Thursday, May 11, 2006

Shopping Perils

Shopping in Korea (in this case grocery shopping) can be like a treasure hunt; not only are things labeled in foreign characters, but the stores are also arranged in what I (a frequent patron to Woolies, Coles and the like back in Australia) would call "illogical". Things are not always where you would expect to find them. The strangest one I saw was 'feminine products' across the aisle from cooking oil, with gas cylinders for those tiny portable camping stoves on one side and something totally incongruous on the other; plastic plates or lollies or whatnot.

Anyway, when things are labelled in a foreign language, purchases often require guess work and detective skills: looking at pictures, comparing products with some English vs no English, and so on.

Let's take the example of shampoo and conditioner. It's pretty easy to spot; I know the brands 'Pantene' and 'Head and Shoulders' (even with the Korean writing), and I recognise some of the Korean brands. Some of them have 'rinse' (American terminology for conditioner) and 'shampoo' written on them (in English). I can also read the Korean equivalent of 'rinse'.
So, I find the right aisle, figure out which is affordable (it happened to be Pantene), and identify 'rinse'.
However, now I have 5 different kinds to choose from. I picked one at random, but unfortunately I think I picked a 'for volume' kind. Anyone who knows me and my hair will know that 'volumising' is something it most certainly does not need, and contrary to what some people may think, I think it actually works. My hair tends to resemble a mop or a poodle most days; after using the rinse, my hair tends to look like a poodle sitting on a mop, or a mop which has somehow morphed with a poodle. Combined with the wind we have at the moment, add "witch" to the picture, and you've got my hair.

Unfortunately, I also bought the "two-bottle value pack" (thinking it was a "shampoo and conditioner set" pack), so I've got a lot of the stuff to go through.

Here is what the bottle looks like. I suppose purple is generally on 'volumising' kinds of cond/shpoo, but I wasn't thinking about that at the time.
Captain Conditioner, whose love of purple has gotten her boofy hair.

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