+ Binu Binu
Karen Kim began Binu Binu to ease her need for a simple, all-natural bar of soap that felt great to hold and was truly aesthetically pleasing. Inspired by the ritual of the Korean public bath, a place free of vanity and where generations are brought together in the simple act of cleansing, Binu Binu soaps are meant to become part of your renewing ritual – similar to the skin shedding scrub treatment that so many swear by — a miniature, daily rebirth.
The line uses 100% natural plant botanical ingredients and essential oils, including a base of "boricha" in all of the soaps, the Korean roasted barley tea which has a place in the household as important as water. Each minimal, yet sculptural, bar is formulated using a cold process method that retains the skin benefitting properties of the natural oils used – perfect for sensitive skin.
"There’s something compellingly simple about a bar of soap that makes it a beautiful thing: its form (no container, no pump, just a simple bar), its use (you hold it in your hand, lather, rinse), and its creation. I wasn’t able to find something that I felt looked modern and that I wanted to use all of the time, so I decided to create it. When working on the formulations, I started out with the idea of the Korean public bath, and all inspiration stemmed from there – the idea of daily ritual, ceremony, things that we do to sustain and renew ourselves."
"The word “Binu” means soap in Korean; I wanted to name the brand something interesting that reflected the product in the simplest terms. The ingredients are inspired by a theme, as well as selected for their skincare properties. It’s important that the products are both sensory and visual. So, in addition to being lovely to use, I wanted to simplify the bar form into something minimal but beautiful that would add interest to wherever it was placed, and be pleasing to hold. The packaging is based on the idea of an envelope. A discreet little package with something nice inside."