Even if you’ve never watched a Korean drama yourself, you probably know more than a handful of people who are obsessed with them. Just last week, my own mother — who has spent her life staying far, far away from spicy food — told me she was suddenly craving kimchi. The reason for her change in food preference? She and her friends just binge-watched yet another K-drama and the heroine happened to be eating kimchi in just one scene. (Talk about advertising.) Though her addiction to the world of tear-filled episodes and men with gorgeous skin has only recently begun, she has been consuming as many K-dramas as she can get her hands on. And while many of us were introduced to Korean dramas years ago, having my mom and all her friends suddenly take on the addiction with such a passion made me realize that K-dramas are not only alive and well, they’re still expanding their reach.
And if K-dramas can get my mom to eat something spicy, I’m convinced they could market absolutely anything. Of course, I wasn’t the only one who recognized this. Many beauty brands, for instance, have reaped the benefits of this global audience. Just look at these seven lip products that flew off the shelves thanks to an appearance on a Korean drama.
It should come as no shock to see this lipstick at the top of the list. My Love From Another Star was a worldwide sensation, and as the popular series progressed, fans everywhere were trying to guess the product that gave Jun Ji Hyun’s superstar character her vibrant lip color. When the Internet began buzzing that the product was YSL’s Rouge Pur Couture #52 Rosy Coral, the color sold out immediately. (This despite the fact that show reps asserted that the lipstick was actually a mix of two Iope lip colors.) The Rosy Coral shade was reportedly unavailable worldwide for months.
Not only was the 2016 K-drama Descendants of the Sun a worldwide hit, so was the lipstick featured prominently on its star, Song Hye Kyo: The Laneige Two Tone Lip Bar completely sold out just four days after its release on the popular Chinese shopping site 11th Street. Sure, Song may have only worn it for one scene in Descendants, but it managed to break sales records in South Korea. Its popularity skyrocketed, and Laneige ended up hosting a makeup event on its homepage entirely devoted to the drama.
It’s safe to say that Park Shin Hye knows exactly how to rock Mamonde products. After all, she became an official endorser of the brand in 2014. When she was seen trying two shades of Mamonde’s Creamy Tint in the 2014-15 drama Pinocchio, the tinted lip crayon quickly became a must-have.
Ji Sung was rightfully praised for his performance as a man whose traumatic past causes him to have seven distinct personalities. One of his most memorable personalities was certainly Ahn Yo Na, a young girl who had both a bold personality and — as many viewers were quick to point out — a lip color just as bold. Ji Sung pulled off the look so well that many fans wanted HERA Sheer Holic Pop Tint for themselves.
Talk about trendsetting! Although It’s Okay, That’s Love was released in 2014, Gong Hyo Jin still tops many lists when it comes to favorite K-drama makeup looks for pulling off this orange lip color. Her must-have product? Giorgio Armani Lip Maestro 300.
You know you’ve got yourself a winner when most fan discussions of the show are based on the lip color worn by actress Lee Yoo Ri. Of course, we don’t blame them. The Matt Kiss Lipstick in 03 Gorgeous Red by Korean cosmetics brand Seatree Art is (as the name suggests) absolutely gorgeous with its velvety matte texture and long wear.
Of course, we can’t finish this roundup without returning to the queen of sold-out lip colors, Jun Ji Hyun. In her latest hit drama, The Legend of the Blue Sea, she donned a bright pink-orchid shade that fans couldn’t get enough of. Allure Korea took to Instagram to confirm that the shade was a mix of two lip colors from Korean brand Hera: Rouge Holic in 147 Supreme Pink with a swipe of Sensual Lip Serum Glow in 1 Love Blossom on top for a mermaid-worthy gloss. Needless to say, both quickly sold out. (But W2Beauty has them!)
Have you ever been moved to buy a lipstick (or any other product, for that matter) by a Korean drama? Start the conversation below!