18 Best Japanese Sunscreens For Every Skin Type
by Teni Wada | LIFESTYLE
It's that time of the year again! Whether you’re ready to catch some serious rays, or struggling to cover up, there’s no denying the importance of an all-season must-have: sunscreen.
Japanese sunscreen, in particular, has become something of a cult favorite among beautyholics and skincare aficionados worldwide, thanks to their high SPF rating, weightlessness, moisturizing ingredients, and versatility as a makeup primer.
You’ll notice that in addition to SPF factor, Japanese sunblock also uses PA (Protection Grade of UVA), a four level rating to measure protection from the sun’s UVA rays.
With so many choices on the market, there’s bound to be confusion. But don’t worry: we’ve selected 18 of the best Japanese sunscreens that you can buy online, and divided them by skin type. So whether you have acne-prone skin, dry skin or sensitive skin; light or dark complextion; or if you want to know where to buy Japanese sunscreen for kids or mature skin, we’ve got you covered!
You can also browse gorgeous silk brocade travel makeup bags handcrafted in Kyoto, to go with your Japanese sunscreens, from the Japan Objects Store. Free shipping available worldwide!
- Acne-prone/Oily Skin -
1. Watery Essence by Bioré (SPF 50 + / PA++++)
True to its name, Bioré Watery Essence Sunscreen is so weightless and hydrating, it’s as if you’re splashing water onto your face whenever you apply it. The high water content of this milky formula keeps oil at bay, ideal if you have oily or acne-prone skin.
2. Sarasara Mild Care Milk Sunscreen by Bioré (SPF 28 / PA++)
For sensitive skin prone to breakouts, try Sarasara UV Mild Care Milk Sunscreen from Bioré. It leaves skin hydrated, yet dries to a matte finish to keep oil in check. Sarasara means silky in Japanese and the smooth, powder-like result is the perfect base for applying makeup.
3. Urban Oil-Free UV Protector by Shiseido (SPF 42)
Light and oil-free, Shiseido Urban Environment Oil-Free UV Protector is a conveniently packaged sunscreen that absorbs well into the skin without leaving a white tint or greasy residue. Despite its tiny size, a little goes a long way with this product. Apply a few drops to face and rub in gently.
- Dry/Sensitive Skin -
4. Allie Extra Gel UV Sunscreen by Kanebo (SPF 50+ / PA++++)
Nourish dry, parched skin with Kanebo Allie Extra UV Gel Sunscreen, one of Japan’s best-selling sunscreens. This gel-like lotion leaves skin with a healthy, dewy finish. This is also a great sunscreen for everyday use in colder climates to protect and moisturize dry skin, thanks to hyaluronic acid and collagen in its formula.
5. Sarafit Moisture Milk by Skin Aqua (SPF 50+ / PA+++)
One quality of Japanese sunscreens that has helped to increase their global popularity is that despite their formula (milky, gel, or cream) many of them absorb into the skin leaving a matte finish. Skin Aqua Moisture Milk Whitening is no exception. It leaves a near-invisible finish that moisturizes and primes the skin for makeup.
6. UV Milk by Curel (SPF30 / PA++)
Curel is Asia’s leading brand of products specially formulated for dry sensitive skin, so it’s no surprise that its Intensive Moisture Face Care Series sunscreen is a hit,as well. Curel UV Protection Milk soothes and enriches dry skin with ceramide and eucalyptus extract. Hypoallergenic, fragrance- and alcohol-free.
7. Annessa Essence UV Sunscreen Mild Milk (SPF 35 / PA+++)
Anessa is one of Asia’s best-selling sunscreen lines. Made by beauty giant Shiseido, Anessa sunscreens are valued for its Aqua Booster Technology that blocks UV rays from penetrating wet skin. Anessa Essence UV Sunscreen Mild Milk is SPF 35 and PA+++ and contains extra moisturizing ingredients to nourish dry skin. It absorbs well without leaving a white cast and leaves skin feeling soft to the touch.
8. Mommy UV Aqua Milk (SPF 50+ / PA++++)
When looking for a sunscreen suitable for dry and/or sensitive skin, it’s always a good idea to consider products aimed at babies and toddlers. After all, their skin is still developing and is prone to rashes and other unpleasant conditions. Mommy UV Aqua Milk is waterproof and free of additives, alcohol paradens, artificial colors and fragrances, preservatives, and mineral oils. As an added bonus, 80% of its ingredients are food-derived.
- Mature Skin -
9. Senka Aging Care UV Sunscreen by Shiseido (SPF 50+ / PA++++)
When it comes to mature skin, you want a sunscreen that will work double duty in protecting your skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays as well as addressing the signs of aging. Shiseido Senka Aging Care UV Sunscreen is SPF 50+ and PA++++. This cream-like sunscreen moisturises and leaves a dewy finish. Mix with tinted moisturizer or foundation for a natural glow.
- Fair Complexion -
10. Ultimate Sun Protection Lotion by Shiseido (SPF 50+)
This water-resistant formula provides coverage for the face and body and is ideal for anyone who actively wishes to avoid tanning at all costs. Fans of Japanese beauty trends will appreciate the porcelain-like finish of Shiseido Ultimate Sun Protection Lotion as well.
11. Tone Up UV Essence by Skin Aqua (SPF 50+ / PA++++)
Skin Aqua Rohto New Sunscreen Tone Up UV Essence is a lightly scented tinted makeup base that brightens the complexion as it protects from the sun’s rays. Use as a BB cream or tinted moisturizer to simplify your makeup routine.
12. Sunplay Superblock by Rohto (SPF 50+ / PA++++)
Another great option for those with fair skin, Sunplay Super Block is a “super waterproof” and sweat-resistant sunscreen. It is formulated for active and sporty individuals who spend a great deal of time outdoors when the sun’s rays are at their strongest. The milky, fragrance-free formula is SPF 50+ and PA++++, the highest designation of sunscreen in Japan.
- Dark Complexion -
13. UV Bright Milk by Bioré (SPF 50+ / PA++++)
If you have a dark complexion, one issue you may encounter when applying sunscreen is an unsightly white cast that products often leave behind. This white cast is caused by zinc and titanium oxides, which the skin does not absorb easily. Biore UV Sarasara Bright Milk avoids this issues with its milky formula that dries matte while leaving a soft glow.
14. On Face Beauty Light Lotion by Orbis (SPF 34 / PA+++)
Orbis Sunscreen On Face Beauty Light Lotion uses zinc and titanium dioxide and provides light coverage, making it suitable as a makeup primer that adequately protects the skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays. The lightweight formula glides on skin without leaving oil residue behind, and it can be easily removed with makeup remover.
15. Super Moisture Gel Pump by Skin Aqua (SPF 50+ / PA ++++)
A Japanese sunscreen highly praised by individuals with darker complexions, Skin Aqua Super Moisture Gel is an alcohol-free formula that leaves the skin with a natural, satin-like finish. The convenient pump bottle and lotion consistency makes it easy to apply on the face and body.
- Babies & Kids -
16. Waterproof Baby Milk by Pigeon (SPF 35 / PA +++)
Pigeon is one of Japan’s leading producers of baby and toddler goods. Its UV Baby Milk Waterproof sunscreen is tough enough to withstand water play and sweat, all while being gentle enough to protect babies’ delicate skin. This product leaves a faint white sheen so you can keep track when applying sunscreen on your little one.
17. Aqua Booster Mild by Shiseido (SPF 50+ / PA++++)
Anessa Perfect UV Sunscreen Aqua Booster Mild Type is specially formulated for sensitive skin and can be used on a baby’s delicate skin as well. It’s a sunscreen ideal for sports and other outdoor activities, thanks to Anessa’s Aqua Booster Technology that boosts UV protection by 20%. Paraben, alcohol- and fragrance-free.
18. Mommy UV Mild Gel (SPF 30 / PA+++)
90% of the ingredients in Isehan Mommy Mild UV gel sunscreen are derived from food, making it a wonderful choice for parents who want to avoid chemical sunscreens for their children. The gentle hypoallergenic formula can be removed easily with soap and water.
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