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PRINTS 2016-06-08
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Who's the winner of the 2016 cushion foundation battle?

Cushion foundations lead the base makeup market.
The cushion foundation craze, which originated from Korea, has now swept the whole world. In the first half of 2016, a string of global beauty brands released their own cushion foundations. Now that there's such a wide range of options available, the question is how to pick the best! Here, we have conducted a blind test to find the ultimate winner of the cushion foundation battle. Listen to what participants had to say and find the one right for your taste and skin.

Participants in the blind test
  • Nam Yoon-hee(NYH) chief editor of AVENUEL
    Oily skin. Favors a cushion with high coverage and a moist finish to cover up any redness or buildup of dead skin cells around the nose.
  • Lee Ji-hyun(LJH) beauty editor of AVENUEL
    Combination skin with oily T-zone. Favors a cushion that creates a natural, clean look.
  • Oh Ji-eun(OJE) fashion director of AVENUEL
    Dry skin. Favors a cushion that leaves the skin looking smooth, soft and dewy without settling into wrinkles.
  • Lee Mi-ah(LMA)LVVIP of AVENUEL
    Dry skin with yellow undertone. Favors a cushion with a dewy finish and high coverage.

10 days from May 9 to May 18
Five cushion foundations were tested with packaging and branding covered.

Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation Cushion Compact SPF 50 / PA+++, 13gx2 / KRW 68,000+

  • Natural look, but not dramatic effect. Recommend for those with naturally clean and fresh skin. By NYH
  • Beautiful skin with sensual glow and dewiness.By LJH
  • Moisture level
    • NYH (3.5) The skin around the sides of the nose still looks flaky.
    • LJH (4) It lends a dewy glow, creating a gorgeous skin.
    • OJE (3) The skin seems moisturized, but lifts a little off dead skin cells.
    • LMA (3) No sticky feeling, but a good moist finish.
  • Coverage
    • NYH (4) Not matt, but unable to hide the redness around the nose.
    • LJH (4) It nicely covers up any wrinkles and bumps on the skin's surface.
    • OJE (3) It brightens up the skin, but fails to cover up redness and blemishes.
    • LMA (4) It offers good coverage of blemishes.
  • Staying power
    • NYH (3.5) It fades away naturally.
    • LJH (3.5) It doesn't last long around the oily T-zone.
    • OJE (3) Not bad.
    • LMA (3) I fix makeup about two times before/after lunch.
  • Finish
    • NYH (4) It leaves a subtle glow.
    • LJH (4) It gives both a delicate glow and a soft, matt finish.
    • OJE (3) It clogs pores and looks a little flaky when the skin feels dry.
    • LMA (3) LMA (3) Gives a luminous glow, but not good enough.
  • Makeup look
    • NYH (5) Good coverage, natural no-makeup look.
    • LJH (5) Color matches my skin tone.
    • OJE (3) Good for those who want bright, fair skin tone.
    • LMA (4) It doesn't get cakey or flaky.

MAC Lightful C SPF 50 / PA+++, 12gx2 / KRW 52,000+

  • It improves the skin tone and moisture level, and also gives good coverage and blendable formula, making the skin look good naturally. By OJE
  • It causes a cakey look, does not blend well into the skin. By LMA
  • Moisture level
    • NYH (3.5) It feels moist, but looks heavy.
    • LJH (5) It leaves the skin feeling hydrated inside out.
    • OJE (4) It feels as moist as a moisturizing essence.
    • LMA (2) A little matt, considering it's a cushion foundation.
  • Coverage
    • NYH (4) It gives a flawless airbrushed look, but not natural.
    • LJH (4) It completely covers up wrinkles and pores.
    • OJE (4) It evens out the skin tone and covers up any skin imperfections nicely.
    • LMA (2) It offers good coverage, but makes the skin look pale.
  • Staying power
    • NYH (3) It needs a touchup by around 2 p.m.
    • LJH (3.5) It is little washed away when there is oil on the skin's surface.
    • OJE (4) It corrects skin tone with a shimmering glow.
    • LMA (3) It needs several touches to conceal any blemishes.
  • Finish
    • NYH (5) Instant glow and brightening effect.
    • LJH (4) The skin looks soft and supple with a shimmering glow.
    • OJE (5) It gives a luminous glow, like a highlighter does.
    • LMA (2) It leaves a matt finish, lacking both glow and moisture.
  • Makeup look
    • NYH (3.5) It looks well-pampered rather than natural.
    • LJH (4.5) It's really thin and airy, creating a natural look.
    • OJE (5) It blends well into the skin, giving a natural glow.
    • LMA (1) Too much of it makes the skin look pale.

Shu Uemura Blanc:Chroma UV Foundation SPF 50 / PA+++, 13g / KRW 43,000

  • A little matt, but a small amount is good enough to cover up. By NYH
  • The best product for those who favor liquid-type foundations. By LMA
  • Moisture level
    • NYH (4) Ideal level of moisture. The skin doesn't feel dry until late afternoon.
    • LJH (3.5) The skin around the mouth and eyes seems dry.
    • OJE (4) The skin seems matt but feels moisturized inside.
    • LMA (2) Not the best product for dry skin type.
  • Coverage
    • NYH (4) It covers up my redness nicely.
    • LJH (4) It corrects the yellow undertone, brightening up the skin.
    • OJE (4) Great for perfect full-coverage makeup.
    • LMA (3) Good coverage, but it's difficult to adjust the amount.
  • Staying power
    • NYH (5) It stays put until late afternoon.
    • LJH (5) Long hours of wear, like a liquid-type foundation.
    • OJE (3) It lasts only 3-4 hours.
    • LMA (2) It requires touchups more often than the other four products.
  • Finish
    • NYH (4) It seamlessly blends into the skin.
    • LJH (4.5) It gives a matt finish with sheer glow.
    • OJE (3) It smoothly applies and leaves a semi-matt finish.
    • LMA (2) It makes the skin look a little pale, rather than healthy and vibrant.
  • Makeup look
    • NYH (4) It blends with sebum, looking more natural with time.
    • LJH (3.5) It gives a full-on makeup look.
    • OJE (3) It leaves the skin looking as smooth as velvet.
    • LMA (2) It's very much similar to liquid-type foundations.

HERA UV MIST CUSHION COVER SPF 50+ / PA+++, 15gx2 / KRW 47,000+

  • The best cushion foundation I've ever tried. By NYH
  • Unlike conventional cushion foundations, it provides both moisture and perfect coverage By LJH
  • Moisture level
    • NYH (5) The best moisturizing cushion. It moisturizes and plumps up the skin.
    • LJH (5) It gives a delicate dewy glow.
    • OJE (5) It instantly fills the skin with moisture from inside.
    • LMA (5) It leaves a nice moist sensation that's great for hot summer days.
  • Coverage
    • NYH (5) The texture is light, but coverage is great.
    • LJH (5) It completely covers up any skin imperfections with a single touch.
    • OJE (4) It conceals redness and covers up blemishes when dabbed over the skin.
    • LMA (5) It creates impeccable looking skin that covers up any imperfections, pores and wrinkles.
  • Staying power
    • NYH (4) Makeup stays put and fresh until late afternoon.
    • LJH (4.5) It feels moist, but is not easily washed away and tends not to leave a stain.
    • OJE (5) It seems to last up to six hours.
    • LMA (5) No touchups needed.
  • Finish
    • NYH (5) It leaves the skin matt enough to prevent hair from clinging.
    • LJH (4.5) The skin glows, but doesn't look too shiny.
    • OJE (4) It has the distinctive moist feel of a cushion foundation.
    • LMA (4) The skin feels fresh and matt, but really moisturized inside.
  • Makeup look
    • NYH (4.5) The right amount of glow and brightening effect for a natural beautiful look.
    • LJH (4) High coverage and yet a nice, no-makeup look.
    • OJE (4) It covers up well, but not too much.
    • LMA (5) Beautiful, gorgeous skin complexion and tone.

Lancôme Blanc Expert Cushion Compact High Coverage SPF 50+ / PA++, 13gx2 / KRW 68,000+

  • Doesn't flake, even on dry skin, and offers a great no-makeup look. By OJE
  • Natural look, but not brightening enough. By LMA
  • Moisture level
    • NYH (4) The fresh moist sensation leaves me feeling refreshed.
    • LJH (4.5) Great moist finish, not too much shine.
    • OJE (4) As good moist finish as its old version.
    • LMA (3) Good moist texture, great to be used in summer days.
  • Coverage
    • NYH (4) It brightens up the skin tone, rather than covering it up.
    • LJH (4) It naturally conceals pores and bumps with each dab.
    • OJE (3) It covers up any redness seamlessly.
    • LMA (2) Medium coverage, with some blemishes left uncovered.
  • Staying power
    • NYH (4) It doesn't last very long, but keeps the skin looking as beautiful as when first washed.
    • LJH (3.5) Great dewy glow, but its long-lasting effect is not good enough.
    • OJE (3) Average level of staying power.
    • LMA (4) It keeps the skin looking fresh.
  • Finish
    • NYH (5) It gives an illuminating glow that Korean women love.
    • LJH (4) The skin glows with fresh dewiness.
    • OJE (4) It seamlessly and completely blends with the skin.
    • LMA (2) Not enough glow, with a slightly matt finish.
  • Makeup look
    • NYH (3.5) Too natural, unable to cover up skin imperfections.
    • LJH (5) It puts a light, thin veil of makeup over the skin.
    • OJE (5) No dull, cakey look no matter how many times it's applied.
    • LMA (3) It matches my skin tone, but lacks brightness.