June 13, 2013

My Picks For Best and Worst BB Creams

In full disclosure I am by no means an expert on BB creams. These are simply my opinions about products I've tried. By now you've been bombarded with the new craze in beauty - BB creams. They originally began to help women with scars hide their "flaws" and then grew popular among in actresses who wanted a long lasting primer (at least from my understanding). BB stands for "Blemish Balm." Brands in America have tried to copy their success. Some successfully... others not so much. Most tend to be a glorified tinted moisturizer, which is alright with me most of the time since I don't wear heavy makeup every day. My biggest issue is finding a light enough shade for my porcelain skin. After trying several brands, I thought I'd share a round-up of what were some of my favorites and not so favorites.

Best BB Creams
Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream SPF 35 (1 oz $39) - This was the first BB cream I ever tried and it got things started on the right foot. It matched my fair skin beautifully and gave full coverage. It's supposedly a 5-in-1: "This multitasking tinted cream formula with SPF 35 moisturizes, primes, perfects, controls oil, and protects for flawless skin. Formulated with emollients and optical pearl pigments, this BB Cream gives skin a glowing, ethereal look and provides a hydrating veil for the complexion to maintain moisture on the surface of the skin. With its ultrasmoothing finish, it instantly re-texturizes to create a smooth canvas." There are some arguments that it's not a technical BB cream but I like the way my skin looks after using it. It's lightweight and lasts all day. I honestly didn't want to add another layer of makeup on top of it since it made my skin look so great on it's own. It's also available in 7 different shades, which is a wide range when it comes to BB creams.

Juice Beauty Stem Cellular Repair CC Cream (1.7 oz $39) - Another great find for us pale girls! I just received a sample of this in my POPSUGAR Must Have Box and I have been wearing it all week. It comes in "Warm Glow" as well and is supposedly 12-in-1 multitasker. It has the same creamy texture that Smashbox does but is made with more mineral based products so if you're afraid of clogging up your pores this could be a better option. I'm definitely going to be purchasing a full-size bottle!

Dr. Jart+ Premium Beauty Balm SPF 45 (1.4 oz $39) - The biggest downside of this product is that it only comes in one shade: light to medium. It is considered the best of the best and I see why. "It minimizes the appearance of imperfections and evens the skintone. Antioxidant bio-peptides and adenosine protect skin from harsh environmental factors while restoring firmness and elasticity. This lightweight formula features mineral sunscreens to provide broad spectrum sun protection from both UVA and UVB rays." It lasts all day (even while I was sweating in NYC humidity) and makes your skin look flawless. So if your skin tone matches then I'd highly recommend it.

Now on to the not so great...
Worst BB Creams
Lumene Vitamin C+ Illuminating Anti-Age BB Crea SPF 20 (1.7 oz $14.99) - I  tried 01 Light, which was not light on my skin. It's supposed to be anti-aging but when I moved my face, it created wrinkles! I'm sure it's supposed to float on top of the skin to hide wrinkles but was not a fan of it creating creases on my skin. It was too thick and never seemed to settle onto my skin.

L'Oreal Magic Skin Beautifier BB Cream ($10.95) - They now have more shades but when I originally reviewed it the "Light" was way to dark. It claims to be an all-in-one skin BB cream with Beautifying beads and "encapsulated pigments infused in an ultra-light lotion with antioxidants vitamins C & E. This multi-tasking skin beautifier delivers 4 beautifying actions in 1: hydrates, corrects, evens and perfects." I was not impressed at all by this. It looked orange on my skin and felt oily.

L'Oreal Age Perfect BB Instant Radiance ($16.99) - The claims: "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. It 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." It comes in one shade: light-medium; however, it was way to dark for my light skin. It looks orange. I didn't notice any coverage or evening of my skin tone. I don't have "mature skin" but I don't see how someone older would enjoy this product.

Olay Total Effects 7-in-1 Tone Correcting UV Moisturizer (1.7 oz $21.99) - SPF 15 is not enough coverage for a supposed sunscreen moisturizer. I tried "Light to Medium" which of course was too dark for me. There is "Fair to Light" but I wouldn't give it a try after not being impressed. Claims: "This all-in-one triple stream formula combines a daily anti-aging moisturizer, SPF 15 sunscreen and sheer tint for younger-looking skin.  Instant skin perfecting coverage + correction to fight 7 signs of aging. Reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, balances and helps even out tone, reduces appearance of age spots, improves surface cell turnover, provides nourishing moisturization, strengthens skin’s natural defense against moisture loss, recaptures youthful luminosity." I don't think it did any of those except maybe moisturize.

Julep DD Creme (1 oz $36) - Perhaps the biggest disappoint for me. I adore my Julep boxes every month and was very much looking forward to this product. However, when I went to use it at least half the bottle was filled with air. Also the "Light" shade was WAY too dark for me. I was not impressed by any of it's claims. It did nothing for my skin. I think companies are just trying to out do each other with letters: BB then CC and now DD. What letters are next?!

Hopefully you found this post helpful as I know there are a lot of options on the market. So now I turn it over to you...

What BB creams have you enjoyed?


  1. I've never used BB cream - I stick just to primer. But it's always good to know which brands are good for it. We have a Body shop BB cream in the UK, which everyone loves.

  2. I really loved the BB cream from MISSHA that you gave me. I havent tried any others, but I am interested in the smashbox one! Great review!

  3. The L'Oreal was orange on me, too! Maybelline Dream Fresh BB is okay on me-- it's more like a tinted moisturizer, but if I dab some foundation on top it looks great! I've been meaning to pick up Dr. Jart forever. Must get to Sephora!

  4. Yeah most are just tinted moisturizers that I mix with some SPF lotion or with another color. Let me know if you try Dr. Jart!

  5. I wonder what the UK used... good to know :)

  6. My favorite is the Pur Minerals CC Cream, which comes in a few shades. I've tried a bunch of these creams too and it is the only one that has really done anything for my skin. I like Smashbox BB Cream, but more for the dewy look (if that makes sense) then for any sort of color balance it provides.

  7. @FantabulouslyFrugal.com ooh never tried that one. I did try their mineral foundation and it was okay.


We all have opinions... I want to hear yours!

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