BB Creams: What the Newest Beauty Craze is All About

by Janine on 21 November 2011 · 107 comments

If you haven’t already heard some of the buzz on BB creams, you will — you’ll be seeing a lot of them over the next several months.

So, what are BB creams? If you think of this stuff as a miracle cream, you’ll be underwhelmed. But if you think of it as a one-step makeup time saver — great.

BB Creams are simply a mash up of several products you’re probably already applying. Based on a formula developed in 1968 by German derm Dr. Christine Schrammek-Drusio to soothe, protect and lightly camouflage patients’ skin after cosmetic work, BB creams are multi-taskers that combine skincare ingredients with moisturizer, primer, foundation and SPF. Also referred to as beauty balms or blemish balms, they became wildly popular in Korea when a famous Korean actress credited one for her flawless complexion.

Over the last year or so, several BB Creams have popped up in North America. Maybelline New York, MAC and Clinique have aleady launched versions (none of which is available to Canadians right now, sorry). But, released earlier this year in the US and available at Sephora there, Boscia BB Cream will officially hit Canada in January. Garnier debuted their BB Cream in Europe a few months ago; it’ll be on Canadian drugstore shelves in January, too, as will Estée Lauder Daywear BB Cream SPF 35. And in February, look for a BB Cream (sans SPF) from Canadian brand Marcelle.

The Western formulas are a bit different from the brands that are popular in Korea — those tend to be a bit more opaque, with cooler undertones (Monica of reviewed Missha Perfect Cover BB Cream here). In Asia, the beauty ideal is flawless, porcelain skin. In North America, we like glowing-with-health skin, so our BB creams are more sheer, designed to give the complexion a radiant finish. They’re somewhere between tinted moisturizer and medium-coverage foundation. Skincare ingredients vary, but can include hydrating ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, brightening ingredients such as Vitamin C, and antioxidants.

BB creams can be used on their own, or as a base (like primer) for regular foundation. They generally come in one or two shades designed to suit a wide range of skintones. Apply sparingly.

I’ve tried the Boscia and Marcelle versions. And although you don’t have to apply moisturizer first, I do — my skin’s thirsty right now.

Boscia BB Cream ($46, Sephora): This one looks to titanium dioxide for SPF rather than chemical sunscreens, and contains skincare ingredients to moisturize, condition and protect skin against free radicals. It’s quite sheer, but just a tad too dark for me. Yes, at first I applied a bit too generously — a wee pea-size amount is about right. But it’s still too dark. Apparently another shade is in the works, but it’ll be a while before it comes out.

Skincare ingredients include hydrating types, along with Hydroxyprolisilane, which has healing properties and improves elasticity, and Abyssine, which reduces skin sensitivity and boosts skin repair.  The US version has an SPF of 27; I’m pretty sure the Canadian version has as well, but the brand just can’t put it on the package yet. #needaDIN

Marcelle BB Cream ($22.95, drugstores): This one does not have SPF. The company says their customer doesn’t put UV protection at the top of their ingredient list for foundation, so Marcelle skipped the sunscreen components so they could get the cream into stores quickly. But they’re definitely working on an SPF version with chemical sunscreens. That aside, the texture is creamy and easy to blend — probably something to do with all dimethicone in the formula, which also contains hyaluronic acid, glycerin, aloe and chamomile.

This BB cream comes in two shades, Light to Medium (perfect for me) and Medium to Dark. As well, although sheer, it has decent coverage that evens out my skin without looking like makeup. (I put it on over a moisturizer with SPF.) I don’t buy the skin-improvement claims these things make — I look to my skincare regimen for that. But this Marcelle BB cream, with a bit of concealer where necessary and blot powder on top, helps my skin look and feel pretty good all day.

Of course, it’s added a step to my back-of-the-cab routine.

If you’re curious about BB cream but aren’t sure which one might be for you, click here for tips on how to choose a BB cream.

For more reviews of the MAC, Clinique and Garnier BB Creams, read “Latest BB Creams” by Amy Lawrenson on

Do you already know all about BB creams? Are you planning to try one?



The above BB creams aren’t available in Canada at the moment, but it’s probably only a matter of time. Clinique is confirmed for Canadian release, but the date hasn’t yet been set.

In case you were wondering about the ingredients…

Boscia BB Cream ($46, end of JAN 2012 in Canada): Active Ingredients: Abyssine (naturally-derived survival molecule shields and soothes skin), Hydroxyprolisilane (promotes skin elasticity and reduces the appearance of fine lines), Beta-Glucan (provides essential moisture and protects against environmental damage), Titanium Dioxide 6.4% (sunscreen protection). Other ingredients: Water, Cyclopentasiloxane, Glycerin, Sodium PCA, Glycereth-26, Dimethicone, Dipropylene Glycol, Arbutin, Beta-Glucan, PEG/PPG-18/18 Dimethicone, PEG-10 Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Methylsilanol Hydroxyproline Aspartate, Panthenol, Alteromonas Ferment Extract, Phenyl Trimethicone, Acrylates/Dimethicone Coploymer, PEG-10 Dimethicone, Sodium Hyaluronate, Allantoin, Adenosine, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Butylene Glycol, Stearic Acid, Caprylyl Glycol, PEG/PPG-20/15 Dimethicone, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Alumina, Mica, Citric Acid, Sodium Chloride, Sodium Levulinate, Sodium Anisate, Iron Oxide (C.I. 77499), Iron Oxide (C.I. 77491), Iron Oxide (C.I. 77492).

Garnier Skin Renew Miracle Skin Perfector BB Cream SPF 15 ($19.99, JAN 2012 in Canada): Active Ingredients: Octinoxate 4% Other Ingredients: Water, isononyl isononanoate, isoxadecane, glycerin, alcohol denat, peg-20 methyl glucose sesquistearate, methyl glucose sesquistearate , cetyl palmitate, nylon-12, cyclohexasiloxane, propylene glycol, hydrogenated polyisobutene, stearyl alcohol, magnesium aluminum silicate, phenoxyethanol, fragrance, caprylyl glycol, lithium magnesium sodium silicate, disodium EDTA, linalool, benzyl salicylate, limonene, caffeine, ascorbyl glucoside, benzyl alcohol, geraniol, cellulose acetate butyrate, polyphosphorylcholine glycol acrylate, citral, ammonium polyacryloyldimethyl taurate, polyvinyl alcohol, sodium chloride, butylene glycol, sodium hyaluronate (MAY CONTAIN: Titanium Dioxide, Iron Oxides], FIL B47069/7, G790303

Marcelle BB Cream ($22.95, FEB 2012 in Canada): Aqua/water/eau, cyclopentasiloxane, octyldodecanol, dimethicone, glycerin, dimethicone/vinyl dimethicone crosspolymer, cyclohexasiloxane, isopropyl myristate, bis-peg/ppg-14/14 dimethicone, aluminum starch octenylsuccinate, xylitylglucoside, cetyl peg/ppg-10/1 dimethicone, polyglyceryl-4 isostearate, hexyl laurate, silica, sodium chloride, isododecane, acrylates dimethicone crosspolymer, dimethicone crosspolymer, anhydroxylitol, xylitol, tocopheryl acetate, lauroyl lysine, hydrolyzed hyaluronic acid, triethoxycaprylylsilane, aloe barbadensis leaf juice, camellia oleifera leaf extract, chamomilla recutita (matricaria) flower/leaf extract, disteardimonium hectorite, propylene carbonate, trihydroxystearin, talc, butylene glycol, propylene glycol, diazolidinyl urea, iodopropynyl butylcarbamate, sodium benzoate, potassium sorbate, phenoxyethanol, titanium dioxide, mica, iron oxides

Clinique Age Defense BB Cream SPF 30 [$37 USd, not yet available in Canada]: Active Ingredients: Octinoxate 7.50%, Octisalate 4.00%, Zinc Oxide 3.50%, Oxybenzone 2.50%, Titaniium Dioxide 1.1.0%  Other Ingredients: water, dimethicone, butylene glycol, phenyl trimethicone, pentylene glycol, glyceryl stearate, behenyl alcofol, trioctyldodecyl citrate, polymethylsilsesquioxane, octyldodecyl stearoyl stearate, PEG-40 stearate, polyglyceryl -10 pentastearate, octyldodecyl neopentanoate, Hordeum vulgare (barley extract), extract d’orge, Triticum Vulgare (wheat germm extract), Laminaria saccharina extract, Linoleic Acid, Oryzanol, cholesterol, caffeine, sucrose, glycerin, Polyquaternium-51, lecithin, Sodium stearoyl lactylate, Polyglyceryl-6 Polyricinoleate, Sodium PCA, Isopropyl titanium triisostearate, Trehalose, urea, Tocopheryl Acetate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Ammonium Acryloyldimethyltaurate/VP Copolymer, Xanthan Gum, Glycyrrhetinic acid, stearic acid, Aluminum hydroxide, silica, Pentaerythrityl Tetra-di-t-butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate, Disodium EDTA, Chlorphenesin, Sodium Dehydroacetate, Phenoxyethanol, titanium dioxide, iron oxides, mica

MAC Prep + Prime Beauty Balm SPF 35 [$30 USd, not currently available to Canadians]: Active Ingredients: Octinoxate 7.40%, Octisalate 4.00%, Oxybenzone 2.50%, Titanium Dioxide 1.10%, Zinc Oxide 3.50%  Other Ingredients: Water/Aqua/Eau, Dimethicone, Butylene Glycol, Phenyl Trimethicone, Pentylene Glycol, Glyceryl Sterate, Behenyl Alcohol, Trioctyldodecyl Citrate, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Octyldodecyl Stearoyl Stearate, PEG-40 Stearate, Polyglyceryl-10 Pentastearate, Octyldodecyl Neopentanoate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Caffeine, Glycyrrhetinic Acid, Urea, Sodium Hyluronate, Squalane, Hordeum Vulgare (Barley) Extract,/Extrait D’orge, Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Germ Extract, Laminaria Saccharina Extract, Glycerin, Lecithin, Polyglyceryl-6 Polyricinoleate, Cholesterol, Trehalose, Sodium PCA, Oryzanol, Ammonium Acryloydimethyltaurate/VP Copolymer, Sucrose, Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate, Xanthan Gum, Polyquaternium-51, Isopropyl Titanium Triisosterate, Silica, Aluminum Stearate, Linoleic Acid, Stearic Acid, Pentaerythrityl Tetra-Di-T-Butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate, Disodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphensin, Sodium Dehydroacetate, Mica, Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499), Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891) <ILN36505>

Maybelline Pure Minerals BB Cream SPF 27 [not available in Canada]: Aqua/water, cyclopentasiloxane, dimethicone, ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate, glycerin, isotridecyl isononanoate, peg-9 polydimethylsiloxyethyl dimethicone, disteardimonium hecorite dimethicone/polyglycerin-3 crosspolymer, sodium chloride, phenoxyethanol, methylparaben, disodiumstearoyl glutamate, chlorphenesin, disodium EDTA, acrylates copolymer, propylparaben, tocopherol, aluminium hydroxide, ascorbyl palmitate, peg-9 ethylparaben, zinc gluconate, magnesium aspartate, zinc gluconate, magnesium aspartate, isobutylparaben, copper gluconate (+/- MAY CONTAIN, C1 77891 / titanium dioxide, C1 77491, C177499, C1 77492 / iron oxides]. (F.I.L. D34334/1)


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{ 57 comments… read them below or add one }

Lindsay 21 November 2011 at 10:36 am

Oh. Do I need this? I’m still confused about what they do, exactly.


Janine 21 November 2011 at 9:48 pm

The idea is that the right BB cream could take the place of your daytime moisturizer, SPF, primer and foundation. Just comes down to finding the texture that works for you — and colour.

I’m not so sure it can replace moisturizer, though — I apply after I’ve moisturized already.


Lindsay 22 November 2011 at 10:56 pm

Ohhhhhh. Cool! I think I do need this.


Carmela 21 November 2011 at 10:45 am

I’m currently trying out a BB cream from Korean brand, Skin79. I have noticed it does leave you with a white cast (hence a porcelain-like finish) but coverage is pretty sheer with the one I got. Also, FYI, they ship to US and Canada if anyone’s curious to try the Asian ones before the North American versions come out early next year. (


Janine 21 November 2011 at 9:51 pm

I tried a bit of the Missha stuff at an event and really noticed a difference in tint and texture in comparison to the Garnier. The Missha is drier, and a little more… grey. Good for oily skin, I think.

How are you enjoying the one you’re trying? Does it cut your skincare/makeup time down at all?


Carmela 23 November 2011 at 8:15 pm

It’s working pretty well, actually. I don’t need to use primer/sunscreen/foundation/concealer so it cuts down on prep time a lot! The texture feels a lot like a liquid foundation but with sheer coverage and dries powdery to the touch.


Tracy 21 November 2011 at 12:47 pm

I’m not too sold on these things. To me they’re just a tinted moisturizer, especially the ones that are coming out in North America. The Korean ones have more coverage ,and if they’re supposed to be an all in one product, that would be the point of it, no?


Janine 21 November 2011 at 9:53 pm

I’m kind of with you, Tracy. I like the texture of the Marcelle version because it offers a titch more coverage than a tinted moisturizer. *shrug*


Kristina 21 November 2011 at 5:48 pm

I’ve added this one to my watch list, thanks for the seller tip :) for $10 for a 20 ml, not bad! I’ve been wanting to try one for a while


Solen 22 November 2011 at 12:07 pm

Great Article Janine :) The best so far on the subject!


Brittany 22 November 2011 at 12:26 pm

Interesting post – haven’t heard of these yet. Do they ever explain why they’re tagging them as ‘BB’? Seems like a random, obscure acronym.


Tracy 22 November 2011 at 1:29 pm

The BB stands for Blemish Balm.


Janine 22 November 2011 at 4:37 pm

These kind of creams are/were called “blemish balms” or “beauty balms,” and a few other double-b names that soon became known as B.B. creams… or BB if you’re too lazy to add the punctuation (which apparently I am — *grin*). It’s a new makeup category, really.


Alexandra 22 November 2011 at 9:07 pm

seriously informative post. not sure i’m entirely convinced i need it yet but glad to see i have options when i’m ready to purchase! thank you!


Janine 23 November 2011 at 12:02 am

Thanks, Alexandra! And my pleasure :-)


Karen 23 November 2011 at 12:32 pm

The Marcelle BB looks promising. I’m a fan of their Sheer Tint Fluid Moisturizer. Would you say the BB has more coverage or pretty much the same?


Janine 24 August 2012 at 4:20 am

Wow, I realize I missed a slew of comments at some point. Apologies for not answering sooner, Karen. You’ve probably already found your answer, but although I haven’t tried the Sheer Tint Fluid Moisturizer, the Marcelle BB cream has more coverage than tinted moisturizer in general.


Jane 23 November 2011 at 2:56 pm

These do not appear for oily skinned girls. Silicones make me shinier and cause break outs. I used to use Clarins Beauty Flash Balm and loved it….does it have silicone I wonder?


Monica 23 November 2011 at 11:15 pm

Thank you for the link back to me:)
I’ve been using the Garnier BB Cream since September & have to say its not the same as the BB Creams from Asia. However, still a good product. I swatched the Marcelle BB Cream recently and have to say a pretty good comparable to the Korean brands. Great write up!!


Amanpreet Dhami 27 November 2011 at 12:35 pm

Thanks Janine, this is a really informative post. As always your blog is such a great read.
I just tried the Marcelle one as well and felt it was nice. Usually I prefer a foundation compact and when I do use a liquid foundation I always thin it out with moisturizer, so BB creams are a nice option. I am not totally sure that I would invest in one though, since they are not that different from the idea of tinted moisturizers and since I like sheerer coverage its not high on my priority list.
I am curious about trying the Smashbox BB cream just because their foundations/face care products are really great, have you tried that yet?


Karen 6 January 2012 at 12:19 am

I don’t know if you heard of the Korean brand called “Lioele”. If you go on a YouTube, there are lots of videos on Lioele BB creams. You may want to check that our for fun. Also, in Korea Bobbi Brown sells BB cream and I hear great things about them. I believe they are only available in Asian countries. Do you know why Canada usually seems not to get some products otherwise available in other countries? Less buying power?


Janine 24 August 2012 at 4:26 am

Hi Karen,

Apologies for missing your comment. I’m not familiar with Lioele; thanks for the tip.

I believe the Bobbi Brown BB is available in the US, actually. Several more are available there but not here. Sometimes it’s because a product with SPF needs to get through a lengthy Health Canada process for a drug information number (DIN) in order to say SPF on the label. And sometimes it is indeed buying power (we have such a small population compared to the US), as well as a buyer’s decision on what will sell here and what won’t. *shrug*


Chelsea 31 January 2012 at 12:11 pm

I’ve tried Skin79 and Missha M Perfect Cover bb creams and I love them. The texture is so soft and coverage is great as well.


Skycat 4 February 2012 at 10:06 pm

BB Creams are from Korea brands like Skin 79, Tony Moly, skin milk, and étude house to name a few. They are skin 79 stores in Canada I been using there diamond brand for 2 years know I love it. I think north American companies are trying to gain on this very popular Korean staple of makeup.


Janine 24 August 2012 at 4:28 am

I think it’s safe to say cosmetics companies saw North America as an opportunity. And they were right.


Sarah 12 February 2012 at 3:01 pm

I just happened to come across a YouTube page in December where this girl was using BB Cream (I had no idea what it was yet) and I bought one of the ones she recommended from Skin79- it’s the “gold label.” sells it- I really like it! I do have oily skin and I agree that it can make you look a bit oilier but just carry blotting powder or blotting sheets with you :) I hate the amount of time it takes to perfectly apply your moisturizer, primer, foundation, etc etc – this is ONE step! Haven’t considered trying the American brands- it’s easy enough to order from Korea on Amazon


Helen 4 March 2012 at 3:03 pm

Hi Janine, great article! I’m also a freelance beauty writer and I’ve been testing out the Boscia BB cream for a week now. I like it for weekday makeup when I’m just going to the office – it cuts down on morning prep time. And the darker tint is okay for me, but like you, I still need to apply moisturizer before to keep my skin supple. Overall, I do like it for day-day use. But for events, I would want more coverage.


Janine 29 March 2012 at 8:40 pm

Thanks, Helen!

I think the Lauder version has a titch more coverage than the Boscia. Let me know what you think if you get a chance to try that one!


Angel (clumsydubu) 28 March 2012 at 2:38 pm

honestly i find korean BB creams more effective I use Skin79 in hot pink and nothing more everyday in a week i noticed my acne scaring disappearing! i also had a huge wrinkle in between my eyes from squinting too much and now its completly gone i have been using BB cream for almost 2 years now and Skin79′s for around 4 months and i love it with just a small pump i get full coverage even more than a foundation my face has a nice healthy glow to it and im actually a honey brown color! it doesnt make me seem pale and only takes 10 mins to oxidize. Now even without makeup my face looks smooth and even toned!


Janine 29 March 2012 at 8:34 pm

I’m officially intrigued re: Skin79 — thanks for your comment, Angel!


Courtney 31 March 2012 at 6:11 am

I got a sample of the Garnier BB cream in the mail and it was great! So I purchased a full size-oh my goodness. So many breakouts! I should have known better than to use a super scented product. I splurged and bought the Smashbox yesterday, so we’ll see how this one goes. Does anyone know where I would get the skin79 products in Ottawa, On? Love this blog!


Janine 1 April 2012 at 7:12 am

Hi Courtney,

Thanks for the love! The tough part with a new makeup category — or with trying a new type of product in general — is finding something your skin likes. Sorry you’ve not had a great experience with the Garnier so far. Hope your luck with the Smashbox is better. If you’re still interested in acquiring Skin79, according to the lovely Carmela in one of the comments above, ships to Canada :-)

Do let me know how things go for you, okay? Thanks again!


iseepink 5 April 2012 at 2:15 pm

I’ve been using the Smashbox one for about 3 months now and I find it’s not that great. I don’t have acne but I have the occasional pimple and it does nothing to cover it. I also have oily skin and after 3 hours I have to use blotting papers (which is stupid considering the smashbox is supposed to stop your skin from getting oily). The product is okay but agreed that it’s more like tinted moisturizer. You’re not going to get a lot of coverage (barely any at all in fact) and I find that while I don’t like to look like I’m weating makeup, putting on a cream and not seeing any difference at all is really just $35 down the drain.

I guess I should try the Korean brands.


Janine 6 April 2012 at 11:03 pm

I think it’s going to take a lot of us some time to find out whether a) BB cream works for us, and b) which one is the best formula for our skin.

It’s like trying to find your first foundation in the early days of foundation availability. Weird, right?


Courtney 6 April 2012 at 7:31 am

So far, so “okay” with the Smashbox. I find it makes my eye and brow area super itchy at times and also that it gives me flaky patches where there weren’t any! But I’m not breaking out, so that’s good. I ordered a sampler of the Skin79 creams from last week, so am looking forward to trying those. Wish the Clinique one would hurry up and be available in Canada since I know I can use their products without issue!


Janine 24 August 2012 at 4:31 am

Thanks for the update, Courtney! (Sorry it’s taken me so long to answer!)

So many brands are sampling right now — just look for their Facebook pages — that snagging a variety to test drive is likely an easy feat. I’m sure you’ll find one you love (there are so many now); good luck! And despite how long it took me to answer you this time, please DO let us know when you find BB love!


beachgal 20 April 2012 at 8:20 pm

I have had a variety of BB creams already for yrs I use (used). I always look for a tinted moisturizer that has spf, imparts color for evening out my complexion, and have other ingredients in them for brightening and/or illuminating. They all have either subbed for my foundation, or were primers for my foundation be it a mineral one or one with more coverage like my fav of current – Tarte full coverage Amazonian clay Foundation with spf. I don’t need a BB cream by any means. Clarins has had a BB cream on market in Europe, CA and USA called Flash Beauty Balm – it’s not got a tint nor any spf…but it DOES something different than these new age BB creams that are just imposters for a good tinted moisturizer with spf, hydration and coverage in it. I just find the entire BB craze an attempt to cash in on a new name for a good tinted moisturizer with spf and the other things I personally always looked for in a tinted moisturizer. It’s a way to market a new/old product and charge more for it. Smashbox released one and took a former product almost identical to it off the market! Also, you mentioned here Garnier BB cream which is in every grocery store in the US pretty much now. I was going to try that one just to say I tried it…but I read 2 really bad reviews on it – that it’s sticky/tacky/yuck. Don’t need that. I have more good tinted moisturizers that I love stacked up here that I probably won’t get through before I need to thin the stash out and do my donation to the women’s shelter with more product I got ahead of my needs on.


Lindsay 1 May 2012 at 5:45 am

I’ve been using the Garnier Light to Medium BB Cream for about a week now and love it. It gives me a glow – which is what I was looking for – and enough coverage to create a more even finish.


Alisa 15 May 2012 at 12:51 am

philosophy has had an amazing one for quite some time that is like a moisturizer, primer & foundation all in one but doesn’t have spf or a tint. It’s called The Clear & it seems like foundation yet it has no color. Great for all skin types & available in Canada at the Bay or Sephora. i know so many people who really love it. it keeps your skin matte too, which i really like because i’m a bit oily. but other people i know who have dry skin love it as well. it’s $33 & it’s totally worth it.


Janine 15 May 2012 at 2:51 am

Sounds like a primer, actually — I’ll have to look it up. Thanks for the tip, Alisa!


Alisa 15 May 2012 at 12:53 am

correction: the philosophy one is actually called The Present Clear.


Natasha 1 June 2012 at 11:30 am

I use the Light to Medium Marcelle BB Cream and I DO enjoy it. As a tinted moisturizer that is. I don’t find it does anything miraculous other then even out my skin tone well. I would buy this product again because I love the texture and lightweight formula of it. I’m not a heavy makeup kinda person. It’s also great for all seasons because it tints to your skin tone. So when I’m using my self tanners, I can still use my BB Cream and still have that bronzed look :)


Janine 3 June 2012 at 9:43 pm

I totally agree — miraculous? not really. But great texture and nice finish? Definitely.

Thanks so much for your comment, Natasha!


Natasha 5 June 2012 at 9:28 pm

Anytime! I just found your website and love it :)
So now i’m here and most likely won’t shut up!


Janine 6 June 2012 at 12:16 am

Thanks, lady! And yay!


Suzanne 2 June 2012 at 7:38 pm

I’ve tried a few of these and am really ambivalent. I have a good skincare routine and was really just interested in something to even out skin tone a bit but not full coverage. The Garnier cream caused a serious reaction – rash covering both cheekbones that has taken a loooong time to subside (finally went to my Dr.) so that one’s been trashed. Strange, because the sample I received seemed OK. I sampled Estée Lauder’s Invisible Fluid Makeup and far prefer the product. Perfect match to my skin and super brightening/even tone effect – a little goes a long way.


Janine 3 June 2012 at 9:49 pm

Sorry to hear you had such a reaction — wow. A couple of people I know have had breakouts or rashes in reaction to one of the new BB cream formulas. They tried different brands from the one you tried, and a different brand from each other, so it’s not that one brand is horrible. Their skin just didn’t like the one they tried.

I’ve sampled the Invisible Fluid Makeup, too — amazing light texture!


Natasha 14 June 2012 at 8:41 am

I know i’ve already replied to this post but I have an observation/side note on the Marcelle BB Cream.

I’ve of course never worn it during summer before (I know it’s still not summer but it sure as heck feels like it), but I don’t personally think it works well in very hot, humid weather. It melts off my face. I do have a touch of oily skin, but i’ve been lucky enough to never have make up melt away with the exception of right now. Just a lil’ heads up for summerwear. It could also totally just be me.


Janine 14 June 2012 at 10:34 am

Good to know, Natasha! Marcelle is launching a couple of new BB items, actually, one with SPF and a cream compact version — and in new darker shades, too. I wonder if they’ll be any different re: melty-weather performance.


Sabrina 16 August 2012 at 2:46 am

I find the same problem with the garnier as well. At first I loved it cause it totally evened out my skin tone and it seemed to moisturizer and have nice texture but by the end of the day it has melted away leaving my skin oily and shiny looking :( I really hope they come out with some that are more matte finish and stay nice all day


Megan 1 July 2012 at 5:09 am

For all the Korean bb cream I have tried, I like Missha Cho Bo Yang the best. I have really dry skin and I don’t need moisturizer for this one. Lioele is good too but my skin gets oily after 3-4 hrs but not this one.


Beverley Cloke 2 July 2012 at 6:53 pm

Hey Janine, Long time no talk. Been a long time since TC days. I tried the Garnier BB as it was recommended by the SDM cosmetician and my skin broke out. Was not a happy camper. Wonder if I can take it back? Need one with little or no perfumes. Bev


Janine 3 July 2012 at 2:00 am

Hi Beverley! It has indeed been a long time!

Sorry to hear about your initial BB experience. I think you should definitely try to take it back. Explain that it made you break out; see what they say.

Perhaps Maybelline NY Dream Fresh BB SPF 30 might work for you. It has very little fragrance (if any), as well as mineral sunscreen ingredients (titanium dioxide and zinc oxide), which sit on skin’s surface rather than chemical sunscreens, which need to be absorbed by skin to be effective. It also has a bit more coverage than the Garnier.

Keep me posted?


Rachelle 14 July 2013 at 1:07 pm

I’m testing BB creams with SPF. I am very sensitive to sun, so my regular is 50-60 SPF. But 30 would be okay if I’ll only be indoors (yes, I have to wear sunscreen indoors), or outside for 5 minutes type of thing.

My question is — with other chemical sunscreens, you have to reapply every two hours. The BB creams I’ve tried feel like foundation. Wouldn’t it get kind of gross to layer on more? Would I have to wash my face and start over every two hours?


Janine 15 July 2013 at 9:16 am

SPF in moisturizer and makeup is so tricky, isn’t it Rachelle? You’ve hit on one of the trickiest parts: reapplication if the SPF is in your foundation.

But there is a solution: SPF mineral powder! Peter Thomas Roth has an SPF 45 via Sephora; one of my favourites is Eminence Organics SPF 30 powder. Just dust on over your foundation and go!

Here’s a link for a bit more info:

Hope that helps!


Rachelle 20 July 2013 at 2:40 pm

Thanks Janine, I’ve been using the Physician’s Formula mineral powder you blogged about recently. I find it’s a good solution when I can’t wash my face and start over, like when I’m about to walk home from work. However, I’m still a little skeptical of the SPF claims for powders. It’s awfully hard to tell how much I’ve applied. I guess it’s better than nothing, so I keep using it. Nice texture as well, not too powdery looking.


Janine 20 July 2013 at 8:11 pm

I feel the same way you do, Rachelle. Physician’s Formula claims a light dusting will do it; until we get the official FDA word, I’m a little skeptical, too. Like you, I figure it’s better than nothing. And I agree, the PF powder is nice, velvety.

Thanks so much for your comment!


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