I wouldn’t be able to call myself a beauty editor if I didn’t write a lot about sunscreens, right? Cliché, but whatever. I was excited to try the Pyunkang Yul ATO Mild Sun Cream! My obsession with sunscreens is no secret. I collect them like women collect lipstick, or how I used to collect beanie babies… pretty sure I lost money on that middle school investment. Let me clarify: if you care about your skin, you should care about sunscreens as much as I do!
My review, at a glance:
- Price and availability
- My experience
Where to buy Pyunkang Yul ATO Mild Sun Cream?
On Amazon* it is available for $19.99.
As I write this review, it is available on YesStyle* for $13.77, StyleKorean* for $11.90, StyleVana for $11.89. They are trustworthy Korean websites that ship internationally.
You can also find it at OHLolly for $24.
It’s a sweet deal because it comes in a 2.53 fl oz / 75 ml compared to the 1.69 fl. oz / 50 ml typical to most Asian sunscreens. It matters, especially when you need sunscreen every day.
The Pyunkang Yul brand
I am also currently enjoying Pyunkang Yul ATO Cream Blue Label, and I am eager to try new products from this brand because:
- I have only read amazing things about the Pyunkang Yul Essence Toner.
- I have also read my fellow muse, Adela’s, review on Pyunkang Yul Low PH Pore Deep Cleansing Foam.
Pyunkang Yul ATO Mild Sun Cream claims
- Gentle sunscreen offers SPF 50 PA++++ UV protection without leaving a white cast.
- Lotion-type formula absorbs well into skin and feels comfortable on skin.
- Contains Honeysuckle Flower Extract, Mugwort Leaf Extract and Green Tea Extract to soothe sun-irritated skin.
- Enriched with Hyaluronic Acid and Ceramide to form a moisturizing barrier over skin.
- Suitable for sensitive skin.
- Made of EWG green-grade ingredients, the formula is safe to use for the whole family.
Who is this hybrid sunscreen for?
For all skin types, especially for sensitive, easily irritated skin. It is tested and ok to use even for babies.
Pyunkang Yul ATO Mild Sun Cream Ingredients
Water, Zinc Oxide, Cyclopentasiloxane, Homosalate, Butyloctyl Salicylate, Propanediol, Ethylhexyl Salicylate, Propylheptyl Caprylate, Polyglyceryl-4 Diisostearate/Polyhydroxystearate/Sebacate, Titanium Dioxide, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Polyglyceryl-3 Polydimethylsiloxyethyl Dimethicone, Magnesium Sulfate, Phenyl Trimethicone, 1,2-Hexanediol, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Acrylates/Dimethicone Copolymer, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Stearic Acid, Aluminum Hydroxide, Glyceryl Caprylate, Caprylyl Glycol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Tocopherol, Ceramide NP (Ceramide 3), Sodium Hyaluronate, Butylene Glycol, Dipropylene Glycol, Glycerin, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Artemisia Princeps Leaf Extract, Ulmus Davidiana Root Extract, Xanthium Strumarium Fruit Extract, Salicornia Herbacea Extract, Zingiber Officinale (Ginger) Root Extract, Lonicera Caprifolium (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Poncirus Trifoliata Fruit Extract, Sophora Angustifolia Root Extract, Allium Sativum (Garlic) Bulb Extract
See explained ingredients on INCIDecoder.
Zinc Oxide, Homosalate, Ethylhexyl Salicylate, Titanium Dioxide.
Pyunkang Yul sunscreen* was previously formulated with only one UV filter: Titanium Dioxide.
Titanium Dioxide is an inorganic photostable sunscreen filter that reflects and blocks UVA and UVB rays. However, it has been said that it does not protect against the whole range of UVA rays but depends on the formulation.
Inorganic filters are supposedly a safer choice for those with sensitive and/or acne-prone skin types as they do not penetrate much into the skin and instead form a protective film over the skin. However, some may still find their skin irritated or allergic to this filter, so do note.
It also may cause a “white cast” effect on deeper skin tones.
Based on the ingredients, it can be observed that this new formulation of the Pyunkang Yul sunscreen has added Zinc Oxide, Homosalate, and Ethylhexyl Salicylate to the UV filters.
Ceramides are a family of lipids that account for 50% of the skin barrier (by weight), so they’re essential, right? Ceramides are crucial to
- maintain the skin’s moisture levels;
- protect skin from external irritants making skin more resilient;
- help make skin more plump, juicy, radiant, and smooth;
- makes skin tolerate chemical exfoliation much better;
- skin is less likely to become irritated;
- because they prevent dehydration, ceramides are a great anti-aging ingredient;
- regulate the cell cycle and apoptosis (regulated cell death);
- beneficial for all skin types.
Heralded as skincare heroes, ceramides can now be found in cleansers, toners, serums, masks, moisturizers, and even hand creams.
They are generally well tolerated and can be combined with other ingredients, especially plant oils rich in linoleic acid.
Artemisia Capillaris Extract
Also known as mugwort extract helps relieve skin inflammation due to sensitivity issues such as atopic diseases (e.g., eczema).
Licorice is a potent antioxidant that evens skin tone and soothes sensitive skin. Studies also have shown it acts as an anticarcinogenic.
Ingredients not included in Pyunkang Yul ATO Mild Sun Cream
Alcohol, fragrance, and essential oils
Pyunkang Yul ATO Mild Sun Cream* is vegan, therefore, cruelty-free.
The Pyunkang Yul ATO Mild Sun Cream, or as I like to call it, the Pyunkang Yul sunscreen (I’m just lazy, haha), comes in an outer blue and white transparent carton box that’s pretty minimalistic in itself. The actual product is housed in an opaque, matte slim white squeeze tube with a screw cap that twists off to reveal a fine nozzle dispenser.
Scent-wise, this sunscreen has a light sunscreen smell. I have no issue with it, as it’s not strong.
Interestingly though, when I asked my mum what this sunscreen smells like, she said it reminds her of those old medicinal zinc ointments, which is surprisingly quite apt as Zinc Oxide is listed as the second ingredient.
I’m pleased to say that the application is smooth sailing. It has a lightweight consistency, but it is not oily.
I also like how travel-friendly the packaging design is, as the firm screw cap eases any worry of product leakage.
My personal experience with Pyunkang Yul ATO Mild Sun Cream
I’ve been using this Pyunkang Yul sun cream as my everyday sunscreen for about three weeks, and I see some pros and cons. I have to mention, though, that when I first started using this product, my skin was particularly sensitive due to starting tretinoin, so results may vary depending on the individual, particularly if you have less reactive skin than I do.
Let’s start with how nice the texture is. The sunscreen is a white cream with a soft, lightweight consistency that spreads onto the skin quickly and feels comfortable on the skin upon application. The finish is also an excellent natural semi-matte finish and does seem to aid in oil control during the day.
However, as expected from a hybrid sunscreen, it leaves a slight white cast that will probably show up or darker skin tones (I’m around a MAC NC20), primarily if you use the two-finger application rule with minimal rubbing. It’s less noticeable on this swatch on my hand, but trust me when I say it’s more apparent on the face.
This white cast does go away eventually, but not until a few hours later, and even then, I wonder if it’s because it’s a sign I need to reapply. So yes, I usually have to wear base makeup if I use this sunscreen. I use foundations or bb creams that might be a tad too dark to balance out the paleness of my skin post-sunscreen application.
During this trial, the most important thing for me is how it reacts when my skin is sensitized. Is it genuinely suitable for sensitive skin, as advertised? Short answer: yes, for me at least (YMMV!).
How to use Pyunkang Yul ATO Mild Sun Cream?
- In the AM, at the end of your skincare routine, apply and spread evenly on areas easily exposed to UV rays.
- Reapply throughout the day as needed, especially during prolonged sun exposure.
Is Pyunkang Yul ATO Mild Sun Cream Discontinued?
Yes, the 2020 formula is discontinued. That sunscreen was a physical sunscreen containing only titanium dioxide as a UV filter. The sunscreen was SPF45 PA+++
The new version, the one I’m reviewing now, is the 2022 formula. It contains physical and chemical filters; therefore, it’s a hybrid sunscreen. The new sunscreen is SPF50 PA++++.
- good price/quantity
- does not sting my eyes
- nothing sexy about it
Overall it’s an excellent sunscreen to wear all year round since it’s light-feeling.
This might be a great choice if you’re on the fairer end of the skin spectrum and generally have sensitive skin.
Will I repurchase Pyunkang Yul ATO Mild Sun Cream?
I enjoyed this product but won’t repurchase it, not because I didn’t like it, but because I want to try new things.
Pyunkang Yul ATO Mild Sun Cream vs. Beauty of Joseon Relief Sun Rice + Probiotics Sunscreen
Unlike the Beauty of Joseon sunscreen, the Pyunkang Yul sunscreen does not sting my eyes. Because of my sensitive eyes, this is an actual selling point. Pyunkang Yul sunscreen is a little thicker in texture than the BOJ sunscreen.
The Beauty of Joseon Relief Sun Rice + Probiotics* is good, but this one is better.
Shop for Pyunkang Yul ATO Mild Sun Cream
Available on Amazon*, YesStyle*, StyleKorean*, StyleVana, and OHLolly. (*affiliate links)
As always, you do you, be kind to your skin and yourself! Remember that every person’s skin and skin type is different, so what might work for me might not work for you, and vice versa. So before adding a new product to your skincare routine, it pays to do a little research first.
Pay special attention to ingredients that you might react to. Doing a patch test is always a good idea. Unsure? Best to consult your dermatologist.
Happy skin experimenting, and don’t forget the sunscreen!
Show me proof
- Q Li, H Fang, E Dang, G Wang, The role of ceramides in skin homeostasis and inflammatory skin diseases, Journal of Dermatological Science, Volume 97, Issue 1, 2020, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jdermsci.2019.12.002.
- Coderch, L., López, O., de la Maza, A. et al. Ceramides and Skin Function. Am J Clin Dermatol 4, 107–129 (2003). https://doi.org/10.2165/00128071-200304020-00004
- Uchida Y. Ceramide signaling in mammalian epidermis. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2014 Mar;1841(3):453-62. doi: 10.1016/j.bbalip.2013.09.003. Epub 2013 Sep 19. PMID: 24055887; PMCID: PMC3943494.
- Cha, H. J., He, C., Zhao, H., Dong, Y., An, I., An, S.”Intercellular and intracellular functions of ceramides and their metabolites in skin (Review)“. International Journal of Molecular Medicine 38, no. 1 (2016): 16-22. https://doi.org/10.3892/ijmm.2016.2600
- Kang TH, Yoon G, Kang IA, Oh HN, Chae JI, Shim JH. Natural Compound Licochalcone B Induced Extrinsic and Intrinsic Apoptosis in Human Skin Melanoma (A375) and Squamous Cell Carcinoma (A431) Cells. Phytother Res. 2017 Dec;31(12):1858-1867. doi: 10.1002/ptr.5928. Epub 2017 Oct 13. PMID: 29027311.