K-Beauty Review: TONY MOLY NYC Flagship Store Opens In K-Town, Chock-Full Of Peach And Panda Products [VIDEO]

By Sara Guaglione | July 22, 2015 05:51 PM EDT


With just your first step in TONY MOLY's flagship store - which opened in NYC's K-Town on 32nd St and 5th Ave - you'll realize this is no ordinary beauty brand.

Tony Moly is famous for one thing in particular, and it's a branding gold mine: cute packaging. The flagship store is chock-full of fruit- and fauna-inspired beauty products, from peach-shaped hand creams to panda-faced eye sticks.

The Tony Moly Flagship Store held a grand opening party on Friday, June 26, 2015. A stoney-faced DJ stood beside his deck at the front of the door, blasting hip-hop music resonating around the narrow store. This space was formerly cohabitated by the Koryo bookstore and another K-beauty brand, The Face Shop. The Face Shop ultimately moved a few storefronts down the street, making way for Tony Moly in NYC's Korea Town. Upstairs, Shine 32 sells Korean accessories and jewelry.

Tony Moly is certainly the master of adorable packaging. Most products are encapsulated by cute, mildly-Asian-themed plants or animals. A cooling gel with the essence of bamboo is contained in a thick, green, ribbed bottle shaped like a chunk of the plant. A whitening cream comes in a rotund, black-and-white vessel with a panda face staring back at you. The Appletox Honey Cream comes in a shining red apple, fit for Snow White. Lip gloss is topped with a colorful bunny face on the cap - complete with protruding ears - each shade conveying a different expression.

The girlish packaging may lead one to believe Tony Moly is targeting teens and young adults, but the prices tell a different story. The blog CeCi Beauty Therapy claims most products at the Tony Moly NYC flagship store are the victim of huge markups, perhaps due to the high cost of rent in K-Town.

The Pure Farm Pig Collagen Sleeping Pack costs $28 at the store, but you can find the same product online for about $15. While it's not available at Tony Moly's other NYC store location in Chinatown, you can grab this product for $26 at Urban Outfitters.

A Yelp reviewer similarly claims that the flagship store is a great place to try out different products, but it's a better deal to head home and buy online, where you can get the same items for "30%-50% cheaper."

The K-Town store does seem eager to draw customers in to try their products. The walls are back-lit with their popular items, including a particularly useful shelf called "Tony Moly Best 8" that displays eight of their customer-favorite products. Testers are abundant. In the back of the shop, you can set up a private appointment to get your hair styled and makeup done, as well as receive a skincare consultation.

But the store is extremely narrow. Expect to do a lot of sidling. Don't come to Tony Moly after a day of shopping in Midtown - your bags will knock over all the displays, and panda heads will roll.

Tagged :  kbeauty, k beauty, Korean Beauty, Tony Moly, TONYMOLY


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