Beauty, Buying Guides, Korea

The Best Korean Sunscreens

WHY WE NEED SUNSCREEN <3


By now we all know how important sunscreen in order to prevent cancer and sunburn; of course the US is obsessed with skincare but Koreans are are even more obsesssed.  With Korean makeup, SPF protection is already included in many BB Creams, CC Creams and Cushion Conpacts.

Korean culture is a bit different and as for myself I have always been told to avoid  the sun.  In America there's so many tanning buisnesses while in Korea getting a tan is a frowned upon...what to do lol!?!  

On a serious note the number one cause of wrinkled and aging skin is UV rays for it will dry out your skin by breaking down collagen.  If you want to protect your skin under the sun remember to layer with sunscreen. "Slathering on the SPF repeatedly during your day will best prepare your skin for facing the the sun's harmful rays and help the skin retain its youthful elasticity. Layering SPF doesn't enhance your protection factor, but applying an SPF spray over your face two hours after you applied your SPF BB sure doesn't hurt"

HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST KOREAN SUNSCREEN

In the United States, Unfortunately, more than three million people have skin cancer in the U.S. each year. Of course we want to protect ourselves but there are so brands to pick from, so which one is right for you? On the other end there has been new research that shows that chemicals found in sunscreens can actually increase skin cancer?

Did you know that sun damage is credited for 90 percent of nonmelanoma skin cancers in the United States, Unfortunately, more than three million people have skin cancer in the U.S. each year. Of course we want to protect ourselves but there are so brands to pick from, so which one is right for you? On the other end there has been new research that shows that chemicals found in sunscreens can actually increase skin cancer?

​There are "chemical free" sunscreens as well "heavy metal" which includes zinc, titanium which is like a reflector "They're just a mirror, reflecting ultraviolet light off." I will say many prefer organic ingredients than chemical based sunscreens. Chemical-based sunscreens have a shorter half-life compared to sunscreens with a zinc based with will last for over with hours. The down side of zinc and titanium are less resistant to water and will clump to your skin; in addition it will leave a white coating if you're concerned about aesthetics=(


Price

If you're planning on using your BB cream as a replacement for your foundation, then you're going to want to understand how much coverage the product will supply. Coverage can vary between products, so it's important to find the right amount for your skin.

SPF

Keeping your skin protected from harmful UV rays is one of the most important ways to keep your skin glowing. Since Koreans love keeping their skin sun-free, many BB creams will come with varying levels of SPF. No need to double up on SPF moisturizers!

Size

Korean BB creams come in all different shapes and sizes. Since it is likely you will be ordering from Korea, you might want to check out different size options, especially if you plan on using it on the daily. 

Scent

There's nothing better than having a fresh burst of scent when you're applying your foundation. Some of the BB creams come with a light fragrance to add a little zest to your morning routine.

THE BEST KOREAN SUNSCREENS

Korean Sunscreen

Name

Cost

SPF

Size

Skin Type


$

SPF50/PA+++

45 mL

all skin types


$

SPF 40/PA+++

n/a

oily/combo skin


$

SPF45/PA+++

50 mL

all skin types


$

SPF50+/PA+++

n/a

oily/combo skin


$$

SPF 46/PA+++

50 mL

oily


$

SPF45/PA+++

50 mL

dry skin


$$$

SPF 50/PA+++

70 mL

all skin types


$

SPF50+/PA+++

55 mL

sensitive skin

Why do You Need to Wear Sunscreen?

Skin diseases are on the rise. So, one of the most basic functions of sunscreen is to protect your skin from all the harmful components in the sunlight. Additionally, it helps the skin to defend against skin yellowing, brown or black spots, wrinkles, fine lines etc.

Koreans are simply crazy when it comes to skincare and makeup. Yes, even Korean men wear makeup regularly! Also, cosmetic surgery is relatively common in Korea.

In the end, Korean skincare is pretty straightforward. Regardless of your skin type and issues, moisturizing and the use of sunscreen are always top priorities in the skincare routine.

Sun has been and always will be the greatest enemy of the skin! So, you must always add a layer of SPF-facilitated sunscreen before heading out of the house. Photo-protection is a very important issue when it comes to sun protection. Korean sunscreens offer much better photo-protection in contrast to US or European sunscreens.

Now, there are thousands of sunscreens out there with different attributes and benefits. However, it is imperative to decide which sunscreen is best for you based on your skin type, skin sensitivity, SPF Level, texture, weight, drying speed and so forth.

We have tested the top Korean sunscreens on the market and came up with a list for different skin types and problems. Hope you will find it useful!

Types of Sunscreen

Two basic categories can be found in regards to sunscreens. They are Physical and Chemical sunscreens. Additionally, you would find other sunscreens like broad spectrum or water resistant sunscreens that are formulated from these two fundamental combinations.

Physical Sunscreen

The amazing feature of physical sunscreens lies in their ability to reflect harmful UV rays before they can break through to the skin. They work as a layer on top of the skin. Thanks to their properties, these physical sunscreens are often called ‘Sun Block’. The skin doesn’t absorb physical sunscreen solutions. As a result, physical sunscreens have a propensity to work immediately after application. Moreover, they happen to last longer on the skin.

Chemical Sunscreen

Chemical sunscreens tend to suck up the harsh UV rays while the physical sunscreens don’t. They usually contain UV absorbing chemical filters that helps the skin to guard against different types of UV rays.

Broad Spectrum

Broad spectrum sunscreens are, more often than not, formulated via the combination of the physical and chemical sunscreen elements. These broad spectrum sunscreen formulations happen to work better than to physical or chemical sunscreens.

Water Resistant & Waterproof Sunscreen

Whether physical or chemical sunscreen, water resistant or waterproof solutions are indispensable for outdoor activities. By formulation, waterproof sunscreens can maintain their SPF level longer than water resistant sunscreens.

Difference Between American and Korean Sunscreen

For any sunscreen, a range of factors are associated with sunscreen solutions: Longwave UV protection (UVA) that is considered by PA or PDD Level; Shortwave UV protection (UVB), which is usually measured via SPF Level; Filters & Safety; Cosmetic Finish and so forth.

Now, when it comes to chemical strainers or PA or PDD levels of sunscreens, FDA doesn’t allow manufacturers to disclose this information on the bottles in the United States. Also, the formulas are much more different in the United States as compared to Korean or other Asian sunscreens.

Korean sunscreen comes with a wide variety of sunscreen formulas. Whether it is for daily or incidental sun exposure or a long-standing sun exposure like spending all day on beach, cycling, or mountaineering, Korean sunscreens have a range of solutions for every circumstance.

In case you are wondering, PA typically refers to Protection Grade of UVA rays. And, the protection grade is habitually leveled as PA+, PA++, PA+++, PA++++. The accumulation of plus signs usually indicates better protection from UVA rays. The more pluses mean better UVA protection in addition to the higher range of Persistent Pigment Darkening (PPD) factor.

By and large, be it formulation or texture, Korean sunscreens can offer a far better solution in contrast to American sunscreens!

Hera - Sunmate Cooling Mousse SPF 50

$$

70mL

SPF 50/PA+++

all skin types

Are you searching for a layered sun block that also has cooling effects in addition to basic UV ray protection for your skin? The famous Korean skincare brand Hera's ‘Sun Mate Cooling Mousse’ offers a soothing cooling sensation on top of it's UV protection. We love mousse for its ease of use.

Beside it's cooling effect, this physical sunscreen solution is formulated with SPF 50+ to fight against UVB rays with level PA+++ UVA ray protection. After application, the mousse creates a fine layer over the skin. As a result of highly concentrated formula, the solution can repel most of the harmful aspects of UV rays from the sun exposure.

With it's 50+ SPF level, PA+++ UVA protection, this Sun Mate Cooling Mousse is, without doubt, our top pick for the very best Korean sun protection formula available in the marketplace.


$

50mL

SPF45/PA+++

dry skin

 A’Pieu made a splash in skincare with their award winning, high-quality sunscreen at an affordable price. One of the key aspects of this wonderful solution from A’Pieu lies in its natural ingredients. This sunscreen is formulated with hydrating and rejuvenating components like aloe extract, and desert watermelon extract in addition to raspberry mixture containing peach, pomegranate, apple blossom, lime flower, damson flower, and orange flower.

It has a creamy texture without any gluiness. This sun cream offers powerful protection against UV damage with 45 SPF and a PA+++ grading. This natural solution is a great solution for oily and acne-prone skin. It creates a thin white layer on top of your skin and you can blend it with other layers easily. With it's natural ingredients, industry standard UVA and UVB ray protection, and light fruity aroma, this sun cream can provide some first-rate protection against UV damage.

Missha - All Around Safe Block Essence Sun

$

50 mL

SPF45/PA+++

all skin types

In the hot summer months, it’s time to get your bikini out of storage and relax at the pool and the beach! But how can we protect our skin while playing in the water? We have a perfect solution,  ‘Missha's All Around Safe Block Essence Sun’ with SPF45 and PA+++.

This particular sun block essence contains PA+++ grade protection against UVA rays. Also, the formulation is especially designed with a Double Layered Polymer which stands up against sweat and water. Just take a pea-sized amount of lotion into your palm and pat lightly on the face for a super smooth absorption. You can easily use this solution as the final step in  your morning skincare regimen.

In addition to the face, you can also apply the solution to your neck, arms, legs, or any other preferred areas. You can always reapply the solution for extended sun exposure. MISSHA deserves a round of appreciation for this all around sun block solution!

Etude House - Sunprise Mild Airy Finish Sun

$

55mL

SPF50+/PA+++

sensitive skin

Next up is ‘Sunprise Mild Airy Finish Sun Milk’ from the famous Korean skincare brand Etude House. Etude House formulated this sunscreen based on non-sticky and non-turbidy properties for a superior and smoother finish. As the name suggests, this product has a milky consistency. It was particularly designed for sensitive skin with a list of 100% mineral components.

The mineral filter will help with the soft and smooth application of the product. Moreover, the solution absorbed easily into the skin. Also, this product works miracle for oily and sensitive skin. It will allow you to have a matte finish topped off with an all-natural fragrance.

When it comes to primary UVA and UVB rays protection, it comes in at 50+ SPF with a PA+++ fortification shield. With it's light and matte formula and  SPF 50+ and PA+++ grading, the Etude House 'Sunprise'  product worth every penny.


The Face Shop - Natural Sun Eco Sebum

$

n/a

SPF 40/PA+++

oily/combo skin

For a sunscreen featuring oil control and a hydrating solution check out the highly acclaimed solution fromthe Face Shop, the ‘Natural Sun Eco Sebum Control Moisture Sun’. This water-based sunscreen solution is made with natural elements and it is compatible with all skin types. It contains sunflower sprout extract, salvia hispanica seed extract, and native Korean cotton seed extract.

One of the key aspects of this sunscreen is that it helps to control the oily secretion from the sebaceous glands of the skin. This water-based product can protect your skin against the UV rays for a period of 8 hours. With a SPF level of 40 and UVA grading of PA+++, you can have plenty of time to play in the sun.

This sunscreen is super hydrating! It will cover all the pores of the skin and block the UV rays from damaging the skin. With an assortment of beneficial natural components, SPF 40, PA+++, sebum control, and moisturizing effect, this is one of the best Korean sunscreens on the market.

Etude House - Sunprise Bye Sebum Sun Stick

$

n/a

SPF50+/PA+++

oily/combo skin

If you are sick of the oily and greasy residue on your skin and looking for an on-the-go sun protection solution, make sure to scoop up the ‘Sunprise Bye Sebum Sun Stick’ from Etude House. This is a multipurpose skincare solution from Etude Hose that can solve a range of problems from sebum control to toning and the essential UV protection.

It contains tangerine, aloe vera, acerora and portulaca extracts. The solution has a silky texture and glides softly onto the skin. It is also designed to prevent oil secretion from your pores. This product isn't waterproof however.

 You can seriously say bye to oily skin with the regular use of this sun stick. With it's series of revitalizing ingredients, great protection from both UBA and UVB rays with 50+ SPF and PA+++ grading, it’s a no brainer for anyone who is searching for a oil-control sun stick. It's also just a super fun and novel way to apply sunscreen!

CATRIN- natural 100 Mineral Sun Kill RX

$$

50 mL

SPF 46/PA+++

oily skin

The ‘Natural 100 Mineral Sun Kill Sunscreen’ from CATRIN contains ten organic natural ingredients. One of the key elements of this solution is the 100% premium Italian Intercos minerals for skin soothing. This sunscreen doesn’t contain any harmful ingredients like paraben and benzophenone. We love that this sunscreen is in powder form! This is because it specializes in a matte finish and doesn't leave an oily residue as sunscreen lotions often do.

With it's light texture, you will find it applies smoothly into your skin. Moreover, it gets absorbed into the skin effortlessly. Within just 24 hrs of use, the product can cover your blemishes and pores The mineral and natural ingredients actually invigorate the skin. It can protect the skin without stickiness and white residue.

Thanks to its milder consistency, you can use it in layers with other makeup without clumping. With it's light consistency, SPF 46, Pa+++, natural ingredients, imported Italian ingredients, and powerful adhesive effect, this product can be considered as one of the best sunscreens out there in the market for oily skin.

Tony Moly - Mango Mild Sun Block

$

45 mL

SPF50/PA+++

all skin types

TonyMoly is a well-established name in Korean skincare with a huge product lineup. This time, TonyMoly came up with an amazing sunscreen solution for every skin typeat a very very affordable price point. With this sunscreen TonyMoly focused on non-stickiness and non-white turbidity in accordance with the consumer research.

This sunscreen includes a series of natural ingredients such as of mango seed butter, apple mango, lemon, guava, banana, grapefruit, orange and papaya extracts. All these components promote extra nutrition and moisturizing of the skin. As always we love Tonymoly's packaging! Since this sunscreen is made with mango extract and has a mango aroma, it comes in a mango! The soft and moist texture of the product will remind you of a real mango.

Thanks to its UV protection properties, this is one of the best alternatives for incidental sun exposure. You can use this light solution on top of all of your skincare and makeup layers so that it can block UV rays. With it's fruity ingredients, smooth absorption, SPF 50+, and PA+++, this is a great all-around sunscreen for all skin types.

MISSHA All-Around Safe Block  Sun Milk

$

70 mL

SPF50+/PA+++

all skin types

If you hate greasy feel of many sunscreens finish and want a lighter consistency with matte finish, check out ‘All-Around Safe Block Sun Milk’ with SPF50+ and PA+++ from the famous Korean skincare giant MISSHA. This sun milk from MISSHA has a milky consistency and it layers onto your skin smoothly and evenly.

This product is made with camu-camu extract for clear skin. It is designed to be white residue-free, stickiness-free, with a matte finish.When you would first apply this solution onto your skin, you'll immediately feel the silky smoothness of this formula. We super love the matte finish! However, in case you have a sensitive or allergy prone skin, you might want to pick a different sunscreen.

On the whole, it provides you with strong UV protection with SPF 50+ and PA+++ protection and a silky-smooth matte finish. This is a great sunscreen for everyday outdoor activities in addition to occasional continuing sun exposure.

Koreangs - Jelly Water Based Sunscreen

$

50 mL

SPF50/PA+++

all skin types

For a water-based sunscreen solution with superior moisturizing, non-residue and non-sticky properties, check out this Jelly Sunscreen from Koreangs.  This water-based sunscreen consists of a range of natural ingredients like Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Orchid extract, crinum asiaticum extract, dendrobium phalaenopsis flower extract, witch hazel leaf extract, camellia sinensis leaf extract, cucumber fruit extract, and morus alba bark Extract. 

It's jelly-like texture feels nice on the skin and it absorbs smoothly. The major feature of this sunscreen lies in its ability to hydrate the skin. Thanks to the natural ingredients, it can sooth your skin nicely.

The water-based formulation with herbal extract can minimize the chemical effect of the broad spectrum. The oil-free formula, the extraordinary moisturizing, and the solid UVA and UVB protection will allow you to enjoy shine free finish.


How to Apply Sunscreen

Source: Paula's Skincare


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