The only and most important rule of sunscreen is simple – wear it every single day! Beyond this, choosing the right product and layering it with other products in your Korean skin care routine can be tricky. In this post, we will help you to understand more about Korean sunscreens and how you can seamlessly incorporate SPF into your skincare routine.
A sunscreen will not only keep you looking years younger by preventing premature aging, but it can also protect your life from cancer. You can wear these sunscreens alone or under your makeup for healthy and youthful skin.
Sunscreens are huge in the K-beauty world and most of the formulation are carrying with them some of the most impressive ingredients. There’s a ton of variety in the texture and feel of the sunscreens. There’s something lightweight and matte that you can choose, or even soft and glowy.
No matter whatever Korean skin care and beauty products you are using daily, if you are not applying sunscreen, you’re missing the most crucial step.
Did you know indoor sunscreen is a thing? If you are working by a window or sitting inside a car, you still need sun protection! Standard glass windows only block UVB rays but not UVA, thereby leaving your skin exposed to harmful effects of UVA – photo-aging. These include dark spots, wrinkles, and even an uneven skin tone.
Your hair also needs sun protection! You probably haven’t thought about it, but even the hair has an aging process. If you step out in the sun without sufficient protection, your hair is at risk of dullness, dehydration, and premature greying.
Best Korean Sunscreens for All Skin Types
Korean sunscreens are of two types – physical and chemical. Physical Korean sunscreen, a traditional Korean sunscreen, sits on the top of the skin and leaves a white cast which reflects the UV rays. They are also popularly known as Korean mineral sunscreen. They contain titanium dioxide and zinc dioxide, which protects you by reflecting the UV rays. Chemical Korean sunscreens do not leave a white cast, but these need to be applied roughly 20 minutes before sun exposure. They convert the UV rays into heat and thus protect the skin from any damage.
Here’s our ultimate guide to finding the best Korean sunscreen for you.
Best Korean Sunscreen for Acne-Prone Skin
A non-comedogenic sunscreen is perfect for acne-prone skin. If you feel that sunscreen will clog your pores, you can use a non-comedogenic sunscreen with soothing ingredients like Centella asiatica.
The water-based Korean sunscreen does not cause breakouts, and it does not even leave a white cast. It does not settle into the lines and pores of the skin. the sunscreen also controls sebum production and saps away excess surface oils leaving your skin with a soft and matte finish.
Best Korean Sunscreen for Dry Skin
Go for a hydrating sunscreen to protect your skin from the sun. If your skin feels dry and needs some extra moisturization and nourishment, then you should get a Korean sunscreen formulation that packs an extra dose of hydration.
Perfect for dry skin, it has rose and raspberry extracts that deliver a boost of hydration in a silky-feeling formula. People with normal and oily skin can use it as a moisturizer with sun protection. When this Korean sunscreen for dry skin is applied, the white cast fades within 10 minutes, and the sunscreen sinks into the skin. The Korean sunscreen has a superior adhering formulation with rich anti-oxidant Eco-certified ingredients. It also provides additional benefits of pore care.
Best Korean Sunscreen for Sensitive Skin
Does your skin react easily to stress or ingredients? Try sunscreen formulation without artificial fragrances that are specifically designed for sensitive skin.
It is a safe Korean sunscreen that is essential oil-free and contains ingredients that are safe for all skin types, including sensitive skin. The Korean sunscreen for sensitive skin is a natural sunscreen that is entirely unscented and uses EWG Green Level Grade ingredients. Centella Asiatica restores that oil-moisture balance of the skin and helps in the formation of collagen, which maintains skin elasticity.
Best Korean Sunscreen for Oily Skin
If you have oily skin and want to avoid the oily slick and shine on your face at the end of the day, then use sunscreen for oily skin with a matte finish. They balance out oil production in the skin.
The sunscreen for oily skin is a double-layer UV blocking system that holds up to both water and sweat. It provides long-lasting and impenetrable UV protection. Even when the humidity rises, the skin is protected from UV rays. The sun milk naturally brightens your skin and provides hydration and nutrition with the Natural Barrier Complex. Antozone-rose and glycofilm offer skin protection while helichrysum flower water is calming to the skin. It is a Korean chemical sunscreen that you need to apply 30 minutes before exposure.
Best Korean Sunscreen for Combination Skin
If you have combination skin, then you have a mix of dry and oily areas on your face. Generally, T-zone is oily while other areas are more dehydrated. So you need something that will not be too oily or too hydrating. It is crucial to find a proper balance between the two extremes.
The fantastic Korean sunscreen is perfect for combination skin. It has a thick moisturizing cream-like texture, and it rubs in well with quick absorption. The sunscreen has a pleasant smell and leaves a matte finish after drying. It is a mix of botanical and scientific ingredients that guarantee UV blockage. The sunscreen is formulated with 5,500 ppm of Aloe leaf extract that not only protects from UV rays but also improves the skin’s moisture barrier. You can also use sunscreen if you have sensitive skin.
Best Korean Sunscreen for Normal Skin
Normal skin means pretty much everything works. The ultimate choice depends on your personal preference.
It is sebum-free, non-sticky sun milk that provides long-lasting sun protection with 100% mineral-based mild ingredients for sensitive skin. The Korean mineral sunscreen has a light and airy texture with a pleasantly warm smell of grapefruit that fades quickly. It definitely does not leave a white layer on the skin, and it is easy to spread. Its thin and liquidy consistency leaves a light matte finish and can be a good base for makeup.
Best Lightweight Korean Sunscreen
If you are finicky about sunscreen creating a thick layer of cream on your face, you can opt for a lightweight Korean sunscreen. This type of lightweight sunscreen will not feel tight or heavy on the skin even during hot and humid months.
This lightweight Korean sunscreen from Innisfree will protect your skin from harmful UV rays without leaving a greasy residue on the skin. It contains soothing and hydrating ingredients like cica, sunflower seed oil, and green tea. It is a watery formulation that blends well with the skin without leaving a white cast.
What’s the difference between UVA and UVB?
The UVA rays are responsible for the aging effects along with causing cancer. UVA penetrates deeper into the skin, and it attacks the collagen in your dermis. UVB rays are the leading cause of skin cancers and sunburn. So, it is always the best option to choose a ‘broad-spectrum protection’ as it can protect against both UVA and UVB.
Moisturizer vs. sunscreen, which one goes first on my face?
According to Korean dermatologists, it is better to apply moisturizer before applying sunscreen. It will ensure that the sunscreen is layered properly over the skin evenly.
Can I skip the moisturizer then and directly apply sunscreen?
Typically Korean women use both, one after the other, layering their skin with products. You can choose a Korean moisturizer with SPF if you are really against layering your skincare. Make sure that the selected moisturizer offers sufficient protection against UV rays just like sunscreen.
Are Korean sunscreens FDA approved?
Not all Korean sunscreens are FDA approved, but the ones we have selected in this guide are FDA processed and approved.
I don’t get sunburnt. Do I still need sunscreen?
Yes! Even if you are not prone to sunburns or you can’t see the sun as it is hiding behind the clouds, sunscreen is a must! Sunscreen is not just a protection from premature aging and sunburn; it is also about protection from skin cancer.
It’s all cloudy outside. I definitely don’t need a sunscreen now, do I?
SPF is not just for sunny days! You need it even on cloudy days as the UV rays can penetrate through the cloud even when you can’t see the sun directly.
What else do I need to know about applying sunscreen?
Sunscreen is not just for your face. Don’t forget to apply it on your ears, tops of your feet, hands, and neck! These areas are often neglected, and you get sunburnt as a result.
Can I use the same sunscreen on my body?
Yes! You can definitely use the same sunscreen you are applying on your face.
Okay, I understand the basics, but what if I apply an SPF 50 sunscreen and then layer on a BB cream with SPF 50 on the top. Do I get double the sun protection?
Nope! When you layer different products with different SPFs, your total sun protection factor is the highest one, in this case, SPF 50. But, just because of this, don’t stop layering as protection is protection.
Shop the Story
Our editors independently select all products featured on KoreaProductPost. However, we may earn an affiliate commission when you buy something through our retail links.