You’ve heard of Christmas in July, but have you ever considered Halloween in January? Here are some of our favorite urban legends from Korea that may leave you feeling a bit uneasy:
The Slit-Mouthed Woman
It’s well-known that South Korea is typically mentioned whenever the topic of plastic surgery arises, due to the country’s profitable and successful industry. So, it’s no surprise that with that would come a tale of a less-than-fortunate client.
The Legend of the Slit-Mouthed Woman began with a man who saw her on a train. At first glance, she appeared to be a normal woman wearing a surgical mask. Nothing too alarming, as it’s not uncommon to see others amongst the streets in South Korea wearing a mask due to sickness or the cold. But when she spoke to him, that’s when things began to get strange. She asked if he thought she was pretty. Confused, he stayed silent. So she asked again, “Do you think I’m pretty?”
This time, he tells her yes.
At that moment, she removed the mask to reveal a large gash across her mouth that stretched from ear to ear. “Do you think I’m pretty?” she asked for a third time, brandishing a scalpel. The man managed to get away, but it’s rumored that those who don’t escape her end up with the same gash across their face if they answer yes, and dead if they don’t answer at all. Moral of the story: look at the ground at all times.
The Cockroach Facial
Acne. Everyone’s had it, and a lot of people still suffer from it and the scars it leaves behind. However, many treatments are on the market. For instance, have you ever heard of using a cockroach to help?
In South Korea, you can get a facial using a purée of cockroaches to help battle those demons, but one man had an unfortunate accident with the bugs…
Legend says a man visited a fortune teller with acne so bad that he had reached his wit’s end. The solution he was given was to find a cockroach outside, and sleep with it beside his pillow. Following the advice, the man woke up the next morning and he noticed his scars were gone.
However, once he went in for a closer look… he found that the cockroach had laid eggs in his face.
Just remember to be careful about home treatments and remedies when it comes to your face!
We all love to take pictures to capture life-long memories in just a split second! Well, many of us do. Some avoid taking pictures and don’t keep many around, and this urban legend is a good reason why.
The story goes like this: A man came across the scene of a horrible wreck. There, he stumbled upon a photograph. In the picture was a very beautiful girl giving a “V” sign (also known as a peace sign), and he liked the photo so much that he took it with him and put it in his car.
A few days later, the same man was involved in his own fatal wreck, one that another man happened to find. Amongst the wreckage, he found the same photograph undamaged. Just like the previous man, he also thought it was a very nice picture. So, he took it with him, keeping in his car the photo of the pretty woman—now holding up three fingers.
Korea is known for beauty and skincare products, even skincare tips that are cheap, simple, and can do wonders for the skin. Have you heard how sesame seeds not only helps with hair growth but also promotes healthy, glowing skin?
This Korean urban legend tells of a young girl who’s self-conscious about her appearance. After hearing of their skin benefits, she hurries home to take a warm bath with black sesame seeds. She soaks in the bath for several hours, long enough for her mother to decide to check on her. Getting frustrated with her daughter’s vague responses and extended time in the bathroom, the mother forces her way inside, opening the door to find her daughter madly digging out each sesame seed that had taken root in every one of her pores with a toothpick.
Handsome Stranger in the Elevator
You never know when you meet someone new what they will really be like. While meeting someone new can be scary in its own right, there exists a legend in Korea of a handsome stranger and a cute girl meeting, and the consequences of that encounter.
Legend has it that a young woman was alone in the elevator of her apartment building when a young handsome man boarded the elevator with her. They struck up a conversation, and quickly found they lived only a floor apart. As the elevator stopped at the man’s floor, he turned to the girl, gave her an odd, creepy smile, and said, “I’ll see you soon,” as he brandished a knife and ran towards the stair entrance, laughing like a madman.
The doors shut on the now-terrified young woman, but unfortunately, the elevator did not come with an emergency stop button. Filled with despair, she hammered on the other buttons, but of course, this did no good since her’s was still active. The next stop was inevitably her floor, and she knew death was waiting as the doors opened to reveal her crazed neighbor.
The moral of this urban legend might be just as our mothers always told us: Don’t speak to strangers, who knows what the consequences may be?
Heard any scary stories lately?