Quirky Korean lifestyle goods


To most people, giant AirPods and boyfriend-shaped cushions aren’t necessities. But sometimes, it doesn’t hurt to spend some cash on things that will not only put a smile on your face, but also be of use to you. We’ve compiled a list of 9 quirky Korean lifestyle goods that are surprisingly useful. 


1. UFO Hula Hoop


Korean Lifestyle Goods - ufo hula hoop
Image credit:
Coupang

This UFO Hula Hoop looks like something out of a sci-fi film, but don’t be afraid. Unlike a regular hula hoop, this contraption fastens securely around your waist, and you’re meant to swing the attached weight around the hoop. 

Korean Lifestyle Goods - ufo hula hoop video
Image adapted from:
@ha_ha_market_

As the weight revolves around your waist – and the hula hoop – spring-powered nodes will massage your abdomen and lower back.

Korean Lifestyle Goods - ufo hula hoop
Image adapted from:
Coupang and Coupang

The adjustable UFO Hula Hoop is made of 24 detachable joints, and you can customise the circumference of the hoop according to your waist size.

Not only does it massage your waist, but this strange-looking hula hoop will also help tone your body – you’ve got to use your abdomen, lower back, and hips in order to swing the weight around.


2. Muscle boyfriend cushion


Korean Lifestyle Goods - muscle boyfriend cushion with abs
Image credit:
다온 감성창고

There’s no need to feel lonely and miss out on cuddling with a significant other when you can get your hands on this spiffy muscle boyfriend cushion. Owning this cushion is like owning your very own K-drama oppa, complete with drool-worthy abs. This cushion will never give you up, let you down, or desert you.

Korean Lifestyle Goods - boyfriend cushion
Image adapted from:
다온 감성창고 and 다온 감성창고

Korean Lifestyle Goods - boyfriend cushion velcro hands
Image credit:
다온 감성창고

This multi-functional cushion allows you to lie on it, hug it, squish it – anything you want. The hands of the cushion feature velcro strips, which means you can fasten them together and wrap its hands around you.

Korean Lifestyle Goods - punching muscle boyfriend cushion
Image credit:
다온 감성창고

The boyfriend cushion also works great as a punching bag for days when you need to blow off some steam, which is something you can’t – and shouldn’t – do with an actual human being.


3. Friendly critter catcher


Korean Lifestyle Goods - friendly critter catcher
Image credit:
Bazio

If you hate creepy crawlies but can’t bring yourself to squash them, this item is perfect for you. This friendly critter catcher, with its soft bristles, does a great job of trapping insects without harming them. 

Korean Lifestyle Goods - critter catcher
Image credit:
Bazio

The critter catcher measures 65cm long, which means you can catch insects without having to go too near them.

Korean Lifestyle Goods - friendly critter catcher video
Image credit:
Bazio

And once you’re done catching said creepy crawlies, you can carefully release them back into the wild.


4. Portable stove table


Korean Lifestyle Goods - stove table
Image credit:
Wadiz

In Korea, most BBQ restaurants don’t serve single portions, which is annoying for diners who want to enjoy some grilled meat by themselves. And that’s where this mini table stove will come in handy – it allows you to honbap (have a meal by yourself) and indulge in K-BBQ in the comfort of your home.

Korean Lifestyle Goods - low stove table
Image credit:
Wadiz

You don’t have to worry about a tangled mess of wires coiling around the table legs as the stove is powered by butane gas, and you can easily get canisters of it online. The table measures 60cm X 60cm and can be easily stored out of sight as the table legs are foldable.

Besides having barbecued meat, you can also use the stove table to cook instant noodles or anything that fits into a small pot.


5. LED beauty mirror fan


Korean Lifestyle Goods - led ring light mirror
Image credit:
린더스위스

This 2-in-1 LED beauty mirror fan is a must-have for anyone who has to put on makeup in hot weather. The LED ring light lights your visage evenly, while the fan prevents sweat from ruining your makeup. 

Korean Lifestyle Goods - led beauty mirror fan
Image adapted from:
@one_home_life

There are 2 touch buttons on the mirror – one to control the ring light and another to control the fan speed. The mirror can also swivel 180°.

Korean Lifestyle Goods - led beauty mirror fan
Image adapted from:
@one_home_life

On hot days, the mirror can also double as a personal table fan. 


6. Teddy bear socks


Korean Lifestyle Goods - teddy bear socks
Image credit:
10×10

These 80cm-long teddy bear socks are a lifesaver for anyone who hates the feeling of the cold hitting their toes while they sleep. The socks are thigh-high so cold air will have to travel a long way to reach your toes – there’s a high chance it won’t.

Korean Lifestyle Goods - teddy bear socks
Image credit:
10×10

The socks have an adjustable toe opening so you don’t have to take them off completely when you inevitably have to go to the toilet in the middle of the night – there’s nothing quite like the horror of stepping on a wet patch when you’re wearing socks. And when it gets too hot, you can also slip your toes out for a while to cool down.


7. AirPods speaker


Korean Lifestyle Goods - airpod speaker
Image credit:
@gmarketstory

This one is for people who find themselves losing AirPods due to their small size. Kim Namjoon, we’re talking about you. The AirPods speaker looks just like regular AirPods at first glance, except it’s about 20 times bigger in size. 

Korean Lifestyle Goods - airpod speaker macbook
Image credit:
@gmarketstory

The only downside is that it’s not a Bluetooth speaker and you’ll need to store your music in a memory card. Nevertheless, it’ll definitely give your friends a good laugh when you pull this mega-sized AirPods speaker out of your bag. 

Korean Lifestyle Goods - giant airpod speakers
Image credit:
@i_jee_you

It’s also a perfect troll gift for the friend who has always wanted a pair of AirPods. 

대형 자이언트 에어팟 스피커 리뷰!! 일단 크다...
play button
대형 자이언트 에어팟 스피커 리뷰!! 일단 크다...

 


8. Sequinned face cushions


Korean Lifestyle Goods - sequin face cushion
Image credit:
@dy._.9

Sequinned face cushions are one of those things you don’t know whether to laugh or cry at. And apparently, it’s been a hit with Koreans – celebrities such as Ahn Bo-hyun and Jo Se-ho have been seen with these custom-printed cushions bearing their mien.

Korean Lifestyle Goods - i live alone sequin cushions
Image credit:
idus

The face cushion became popular after it was featured on MBC’s I Live Alone.

Korean Lifestyle Goods - sequin face cushion
Image credit:
@sin_soyoung_96

These sequinned cushions look normal – albeit flashy – at first glance, until you run a hand across it. This will reveal what’s printed on the other side of the sequins. Owning such a cushion will rid boredom at home as you’ll be self-entertained by the many variations of patterns you can create with a swipe of your hand. 


9. Kiss cup lid


Korean Lifestyle Goods - kiss cup lid
Image credit:
Behance

Even in times of social distancing, you can still get kisses whenever you like. These kiss cup lids combine the goodness of coffee and kisses, literally giving you a coffee kiss.

Korean Lifestyle Goods - kiss cup lid
Image credit:
Behance

The kiss coffee cup lids were designed by Korean designer Jang Woo-seok, who drew inspiration from Greek statues. The coffee lid only had lips at first, but a nose was later added in to give users a more realistic kissing experience.

Korean Lifestyle Goods - kiss cup lid
Image credit:
@yeah_jangdy

Many online shops have co-opted the kiss cup design, and now, there are even ceramic versions so that you don’t have to stop at one kiss. How eco-friendly!


Quirky Korean lifestyle goods you can find online


Korea certainly does a great job when coming up with items that are just as useful as they are quirky. Even if you don’t actually buy any of them, window shopping and browsing through these strangely useful items will give you a few good laughs. 

Check out other K-culture articles:


Cover image adapted from (clockwise from top-left): 다온 감성창고, @gmarketstory, @n_mj91 , and Wadiz

Follow The Smart Local South Korea on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Telegram for more stories like this.