When I briefly tried the AmorePacific cushion compact, I was infatuated and disappointed at the same time. I loved the glow-y finish with a perfectly skin-like feel, but couldn't make even the lightest color offered here in the U.S. work for me.
So you can easily guess I was over the moon happy when Peach and Lily sent the IOPE Air Cushion XP in N21, which is an awesome color match for me. IOPE Air Cushion is "the cushion compact" that started it all, and it is still very popular in Korea now when there are a lot more cushion compact options available. It is called "6 second compact" as they say one is sold every 6 seconds.
I have been wearing it for 7 straight days now, and I can confidently say this is everything and beyond of what I fantasized about Korean cushion makeup.
First of all, let me say it is such a relief to have found a reliable site for Korean beauty that is based in the U.S.
I looked at some other options like eBay and Amazon sellers and even considered buying directly from GMarket (it is the biggest open market source in Korea and ships internationally). But then I'd have to deal with a heck of shipping (GMarket only ships via EMS), a longer wait, or even worse, a possibly fake one (due to the high demand and popularity, there have been major counterfeit issues reported very recently)!
Not only is Peach and Lily based in the U.S, but also they have well-curated selections of Korean beauty products mainly focused on skincare. Being a native Korean, I could quickly see they are offering hand-picked cult-favorites that are currently "happening" in Korea as well as the steady-sellers. But more importantly, everything is priced reasonably especially when I consider the fact that some of the skincare products weigh much more, which is often reflected in the imported price. I've done some maths and I found this site is probably the best domestic option there is in terms of shopping for imported Korean skincare.
(Ok, enough with the words. Now on to the cushion compact - let the pictures do the talking. I got excited and took more pictures than usual even employing the sunlight this time!)
Love the clean minimal packaging (although it is bulky due to the sponge and the airtight lid inside).
And it comes with a refill.
(Lancôme was inspired by Korean cushion compacts, but obviously not by this.)
And that blue sponge.
I think half the credit should go to invention of this sponge, because it really makes all the difference in the world.
1. Use after removing the film attached.
2. Make sure to close the lid tight after each use.
(Just translating for your convenience..)
So I removed the film..
I wanted a sheer and even coverage so I chose N21 Ice Vanilla, which I'd say is yellow-based but fairly neutral.
There are N21, N23, C21, and C23 available on Peach and Lily.
N stands for "Natural" whereas C is for "Coverage"(not for cookies), if you're wondering.
The color looks darker from the pan than what it is. I think this is quite common in cushion makeup.
As you see, N21 Ice Vanilla is an excellent match for my skin tone.
The naturally dewy finish is truly gorgeous. The light coverage is enough for me since I don't want that mask-y feel. My freckles and sunspots still show through but my whole face is evened out beautifully that I can skip concealing.
Lately my skin has been drier but it feels comfortable with IOPE Air Cushion XP. I would say it is ideal for normal/combination skin. Because of the current hot weather, I still dust a bit of loose powder on my T-zone, but I don't think I'd need that in the cooler months.
I love that the foundation is deposited on the skin without disrupting the sunscreen layer not to mention the foundation itself comes with a high sun protection (SPF 50 PA+++). It is perfect for both color and sunscreen touch-ups, I don't even mind carrying the cubby compact with me.
The only thing I dislike is..the scent. It has a quite strong floral fragrance which is often the case in Korean makeup. It lingers for about 15 minutes after application and dissipates.
Here is an overall look with IOPE Air Cushion XP N21.
I am only wearing the IOPE Air Cushion here. No powder nor highlighter was worn.
(That hair, though)
I am completely satisfied with my first real experience in Korean cushion makeup, and planning to repurchase when I run out. Peach and Lily has the UV Mist Cushion from Hera (which is also under AmorePacific umbrella), and I hope it would be back in stock by the time I need a new one.
Thanks for reading!
Hope this is helpful for those who have light skin tones like me and want to try Korean cushion compacts.
For your reference, I am about NC15-20 and N21 is quite perfect.
*The product was sent from Peach and Lily for review purposes.*