• Top 14 Best Japanese CC Creams to Buy Online 2020 - Tried and True! 1
  • Top 14 Best Japanese CC Creams to Buy Online 2020 - Tried and True! 2
  • Top 14 Best Japanese CC Creams to Buy Online 2020 - Tried and True! 3
  • Top 14 Best Japanese CC Creams to Buy Online 2020 - Tried and True! 4
  • Top 14 Best Japanese CC Creams to Buy Online 2020 - Tried and True! 5

Top 14 Best Japanese CC Creams to Buy Online 2020 - Tried and True!

Foundation is so yesterday. Nowadays, in Asian beauty, all you hear about is alphabet cream: AA, BB, CC, DD, so on and so forth. CC cream is more a skincare product than a cosmetic; it usually functions as a color corrector and primer, though its properties can differ by brand. Depending on who’s making it, CC cream can be all sorts of shades and do all sorts of things.

So which products are actually loved in Japan and which are dupes? To answer that question, we ordered the 14 most popular Japanese CC creams from Japan’s e-commerce giants (such as Amazon, Rakuten, and @cosme) and tested them all. We also consulted three experts, who looked for the following:

1. Finish
2. Ease of Application

This is how we tested and found the most exceptional Japanese CC creams.

This article's specialists

Mutsuki
Chie Kato
Rika Fujiwara
  • Last updated: 10-25-2019
  • 3,742 views
Table of Contents

Introducing the Experts Who Lent Us Their Knowledge

This time around, we borrowed the expertise of hair and makeup artists Rika Fujiwara and Mutsuki, as well as the former fashion retailer and Instagrammer Chie Kato.
Introducing the Experts Who Lent Us Their Knowledge
〈Chie Kato, Rika Fujiwara, and Mutsuki〉
Beauty Gurus

{Left: Former Fashion Retailer and Instagrammer Chie Kato}
She used to work in fashion as a retail clerk (also the time when she started her blog). After she got married, she quit her job in in the fashion industry. Now, as a housewife, she's still very active, Instagramming daily about fashion, cosmetics, and hair. She's got over 100,000 followers.

{Middle: Freelance Hair and Makeup Artist Rika Fujiwara}
She's a freelance hair and makeup artist and an expert in aromatherapy certified by the Aroma Environment Association of Japan. She also pens beauty columns. She studied under Mr. Hiroki Murooka from the hair and makeup studio ThreePEACE for four years before going independent.

{Right: Hair and Makeup Artist Mutsuki}
She's a popular freelance hair and makeup artist who can turn anyone into an idol. Her creations are known for being girly, exquisite. In the industry, she has a huge following who can't get enough of "Mutsuki Magic," which brings out the innate beauty of actresses and models, leaving them doll-like yet natural.

Sorry, but What’s CC Cream Again?

Sorry, but What’s CC Cream Again?
CC cream is most often used as a skin corrector and primer. CC cream is described differently by various cosmetics companies, so it’s hard for us to give a hard and fast definition, but they’re basically color correctors, which is what the CC stands for.
For more coverage, go through your usual skincare routine, apply CC cream, then throw on a liquid or powder foundation. For a more natural look, just apply face powder over the CC cream.
CC cream is indispensable for busy mornings, but it tends to have a lot of oil in it. Therefore, if you have oily skin, it may wear off quickly and/or turn you into a greaseball, so you’ll have to work harder to find a formula suited for you.

How to Choose Japanese CC Cream – Buying Guide

We’ll get into how we tested and compared all of our CC cream, but first we want to share two things you should keep in mind when choosing CC cream.

① Choose a Shade that Blends Well into and Complements the Skin You Were Born with

① Choose a Shade that Blends Well into and Complements the Skin You Were Born with
Get CC cream that can match and color correct your skin color. The more naturally the tone blends in and the better the cream addresses your problem spots, the more beautiful your skin is going to look. The following is how we use CC creams of various undertones in Japan:

  • Green: To cover redness, especially around the cheeks

  • Yellow: To cover hyperpigmentation and liven up dull skin

  • Pink: To create a healthier complexion

  • Blue: To craft translucent porcelain skin

There’s also CC cream that goes beyond priming and acts more like a foundation. If you like a no-makeup look and want to complete your base with just CC cream, go for one that’s more beige in tone.

② Hydrating, Sunblocking, or Beautifying, Skin-Nutritious Ingredients? Know Your Priorities

Depending on the product, CC cream is going to be filled with different kinds of ingredients, meant to serve different purposes. Think about whether you want to prioritize sun protection, hydration, or beautification, then pick a CC cream that prioritizes the same things.

Looking for Hydration and Skin Beautifying Skincare? You Want Nutritious Ingredients like Collagen and Hyaluronic Acid

Looking for Hydration and Skin Beautifying Skincare? You Want Nutritious Ingredients like Collagen and Hyaluronic Acid
If you have dry skin or simply want to heal, pretty up, and maintain your skin, get CC cream that doubles as skincare. That means it should be packed with nutritious and hydrating ingredients. If you see humectants (compounds that attract water into the skin) such as glycerin※1, collagen※2, hyaluronic acid※3, and squalane※4, then it’s a moisturizing formula.
If you have sensitive skin, then you also need to avoid ingredients that could possibly irritate it. The most common culprits are ethanol※5, parabens※6, and mineral oil-based surfactants※7.
※1 グリセリン: glycerin
※2 コラーゲン: collagen
※3 ヒアルロン酸: hyaluronic acid
※4 スクワラン: squalane
※5 エタノール: ethanol
※6 パラベン: parabens
※7 石油系界面活性剤: mineral oil-based surfactant

Looking for Sun Protection? Aim for a Rating of About SPF30 PA++

Looking for Sun Protection? Aim for a Rating of About SPF30 PA++
If you want sun protection, it only makes sense that you’d go for a cream that can block UV rays. Just know that the more UV protection a product offers, the more stress it tends to put on your skin. Therefore, if you have sensitive skin, it’s important to avoid products with jaw-droppingly high SPF ratings, no matter how tempting they may be.
Something with an SPF of around 30 and a PA++ rating should be more than enough for everyday use. Use that as a bottom line and look for more protection when the need arises.

What Products We Ordered and How We Tested Them

What Products We Ordered and How We Tested Them
Now to introduce the 14 most popular Japanese CC creams that we ordered and the process by which we tested them.
{The Products We Tested}
1. naturaglace Makeup Cream (ナチュラグラッセ メイクアップクリーム)
2. Keana Pate Shokunin Mineral CC Cream (毛穴パテ職人 ミネラルCCクリーム)
3. LANAREY Prism CC Cream (ラナレイ プリズム CCクリーム)
4. KATE Secret Skin CC Base Zero (ケイト シークレットスキンCCベースゼロ)
5. Kose Grace One CC Cream (コーセー グレイスワン CCクリーム)
6. Shinnihonseiyaku Perfect One CC Cream (新日本製薬 パーフェクトワン CCクリーム)
7. SK-II Atmosphere CC Cream (SK-II アトモスフィア CC クリーム)
8. Kose Nudy Couture Mineral CC Cream (コーセー ヌーディクチュール ミネラル CCクリーム)
9. MAIHADA Sumihada CC Cream (米肌 澄肌CCクリーム)
10. FASIO CC Liquid Touchproof (ファシオ CC リキッド タッチプルーフ)
11. SUGAO Air Fit CC Cream (スガオ エアーフィット CCクリーム)
12. Dr.Ci:Labo CC Perfect Cream (ドクターシーラボ CCパーフェクトクリーム)
13. Freshel Skincare CC Cream (フレッシェル スキンケアCCクリーム)
14. 24h cosme Mineral CC Cream (24hコスメ ミネラルCCバーム)
We then tested for each of the following things:
Test ①: Finish
Test ②: Ease of Application

Test ①: Finish

Test ①: Finish
First, we tested for finish.
We had our experts try the CC creams out on their hands and tell us their impressions–whether the cream looked cakey, for instance, or gave the skin a translucent glow.

The Big Takeaway: The Dewy Finish of Hydrating CC Creams was Mesmerizing

The Big Takeaway: The Dewy Finish of Hydrating CC Creams was Mesmerizing
On this test, we were partial to hydrating formulas. They gave us those beautiful dewy finishes that are particular to CC creams.
Even the experts were impressed by the glow they provided. There were also a few products that offered enough coverage to be used on their own as a base, which will be good if you’re looking to save time.
Rika Fujiwara
Freelance Hair and Makeup Artist
Rika Fujiwara
I like CC creams that strike a balance with hydration and a dewy finish. They're excellent because they make your actual skin look beautiful.
Mutsuki
Hair and Makeup Artist
Mutsuki
CC creams are typically dewy. But the CC creams that did the best were the ones that provided a complete dewy finish, which left us feeling like we could use just that CC cream and nothing else as a base.

Test ②: Ease of Application

Test ②: Ease of Application
Next, our experts tested how easy each CC cream was to use.
They looked at things like packaging and how easily the product spread.

The Big Takeaway: Pump Bottles Made It Easy to Control How Much Product Came out

The Big Takeaway: Pump Bottles Made It Easy to Control How Much Product Came out
This time around, our experts favored products that came in a pump bottle.
Pump bottles predetermine how much CC cream you should use for a single layer, so you don’t run the risk of over-applying. If you tend to use too much product and end up with a cakey finish, next time, try looking for a CC cream that comes in a pump bottle.
Chie Kato
Former Fashion Retailer and Instagrammer
Chie Kato
Products that came in a pump bottle spread well and were easy to use. And you don't have to worry about too much spilling out, either.

The Final Verdict: Top 14 Best Japanese CC Creams to Buy Online

Now to introduce the 14 best Japanese CC Creams available online. They were ranked by how well they did on our tests and given an overall grade ranging from D to A+.
14. Kose Nudy Couture Mineral CC Cream 1

14. Kose Nudy Couture Mineral CC Cream

$11.67

FinishD
ApplicationD
Overall ScoreD
FinishC
ApplicationD
Overall ScoreD
12. Keana Pate Shokunin Mineral CC Cream 1

12. Keana Pate Shokunin Mineral CC Cream

$11.67

FinishB
ApplicationD
Overall ScoreD
FinishB
ApplicationB
Overall ScoreC
FinishB
ApplicationB
Overall ScoreC
FinishB
ApplicationA
Overall ScoreC
FinishA
ApplicationA
Overall ScoreB
FinishB
ApplicationA+
Overall ScoreA
FinishA
ApplicationA
Overall ScoreA
FinishA
ApplicationA+
Overall ScoreA
4. Dr.Ci:Labo CC Perfect Cream 1

4. Dr.Ci:Labo CC Perfect Cream

$32.84

FinishA+
ApplicationA
Overall ScoreA
3. Shinnihonseiyaku Perfect One CC Cream 1

3. Shinnihonseiyaku Perfect One CC Cream

$37.81

FinishA
ApplicationA+
Overall ScoreA
FinishA
ApplicationA+
Final ScoreA
FinishA+
ApplicationA+
Overall ScoreA+

How to Use CC Cream

How to Use CC Cream
CC cream is pretty self-explanatory. You go through your skincare routine, squeeze a bit of CC cream onto your hand, and spread it out from the center of your face outwards. Afterwards, you just pat on a bit of face powder, and your base makeup is complete.
CC cream not only covers up fine lines, dullness, pigmentation, and pores, but also makes your face a shade brighter. It can also function as skincare, hydrating your skin, protecting it from the sun, and controlling oil. It’s pretty much perfect for daily use as an ultra-lightweight foundation.
Of course, CC cream is mainly used as a primer and color corrector, so many of them don’t provide much coverage. If you have stubborn pigmentation, then try the cream along with a good foundation and concealer.

Looking for More Coverage? Try a BB Cream

If you’re looking to save time, nothing beats a BB cream. It contains all your base makeup in one tube. We also had a chance to purchase and test all of Japan’s top-selling BB creams; you can visit the article by clicking below.

Summary

We invited three experts, purchased the 14 most popular tubes of Japanese CC cream, and tested them all.
Everyone has their own personal preferences, of course, but the writer of the original Japanese article loves drugstore cosmetics, so she was enamored with the affordable Perfect One CC Cream. Next time you’re out looking for some new CC cream that’s a perfect match for your skin and skin troubles, make sure to keep this guide in the back of your mind.
Original by Yukina Matsuda; Translation by Jasmine Li

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