April 19, 2013

Tony Moly Luminous Pure Aura CC Cream Review & Swatches

Tony Moly Pure Aura Luminous CC Cream

Tony Moly Luminous Pure Aura CC Cream has an SPF 30 PA ++ and a color adjusting formula that corrects, perfects, and protects skin. Tony Moly Pure Aura CC Cream is brand, spanking new and I’ve been testing it this week extensively and finally I’m ready to review.

I was VERY excited about this release and I’m happy to tell you that the formula is excellent or at least I thought so.

Take a look!

Tony Moly Pure Aura CC Cream

It seems Korea is going with self adjusting formulas for MANY CC Creams that are launching at the moment. Self adjusting formula aren’t something that I support especially considering how badly L’Oreal Magic Skin Beautifier BB Cream and L’Oreal Age Perfect Instant Radiance BB Cream went for me. Both of these BB Creams turned orange on my skin and in cases of even Almay’s Smart Shade Mousse the color changes ALL wrong for me. Needless to say self adjusting products are a little silly.

I was a little wary of Tony Moly Pure Aura CC Cream as the concept is the same as L’Oreal’s Magic Skin Beautifier BB Cream in the fact it’s white with tiny pigment beads suspended in the formula that burst upon contact with skin and supposedly “self adjust” to your perfect shade of CC Cream.

So after nearly a week of use I need another bottle because I’ve been testing it on everyone I know just out of curiosity how it would adjust but more on that later.

First off the formula is a runny yet creamy texture which absorbs easily into skin and leaves behind a soft, smooth finish. It isn’t dewy nor is it matte in finish, it simply leaves skin feeling soften and smooth.

Now about that self adjusting technology….

From my testing it perfects more than it actually offers coverage and in fact that is where CC Creams differ from BB Creams. As CC Creams rely on acting as a skincare and a corrector but NOT something that offers as much coverage as a BB Cream. You’d think the next generation of a BB Cream would in fact offer more coverage but CC Creams actually rely on correcting and perfecting but not necessarily concealing problems.

Tony Moly Pure Aura Luminous CC Cream Swatches

Tony Moly Pure Aura CC Cream Swatches

Tony Moly Pure Aura Luminous CC Cream Swatches After

Sadly, it isn’t a great option for those that wish to use it as their main foundation product as the coverage is very sheer. If you’re like to use it in conjunction with a BB Cream that would aid you in perfecting skin and also offering coverage for some of your other issues such as acne scarring, blemishes, etc..

I do recommend those with clear skin use it as a foundation product as it offers that bare skin, beautifully finished appearance all its own. It will ease minor redness, it will work amazingly on dullness, and it will even out uneven skin tone. It perfects skin and gives it an all over healthy luminous finish. Don’t be scared, although it appears to have a glow it does not!


It seems to suit most skin tones. My sister is an NC40 or so skin type and it worked fine on her. No pastiness, no chalky ghost face. I also tried it on my friend Jai’s skin and he has a stronger yellow undertone and it fit him as well. And on me it was also perfect. I also tried it on my friend Nancy who has a good deal of redness in her cheeks and this eased the appearance of that redness but didn’t necessarily conceal it. It did however, give her a healthy blushing look as if that redness was natural rather than as harsh as it really is when she doesn’t have makeup on if that makes sense.

I’ve personally used it as my base product, nothing on top, primer under it and it wore beautifully for most of my day (eight or more hours) giving my skin a healthy no makeup look.

In the end Tony Moly Pure Aura CC Cream seems to have captured a very special place in my heart. I really like this. The formula is innovative and truly does offer some correction abilities. I would recommend it for those with minor skin issues in need of correcting but I would warn those with problem skin that this isn’t the end all to perfect skin unfortunately.

This will make a perfect lightweight foundation in the Summer!

Do try it!

Muse Approved.

It retails for around $13 on Korea but I couldn’t wait so instead of asking a friend to purchase it for me I got it from E-bay for $16 from F2PLUS1 (I am not affiliated with this seller).

If you tried this I’d really love to hear your thoughts.

I think it’s a keeper!


I purchased this item.

About the Muse

Isabella MuseIsabella is just an average everyday geeky girl who doesn’t blend her eyeshadow correctly, wears too much blush, and hopes she never finds her holy grail products because she likes the thrill of the chase so much. Her mission is to bring you super honest reviews on makeup, skincare, fragrance and all things beauty. She’s in no way an expert on the topic and she sure as hell isn’t a super model. But she’s passionate about makeup and is seeking like-minded individuals that like pina coladas, getting caught in the rain, and ones that enjoy spending hundreds of dollars at Sephora without feeling buyer’s remorse. If you’re that person feel free to reach out and leave a comment or follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Bloglovin‘.

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  • Louise

    I’ve been recently using this CC cream as well and I am absolutely loving it! As I have clear skin with mild redness, I use it daily and it really gives me a flawless looking finish. It actually minimises the appearance of my pores and doesn’t make my face appear too oily after a long day. This is my first CC cream and it’s such an excellent one.

  • Diana

    Hey Muse!

    Thanks for the review! This does look like an interesting product that I might be interested in trying. Does it have a strong fragrance? And do you think it could take the place of a moisturizer? I take a very minimalist approach to skincare.

  • Dusty

    DOOODE! I was JUST about to order this last night but then I fell asleep at my computer (yeah, I actually fall asleep shopping for beauty products in bed… it’s pretty sad). I wanted to check this out and the new Missha one (the little squat white one LOL). Glad to read I was on the right track with my looking 🙂

    What’s this make, like three comments in one week?! See, I lurk for like 2 years but then once I start – there’s no shutting me up. Haha! xx

  • Maria

    How would you say this differs from The Face Shop Aura CC Cream. I’m trying to decide which CC cream to try first.

  • melissa

    stop with the good asian recs.. zombie walks to mba.. must buy this too

  • Donah

    Oh this looks like a fine CC cream, I don’t really need much coverage so this looks like it would suit me. I’ve been deciding whether to get this or Innisfree CC Cream. I’ve only used Mizon CC so far and I know what you mean about L’Oreal’s – it was horrifying how it turned so orange on me LOL – gladly I only got the samples and not spent on full size. Thanks for sharing this! x Donah

  • jenn f

    huzzah! thanks so much for this review. just in time for my trip ( i leave monday) and definitely picking this up in korea 🙂

  • Summer

    Do you think this would work as an eye corrector? I’ve been googling Korean eye correctors all day and only found two. The Missha one and the Tony Moly Panda one but they don’t see to be effective looking at the few reviews ther is… I live in Korea and I want to try an eye corrector for the first time.

    I’ve had bad experiences with Tony Moly’s Aura line so I’m worried about this CC cream…

    • the Muse

      not really Summer, it’s far to sheer to use to correct/conceal under eyes.

  • jen

    How do you feel about using this as an everyday skincare product to provide spf and a nice bare faced finish?

    • the Muse

      i prefer using my own spf 50 prior to any makeup products Jen. It’s great as a bare faced product but I def want a higher protection when I’m out in the sun 🙂

      • Rina

        Hi… may I know what the exact spf 50 do you use?. Thank you. Ive been using AuraGold magic cream cushion spf 50 pa++ for my daily spf.

    • the Muse

      it isn’t really necessarily if you’re going to use BB Cream just use BB Cream 🙂 as BB Cream will be pigmented enough to cover all your issues. no need for CC Cream and BB Cream application.

  • Christi

    Sorry to repeat myself, but how do u think it would adjust on pale skin? Like NC15?

  • Irene

    The moment I saw your review, I went and got one for myself. If it looks white and adjusts, it must work for my uber pale skintone, right?! Sadly, it doesn’t 🙁 I’m about NC5 (if they made it!) and this makes my skin orange, it’s probably 2 shades darker than my natural skintone. I tried it on my forearm, which is as pale as someone can probably get (close to paper white, really), and if it supposedly self adjusts, the fairest it will go is NC15. I wanted some light foundation just to even out, but I’ll go back to my regular bb cream + FACE Atelier white foundation mix. I’ll just give this one to my mother, who is NC30 or so!

  • elevon

    Hi there, from your experience with the Tony Moly and Face Shop CC Cream, which one would you recommend better?

  • Vivi

    Hi Muse! Thanks for posting this review. I myself got this CC Cream in sample size and have used it like 2-3 times already because I wanted to buy the product. Just like you said, it has no pastiness which I like the most since all bb creams I have leave dull grayish cast. Yet I have to admit it doesn’t cover anything, not even redness on my face. I use no primers under and nothing on top. So I can’t say I’d like to buy this T_T By the way, I’m waiting for my Ohui CC Cream 😀

    • the Muse

      no vivi unfortunately it won’t…it’s very sheer…bb cream is best for redness/darkness/etc…! it does conceal redness slightly and makes it less prominent but def won’t conceal it totally!

  • Ari

    Hi dear!! thanks a lot for Review this!!! i really want to taste it!!.. but, i’m a little scared… because i’m more darker than NC40 but not NC42… is some tone in between… you think this product going to bo ok on me??

    • Reina

      I tried this on my bf who I think would be NC45-50 and it really blended well and matched his skin tone! His skin looked really smooth! The only thing was you could tell it was on his skin if I took a pic with flash in low light… It wasn’t noticeable with flash in already good lighting though!

  • Christi

    Got this a couple weeks ago, & I am loving it soo much! I had mentioned in a previous comment that I had to save my U.S. CC Creams (It Cosmetics, Clinique, & Smashbox) for winter because I ordered them all in fair shades & I’ve started to get tanner. I wear sunblock religiously, but I tan regardless if I’m outdoors. Thankfully, this CC Cream seems to adjust very well, whether I’m pale or more tan! Yay! And my skin looks so good with this on too. I am loving Asian CC Creams even more than BB’s & I never thought I’d say that! I know u feel the same way, as we’ve discussed before. =)

  • afinem3ss

    I bought this after trying the sample twice. It worked out pretty well for me both times but when I tried to read more on what others thought about it, most had negative responses. It’s a product I want to like since it yielded pretty good results on me the two times I used it. The whole time I kept thinking, “Am I just making this all up because I want to like the product that badly?” LOL

    Anyway, it’s nice to come upon a good review. Keep up the great work!

  • Marianne

    I LOVE this product! I am a 56 year old Caucasian woman who’s tried EVERYthing on the planet, ha. I’m trying to go more natural and not wear foundation anymore. My skin isn’t too bad but tends to be red. This CC cream evens out my skin tone and makes it look fabulous! I do dust a little bit of powder over the t-zone and apply a touch of blusher on my cheeks and I’m done. I’m so impressed with this that I’ve purchased other Tony Moly products as well. This CC cream doesn’t cake, pool, splotch, settle in my lines and wrinkles, nothing. It goes on evenly and beautifully and seems to control any oiliness throughout the day as well. It’s a winner! 🙂

  • Elizabeth

    Does this have as much coverage as a TM? Also could I layer bb cream on top just on my cheeks to conceal freckles.

    • the Muse

      it doesn’t really have coverage elizabeth acts more as a corrector. and sure you can def add bb on top! I don’t personally but you can def do so 🙂

  • Cherrypie

    Hi Muse, thanks for review! I saw your reviews of many different types of Cc cream. I’m ordering this kind of CC cream, and when I read your post I’m very excited. But, do you like the best kind of CC cream?

  • maddie.

    Hi Muse,
    I’m asking a friend to get this for me and I’m really excited to try this. CC creams sound exactly like what I need, not so much coverage but something to brighten and even out. But I have a few questions.
    What is the difference between
    – TONY MOLY Luminous Pure Aura CC Cream SPF30 PA++,
    – TONY MOLY Luminous Live Aura CC Cream SPF30 PA++,
    – TONY MOLY Luminous Glow Aura CC Cream (SPF30 PA++), and
    – TONY MOLY Luminous Aura Capsule CC Cream (SPF50+ PA+++)??
    Glow probably has shimmer, Capsule has a higher spf (but it’s almost double the price! what else does it offer?), and I can’t figure out the difference between Pure and Live. 😛
    Holika has an Aqua Jelly CC foundation, have you heard anything about it? What other brands of CC cream do you recommend?

    this is a lengthy post, apologies. Last thing. For a future post, could you go through some of the terminology? I mean, what’s base, primer, starter, lotion, toner, emulsion, cream, moisturizer, balm, essence, serum???? What do you put on before BB cream?

  • Astri Aareskjold

    Hi! I am, wondering… Will this work on very pale skin? The “Color Change” one from Nature Republic was my first CCcream ever and, I just hate it. So dull and DARK and dry.
    Missha´s BBcream in shade 13 works well on my pale skin. Would this?

    • the Muse

      hi astri can’t compare to shade 13 on missha as I don’t own it….not sure if it would work on paler skin as I am medium fair. It does have stronger pink undertones but the color changing might go a bit orange on very fair skin. I tried it on a few different tones and it seemed to work out quite well including my own.

  • Kristen

    Hey Muse!

    I’m so happy to see that you try brands from other countries. I have a plethora of Korean BB creams and a lot of Korean skincare products. I am Korean and I recently went there, so I really loaded up on my products! I was in Korea when CC creams started becoming popular, but wasn’t too sure about the whole idea of “sheer coverage.” I use Etude House’s Precious Mineral Bright Fit BB cream as my holy grail right now, but since it is summer– I decided why not try out a CC cream? There are so many different brands to try, but I picked this one because of your review!

    I actually realized after trying this CC cream, that it works wonders in conjunction with my BB cream. I love that it reduces the redness in my skin, and it really does work alone when my skin doesn’t have many blemishes and I just need something to even out my skin tone. The scent is really pleasing and the color really does suit my skin tone! I love this CC cream. Using it with my BB cream really does create that perfect airbrushed effect I’ve been looking for!

    • the Muse

      hiya Kristen!

      Thanks! I’ve been reviewing Korean/Japanese/etc products for over six years on Musings now 😀 I’ve always felt Asian makeup and skincare is far superior to what you can get in the US. I really love the Tony Moly formula I believe this one might be my HG but I’m always trying new ones 😀 I’m glad to hear your success with it! Enjoy! 😀 and thanks for the comment!

  • purplicious

    Hi, just curious!

    If I use a colour-correcting primer (my go-to primer is Etude House’ Baby Choux Base) and then layer this CC cream on top, wouldn’t it defy the purpose of using a CC cream?

    I’m just curious as to what type of primer you would use for a CC cream. Thanks!

  • iben

    I have the LIVE version of this. It offers more cover and conceals redness on my cheeks and minor blemishes. It also covers old scars just fine. I have slightly oily skin and prefer setting everything with a powder. It lasts me around 10 hours with blotting after about 6. I love it 🙂

  • Shrilaraune

    Most skintones? Does this include those with dark skin? I’ve been looking for a cc cream with enough coverage to coat a little uneveness. Unfortunately, I have dark skin which doesn’t provide many attractive options, especially from Asian brands

  • Doris Clay

    I’m happily shocked that it even fit someone as dark as nc40, i think i’m nw45 so that’s much closer than any other asian products tend to get to my skintone. thanks for such detail.

  • Flora

    Personnally I hated this CC cream.. Under my fingers as I tried to spread it on my face it was so grainy it was impossible ! Like sand! And the color didn’t change, it stayed white on my face… I really regret purchasing it… Maybe mine was not good…