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6 Korean Cushion Compacts And Makeup To Keep Your Skin Looking Bright

By Rachelle D. | November 28, 2015 08:05 PM EST


The cushion is one of the most simple makeup innovations to come out of South Korea. Why didn't anyone think of it before? If you take a trip to Korea, you're going to see everyone from idols to girls at the club quickly applying a little cushion makeup while they're on the go.

Here's Song Hye Kyo putting on hers:

Cushion makeup has a lighter, more watery formula and comes with an application puff or sponge. You use that sponge to lightly dollop the makeup wherever you want it. The light airiness of the formula and application process allows makeup to go on more evenly than if you were using a brush or your fingers, even though most cushion makeups are chock full of ingredients that help protect your skin from the sun as well as fill in lines and wrinkles. In short, it's one of the secrets to the much-coveted dewy look.

Lips, brushes, and bronzers are also available as cushions now, letting Korean women look simply dewy all over. The phenomenon has moved to the West, as well. Popular brands including Lancome and It Cosmetics have introduced their own versions of the cushion, and you can expect to see more on shelves in the coming year. But Korea was the original cushion pioneer (and the one with the cushion patents) and still has the best cushions out there.

There are two main drawbacks to cushion skincare from Korea. First, the formulas are usually designed to provide light to medium coverage. If you're looking for a heavy matte foundation that's going to hide deep discoloration or blemishes, you're going to want to either use a different product or seal in the cushion compact with a powder.

Second, and more importantly, many Korean skin brands is that most don't have several shades that will match all skin tones, and even some of the darker ones will have a white base or whitening ingredients to give skin a lighter, "glowing" finish. But if you find one that looks like it would be great but doesn't come in your skin tone, keep your eye on the brand: now that Korean skincare is gaining in popularity, many companies are making efforts to expand their product lines and create makeup that will better match a wider range of tones.

If you're still in the market, here are a few of the best cushion compacts that will take your makeup game from cakey to flawlessly fresh:

Sulwhasoo Evenfair Perfection Cushion

This is consistently rated as one of the best cushion compacts in Asia. One of the most touted ingredients here is apricot seed oil, which promises to hydrate skin all day long, cover up and even correct wrinkles, and brighten skin. It also has SPF 50 in it, so you don't need to pile on a thick sunscreen on top of your makeup. Another bonus for people who want coverage without looking too white - this one has more of a yellow base than many Korean skin products, giving it a more natural look than other brands.

Laneige BB Cushion Pore Control

This is a great option for people with oily skin or those who want coverage that can hold up against hot, sweaty days.

IOPE Air Cushion XP 

Another Korean favorite (numbers vary, but some reports say one of these is sold every six to 30 seconds in Korea) and regarded as the original cushion compact. And with good reason - the coverage is solid and the finish is flawless. The main downside is that this only comes in four shades. Like many cushion compacts out there, you start by deciding if you need C or N: C is for deeper coverage, N is for less (think more of a tinted moisturizer than a foundation.) Then decide if you want 21, designed for people with more light, beige, and reddish undertones to their skin, or 23, for those with slightly darker or more olive undertones. Anyone with skin darker than what is typically considered medium or dark isn't going to find the coverage they need with this product, unfortunately, but hopefully as the product gets more popular in the West we'll see this popular line expand.

Amore Pacific Color Control Cushion Compact

Here's an option that has a few shades that better fit medium to tan olive skin tones. In addition to SPF 50, it's full of green tea, ginseng, and other botanicals which add a rejuvenating boost to this makeup.

Banila Co Eye Love Cushion Gel Eyeliner

This popular cushion gel eyeliner from Banila is super creamy, giving your lined eyes a more textured and rich feel. It's especially luscious in some of the brown and burgundy shades Banila offers.

Peripera Ah Much Real My Cushion Blusher

Cushion technology is a natural fit for the cheeks. It's the best place for an effortless glow so luminous you'll make people think you've just spent a few moments frolicking in a field of sunflowers. There are a few cushion blushes on the market, but the Peripera ones are the best bang for your buck and come in super fun, vibrant colors that look great all day and night.

Tagged :  Song Hye Kyo, k beauty, beauty, makeup, cushion compact


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