I figured I could make a fun and informative post on my blog! Gmarket is a website in Korea that’s sort of like the Korean e-bay, just far better. I use it a lot here and it’s extremely convenient and sometimes a cheaper way to shop.
I’ve ordered many things through Gmarket, despite not really being able to understand Korean much at all. (Although it helps if you can read Hangul, so study up!) If you’re in Korea, I recommend using this site. You can buy practically anything on Gmarket, and they even have an “English version”.
If you type in or click this url http://english.gmarket.co.kr/ you will be directed to Gmarket’s main English homepage.
As you can see, there’s already a ton to choose from just on the front page, and that’s not even the tip of the iceberg. You can find practically anything you could want or need here!
If you are outside of Korea you can easily make a foreign registration for Gmarket, but I wouldn’t recommend it. Shipping is astronomical…something costing around $21USD will end up costing around $85USD after shipping. If, on the other hand, you are in Korea, you will need an Alien Registration card to be able to get an account (I think). If you’re here for longer than three months you have to get one anyway.
If you’re a foreigner and you’re looking to buy clothes, the best resource is to search for “Big Size” or “빅사이즈” in Korean.I typed it in Korean and literally thousands of pages popped up with those keywords in them. I’ve bought my fair share of great clothes off Gmarket! But beware! Sizing in the west is far different from here in the east. I don’t mean different as in using a different system, I mean physically different.
Back in the states I have a pretty curvy body and wear about a size 15-16 jeans. Mostly I’m large or XL, but it can fluctuate between different styles or brands. Here in Korea, I’ve only ordered their free size (after checking to make sure the measurements matched up fairly comfortably with my own) or L-XL for shirts. Pants here are a whole different story. Not only will my hips and thighs not fit in most sizes here at all, I find that even jeggings and leggings fit somewhat awkwardly. Back in the states, I would wear a Large in jeggings usually, while here in Korea I have not once ordered below a 2XL, and even then I felt lucky. Normally I’m stuck to the 3XL size. As an example, here are the jeggings that just came in.
Both pairs are 3XL and they don’t look any smaller than a large back home. Mind you, my thighs are rather large, so I know that’s what makes them fit awkwardly, but it’s still a small size as compared to what we are used to when hearing the word 3XL. Just because it says XL doesn’t mean it’s the standard of XL you’re used to, so make sure to check the measurements!
If you’re not sure what they are in Korean, I’ll explain. I’ll use an example of a listing on Gmarket of a shirt that I actually bought. The most important terms are “가슴둘레” (bust), “소매길이” (Sleeve length), and “총기장” (total length). They are measured in centimeters and are normally shown at the top or bottom of the item you click on. Sometimes they will have a small drawing of what each category represents on a shirt, sometimes not. Mine didn’t, so that’s why it’s important to know ahead of time! This is an example of the measurements from the shirt I bought~
If you understand what each thing is asking for, it’s pretty easy to navigate buying clothing here. The hardest part is finding things that fit just right…it doesn't happen too often. Also beware that sleeves here are far shorter, especially for girls’ clothes. The length might be 83 centimeters (on myself, a 5’8’’ girl, that’s past my butt), but the sleeves may only be 58-68 centimeters…just pay attention!
Gmarket is incredible and I hope that people can use it! Just look at the haul that came in for me today~
Face and beauty products from The Face Shop, high top shoes (Big Bang style), and two pairs of jeggings!
Another great part of Korea is the freebies…I got free insoles with the shoes, free makeup samples from the Face Shop, and free socks with the jeggings! Not all things will come with “service”, but some will! All of these things together cost me about $35USD. Clearly it can sometimes be a cheaper, easier route!
I hope that this has helped anyone who needed it or just was interesting! Enjoy your shopping!