We talked about eating in Asia. Now let’s talk about Asia shopping! I only love to shop when I’m away from home ironically. Asia is a shopper’s paradise. There are traditional markets and highrise department stores. But my favorite place has to be the subway stations!
Skincare is a staple in South Korea. You may have heard of the Korean 10 Step Skincare Routine. I recommend the Myeongdong area of Seoul for all your skincare needs. It’s Skin sold the sets above and below. They have a great selection and their prices are quite reasonable.
Even more than skincare, my favorite things to buy are random items from a Japanese store called Daiso. They have locations in places like the US and Dubai as well. You name it, they have it. There is a Daiso store in Myeongdong that has 6 stories. It used to have 8, but they condensed the floors.
The items above and below are from Daiso. The items below are cherry blossom-themed items. During the Cherry Blossom Season there are special edition items everywhere you turn in South Korea. Towards the end of my trip, peach items started to pop up in stores.
The items from Daiso below are the perfect “self care” items. Here I bought a pack of dehydrated face masks, foot toxin remover pads (looked interesting) and clear pimple remover patches. Those pimple patches are a lifesaver.
There was also a South Korea souvenir section. I heard about this section from a YouTuber and was excited to see all the items they had available.
How cute are these socks? I can’t believe I didn’t keep one pair for myself. The selection of socks in general in Daiso is crazy.
Masks… You can buy masks for everything in Korea. The gold mask below was very nice. Of course I only bought one. And it cost the equivalent of a dollar.
The mask in the middle was part of a sample pack. I purchased a magazine in the bookstore Kyobo and received a 10 pack of those masks. Korea loves to give away free samples. The other mask was free too.
Now, subway shopping. There were a million things to buy in the subway. I recommend the Incheon Bupyeong Station as well as the Seoul Express Bus Terminal station. They were perfect for some of my trip’s rainy days.
There were so many shops that sold socks and other accessories like earrings. You could buy clothes and shoes in other shops. Think about anything that you can buy in a store above ground. You can buy it in the subway.
The tea below is from a ginseng store in the Myeongdong area of seoul. Ginseng is so good for upset stomachs and all around not feeling well.
Have you ever heard of the Korean liquor Soju? Maybe you have but I know you have not heard of Soju soda. The bottle on the left is Soju soda. It is so difficult to find in the States. Both are really good. If you do buy soju, I prefer the flavored kind. Peach and Green Apple are very good.
The first stop on my last Asia trip was actually Taiwan. I toured Taipei during my 12 hour long layover. The Taipei airport offered a city tour that was completely free. Don’t be afraid of long layovers. They are your friend.
One of my first purchases was this wallet (above). It was from a local seller on the Sanxia Old Street.
I had researched the best things to buy while in Taiwan. One of the top choices was pineapple cakes (above). After that were other little cakes and snacks. Below are sweet potato cakes. I actually preferred those to the pineapple ones. You can’t bring all of the snacks in Taiwan back to the States. They ban the ones with raw egg yolks. The store clerks let us know this.
Tea was another item I wanted to bring home. I still have no idea how this tea tastes. But the little tins are so cute.
Vending machines from other countries always intrigue me. I’m always interested to know what the locals really eat and drink. Plus the vending machines I used were past airport security. That meant I could even buy drinks and take them home in my carry on luggage. Score!
Below are lemon puff snacks, Bermuda Chips and a Honey White Gourd Drink. The lemon puffs were good. I’d compare them to cream puffs. The Bermuda chips were seasoned with Himalayan pink sea salt. They were very addictive. The white gourd drink reminded me of drinking liquid caramel. It was interesting, though still good.
Asia truly is a shopper’s paradise. I’m excited to shop in more cities soon.