IT'S THE WEEKEND: Glow for complexion perfection
12:20pm Sunday 15th September 2013 in News
BY popular demand, this week’s column is dedicated to BB versus CC creams, and what the devil these little beauties actually do.
If I were to sum them up, I would say a BB (or beauty balm) is a tinted moisturiser on metaphorical steroids; and a CC cream is the intellectually superior big sister of the BB cream.
BB cream stands for blemish balm, or beauty balm. What became BB cream was originally formulated in the 1960s in Germany by dermatologist Dr Christine Schrammek to protect patients’ skin after surgery. It was introduced to South Korea and Japan in 1985, where it took off in a massive way. In the last couple of years it has started to take off in the UK too, and is perfect for anyone who is a) constantly in a rush b) has a fear of blocked pores and c) cringes every time they have to smear their faces with concrete-like foundation but find tinted moisturisers don’t give enough coverage.
BB cream is marketed as an all-in-one facial cosmetic product which aims to replace the need for serum, moisturiser, primer, foundation and sun cream.
For time-poor ladies and gents who want a gentle glow without the steady layering of seven-plus products, BB cream is a godsend.
Bobbi Brown’s BB Cream with SPF35 (£29 from Debenhams) comes in a variety of shades including extra dark and extra light, but I find the SPF causes the cream to feel a bit claggy and it takes a while to sink into the skin. It also proves a little harder to blend – but then that’s probably to be expected with such high sun protection.
CC creams, also known as colour-control cream, or colour-correcting cream, are another Korean masterpiece, a kind of magical BB cream with bells on. It’s got the same skincare benefits and all-in-oneness, but it provides better coverage, is less oily and some very clever (expensive) ones adapt beautifully to your natural skin shade, removing the ghost face/Tango’d effect of some BB creams.
In my experience, if you want the best you have to pay for it. The L’Oreal Nude Magique CC cream for anti-dullness (£9.99 from Boots) is reasonably priced, and comes out the most amazing light lilac colour before ‘adapting’ to your skin colour, but again is far too dark for my pale skin.
However, if you’ve a medium skin tone with yellow undertone it would be perfect, as it’s light, hydrating and gives a gorgeous dewy glow.
But the absolute best I have experienced has to be Chanel’s CC cream. It only launched last month and has already developed something of a cult following. It’s luxe, so it’s pricey (£41, nationwide) but if you fancy a real treat, this is the one.
The Chanel Colour Correction Cream in SPF30 offers skincare benefits, make-up coverage and a natural finish, and features cornflower water to soothe, hyaluronic acid to moisturise, active ingredient Rejuvencia to prevent and correct signs of ageing, and mineral pigments to even out skin tone and conceal imperfections. It also has a light fruity scent, featuring top notes of white peach and water melon and a heart made up of jasmine, peony and cyclamen.
Physically, it has a really quite rich creamy texture and a buildable coverage. The big thing about this cream is it really does even out the complexion; redness, dark spots and pores are visibly diminished. Within moments skin appears naturally dewy, flawless, with a natural glow. Dream cream!
If you’re looking for a cheaper option, try Garnier’s range of Miracle Skin Perfector BB creams (from £7.99). I find this smoothes into the skin very naturally, and it feels like you’re dabbing moisturiser and happiness into your skin. It doesn’t settle into lines and leaves your skin with a nice dewy finish. It has an SPF 15. They also make an oily/combination skin version which gives a more matte finish.
If you prefer a product not tested on animals, try the Body Shop’s All in One BB cream (£12) or Docteur Renaud’s Apricot BB cream (£25 from Marks and Spencer). The latter smells good enough to eat, while the former has funky packaging and ethical kudos.
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