Why I've switched from foundation to cushion foundation | All you need to know about cushions

Saturday 13 April 2019

How to choose a cushion: April Skin,  VDL, Moonshot, A'pieu

I guess that foundations became products that we all have in our makeup bags - they come in different forms and shades. BB Creams became very popular but cushions? I barely ever see western brand releasing a cushion foundation - L'Oréal tried, Dior also made a cushion but none of them worked for me. How to choose an ideal cushion and are they really worth it?

Types of cushions 

There are different types of cushions that you can find but I guess the easiest way to band all the cushions is by their purpose - makeup cushions and sun cushions. Makeup cushions are easy to determine while sun cushions are totally new in Europe - it's a cushion filled with sunscreen. It makes sunscreen reapplication easier and it's very portable. Makeup cushions can be banded in different groups - microfoam cushions and pumping cushion. Microfoam cushion has a foam filled with the formula inside while pumping cushion is a cushion where the formula is hidden under a plastic or metal disc with small holes - Skin79, VDL and Estee Lauder had cushions like that, but I don't know if they still release this type of products. There are also foundations in cream that look like the cushion but I'm not going to focus on them since usually, we use them not as a foundation but a camouflage.

How to choose a cushion: April Skin,  VDL, Moonshot, A'pieu

How does the cushion look like? 

The cushion has one or two parts - cushion case and refill or a case with the built-in refill. Each case usually has a built-in mirror. The refill contains filling - (usually) a microfoam filled with formula in a plastic case and air puff on the upper lid of this plastic case.

Refills and air puffs 

When you buy a cushion there are two things to remember about - refills and air puffs. Refills are the containers with (usually) a microfoam and formula. They usually have air puffs together with a refill but not every cushion has this option. Refills are cheaper than cushions and usually, it's better to go for refill option. Normally, each refill contains air puff but you can buy puffs separately - I recommended that if you're a makeup artist or you're allergic. Makeup artists can use this type of puffs on their fingers when they put makeup on the client or model to not mess up the makeup while putting makeup on eyelids or lips. There are also refill sets with liquid formula - Klairs based its cushion on this type of refill.

How to choose a cushion: April Skin,  VDL, Moonshot, A'pieu

How to make more out of the cushion? 

This trick is well known - sometimes it's good to change the side of microfoam to get more out of it.

Is it safe for the skin? Are cushions safe for the skin? 

Yes, they are! It's like asking if foundation brush or beauty blender is safe - al the cosmetic accessories should be cleaned and disinfected. Some puffs can't stand water and soap/shampoo and cleaning the puff this way might be a bit tiring so it's good to use disinfectant. There are substances based on isopropyl alcohol, Sephora also has such solutions as well, 70% formulas are better than 99, 9% ones (it's all about bacteria and chemistry, there's a nice article telling why 70% is better than 99,9%).

What about colours? 

Asian cushions have usually a very limited number of shades - sometimes 2 or 3 shades, sometimes there's one universal colour and some brands make 5 or even more shades. I'll focus on that while showing you some cushions I've tried before.

A'PIEU Wonder Tension Pact Dailylike SPF40 PA+++ Perfect Cover Wrinkle


I've got a love-hate relationship with A'pieu's cushions. I own two cushions from this brand, each one is the same cushion but in different limited edition version - I've written about Wonder Tension Pact in Marymond version, so 2018 version was made in collaboration with daily like - a brand which I know for stationery, I use their planners which I actually got from local store. Besides amazing packaging, the formula is very creamy and not the best for oily skin but it covers blemishes well. It's not a long lasting cushion but somehow I liked it more during the summer than winter even if I had to check it all the time and I used it with mineral water. This cushion has only two colour options - #21 and #23 and each of colours has finishing options like the moist, perfect cover or madecassoside (which is not finishing but more like an ingredient with a special task to do). It has refills.

April Skin Black Snow Magic Cushion 2.0

April Skin

I used two different versions of Black Magic Snow Cushion, now April Skin released 3.0 version which I plan to buy because this cushion is one of my favourite. I get it thanks to BB Cosmetics and it was actually my first cushion and I post the review of it before. The colour fits me well, the formula hides blemishes well and it works longer on my skin than A'pieu. You can get refills but I usually get the full cushion because it's not that expensive and some shops have good prices on this cushion. Do not expect this cushion to have many colour choices, it has shades #21, #22 and #23. All the shades are available on Stylekorean*

Klairs Mochi BB Cushion Pact


Klairs is known for products that fit all skin types but how one cushion can fit all skin tones? The answer is obvious - it can't! I posted a review of this one as well and it wasn't a positive review. This cushion looks cute, the refill option back then didn't exist but now it does still I'm not sure if I like this option since it's a bit too messy. Klairs BB Mochi cushion has one shade and it's more like shade #23 from other brands. It works better on dry skin than oily skin because on my combo skin it literally runs away from my oily face. It's probably the worst Klairs product I've tried. You can buy it on Wishtrend*.

Laneige BB Cushion Pore Control


Actually, I didn't have too much option to try it because I've failed and I've ordered too dark shade but why I want to mention this brand is because they have couple cushions and each one has different finishing/fits different skin. I got the Pore Control version and this product has a huge choice - 10 shades, warm and cool shades. I bought 21 and that was a mistake because I should get 13C. C stands for Cool tones. There's even a darker shade called 37 Cacao which I guess might find fans but I wouldn't expect it to be very dark, still, it's one of the best colour range we can get from Korean brand. This option comes with a cushion and additional refill, you can buy refill which is way cheaper than cushion + additional refill option. You can find it on Stylekorean*. 

Missha x Frida Kahlo Original Tension Pact Perfect Cover


My experience with Missha's BB Creams and Cushions can be summed up in one word - Tragedy. I made a post about both before and my biggest problem with The Original Tension Pact Perfect which I got in Frida Kahlo edition is that it's heavy AF. It clogged my pores so much that after 8 hours I had around 20 new friends on my skin called pimples. It hides blemishes well but it makes even more harm to my skin than it hides. The formula is creamy and easy to transfer onto your clothes or fingers. You can find a refill to this cushion and you can find different cover options like the perfect cover, intense moisture and more. Missha usually have 3 different shades #13, #21 and #23. Now there's a new cushion from Missha because Missha has a Glow series which who knows, maybe one day I'll give it a chance.

Moonshot Micro Setting Fit Cushion


I bought this cushion because of all the hype around it and I won't deny Moonshot Micro Setting Fit Cushion looks amazing. I guess the fact that this cushion was promoted by Lisa from Blackpink also helped the brand, I'm kinda crazy because while my teenage niece who's not that younger than me buys stuff because Justin Bieber is in the commercial, I'm buying a cushion because Lisa from Blackpink promotes it... You don't know how long is my list of stuff bought because someone promoted it. This cushion doesn't work well with my skin tone and my blemishes. I still use it at school because after makeup classes I need to cleanse my skin and I don't want to waste my favourite cushion but I really do not imagine using it every day. It's not as bad as Missha because it doesn't clog my pores but the shade and coverage are no. This cushion has two shades 101 and 201, the good news is that you can get a refill. Moonshot cushion is available on Stylekorean*.

VDL X Pantone 2019 Expert Tone Up Cushion


This brand is my latest discovery and I don't want to tell you a lot about it because the next post is going to be all about it. All I can say is that VDL became my favourite cushion and there's a long list of the reasons. I got VDL X Pantone 2019 Expert Tone Up Cushion. This product has two shades A02 and A03. It comes with an additional refill and yes, you can find refill on your own. I'll tell you more about it in the next post.

How to choose a cushion: April Skin,  VDL, Moonshot, A'pieu

Does a refill fit all cushions? 

Unfortunately, no. Sometimes if a brand has the same manufacturer or mother company like Missha and A'pieu refills can fit both brands but in A'pieu and Missha case - they don't. So it's always safer to buy a fresh cushion from a brand you want to try than buy refill only and try to fit it onto the case from other company. Same with air puffs - they can have different shades and sizes.

Cushions for darker skin? 

I feel like women with darker skin tones are discriminated in general from the beauty industry - not only Kbeauty in terms of cushions and BB Creams or Foundations. Laneige has probably the darkest shade available, Innisfree and Missha also have some options but I guess they are a bit lighter. Amore Pacific offers shade 206 Amber Tan. There are western brands like Lancome or YSL that have a wider choice of shades. YSL Le Cushion Encre De Peau has 11 colour options and B70 is the darkest shade available. Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Cushion Foundation is available in 18 shades in total - unfortunately not in every place they have every shade but shade 555 Suede C is the darkest shade available.

That's all for today. I hope I've encouraged you to try cushions. Do you use cushions or BB cream? What's your favourite?


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