Thursday, May 28, 2015

Difference between a manufacturing date and an expiration date?

Do you happen to know what the date represents on your Korean cosmetic product? Korean manufacturer’s tend to have a very peculiar way of dating their products, and sometimes it can be confusing to decipher. As a Korean and Japanese company we’ve had our fair share of customers coming in who are concerned whether the product is expired or not; and we assure you that’s definitely not the case. For some unbeknownst reason Korean manufacturer’s traditionally label their products with manufacturing dates instead of an expiration date. So how can you tell the difference? Don't worry, we'll show you how! When you leave you’ll be a professional manufacturing label reader, and you’ll never have to worry about buying expired products ever again! 

When products are unopened, and unused they have a shelf-life of 2-3 years depending on what product, and what brand you have purchased. Those 2-3 years are added to the manufacturing date to make up the expiration date.

How can you tell if it’s the manufacturing date? It’s fairly simple. Usually the manufacturing date is accompanied by these Korean characters 제조” which means “manufacturing" in Korean. 

Here’s an example in the photo below: 

(14.10.27제조) - 2014, October 27.
14 Year -10  Month - 27 Day - Manufacturing (Pink Box)

Typically the year the product was made is listed first followed by the month and day. Then add in 3 years from the manufacturing date and your expiration date should be (17.10.27제조) or 2017, October 27. Once you get the hang of it it’s fairly simple right?

Now let’s move onto the expiration date shall we? When Korean manufacturer’s label an expiration date on the product it will have either “EXP” standing for expiration, or the Korean characters 까지 which means “good until or "best used by. 

Heres an example of an expiration date:

(EXP) 1603까지
(EXPIRES) 16 Year - 03 Month - Best Until / Expiration Date (Pink Box)

This one’s a little bit different because instead of a day it just lists the month and year it will expire. If that happens then you generally have by the end of the month to use that product.

So that about wraps it up for this discussion! Can you tell the difference between manufacturing dates and expiration dates now? If not then we’ll be more than willing to help! Just comment down below or shoot us a message at and we’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have regarding your product dates! 


  1. Very good post . I love the korean Products and i think its good to know that.

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