With social media becoming more and more important in our daily life, we are more accessible to different cultures and popular trends around the world. To get a grip on how much these actually differ from each other, we chose the topic of beauty ideals, focusing especially on makeup. We conducted a small research based on makeup tutorials on Youtube to get a more detailed idea of the current makeup trends. In order not to get too overwhelmed, we limited our research according to the following criteria;



In the past Japan and France were the lead runners for the makeup industry, but in recent years Korea has been going up in the ranking. This is mainly due to the Hallyu wave and other industries such as chemistry and bioscience. Korean makeup is known for its natural and dewy look. Compared to other countries, they place a lot of importance on the use of skincare products. These have taken the world by storm under the name “skin-tertainment”. More often than not the skin products have a fun packaging or interesting textures made popular by bloggers and social media. The goal of these products is to have a moisturised, brightened and pale skin. To achieve this look, they use a multitude of skin-care products. To make it easier, there has been a boom of hybrid skincare products that can combine multiple functions. An example of this is the invention of the BB cream, blemish balm, which is a combination of foundation, moisturizer, anti-aging cream, and in most asian countries also a whitening agent and sunscreen. “The Korean beauty market is among the top 10 around the world, with an estimated worth of over $13.1 billion in sales in 2018, according to Mintel, a global market intelligence agency. Facial skin care products alone make up half of the total market share and are projected to reach $7.2 billion by 2020. ” [4]


The Key to Japanese beauty is cleanliness. It is ingrained in Japanese culture. For example, most people in Japan take a bath daily, so having good a good skincare routine comes naturally. Another example is that a lot of people enjoy going to onsen. These are baths containing natural minerals that are known to be good for the skin. Japanese beauty products are known to be scientifically advanced and focus on long term reliability. Miyabi Kumagai, Brand Manager of Japan’s leading beauty brand, Shideido says: "Western culture is more concerned with correcting damages after they have occurred, whereas Japanese beauty care is more about anticipation. For them, everyday prevention is a natural action."

United States

The past few years, the makeup and beauty industry have been thriving thanks to beauty guru's and influencers, who have become more and more influental and famous. They post makeup tutorials on Youtube and often collaborate with different makeup brands. Because of this, makeup has become very accessible and almost an essential thing in the daily life of countless women.

There are three unique circumstances that continue to prop up the beauty industry:

  1. Consumers, mostly women, are on a journey of exploration. They are enjoying new products and finding new brands.
  2. Young, independent brands are supporting a surge in creativity.
  3. Acquisitions by the major beauty companies of ever-smaller companies at very high values are drawing in more founders and driving more creativity every day. (bron: Forbes)

In this section you will find data from our quantitative research. We will look at populair keywords/hashtags on twitter and collect data on makeup video's on youtube using webscraping.

The graph above views a collection of words that are associated with the hashtag 'Koreanbeauty', we wanted to compare the popularity of the hashtags between Japan, Korea and America, but unfortunately although the amount of hashtags surrounding Korean makeup were a lot, the amount of hashtags of Japanese makeup or American makeup were almost non existent. There were a couple of reasons for that. First, using a hashtag with 'Japanese' and another word associating with beauty led us to a different categorie than we were aiming for. Second, the term 'American' with the term 'makeup' is usually not used together in a hashtag, people just use the term 'makeup', but this term does not only include American makeup.

This Pie Chart shows all the words associated with the hashtag 'Shiseido', a famous Japanese makeup and skincare brand.

And here is a graph showing the tweets and retweets of words surrounding Shiseido.

This is data we webscraped from Youtube and imported in Excel. We webscraped the term 'Korean makeup', 'Japanese makeup', and 'American makeup'. After webscraping the pages on Youtube we combined the data of the amount of views between 2015 and 2019 of the three different search terms and put it in the graph you see below.

After that we went on Google Trends to collect data, using the same three search terms as we did for Youtube, to see which one is the most populair and to see the development of it's popularity compared to the others.


As seen in the google trend graph and the webscraping data, we can conclude that in comparison to Japan and the US, Korean makeup has risen in popularity in the last 5 years. This led to Korean trends also becoming popular in other countries, as shown in the world map data we collected on Google trends. This is in contrast to Japan, where the most searches were done in Japan itself. It can be partly attributed to the different search engines that are frequently used in the respective countries, such as Yahoo! in Japan [23].


  1. (videos)