The 14 Best Korean Sunscreens in 2022

Once again, K-beauty knows best.

woman in a pool wearing sunscreen
(Image credit: Getty)

We’ve talked time and again about our love for K-beauty. We've waxed poetic about Korean skincare brands like Dr. Jart+, Sulwhasoo, and Laneige that pull their innovation, technology, and ingredients from South Korea. We've talked extensively about Korean moisturizers that emphasize skin barrier restoration, and obsessed over K-beauty sheet masks that make us glow in a few minutes flat. But we’d be remiss not to do a deep dive into the best Korean sunscreens, as they’re some of the most advanced, elegant formulas in the world. 

With that in mind, prepare to discover the best Korean sunscreens available stateside. From silky, aloe-packed soothing sunscreens to non-sticky formulas designed specifically for the most sensitive skin, these are the most highly-rated, editor-approved K-beauty SPFs on the US market. 

The Benefits of Korean Sunscreens

Korea is always pushing the boundaries on texture innovations and formula stability as the market is hyper-competitive and demanding,” explains Peach & Lily founder Alicia Yoon (opens in new tab). The result of such progressive formulation? Lightweight, glow-giving sunscreens with advanced, UV-blocking filters that don’t leave a chalky white cast on the skin. 

The best Korean sunscreens don't just have a stronghold when it comes to texture; they’re also proven to bring the same high standards to sun protection. Yoon explains that while U.S. sunscreens qualify for the “broad spectrum” label on a pass-fail system, the K-beauty system, a.k.a .the PA system, requires much heavier testing to assess exactly how extensively the formula protects the skin from UVA rays. 

“There are four grades in the PA system: PA+, PA++, PA+++, and PA++++,” explains Yoon. “Each plus sign covers a rand of the PPD (Persistent Pigment Darkening) test. The highest number of the +’s offers the most UVA protection. So while you’re shopping, look out for sunscreen bottles with as many plus signs as possible.”

The Best Korean Sunscreens

Samantha Holender
Beauty Editor

Samantha Holender is the Beauty Editor at Marie Claire, where she reports on the best new launches, dives into the science behind skincare, and keeps up with the latest trends in the beauty space. She has previously written for Us Weekly, Popsugar, Makeup.com, Skincare.com, and Philadelphia Wedding. Follow her on Instagram @samholender.