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If there's one thing to be said about the K-pop idol group Dreamcatcher, it's that "status quo" simply isn't in their vocabulary. Since their debut in 2017, the head-turning septet has captivated audiences and fans with rock-inspired hits like "Odd Eye," "Piri," "Deja Vu," and most recently, "BEcause." It's enough to turn your notion of the "typical" girl group — which, to be blunt, doesn't really exist in the first place — completely on its head.
Despite their cheery dispositions over a Zoom call at 7 p.m. KT somewhere in Seoul (after a long day of work, no doubt), it's clear that, throughout their career, these ladies have showcased a seemingly natural mastery of the goth aesthetic. Don't be surprised if you experience a subtle chill down the back of your spine whilst watching one of their music videos — that's entirely the point. Dreamcatcher is a K-pop group that'll leave your jaw hanging with its boundary-pushing concepts, styling, and production.
In the world of K-pop, brand collaborations are a huge part of the business. Since this was the dynamic septet's first-ever joint venture, they knew they had to infuse that signature Dreamcatcher allure into the project. And who better to bring that to life than Neogen, an innovative Korean skin-care brand we've written about time and time again?
Each of the seven Dreamcatcher x Neogen scents — Passion Neroli, Motion Suede, Moonlight Musk, Love Rose, Freedom Iris, Self Bergamot, and Daydream Sweety, all of which come in both hand creams and body mists — were handpicked by the members and, as such, represent their essences. But no matter what scent, you'll find a heap of moisturizing ingredients like Damask rose water, ceramides, and aloe vera to soothe dry hands or any other areas of your body that need a pinch of hydration.
Oh, and did we mention that each individual product comes with a signed photo card and each box set comes with three? (All cards are chosen at random, by the way.) It's almost as if you're buying a K-pop album but with the (major) added benefit of skin care.
To celebrate the collaboration, we chatted with the lovely women of Dreamcatcher to get the low-down on the collection. They revealed how they landed on their specific scents, their go-to Neogen products, and their thoughts on being a one-of-a-kind group in the colossal industry that makes up Korean pop.
SuA holding Motion Suede.
Handong holding Love Rose.
Allure: How do your individual scents capture/suit your personalities?
SuA: I liked my [Motion Suede] scent because it has a soft, comfortable, and cozy feeling to it. But since it is a scent that represents me [as a person], I didn't want it to be too light. I wanted people who smell this to recognize my strong and charismatic image.
Handong: When I first smelled the Love Rose scent, I really loved its floral, sweet, and luxurious vibes. It suits my personality and is even similar to the perfume I actually use.
Siyeon: I'm such a night person and the [Moonlight Musk] scent is reminiscent of walking in the moonlight.
JiU: The Passion Neroli scent reminds me of my passion for life and striving towards my goals.
Dami: I thought about my own preferences, and when I realized I really liked fruity scents, I selected something similar [Self Bergamot].
Gahyeon: I really thought the [Daydream Sweet] scent captured my sweet, daydreamy personality, and I loved the freshness of the notes.
Yoohyeon: I sensed freedom from the floral and sandalwood notes [of Freedom Iris]. I enjoy being outside and the feeling of being untethered.
Siyeon holding Moonlight Musk.
JiU holding Passion Neroli.
Allure: If you had to combine two scents to make a supercharged one, which two scents would you choose?
SuA: I'd say Passion Neroli and Motion Suede. I actually haven't tried it myself but I hope a lot of people try them together and let us know personally. The names (e.g. Passion Motion) go well together as well.
Yoohyeon: After mixing and matching all our scents, I would have to say all the combinations worked great together, but my personal preferences would be Daydream Sweety (Gahyeon) and Love Rose (Handong) paired together, as well as Freedom Iris (Yoohyeon) and Motion Suede (SuA).
Gahyeon holding Daydream Sweety.
Dami holding Self Bergamot.
Allure: What went into the brainstorming and creation process? Did you try a lot of scent samples? How did you land on the final versions?
JiU: The Neogen team brought us a lot of essential oil samples and we picked the scent combinations and themes we were most drawn towards — and that's how we came up with the names as well. We also selected the packaging prototypes that represented our images and scents the best. We were all involved in giving feedback, as well as testing the textures and longevity of the body mists.
Yoohyeon: If I spray the mists onto fabrics or clothing, the scent will linger for two days.
JiU: And if you apply the mist before bed, you'll still be able to smell the perfume when you wake up about six or seven hours later.
Yooyeon holding Freedom Iris.
Allure: Besides your lotions and mists, what are some makeup or skin-care products you can't live without?
Yoohyeon: I'm really loving this pink metal mascara. My lashes become tangled/clumpy easily, but the ultra-thin wand coats every single lash while separating them.
[Editor's note: SuA got up and close to the camera to show off her lashes since she was wearing the mascara and I can confirm it looked as if she had extensions on — but in a subtle, fluttery way.]
Neogen Dermalogy Extra Slim Metal Maxicara
SuA: I have really sensitive skin so I'm picky about the products I use. I also have rosacea so it's especially hard to choose a cleanser [that won't irritate my skin]. The Calming Cicatree Cleansing Oil is really suitable and soothing for my skin.
Neogen Dermalogy Calming Cicatree Micellar Cleansing Oil
Neogen Dermalogy Calming Cicatree Micellar Cleansing Water
Neogen Dermalogy Calming Cicatree Pad
Allure: What's a skin-care step you'll never skip, or find to be most important?
Siyeon: Cleansing is most crucial for me. After taking off my makeup, I'll splash some warm water on my face and spend 60 seconds rubbing in my cleansing foam to remove all of the dirt and oil. I've been doing that for a while and I think it makes a really big difference, especially in the morning.
Allure: Moving onto music, what was the inspiration behind your latest EP, Summer Holiday?
Handong: Our general inspiration was the movie "Us," but the main theme we went for was creepy dolls.
A still of Dreamcatcher in their "BEcause" music video.
Allure: What was the most exciting beauty element of this comeback? Styling-wise, what differentiates this era from the others?
Yoohyeon: We wore identical, circus-inspired outfits to enhance those "creepy, dark doll" vibes. Unlike previous albums/concepts, our makeup was lighter and cleaner to focus on the pale look of a doll, but we did highlight our looks with a lot of glitter.
Allure: You've been the frontrunners of the rock/EDM genre within K-pop since your debut. What has been one of the most rewarding pieces of feedback you’ve gotten? From either fans or industry people?
Dami: Fans who listen to soundtracks from animes bring up that the music sounds like Dreamcatcher, which I am very proud of. Since we have produced this type of genre for a while I'm happy when people bring the relevance of our sound when hearing something similar — it makes us feel like our music really stands out. Also, a friend who listens to rock music told me "this is the first time I've listened to idol music that I've enjoyed" and I was proud to hear that.
Siyeon: Some of my K-pop idol friends jokingly tell me that they're a little nervous to perform after us on music programs because our concepts are so strong.
Dreamcatcher performing at the 27th Dream Concert at Seoul World Cup Stadium on June 26, 2021.
Allure: Has the pandemic taught you anything new about yourselves and your careers?
Gahyeon: It's taught me to be more thankful going forward. I miss fans crowding, yelling, and standing in front of me, which gives me so much energy.
Allure: What are you most looking forward to in 2022?
JiU: Because this was our first-ever collaboration with a brand, I'm hoping Dreamcatcher will have another successful collaboration in the next year. [Editor's note: We can't wait to see what they roll out with next.] We were also invited — as the first K-pop idols, ever — to perform at Primavera Sound in Barcelona (on June 4, 2022, for those interested), so we're really excited about traveling there.
While you wait for the next Dreamcatcher comeback or beauty collaboration, you can shop the entire Dreamcatcher x Neogen collection at neogenlab.us for $13 (hand cream) or $17 (body mist) apiece. From there, channel your inner K-pop star while you waltz out onto your imaginary stage and give your adoring fans a show they'll never forget.
Dreamcatcher x Neogen Catch Your Perfume Hand Cream Set
Dreamcatcher x Neogen Catch Your Perfume Body Mist Set
This interview has been condensed and edited for clarity.
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