Secret Key Snow White Cream Review

The YS Beauty Lab

“Mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the fairest of them all?” Despite not yearning for a fair complexion, I do appreciate an even skin tone. I’ve heard that Secret Key’s Snow White Cream and its sister product, the Snow White Milky Pack, are selling really well in Korea. According to its product description, the cream basically serves as a BB cream, whitening product, makeup base and lotion, and doesn’t irritate skin. With so many functions and at such a bargain price (US$9.13/50g), I thought, why not give it a try?

“Good choice.”
Image from “The Huntsman: Winter’s War”, Universal Pictures

To avoid any disappointment, let me clarify that the whitening effect of this cream is not permanent. It doesn’t really bleach, meaning you have to keep using it to maintain your “fairness.” I actually see it as more of a moisturizing BB cream, or a tinted moisturizer, for that matter. However, I still consider it a skincare product instead of makeup since it can be rinsed off with water rather easily.

The major useful ingredient in this cream is niacinamide, a brightening agent that also offers UV protection and helps to control acne. It also contains Cyclopentasiloxane (a type of silicone used for lubrication), betaine (a plant-derived amino acid for skin hydration), cnidium officinale extract (plant extract for healthier skin) and dimethicone cross polymer (silicon-based polymer to increase the thickness of cream). The cream is free from colorings, mineral oils, benzophenone, phenoxyethanol and animal oils.

Description on the packaging

Contained in a lightweight, minimalistic plastic jar, the cream has a pleasant milky smell and a thin but refined texture. The packaging comes with a small spatula, though I normally just use my fingers. The cream spreads like gel and absorbs quickly, leaving the skin semi-matte and feeling smooth. There is no residue except on my acne spots and extremely dry areas around the lips, so just avoid those areas. Being non-sticky and non-oily, the cream gives a soft glow to the face, and looks more natural on the skin than most BB creams and tinted moisturizers.

Before (left) and after (right) single use

I love this product for two major reasons:
1. It doesn’t irritate skin, even for acne-prone and sensitive skin like mine. There was no itching or breakout during my 3 weeks of testing, and I didn’t actually need to use a makeup remover.
2. It works perfectly as a primer. The slightly tinted effect leaves you fresh-faced without staining your clothes or creating any discomfort on your skin.

Before (left) and after (right) single use

The only drawback is that you will still feel a little residue when you wash your face. The cream is also not very moisturizing, meaning you still have to keep up with your moisturizing routine. Overall, Secret Key’s Snow White Cream is an excellent primer, and is especially useful when you’re too lazy to put on makeup but still want to look naturally radiant.

I’ve heard that you can mix the cream with the Snow White Milky Pack to create a sleeping mask. I haven’t attempted this since I don’t like sleeping masks, but do share if you’ve tried it!

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