The growing popularity of Korean BB creams marks a fundamental change in the way we're thinking about our beauty routines: a skin-first philosophy is increasingly becoming the norm. When it comes to makeup that provides natural coverage and greater skin benefits, the best Korean BB creams with high SPF fit the bill like nothing else.
Although BB cream was originally created in Germany, Korea is known for perfecting it. I've yet to find a BB cream that wasn't Korean-made with the same level of coverage, that elusive natural finish, high SPF, and the array of antioxidants and hydrating ingredients that many Korean BBs contain.
The high SPF present in Korean BB creams is key to maintaining healthy skin. Unprotected exposure to the sun is extremely damaging to our skin in the long run, and whether you can see that damage happening or not, it's there. Sun protection is so important that the American Academy of Dermatology recommends applying a sunscreen with at least SPF 30 every single day that you're going to be outside.
For your sunscreen to provide full protection, you should be applying at least a nickle-sized amount to your face. Since many people don't apply this much makeup, it's not recommended that you rely solely on it to protect your skin from the sun. That being said, Korean BB creams are intended to provide an extra layer of sun protection — because, really, the more the better! And cushions are especially great for this purpose, because they're easy to throw in your bag and reapply throughout the day.
These eight amazing Korean BB creams and cushions all provide SPF of 30 or above and don't have that white cast typical of many sunscreens.
1. This Ridiculously Popular Dewy Cushion
The IOPE Air Cushion was one of the first cushions to really make it big, but they didn't stop there. For the newest generation of this uber-popular cushion, IOPE added more shades and finishes to their cushion family. There's now four varieties: Moisture Lasting, Natural Glow, Intense Cover, and Matte Long Wear — which I've listed in order of dewy to matte finish.
Each finish is available in shades 13, 21, and 23, which will match fair to medium skin tones.
2. This OG Korean BB Cream With Impeccable Coverage
The Dr. Jart+ Premium Beauty Balm is known for it's medium-high coverage, natural finish, and serious skin care benefits. Titanium and Zinc oxides give this BB its high sun protection, but it never leaves a white cast. Because it's super moisturizing, this BB is best for dry or combination skin types.
3. This Soothing, Oil-Free BB With A Glowy Finish
The biggest downside to Korean BB creams is that their shade ranges are often pretty lousy. And though purlisse's Perfect Glow BB Cream SPF 30 only has eight shades, it's still better than most other brands that only offer a couple. This oil-free formula has an SPF of 30, is suitable for use on all skin types, and offers a tint with a hint of glow. In addition to being vegan, cruelty-free, and free of common chemical irritants like parabens, propylene glycol, and phthalates, it also contains two plant-based ingredients, chamomile and artemisia, that are known to help soothe skin.
This BB cream is available in fair, light, light medium, medium, medium tan, tan deep, and deep shades.
4. This Affordable BB Is A Favorite Among Beauty Vloggers
Skin79's BB creams are a major hit with Korean beauty lovers, and even beauty guru, Jen Chae, of From Head To Toe, says that the Skin79 Pink Label BB Cream is one of her "favorites" and has "Better coverage than other bb creams and improves skin texture." According to Chae, this full coverage BB cream is a perfect match for MAC NC25-NC30 but can blend to match similar shades as well.
This BB cream works best for light to medium skin tones.
5. This Long Wear Cushion Became An Overnight Sensation In Korea
Unlike most cushions, the April Skin Magic Snow Cushion Black provides medium-high coverage with just one tap of the applicator puff, allowing you to wear a lighter layer of makeup if higher coverage is what you prefer. While there is also a dewier "White" version of this cushion, "Black" is longer wear, has a more natural finish, and provides better pore control — making it the better choice for combination-oily skin types year round, and a great option for anyone in the warmer months.
This cushion comes in shade 21 Light Beige, 22 Pink Beige, and 23 Natural Beige, which work for light and medium skin tones.
6. This World Famous BB Cream With A Wider Range Of Shades Than Most
The Missha M Perfect Cover BB Cream is the absolute winner when it comes to their wider range of shades. Because this BB cream became so wildly popular worldwide, they were quick to add more shades to the roster to suit skin tones up to MAC NC40-NC45. And, their lightest shade, 13, is perfect for very fair skin — another skin tone most BB creams fail to match.
7. This Shimmering BB Cream Infused With Pearl Powder Crystals
Sure, this BB cream from Holika Holika offers sun protection and smooth, satiny coverage. But what it also does is create a shimmering, iridescent effect thanks to the pearl powder crystals in the formula. The effect? Luminous skin, even looking tone, and an overall glow.
Because of the pearl-like finish, this BB cream is best suited for fair skin tones.
8. This Matte BB Cream Is Perfect For Oily Skin Types
If you find your skin getting oily by mid-day with other BB creams, you'll love this matte-finish BB. This highly pigmented formula easily covers post-acne marks and sun spots, while rose hip oil and lemon balm help to fade them over time. And, this BB is free of alcohol and mineral oils, both common irritants for acne-prone skin.
This BB cream will work best for light to medium skin tones.
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