Best in BB Creams

BB Creams are the latest craze in the makeup world. Short for “beauty balm”
– they claim to be better than base foundation, but with more benefits than a
tinted moisturizer. Studio 5 Style and Beauty Contributor Holly Stone shares
the scoop on these miracle creams and her favorite picks.

What Is It?
BB Cream-once short for Blemish Balm,originated in Asia as an option to
wear post laser or aggressive skin procedures. These creams had soothing
ingredients for healing skin as well as sun protection to prevent damage
while skin was in a fragile state. These creams were so well designed that the
beauty industry quickly adopted these as viable foundation options and the
trend became global. Cosmetic brands evolved the name to what is it more
commonly known as today-Beauty Balm.

What Does It Do?
BB cream is a multi-functional product which is right on trend with the
movement of skin care properties joining forces with cosmetics to improve
function. Touted as an All-In-One Foundation with characteristics such
asPrimer, Moisturizer, Soothing/Vitamin/Antioxidant, Protection, and sheer
to full coverage Foundation, numerous brands are now promoting these
creams for an ideal daily option for the complexion.

How To Apply?
Since most of these creams have higher concentration of sunscreen
ingredients, they are most easily worked into the skin and smoothed over the
complexion using your fingers. They are very easy and quick to apply since
they are simply a more robust form of a tinted moisturizer. Start with a
Smartie candy- sized amount and work from the center of the face outwards
towards the hairline. If you have a distinct preference in coverage, read the
description on the actual product to select sheer, moderate or full coverage.
Unlike typical foundation products, BB creams when layered, do not result in
fuller coverage. The formulas will perform at the coverage indicated only.

Which Ones Work?
While I am a huge fan of the multi-functional product, BB Creams are a new
enhancement in this trend. I have found that so far, certain brands do ONE of
the multi-functions well. Below are my picks for an outstanding


Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream, Sephora, $39

Smashbox Cosmetics are well known for their stellar complexion primers so
this BB cream is a natural fit for them. They have nailed it when it comes to a
smooth application and evening out rough texture on the skin. With
moderate coverage, the small range of shades cover a broad range of skin

Garnier Skin Renew Miracle Skin Perfector BB Cream, Walmart, $11

This product does a fantastic job of creating radiant skin with an even tone.
The characteristic that yields these results is powerful hydration from
moisturizing ingredients. The sheer coverage makes this the perfect example
of an evolved tinted moisturizer and the price point makes it a great place to
start if you want to explore this trend.


Estee Lauder Day Wear Antioxidant BB cream, Dillards, $38

With the power of Vitamins C and E and CoQ 10, this cream provides strong
anti-aging benefits. Anti-oxidants promote healing as well as can prevent
future damage from free radicals which age skin. After going through a tube
of this, I noticed a visible difference in my skin. I would actually consider
purchasing this again.

Shiseido Anessa face sunscreen BB,, $39.99

While this product is not currently available in US department stores, it can
be purchased online. The Japanese culture is savvy and trend-setting with
Shiseido leading the way as one of the top beauty brands. Since BB creams
started in Asia, I wanted to see what the hype was about and purchased this
cream online. With SPF 50+ it offers by far the BEST protection from the sun.
I wore it while in Orlando’s hot sun all day. My face was unaffected by the
sun’s rays. I wish I could say was the same for my neck-ouch! Buy one shade
darker than you think you would use because the high sunscreen ingredients
have a natural whitening effect.

Clinique Age Defense BB Cream, Nordstrom, $37

I was surprised by this product. While the coverage was full, it felt light on
the skin. This is a great option for those who want to cover imperfections
with a foundation. It evened out skin tone very nicely.

My prediction is that these foundation products will soon be developed so
that all characteristics inside perform to the level of expectation. But as it
stands today in my opinion, these products are nothing more than a result of
good Marketing. Are they worth trying? Of course! Who knows, you may find
something that gives you better results than your current foundation and
“better” is ALWAYS worth it!

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