Tis the season to be spending. But for today’s tech savvy shopper and trendsetter, Amazon can be (let’s face it) a BORE. Sure, the behemoth of online shopping can offer you everything from Yodeling Pickles to pillows featuring the face of Nicholas Cage, but oftentimes it’s a shot in the dark for a good product. Am I right?
There is an extraordinary pool of Asian and Asian American brands and platforms out there, capturing the hearts (and wallets) of shoppers everywhere. These guys aren’t “fringe”. They’re the new mainstream. Don’t be left behind with grandpa’s favorite brands and expand your shopping repertoire.
Here’s ADMERASIA’S Ultimate Holiday Shopping Guide WITHOUT Amazon. From bespoke jewelry to doing-good toys, there’s something for even the pickiest of gift receivers. We’ve split this guide into two sections, platforms and brands, helping you answer “where to shop” and “what to buy” this holiday season for your loved ones (and yourself).
WHERE TO SHOP
Say Yes to YesStyle.com. This site is home to amazing, high-end, beauty and fashion brands from Japan, Taiwan and Korea. And for great discounted prices. Don’t forget to follow their Coupon IG account as well!
Discounts, discounts and discounts. Masksheets.com has the best offerings for skincare and beauty, including $1 facial mask sales. That’s right, you heard me! ONE DOLLAR!
Yamibuy calls itself the one-stop-shop for Asian brands and we certainly can’t complain. Beyond fashion and beauty, you can also peruse food, home décor and children departments. Matcha Kit Kats and pastel pink rice cookers? Done and done.
Interested in something with Southern roots? I’m talking Desi. Roti? Samosas? Chai? Making myself hungry. Check out DesiBasket.com. Shipping fresh and shelf stable staples of South Asian kitchens to the entire U.S. plus FREE shipping over $25! Good times!
WHAT TO BUY
Death Stranding is out!!! After the collapse of civilization, Sam Bridges must journey across a ravaged landscape crawling with otherworldly threats to save mankind from the brink of extinction. From legendary game creator Hideo Kojima comes an all-new, genre-defying experience for the PlayStation®4 system.
Who cares about Tiffany’s when there are some skilled bespoke craftsmanship going on out there. Virani Jewelers offers exquisite bangles, necklaces, rings and more fine accessories.
Michelle Phan took the world by storm when she became a leading beauty influencer. But now her attention is on the market. Featured on Elle and The Cut, EM Cosmetics are a must. We love their Magic Hour Lip Crème.
Something for the tots? Try Modi Toys. These unique and cute gifts are perfect for the young and young at heart. Baby Hanuman, Baby Ganesh?! Our hearts are melting! And the best part is you’re supporting a business that supports children foundations and charities.
Ok, we couldn’t decide what we wanted to talk about more – Live Tinted, who offer every shade for every person, or influencer icon Nabela Noor’s X.O. line of products at e.l.f. So we went with both. The more the merrier!
Ok, something for the guys as well as the gals. (Not ignoring that men’s makeup is on the rise.) Korean brand BESLOW offers the latest chic and clean looks for everyone. And there will be sales. We promise.
And finally, the oldie but goodie Muji. The shop that sucks us in for hours and hours. Stationary, home décor, minimalist fashion all at very reasonable prices. Still delivering on quality after all these years. Yes!
We hope you not only enjoyed our holiday guide, but also discovered something special this year. Asia and Asian Americans are producing fine quality products, changing the landscape of how we buy and paving the way for new voices. Support the movement by buying from these brands or from your local purveyor.
(And Amazon can suck it.)
Written by XiaoHwa Sydney Ng