Cushion used to hook

They used to say that when America sneezed, the world caught a cold, but this year, in the world of beauty at least, we’re all going to be catching the Korean bug. Because the newest, most exciting products all have a distinctly Eastern flavour.The Korean craze all began with BB creams — technically short for Blemish Balms, but essentially rebranded tinted moisturisers.‘BB creams were big in Korea because the girls liked the cuteness of saying “BB cream”,’ explains Kathy Phillips, international beauty director for publisher Conde Nast’s Asian division. ‘There was nothing special about them, it was just another way of selling an existing product.’
The Korean cosmetic craze began with BB creams (Blemish Balms), which quickly became popular in Britain thanks to online promotions (pictured posed by model)But thanks to the internet, the trend quickly spread, and as soon as British brands saw an appetite for BB creams, they started bringing out their own.They also started to keep a close eye on what was happening in Korea. Because while BB creams were not much more than clever marketing, some genuine innovation is emerging.‘There’s a big pharmaceutical industry there which the government has ploughed money into,’ says Kathy. ‘Cosmetic developments have come alongside it.’So, among this year’s slew of Korean-influenced new products, which ones are worth looking out for?
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LANCOME MIRACLE CUSHION
Lancom Cushion Miracle Foundation £29.50, nationwideThese cushion cosmetics are a huge hit in Korea, and Lancome is the first Western brand to launch a version. Essentially a sponge saturated with a light foundation, it comes inside a compact with a mirror and pad-style applicator.VERDICT: A brilliantly easy way to carry a liquid foundation around with you. It comes in six shades with refills costing £19.50.MAI COUTURE BLUSH PAPIER
Mai Couture Blush Papier£12.50 for 50 sheets, thisisbeautymart.comThese papers, infused with a powder blush, come in three shades, from a golden apricot to sun-kissed bronze. Just pat the paper against your face — one sheet does both cheeks.VERDICT: If you’ve ever found your blusher in pieces after carting it around in your handbag, you’ll appreciate these. They make it incredibly simple to top up your blusher on the go.MASQUEBAR ANTI-WRINKLE SHEET MASKS
MasqueBar Anti-Wrinkle Sheet Masks£9.99 for three, BootsMasks are a huge Korean trend — from gel and fabric ones that make you look like Hannibal Lecter to conventional mud and cream varieties. These have give skin a serious dose of hydration.VERDICT: They really do boost hydration, temporarily erasing fine lines.ERBORIAN HERBAL ENERGY LOTION 30%
Erborian Herbal Energy Lotion 30%£22.50, SelfridgesA collaboration between a Korean scientist and a French beauty obsessive, Erborian has been a beauty insider secret in the UK for a while. This lotion, based on Asian herbs, is designed to be used either as a toner, or with the cotton mask provided to create a mask.VERDICT: Delicately scented but not overpowering, if you’re looking for a new toner, this leaves skin soft, and hydrated. Ideal for those who don’t like the dewy finish. It also comes in six shades.SKINPEP AUTO MAKEUP£29.99, skinpep.comHi-tech beauty gadgets are big news in Asia, so it’s no surprise that this South Korean brand offers a vibrating puff that promises a flawless finish for foundation.VERDICT: If you’re prone to ending up blotchy through applying foundation unevenly, this is a bit of a godsend.The puff is anti-microbial and vibrates around 12,000 times a minute to really work foundation into the skin, giving a dewy, natural and even result that a regular sponge or brush simply can’t compete with.THIS WORKS NO WRINKLES WONDER ESSENCE
This Works No Wrinkles-Wonder Essence£30, thisworks.comThis is inspired by Korean ‘essences’ — water-based formulas that combine the properties of a toner, serum and moisturiser. Just pat a couple of drops on your face after cleansing.VERDICT: Many toners are alcohol-heavy and leave skin dry. This feels much gentler. It also contains hyaluronic acid, which attracts moisture to the skin.MIZON EGG WHITE BUBBLE CLEANSER
Mizon Egg White Bubble Cleanser£19, cultbeauty.co.ukThis quirky brand offers a range of off-beat products boasting ingredients as curious as starfish extract and snail secretion. In that context, the eggshell membrane extract in this foaming cleanser seems pretty pedestrian.VERDICT: Weird ingredients aside, this has a clean, soapy scent. It removes grime without leaving skin tight or dry.FRINGE STABILISERFrom around £1, ebay.co.ukThese simple but quirky hair accessories — basically the hook side of velcro, cut into heart or bow shapes — are used to hold hair off your face when washing or applying make up. You can also find them on Amazon.VERDICT: They might look like they’re designed for teenagers, but they’re quicker and easier than using a hairband or clip, and much less likely to mess up a blow dry. 
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robson-kanu phil rounds

They reached the FA Cup quarter-final under the radar – escaping attention with victories over Huddersfield, Cardiff and Derby County in the early rounds.Next month a convey of cars and buses will make the 37-mile trip down the M4 to watch Steve Clarke’s team play the mighty Arsenal in an FA Cup semi-final. Reading are back on the map now.This was a brutal destruction by The Royals, as close as it comes to a complete tactical masterclass at this level of the game. They were ruthless against Bradford. 
Reading players mob goalscorer Garath McCleary during the home sides 3-0 FA Cup quarter-final replay victory against Bradford
Hal Robson-Kanu (right) finds space inside the Bradford City penalty area and directs his header towards goal
The Reading striker prepares to wheel away in celebration after watching his header fly past  Bradford goalkeeper Ben Williams MATCH FACTS Reading (4-4-2): Federici 6.5; Gunter 7, Pearce 7, Hector 7, Obita 7; McCleary 8 (Norwood 86), Williams 7.5, Chalobah 7.5, Robson-Kanu 7.5 (Blackman 86); Mackie 7.5, Pogrebnyak 7.5 (Yakubu 89)Subs not used: Cox, Karacan, Andersen, CooperBooked: WilliamsGoals: Robson-Kanu 6, McCleary 9, Mackie 69 Manager: Steve Clake 7.5 Bradford (4-2-3-1): Williams 6; Darby 6, McArdle 6, Sheehan 6, Meredith 6.5; Halliday 6 (Yeates 59, 5.5), Knott 6.5 (Dolan 73); Hanson 6, Morais 5, Liddle 5; Hanson 6; Stead 5 (Clarke 59, 5.5).Subs not used: Clarke, Zoko, MacKenzie, Routis, UrwinBooked: Sheehan, Meredith, Knott Sent off: MoraisManager: Phil Parkinson 6.5 MOM: McClearyReferee: Mike Jones (Cheshire)Att: 22, 908Player ratings by NEIL ASHTON at the Madejski Stadium  Good for Clarke and his assistant Kevin Keen, the men who controversially changed all 11 players for their 4-1 defeat at Watford last Saturday. Who will remember that score now?‘We sneaked in under the radar, but I’ll be more excited about an FA Cup semi-final nearer the time,’ revealed a dead-pan Clarke.It was hardly champagne popping stuff, but that is Clarke’s nature after a coaching career that has also taken him to Newcastle, Chelsea and West Brom. He left the celebrations to the fans.By the end this place was raucous, with jubilant Reading supporters spilling on to the pitch at the final whistle.A spine-tingling opening ten minutes had seen a goal from former Arsenal trainee Hal Robson-Kanu and another from winger Garath McCleary put Reading in command.Jamie Mackie’s strike in the 68th minute was reward for his endeavour, a fabulous finish after locking on to Nathaniel Chalobah’s delayed pass.By then Bradford were down to ten men, chasing shadows after Filipe Morais was sent off for raking his studs down the body of Chalobah. Silly boy.The sharpest minds were in Reading’s team, with the soothing voice of captain Alex Pearce at the back containing and nullifying the threat of Jon Stead and James Hanson.On a night like this you have to feel for Bradford’s fans, delayed in traffic for hours on the way to the Madejski Stadium. In the end Phil Parkinson’s team never got out of first gear.‘Are you Chelsea in disguise?’ sang Bradford’s fans, hoping beyond hope for a comeback similar to the one they experienced at Stamford Bridge last month.It was there that they beat Barclays Premier League leaders Chelsea 4-2, recording one of the greatest FA shocks of all time. They needed one more super-human effort, calling on Gary Liddle, Billy Knott, Stead and Hanson to provide the resistance against this rampant Reading team. They could not cope.Reading went in front after six minutes and it is here that the romance begins for Robson-Kanu as he prepares to play his former club on the game’s biggest stage.The winger was released from Arsenal in 2004, the year the Invincibles went an entire season unbeaten on the way to clinching the Premier League title. 
Reading FC fan appears to throw a flare towards Bradford fans
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Robson-Kanu jumps for joy following his early header which set Reading on their way to an easy victory
Garath McClearys looping effort in the ninth-minute proves too much for Williams as Reading take a 2-0 lead
The 27-year-old sprints towards the corner flag as he makes the most of putting Reading into an early 2-0 lead
Chris Gunter joins McCleary as the pair hit the floor during the early stages of the FA Cup quarter-final replay
Chelsea loanee Nathaniel Chalobah congratulates the Reading winger on his ninth-minute strike 
Bradford boss Phil Parkinson (left) shouts instructions to his side and Steve Clarke makes notes during the first half
The Bantams were reduced to 10-men after this high challenge from midfielder Filipe Morais (left) 
Referee Mike Jones brandishes a straight red card to Morais as Chalobah (right) looks on from the turf FA CUP SEMI-FINAL DRAW Reading vs ArsenalAston Villa vs Blackburn/Liverpool The games will be played over the weekend of April 18 and 19.  Here nobody could touch Robson-Kanu and he beat Bradford captain Stephen Darby at the near post to put Reading in front with a terrific header from eight yards.The place erupted as Reading took control. Three minutes later they scored again.McCleary darted in from the right and when his shot took a deflection off the leg of Andy Halliday, the ball looped beyond the hands of Bradford keeper Ben Williams.It shattered Parkinson’s dreams, his formation splintered by the class of Danny Williams and Chalobah in the centre of Reading’s midfield.Next month’s semi-final is another chance to shine, as Clarke prepares for Wembley’s wide open spaces with a team that is tactically cute and comfortable in possession.Reading have been to Wembley for play-off finals, but it is 88 years since they played in an FA Cup semi-final.This is Arsenal’s specialist competition — winning the trophy five times under Arsene Wenger and making Wembley a second home. When the Royals arrive, they will deserve the red carpet treatment.
Reading FC fan appears to throw a flare towards Bradford fans
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The Portuguese midfielder looks on in frustration following his red card which left Braford with a mountain to climb  
Jamie Mackie (left) fires home from a wide angle to give his side a 3-0 lead against 10-man Bradford
Former Queens Park Rangers striker Mackie celebrates in front of the Readin faithful after sealing victory 
The Reading players charge towards Mackie (centre) following his 68th-minute strike
The Bradford player look dejected as Reading take a commanding 3-0 lead at the Madejski Stadium on Monday night
The second half was interrupted by a pitch invader, who looked to get the better of several stewards before being taken off
Jones collects a plastic water bottle which was thrown onto the pitch by Bradford fans during the second half
Play was temporarily halted during the second-half as several missiles were thrown onto the Madejski Stadium turf
Thousands of the Reading faithful ran onto the pitch after watching their team secure an FA Cup semi-final clash against Arsenal
One Reading fan holds a blue flare aloft as the home supporters celebration their teams 3-0 FA Cup victory
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