YOO | @reeraboo

South Korea is no stranger to bizarre ingredients in beauty products. After all, Koreans have been using snail slime, bee venom and bird’s nests in their 12-step skin-care routine for the past few years. But two new unusual ingredients are gaining traction in the Korean beauty scene.

Donkey milk and horse oil are the latest skin-care trends in South Korea, according to Alice Yoon, CEO of beauty site Peach and Lily.

memebox-special-7-milk-box-07Skin Ceramic’s Donkey Milk Steam Cream. Photo courtesy of Helloprettybird.

In an interview with New York Magazine, Yoon explained that donkey milk is “gentle and soothing for those with sensitive skin and eczema, and [has] four to five times more vitamin C than cow’s milk and [is] rich in proteins.”

Apparently, donkey milk is a tried-and-true beauty treatment because Cleopatra used to bathe in it.

Yoon also said that horse oil is renowned for its healing and highly moisturizing capabilities. It is “featured front and center” at some of the flagship stores at Olive Young, one of South Korea’s largest cosmetics and supplements distributors. The product is very popular with Chinese tourists.

Screen Shot 2015-01-28 at 1.20.52 PMGuerisson Miracle Korean Horse Oil. Photo courtesy of Aliexpress.

When asked why South Korea uses such experimental ingredients in its beauty products, Yoon answered that Korean women tend to be “more open to exploring” while American women tend to stick with well-known ingredients, such as retinol and vitamin C.

While donkey milk and horse oil may be a bit too adventurous for the American beauty market at this time, some Korean skin-care trends are already making their way to the States. Sheet masks, essences and overnight sleeping packs are expected to “make a huge splash” in the U.S., according to Yoon.


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