If you have been roaming the internet during the early 2000’s, especially in the web pages related to fashion and make-up, you have probably at least once encountered or seen a few of their pictures. To sum up their presence in the internet at that time, I would say they were the 2000’s influencers. They were the IT boys and girls, their pictures are scattered all over the web and their clothes and make-up styles has become one of the most widely used style.
2020 has given us Instagram models with professionally captured photos and YouTubers to look up to for fashion, style and make-up inspiration. But back in the day, we only have these internet celebrities and their self-taken pictures, mediocre background, natural lighting and simple and comfortable clothes.
Even though they’ve reached their peak during the early 2000’s, I can still see the impact that their fashion and make-up has left until the present time. Let me introduce to you the “Ulzzang.”
What is an Ulzzang?
The Korean term ulzzang translates to “best face,” and commonly refers to someone with a good-looking and attractive face. They are not necessarily celebrities or models but normal citizens, be it a male or a female, going on about their lives. If one wishes to be discovered as an ulzzang, Korea’s popular message board like Daum Cafe and social networking sites like Cyworld launched Ulzzang Cafes that serves as a beauty-ranking page It became even more popular after the launch of Haduri, which is a webcam application and a photo-sharing platform made to cater the ulzzang culture (think of Instagram, 2000’s vibes.)
The Ulzzang look is probably the epitome of the no make-up look, very much similar to the style that Koreans used up until the present time. The emphasis is usually on the unbelievably flawless skin, partnered with natural tones of eyeshadow and highlighting the eyes with an eyeliner, light blush and a soft colored lipstick.
Ulzzangs may be known for being the “best face,” but the term is not limited to being pretty and attractive. Ulzzangs are also pretty known for their sense of fashion. Their clothing style is a mixture of comfort and trendy, and most of the time (maybe even all of the time) aesthetically pleasing to look at. Ulzzang knows the perfect combination of colors and patterns, making their outfits a sought after inspiration.
The best thing about being inspired and recreating the “ulzzang look” is that this fashion trend is usable every single day of your life. The make-up can be used in both formal and casual settings, applicable for both students or a young working adult. Their style in fashion is not as flashy and is actually very comfortable if you’re just trying to enjoy a nice day out. You might be turning heads even with just a few simple pieces matched together.
Now that we have the overview done, let’s discuss in an in-depth manner what’s really in it for you if you decided to stroll down the ulzzang fashion.
The Ulzzang Make-up
If you look at it head on, you might think the ulzzang make-up is a very simple and effortless make-up. True that it’s not that much when you look at it but, like all the other make-up trends in the fashion world, there are always key elements and products to achieve that certain look.
First, the skin. This plays a huge part in achieving that flawless, youthful and bright look. But this doesn’t mean pounding on a full coverage foundation on your face. Instead, ulzzangs use a very lightweight BB (Blemish Balm) cream and concealer to hide any blemishes. BB creams are incredibly light on the face. I’ve been using BB creams instead of foundations for years and they really make it seem as if you’re not wearing make-up at all.
Second, the eyes. Ulzzangs are famous for their baby doll eyes. If you already are gifted with one, you’re good to go for this step. If you really want that mesmerizing wide deer-like eyes, one way to go is to use circle contact lenses. Not only do they give you that doll-eyes but you can also go for colored lenses which will give you more depth to your look.
Third, and still on the topic of the eyes is your eyeshadow. Ulzzangs’ make-up, as mentioned, is usually on the very light to natural bracket. Baby pinks and natural shades of brown and taupe are always the safest colors to go if you want that effortless make-up look. However, even though light and natural make-up is the generic, that doesn’t mean that the ulzzang make-up won’t ever try the dark and more smokey look. If the TPO (time, place and occasion) requires a more sultry and alluring look, a smokey eye with dark shades of brown or maybe a burgundy color is a good choice as well.
As you can see, how you decide on the theme of your eyeshadow actually depends on the look you are going for. But, the next thing that I’m going to mention will always be present regardless of the TPO and that is the eyeliner. You can put more emphasis on your eye by lining it with your trusty eyeliner. Depending on your eye look, you can go for either thinner or a bit thicker line. If you want the cat-eye look, you can line your lower lids, giving you a chic look.
We’ve put so much effort on the eyes so it’s only justifiable that we will do everything to get them noticed as much as possible. So apply in your mascara or use fake lashes. A tip though, stray away as much as possible from those dramatic and humongous fake lashes. As much as possible, stick to the natural looking ones or if you’re not a fan, invest in a very good mascara to enhance your natural ones.
The Ulzzang Fashion
The best word to describe ulzzang fashion is streetwear. Sure, there might be the occasional formal dresses if it requires you. Remember, TPO. But, for most times, ulzzang fashion is all about comfy, trendy, and basic clothing articles. By basic, I mean shirts, shorts, and sneakers. It all boils down to mix and match and how you’ll style them.
Now that you know that it’s all about the basic pieces, you might have rushed to your closet and thought, “Where do I start?” and once again, I am here to give you tips!
One, and don’t be surprised. Oversized shirt and you read that right. You might have one or two pieces of oversized shirts in your closet, it could be because you ordered the wrong size but fear not! You now have found the fashion that revolves around oversized shirts that actually look good and trendy. The basic style for an oversized shirt is tucking it into your bottoms and it looks especially good if your bottoms are high-waisted. Another oversized piece of clothing that could also give you the ulzzang vibe are oversized hoodies. They hide your figure but they give you that cozy, cute and simple look.
Speaking of high-waisted bottoms, this is also a staple for ulzzang fashion. Who doesn’t love high-waisted bottoms though? First, they hide and compress the flabby parts of our tum-tums, love handles who? Second, they cinched in our waist and shows off our curvy hips. Third, they highlight our legs and if you’re one of those who has long legs, I am sure that high-waisted bottoms look good on you. This is best partnered with tucked shirts or if you’re feeling a bit summery, you can also pair your high-waisted bottoms with crop tops.
Since we’re mainly talking about ulzzang fashion being a casual streetwear, let’s not forget our most beloved sneakers. I’m telling you, nothing could go wrong with a good pair of sneakers. And to be really honest, they really look good paired with almost everything. There are even formal dresses that look fabulous with a nice pair of sneakers.
So, that’s it! These are the basic tips on looking and styling yourself to the ulzzang fashion. It’s probably one of the easiest fashion styles you can venture in. You can make use of pieces of clothing you already have at your disposal. To have a more through visual on what clothes go well together, you can check YouTube and search for ulzzang fashion. If you want a step-by-step tutorial on the ulzzang make-up, Youtube also has a lot of those! The references are everywhere, it’s hard not to get inspired.
Remember, the main point of ulzzang fashion is all about putting an emphasis on how casual and simple it is. Both the make-up and clothes requires basic products and it’s really up to you to mix and match. Simplicity and comfort is key. Once it has sink in to you what pieces looks good together and what doesn’t, ulzzang fashion is as easy as 1,2,3!