Taiwan Haul: Etude House, 3ina, Kate, and more

I’m finally getting around to posting all the items I bought in Taiwan, even though my vacation was 2 months ago….how about that for a late post? I’m just an expert procrastinator. 

I’ve posted one of these hauls before, the last time I was in Taiwan (and in Japan for that trip too), but this time I really just focused on makeup. I have way too much skincare that I need to use up, though I couldn’t resist picking up a sunscreen from Anessa to try. 

There are fewer well known Taiwanese makeup brands, so I typically end up shopping for South Koren or Japanese brands.If you are looking for more information on where to shop in Taiwan, refer to my previous haul post. In general, I always stop at Watsons for Asian drugstore makeup and skincare. Watsons has brands like Canmake, Kate, Heroine Make, K-Palette, as well as L’oreal, Maybelline, or Revlon, which often have Asian-exclusives. 

This time around, I picked up another Kate palette and eyeshadow, which I’ve bought in the past and love. If you’re not familiar with Japanese makeup, it tends to have a much softer, sheerer, and more shimmery finish than most Western brands. The overall look is just barely there shadows with a barely there wash of glitter on top. The palette I picked up this time has warm bronze tones with an orange (how surprising of me…) I also picked up a single eyeshadow that one of those light sandy tan shades that I always love to wear. It cost about $12 USD.

This time I also picked up a palette from Excel, which is a slightly more expensive drugstore brand, though I wouldn’t quite fit it into a midrange brand yet. The shadows of this palette are considerably softer and silker, and have a bit more pigment though they are still much sheerer than brands I get here. The texture almost reminds me of the Lunasol quad that I bought during last year’s trip. I think this quad cost just slightly under $20. 

I also always pick up a tube of my favorite Heroine Make Long Curl Super Waterproof Mascara. This stuff wears like iron and keeps my curl all day.

For my last Watson product, I found a Taiwanese makeup brand called Hera, and I was totally drawn in to the blushes. It’s a pretty affordable brand, and this terracotta blush was just calling my name.

Here are swatches of all the products from the drugstore:

L-R Hera Blush, Kate single eyeshadow, Kate quad, Excel quad

A new store I saw this time in the Ximending area (which, by the way, is a huge shopping area that is filled with tiny little stores and boutiques, though it caters to a younger college aged/early 20s crowd), I stumbled on 3ina, which is apparently a “European-made” brand, though I’ve only seen the products among people I follow who are located in Asia. The brand, with its simple black packaging, reminds me a lot of Kiko, though I think the price range is just a tiny bit higher. I got sucked into buying the foundation, which is a very watery lightweight foundation that was perfect for the hot and humid weather. 

3ina Blush and Highlight

I also couldn’t resist another earth toned blush and highlighter. The blush is like a bronzy rose, ad the highlighter is a champagne with a hint of rose gold. They were about $15/16 USD each. 

As a gift with purchase, I was gifted this gorgeous blue nail polish, along with a makeup bag and some sheet masks (not pictured). Gotta love the Asian GWP culture.

I think I am most excited by what I bought from Etude House, a South Korean brand, this year. They always do the cutest palettes which are unfortunately almost always limited edition. Etude House is another mid-range brand. The two Play Color Eye Palettes I got were about $27 each. 

The Addicted to Caffeine palette has warm browns, a very typical palette for me to pick up. Here are some swatches:

And I also swatched it with some shades from the Urban Decay Naked Heat Palette because they looked similar to me. 

Here are some comparison swatches with Naked Heat. Unfortunately the Etude House shade names are in Korean, which I can’t read, so I just use numbers based on which they’re in the palette starting from the left: 

#6 vs UD He Devil and UD Cayenne, #7 vs UD En Fuego, #10 vs Ember

#7 vs He Devil and Cayenne, #8 vs En Fuego, #10 vs Ember

There isn’t a whole ton of overlap, except with the darker matte shades. The shimmers are quite different from each other. If you love warm neutral palettes, I think this is a nice one to have! 

The Lavender Lane palette has some gorgeous cool purples and mauves, and it is reminiscent of the Urban Decay Naked Cherry palette to me. 

Etude House Lavender Lane Swatches

Here I have comparison swatches of shades that looked similar: 

#2 vs UD Privacy, #3 and #5 with UD Ambitious, #4 vs Feelz and Juicy, #6 vs Hot Spot

#2 vs UD Privacy, #3 and #5 with UD Ambitious, #4 vs Feelz and Juicy, #6 vs Hot Spot

#7 vs Young Love, #8 vs Drunk Dial, #9 vs Turn On

 #7 vs Young Love, #8 vs Drunk Dial, #9 vs Turn On

As you can see, there are a fair number of similar shades, so if you already have one palette, I wouldn’t say the other is completely necessary. I do really love some of the shimmer and glitters in the Etude House palette that aren’t available in the UD palette.

Overall, the Etude House palettes don’t have quite as nice pigmentation or texture as the Urban Decay Palettes – again, the sheerer textures and light gossamer glitters are also in play here – but I definitely still appreciate the texture and finish. I find them great alternatives if you want something at a cheaper price point, but the downside is that it’s harder to access if you live in the US. 

I also picked up two of their new range of Better Lips lipsticks. They are a rich velvety lipstick with more luxe packaging that other lipsticks. The shares I got are BR402, the perfect brick red shade, and OR203, a salmon coral shade. The formula of these feel so nice and set down really well. 

OR203,BR402

I haven’t had a ton of time to thoroughly wear all of these but I have played around with pretty much everything, and I’m really pleased with everything I got this time. 

I hope this little post helps with helping you pick out what you want if you’re traveling to Taiwan, or other Asian countries with easy access to South Korean and Japanese brands. I will also mention that I usually also stop by Innisfree, but now that they’ve opened a store in New York, I don’t feel a need to go when I’m abroad. 

Let me know if you’ve tried any of these products! 

As always, thanks for reading. 

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