It’s K-beauty royalty
The brand, which debuted here at Level 1 Takashimaya D.S. last month, is part of the Amorepacific beauty super group – aka parent company of Laneige and Sulwhasoo. If the former is the fun, creative youngest sister with its innovative, wallet-friendly products, and the latter, the ultra-refined eldest sibling with its high-end, herbal-infused concoctions, Hera is the glamorous and trendy middle child. Cue its classy yet modern packaging (makeup, for example, mostly comes in sleek all-black cases), and its prices. With Hera positioning itself as a “luxury” beauty brand, they start from $25 for the Auto Eyebrow Pencil, which promises smooth, natural-looking lines, and go up to $380 for the anti-ageing Signia Cream.
It targets the fashion lover
The brand has been co-sponsoring Seoul Fashion Week for six seasons (its makeup artists are behind the beauty looks that go down the runway). Adding to its cool factor: its tie-up with French illustrator Edith Carron, a favourite among the fashion set for her quirky colour-pencil drawings. In stores now, the limited edition collab – dubbed the Secret Party collection – features her artwork on some of the brand’s signature products, including its Black Cushion, Cell Essence and Rich Curling Mascara.
It’s huge on makeup
According to a brand representative, Hera carries three times more makeup than skincare (and sales reflect this ratio too). What sets its makeup, which spans an impressive 28 ranges, apart? Besides some nifty technology (more on this later), its colours tend to be rich yet sophisticated, making them easy for anyone to pull off. Among the bestsellers: the saturated Rouge Holic Exceptional lipstick ($46) that’s known to glide on smoothly and not cake. (We also dig how the grooved lacquered case recalls the texture of plush snakeskin.)
Its cushions are a must-try
All five of the brand’s cushions are said to be popular, but the numero uno of the lot is the Hera Black Cushion ($75), launched in 2017 and reportedly the brand’s bestseller. Designed to appeal to women looking to achieve a semi-matte base (the “look of the moment in Korea” according to brand manager Lee Seunghee), its powder pigments – reportedly smaller than most by 30 per cent – are coated with amino acid derivatives. This is said to help the powder blend better and more easily to boost radiance and translucency.
A “matte finish gel” balances this dewiness out by recreating the effect of powder being applied on top of foundation, while the brand’s “double lasting layer technology” allows it to last all day without drying.
Its skincare boosts the effects of makeup
A big part of Hera, says Choi Youjin – another brand manager – is “multipurpose skincare that helps prep skin for makeup application”. For example, the cult favourite Cell Essence ($80) has eight ingredients that help hydrate, nourish and boost radiance. Its effect: a dewy complexion that helps makeup stay on for longer. That it gets absorbed quickly sans residue also means that foundation goes on smoothly.
Meanwhile, the Rosy Satin Cream ($128) is meant to give skin a soft and smooth finish, not unlike that of rose petals. The brand’s patented Rosy-Satin Complex nourishes, while achillea promises to balance moisture levels and promote skin regeneration. It also boasts elasticity-supporting peptides, which supposedly strengthen collagen proteins, and antioxidant-rich rose essential oil to brighten skin. As most would know, a plump and radiant complexion is the best foundation for makeup.
This story first appeared in Female’s June 2018 print issue.