BB Cream (aka Blemish, Beblesh or Beauty Balm) has risen to popularity recently in the US after being the secret treasure of Asian beauty aficionados for many, many years.
BB Cream was originally used medically to protect and regenerate skin after laser treatments & surgery, and to provide light coverage for post-procedure scars and redness. It was developed in Germany by a dermatologist in the 1950s.
It was introduced in Korea and quickly spread to Japan in the 1980′s, where it has evolved into a main beauty staple in both places ever since. And then the formidable cream eventually began conquering China, South East Asia, and now has made its way to Europe and the USA.
Today, BB Cream is an all-in-one cream to instantly correct the complexion, balance the skin, and protect its youthful appearance. It combines 3 or 4 products into one: the anti-aging & moisturizing power of a skincare product with the immediate complexion-enhancing and even-toning properties of a tinted moisturizer, and defends the skin against environmental stress with broad-spectrum UVA and UVB protection. And, in some cases it also helps to brighten and lighten the skin.
A good BB Cream will cover and enhance the complexion without feeling like you’re wearing a mask. Whether you’re looking for sheerness or need more coverage, I’ve taken a look at some of the best on the market and here’s what I’ve found:
Missha – M Perfect Cover BB Cream SPF 42 PA+++
The M Perfect Cover BB Cream gives an even and natural-looking coverage with the soothing, moisturizing properties of a cream. It is suitable for all skin types including acne-prone skin, and can be used as a makeup base or foundation.
This BB Cream has benefits of both a tinted moisturizer and foundation. Better coverage than a tinted moisturizer, yet lighter weight than a foundation. Can be used alone or with a foundation and powder for greater coverage.
The skin-beneficial ingredients packed into this formula includes Caviar, Algae, Jojoba and Macadamia Oil for ultra-hydration, Collagen and Ceramide for smoothness and plumping effect, and antioxidant stars Rose Hip extract and Squalane. This BB Cream also offers whitening & anti-wrinkle effects with UV Protection SPF 42 PA+++
Smashbox - Camera Ready BB Cream SPF 35
My personal favorite is Camera Ready BB Cream by Smashbox because they took the original concept of BB Cream and put a twist on it by adding pigment for a wider array of skin colors. This BB Cream primes, protects, perfects, hydrates, controls oil, and gives you a natural, all over radiance.
Loaded with anti-aging peptides, soothing Cucumber, renewing Apple extract, hydrating Barley and Trehalose, and antioxidant-rich Wheat Germ for smoother, softer, younger-looking skin.
You can wear it alone or over your moisturizer or under your foundation depending on what kind of coverage you are seeking. Just remember a pea size is all you’ll really need, a small amount goes a long way. 5 shades in Fair, Light, Light Medium, Medium, and Dark evens out skin for a flawless finish and SPF 35 for UV protection.
Garnier – Skin Renew Miracle Skin Perfector BB Cream
One of the most affordable and more sheer formulas, this drugstore brand makes skin appears airbrushed, beautifully smooth and even. Its light-weight and comfortable texture blends perfectly into skin.
Garnier BB Cream combines intense moisturizing skincare with vitamin C + Mineral Pigments for an instant skin transformation that hydrates, renews radiance, brightens complexion, evens skin tone and blurs imperfections, and protects against harmful effects of the sun with SPF 15 sunscreen.
Available in two shades: light/medium and medium/deep for skin that looks naturally more even, radiant and smooth.
Skin79 – Super Plus BB Cream
With an intense formula of Sweet Almond Oil, Arbutin, CoQ10, Citrus Unshiu, Green Tea, Caviar, Ceramide, Kava, Sunflower, Purslane, Adenosine, and with SPF 25 PA++, this BB powerhouse decreases the common problems of wrinkling, roughness, dryness, laxity, sallowness, and uneven pigmentation.
Best for those that want a sheer radiance and fast-absorbing light to medium coverage makeup with skin-rich ingredients. No need to use primer or foundation. Most ideal for fair skin or light Asian skin.
Skin79 offers various types of BB to suit the needs of each individual. According to the age, skin types and gender, customers can choose the perfect BB Cream that is ideal to them utilizing premier ingredients like Coenzyme Q10, Green Tea, Mulberry, Arbutin, Cornelian Cherry, Citrus Unshiu, and Goji Berry.
Skin79 also offers one just for men: Homme Triple Action Beblesh Balm, a formula takes care of men’s skin problems all at once. With ingredients for moisture, tightening pores, whitening, wrinkle care, UV block, and slight coverage for acne and blemishes.
Other cosmetic brands such as Lab Series, Etude House/AmorePacific, Dr. Jart, Coogi, and Hanskin have now come out with BB Cream products that are suitable for men too, with the main difference being that these made-for-men creams come in slightly darker shades and offer varieties that don’t offer skin whitening, and some that are waterproof, taking into consideration an active lifestyle. So, if you are looking for more versatility in color and are more active, try a men’s formula BB cream!
Clinique, 3Lab, MAC, Estee Lauder, Dior, Too Faced, Boscia, and Stila also offer their versions of BB Cream here in the United States too.
Note: Newer sunscreens on the market also contain UVA-filters and their protective effect against UVA is measured with PA. PA stands for Protection Grade of UVA. There is currently no uniform measure of UVA absorption, so PA is only a rough indicator of the amount of UVA protection the suncreen offers. There are three grades, namely PA+, PA++ and PA+++. PA+++ offers the most protection. PA+ is adequate for most activities.