Pyunkang Yul Nutrition Cream – Review

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The Pyunkang Yul Nutrition Cream is a skin repairing and moisturizing cream containing Astragalus Membranaceus Root Extract, a traditional Chinese medicinal remedy used for treating wounds, and inflammatory conditions. This moisturizer is hydrating and nourishing and works as a gentle occlusive for using after applying strong active ingredients. It helps to restore the skin’s pH level after cleansing, strengthen the moisture barrier, heal damaged skin and improve overall skin health. I really like that only gentle and safe ingredients are used and this is a product I feel confident using and recommending to anyone.

Punkyang Yul Claims:

The Pyunkang Yul Nutrition Cream is a nutrient-rich and smooth cream that delivers nourishment and moisture deep into the skin to provide radiance and lustre. This soft-textured, facial cream delivers essential moisture deep into the skin, giving you an extremely glowing complexion. Infused with 21 kinds of main ingredients verified by US Environmental Working Group (EWG), which includes Astragalus Membranaceus Root Extract, that protects the skin from external irritations, Shea Butter, Butylene Glycol as moisturizers, and Bee Wax to prevent moisture loss.

Brand Overview:

Pyunkang Yul is a clean skincare line created by the Pyunkang Eastern Medicine Clinic in South Korea. Their brand philosophy is “less is more” and they only use safe and gentle ingredients. They believe that healthy skin is capable of retaining moisture and controlling oil production. To read more about the brand, and their other products I have tried and recommend, click here.

Appearance and Scent:

The constancy is a light-weight cream, which is thick, yet easily absorbed into the skin without leaving any residue or a sticky finish. The formula is fragrance-free and the scent is a mild herbal fragrance that dissipates when applied to the skin.

Packaging, Size and Expiry:

The moisturizer comes in a 100 ml glass jar, with a plastic screw lid. A spatula is included. The expiry is two years from the date of manufacture, and 12 months after opening.

Cost and Number of Uses:

The Pyunkang Yul Nutrition cream retails for NZD $53.00 or US $38.50. A small amount goes a long way, and the generous volume lasts a really long time, around six months with daily use.

How to Use:

Take a moderate amount and apply evenly onto the face, avoiding the eye area. Pat lightly to aid absorption.  I prefer to use this after the Punykang Yul Essence Toner (you can read my review here), as they work together to really strengthen and nourish the skin.

Formulation Science:

This cream was tested by the Punkang Korean Medicine Skin Laboratory on 110 people over a two week period. Of the participants, 90% reported dryness had eased, 83% reported skin had become healthy and shiny and 94% reported dead skin cells were eliminated.

The formula has also passed European certification after skin patch testing was conducted by the Korea Dermatology Research Institute.


Astragalus Membranaceus Root Extract, Butylene Glycol, Cetyl Ethylhexanoate, Butylene Glycol Dicaprylate/Dicaprate, Hydrogenated Polydecene, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Cyclopentasiloxane, Cetearyl Alcohol, Macadamia Integrifolia Seed Oil, Polysorbate 60, 1,2-Hexanediol, Beeswax, Glyceryl Stearate, Cyclohexasiloxane, Sodium Hyaluronate, Sorbitan Sesquioleate, Sodium Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Isohexadecane, Polysorbate 80, PEG-100 Stearate, Glyceryl Caprate

Ingredient Analysis:

Astragalus Membranaceus Root Extract, also known as Milk vetch, a flowering plant native to the Northern Hemisphere. The exctract contains several bioactive components including polysaccharides, flavonoids, and saponins. Pharmacological research indicates the extract can increase telomerase activity (protecting DNA), have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, immunoregulatory, anticancer, and antiaging effects. The extract also provides UV-absorbing protection to the skin from sun damage.

This study published in the Jornal of Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity looked Astragalus membranaceus root extract and Marshmellow root extract. Both were found to significantly reduce UVA-induced DNA damage in cultured skin fibroblasts. The authors proposed this was most likely due to the extracted phytochemicals protecting against UVA-induced oxidative stress.

Butylene glycol is a common ingredient in skincare and cosmetics. It is very efficient at enhancing the penetration of active ingredients and acts as a humectant and solvent with antimicrobial properties.  It can be used to decrease the viscosity of a formulation or to mask unpleasant odors. It is considered to be non-toxic and non-irritating when applied topically.

Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter) is extracted from the kernels of the Shea tree native to West Africa. It is composed of vitamins, minerals and triglycerides with oleic, stearic, linoleic and palmitic fatty acids. It also contains compounds that possess anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.

Macadamia Integrifolia Seed Oil Macadamia oil (or macadamia nut oil) is the non-volatile oil collected from the nuts of the macadamia (Macadamia integrifolia), a native Australian plant. As the oil is highly stable, it is often used in cosmetics. Palmitoleic acid, a Fatty Acid that is naturally found in human skin, especially younger skin, is present in high amounts in macadamia nuts.  It has anti-inflammatory action and shows promise in stimulating immune cells and treating wounds.

Beeswax is the wax structure that forms the honeycomb where bees store honey.  Its often used in cosmetics due to its hydrophobic (water-repelling) preotectgive properties and its efficiency at healing bruises, inflammation, and burns.  It also exhibits antifungal and anti-microbial action that is enhanced when combined with honey.  Beeswax is composed of hydrocarbons, free fatty acids, esters of fatty acids, and fatty alcohols.

Hyaluronic acid and its derivatives offer superior moisturization as the skin-identical molecules are capable of penetrating deep into the dermis and absorbing 1000 times their weight in water.  The lower the molecular weight, the deeper the molecule can penetrate the skin. Sodium Hyaluronate is the salt form of hyaluronic acid that exists as a smaller molecular size than hyaluronic acid, is more water-soluble, and is less likely to oxidize. It provides more significant moisturization as the molecule is capable of penetrating deeper into the dermis.  It is ideal for use in skincare due to its biocompatibility, consistency, and hydrophilicity (water-loving nature).

pH Testing:

I got a pH result of 4.6.

pH Analysis:

The pH of this moisturizer is within the pH of the skin (range 4.0-6.0, average 4.7), and very close to the average value. The pH is a skin-friendly 4.6 that will help to return the skin to its optimal acidity level after cleansing and assist with overall skin health and barrier repair. Learn why the pH of skincare products is so important here.


This moisturizer is hydrating and nourishing. I love this moisturizer and will continue to repurchase, and especially enjoy using it during winter, when my skin needs extra moisture. Any skin type would benefit from using this product, but I do prefer a more light-weight cream under my sunscreen in the morning. However, it does absorb well without leaving any residue on the skin and works well when used before or after all other skincare products I have tried. The only downside for me is the jar packaging, which exposes the formulation to the air, and is unhygienic, especially since only such a small amount is needed and it lasts a really long time. This increases the chance of the product becoming contaminated, and is not ideal when the people most likely to benefit from this product potentially already have an issue with the health of their skin. To counteract this, I prefer to decant a small amount to a small, clean, lightproof container for daily use. While I do like the look of the expensive blue glass jar, I would prefer not to have to take this step.

Overall Impressions:

I first started using this when I was looking at products to heal my damaged skin barrier. Thie minimal ingredient list appealed to me and I found it was the right amount of soothing and moisturizing. Having a pH close to that of the average value, and containing high quality, skin-repairing ingredients makes this one of the best products for damaged, sensitive or acne-prone skin in my opinion.

Things I Liked:

  • pH balanced at 4.6
  • Simple ingredient list
  • Free of perfumes, alcohol, and essential oils
  • A high amount of active ingredients, with proven efficacy
  • Safe for sensitive skin
  • Pyunkyang Yul is a Cruelty-free

Things I Disliked:

  • The jar packaging is unhygienic and exposes the product to the air when opened
  • The glass jar is not travel friendly

Where to Purchase:

Pyunkang Yul products are available at StyleKorean, YESSTYLE and Stylevana.


  • An evaluation of root phytochemicals derived from Althea officinalis (Marshmellow) and Astragalus Membraneaceus as potential natural components of UV-protecting dermatological formulation.  Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longetity, 2016.
  • Anti-again implication so Astragalus membranaceus (Hangqu): A well-known Chinese tonic.  Aging and Disease, 2017.
  • Bioactive for probiotics for dermal health: function and benefit.  Journal of Applied Microbiology, 2013.
  • Biotechnological production of hyaluronic acid: a mini review.  3 Biotceh, 2016.
  • Honey, propolis, and royal jelly: a comprehensive review of their biological actions and health benefits.  Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity, 2017
  • Beeswax: a min review of its anti-microbial activity and its application in medicine.  Asian Pacific Journal of Topical Medicine, 2016.
  • Final Report on the Safety Assessment of Butylene Glycol, Hexylene Glycol, Ethoxydiglycol, and Dipropylene Glycol.  Journal of the American College of Toxicology, 1985.
  • Anti-inflammatory and skin barrier repair effects of topical application of some plant oils.  International Jornal of Molecular Sciences, 2017.