These Korean beauty brands are minimalist wonders

RboW, Tamburins, and Nonfiction are three Korean beauty brands using minimalist designs to create eye-catching products

Split photo of lady pulling skin mask off her face and box with face on
Tamburins’ Tiger Leaf face mask
(Image credit: press)

We have always had a taste for minimalism here at Wallpaper* HQ, from architecture to design, fashion to beauty. So it’s no surprise that our interest was been piqued by a few new South Korean beauty brands with bold, sleek packaging that played right into our minimalist sensibilities. K-beauty might have skyrocketed to popularity with its ten-step regimes, but these brands prove the power of simplicity. 


Two bottles of fragrance on rocks

(Image credit: press)

Body care and fragrance brand RboW was founded by former contemporary gallery director Sohyung Kim as a way to combine her passion for art and fragrance. 

All the products come in packaging decorated with abstract drawings that express the mood of the scent inside. For instance the packaging of O.A.C, a woody floral scent, displays two circles to demonstrate the symmetry between its dual aspects. 

The artistic inspiration also applies to the scents themselves. Take, for instance, OooooF, a potent blend of ceder, musk, and vanilla that draws its inspiration from minimal art by combining a few elements to have a highly impactful result.


Tamburins shell hand cream stacked on top of each other

(Image credit: press)

Designed by the minds behind Gentle Monster, Tamburins’ products feel more akin to a designer accessory or mini object d’art rather than, say, a hand sanitiser. 

Take, for instance, its signature hand cream, which comes on a gold chain, or its new The Shell hand cream, which is designed to be used as both a perfume and moisturiser. It comes in variety of curious scents, including Fear (a blend of ‘hard soil, grapefruit, and fresh air’) and Posy (‘rose bushes, patchouli, and wet soil’). 

We also recommend trying the brand’s signature Tiger Leaf masks in the morning before make-up application. They quickly hydrate the skin without making it greasy, making them a perfect primer for foundation or tinted moisturiser.


Fragrance in a clear bottle

(Image credit: press)

Nonfiction’s efficacious and easy to use product line is designed for the realities of everyday life. Body odour, dry hands, snd chapped lips are all alleviated by the brand’s coolly packaged products. 

We recommend trying the Santal fragrance if you’re a fan of the Le Labo classic, but would rather wear something a bit less ubiquitous. The Vegan Lip Balm is an ideal addition to any handbag as winter starts to settle in. And the Hand & Lip Care Trio with soap, lotion, and lip balm makes an elegantly packaged gift to please anyone.

Writer and Wallpaper* Contributing Editor

Mary Cleary is a writer based in London and New York. Previously beauty & grooming editor at Wallpaper*, she is now a contributing editor, alongside writing for various publications on all aspects of culture.