BB creams have been out for some time now, every brand offers one and they ALL promise miracles but, what do they deliver?
In Korea, a BB or Beauty Balm is a combination of products design to facilitate your morning routine, usually they contain: SPF, moisturizer, primer, some have an illuminating component and then your make up and this is where a Korean BB cream differs from an American one: their products actually delivers the coverage they promised our seldom do.
I own five drug store BB creams and these are my thoughts.
Rimmel BB cream.
This retails for $6.99 for around 2 ounces with SPF 25, has a three shade range and this is what they claim:
BB Cream with SPF 25 is skin perfecting super makeup, developed specifically for women who prefer not wear foundation. Better than a moisturizer, better than a foundation. Creates the perfect 9-part regimen in one easy step: Primes, Moisturizes, Minimizes Pores, Conceals, Covers, Smoothes, Mattifies, Brightens and helps Protect. You have to live it to believe it! It’s foundation reinvented! Dermatologist tested.
What I think:
This cream goes on smooth, if applied with your fingers you will not notice streaks. It has a good medium coverage but I would not build it up, I haven’t found that it minimizes pores very well or that it brightens but it also doesn’t settle into fine lines. It does have a matte finish and I didn’t have to use a ton of concealer with this product or did I have to powder, it does last at least six hours without becoming patchy. I have normal skin and no break outs.
This product is not cruelty free and as far as I know is not Gluten Free either.
NYX BB cream.
This retails for $12.99 for 1 ounce with SPF unknown and available in only three shades, this is what they claim:
Perfection in a tube. This lightweight miracle worker was developed by NYX Cosmetics to hydrate and prime for skin that looks perfectly beautiful. The result is skin that appears smoother and more radiant. The luxurious oil-free and mineral enriched formula is versatile delivering multiple benefits all in one.
What I think:
I found it to have less coverage than your average tinted moisturizer, it did not make my skin appear smoother but didn’t settle into any fine line either it did give me a little glow. This product doesn’t have enough longevity to last all day so I would suggest wearing a primer and powder with it.
This product is cruelty free and as far as I know Gluten Free.
Garnier Skin Renewal BB Cream.
This retails for $13.79 for 2.5 ounces with SPF 15 in two shades and this is their claim: Instantly renews, brightens and hydrates.
What I think:
This was the first Western beauty cream I tried. To this day I think that it is very easy to wear, provides excellent coverage, I don’t need to wear a moisturizer underneath and it has a decent staying power. However it does have a lot of shine to it so use powder over it and it would be nice if they offered a better shade selection.
Garnier is not cruelty free and doesn’t appear to be Gluten Free.
With vitamin C and SPF 15
Beauty balm for skin care plus coverage
Now let’s give a look at my two anti-age BB creams because it’s where this gets interesting.
L’Oreal Age Perfect BB cream instant radiance.
This retails for $16.99 for 2.5 ounces with SPF 20 it seems to offer either 1 or 2 shades and this is what they claim:
This luxurious 5-in-1 BB Cream instantly restores skin's healthy glow with advanced skin matching tone enhancers - all in one step. It's the first BB cream formulated exclusively for mature skin. Age Perfect BB Cream Instant Radiance works to perfect and restore resiliency with powerful anti-aging properties. Over time, age spots diminish thanks to a powerful Vitamin C complex that restores vibrancy. Soy seed proteins absorb instantly to help silken and nourish skin leaving it toned and resilient. SPF 20 helps protect against future damage.
What I think:
This BB cream has a pinky color that seems to adjust to your skin tone, it has medium coverage, it is comfortable to wear, doesn’t settle into your fine lines but can be a little too radiant so you might have to powder your T zone. It lasted a fair amount of hours on my face and I never retouch my make up during the day. I can’t say that it’s capable of diminishing any dark spots because I personally don’t think it has that kind of punch. Any make up that claims to help reduce fine lines and dark spots would need a higher concentration of those ingredients designed to help.
L’Oreal is neither cruelty free nor Gluten Free.
Pond’s Luminous Finish BB +.
This retails for $12.70 for 1.5 ounces with SPF 15 and this is what they claim:
Formulated with breakthrough tone perfecting complex and gives you luminous coverage instantly + visible dark spot reduction. Effortlessly reveal your natural, luminous look.
This is what I think:
This is easy to blend has a very light coverage, feels kinda tacky to the touch after a couple of hours but it doesn’t feel gross. It doesn’t really pack enough of a punch to really take care of any significant discoloration or to reduce dark spots. I had to use concealer with this and powder. It did not settle into my lines.
Pond’s doesn’t appear to be cruelty free or Gluten Free.
Wrapping up this awfully long blog post I would definitely repurchase the Garnier BB cream and the L’Oreal Age Perfect because they are both easy to work with, have decent coverage and staying power. The others are ok for days when I just need to slap something on but I still have enough time to use concealers and powder because they are not an all in one deal as they would like you to think.