Nov 14, 2012

To B or not to B that is the question

The BB Cream Debate
Okay, I could not resist any longer and decided to jump on the BB cream wagon and give it a try! But before I give my opinion on some of the BB creams I have personally tried and tested I think it best to explain what a BB cream is and 'claims' to do.
Is there a difference between Asian and US BB creams?
The answer is a clear 'YES'
US BB creams are no more than a tinted moisturizer with very little coverage whereas Asian BB creams
are more like skin care. Most of them whiten your skin, have anti-aging benefits, brighten, and even skin tone and the Korean BB creams have more coverage than American BB creams.
What does BB stand for.? BB stands for Blemish Balm and it is promoted as an all-in-one facial cosmetic product to replace serum, moisturizer, primer, foundation and sunblock It can be worn alone, over serum and moisturizer as a regular foundation, and under powder, depending on the desired amount of coverage.
BB Cream was originally formulated in the 1960s in Germany by dermatologist Dr. Christine Schrammek to protect her patients' skin after cosmetic surgery. Introduced to South Korea and Japan in 1985 – where healthy-looking, porcelain skin is heavily prized – the cream was hailed as "the secret of Korean actresses," and was heavily endorsed by Korean celebrities.
Because Korean companies focused initially on the Korean and East Asian markets, they are offered in a limited number of shades however, most formulas are designed to oxidize to match the user's skin tone.
The cream is promoted as a multi-tasker, an all-in-one treatment, but Korean women mostly use it as an alternative to foundation, especially Western foundations that tend to be too heavy for their taste. The coverage is often mineral-based, and is intended to both cover and treat blemishes such as acne, sun spots and age spots. It also has anti-wrinkle, anti-inflammatory and soothing effects.
BB Cream provides coverage just like a foundation, but instead of clogging pores and damaging the skin, it claims to tighten the pores and help improve skin complexion.
So, you may ask yourself how do these claims stand up.
Skin79 sample kit

I first purchased Skin79 sample kit which contains:
Diamond Prestige
Super VIP Super Plus
Super Plus Triple Function
Diamond Luminous Pearl
Oriental Gold (this was not included in the sample kit but I am reviewing it below)

Skin79Diamond Prestige SPF 25 PA ++
The coverage is light to medium with a slight shimmer and for those who just need light coverage with the added benefits that BB creams provide then this could be the one for you. However I would not recommend this for anyone who needs to cover scars or blemishes.
Skin79Super VIP Super Plus SPF 25 PA ++
This does have a dull grey tint to it when first placed on the skin and I felt made my skin look a little unhealthy as if I had been sick. I found this particular BB cream to be a little heavier in texture than the others I tried and decided this would not work for me at all.
Skin79 Super Plus Triple Function SPF 25 P ++
This BB cream is for oily skin and states that it will leave skin feeling matte all day. However I asked a friend who has oily skin to test this for me and she said that she had to 'blot' her skin after 4 hours and therefore would work more effectively if set with a finishing powder. The Super Plus Triple Function is best for those who have combination/oily skin who prefer a light coverage.
Skin79 Diamond Luminous Pearl
This has a very soft 'mousse' like texture and applies very smoothly.
This gives a very 'sparkly shimmery' look and I would hesitate to suggest anyone (unless very young) wear this all over the face without anything on top.
This is very oily and felt uncomfortable on the skin. Fortunately I do not suffer with break outs but once I applied this to my skin I felt that if left on to long it would clog my pores and could not wait to remove it!
The only other item I could possible compare this to is MAC Strobe cream and therefore is best used as a highlighter underneath makeup.
Skin79 Oriental Gold SPF 30 PA ++

This without doubt is my favorite BB cream as it does everything I wanted and hoped it would do. This has a rich creamy texture and feels like I imagined a BB cream should feel. It has a thicker constancy than the others and the color melts into my skin giving me a very good color match and can be applied all the way from sheer to full coverage concealing redness, blemishes, freckles etc and does an 'excellent' job of completely covering pores which was absolutely amazing to witness. Once applied it feels wonderful and 'barely there'. It drys leaving a soft and flattering glow to the skin leaving a flawless finish.

Missha Cho Bo Yang SPF 30

This is a full coverage BB cream with a thick texture. It comes in two shades (which is rare for BB creams) and would cover scars and blemishes very well. Due to it being of a thicker consistency I would recommend gradually building for coverage as this could easily appear 'cakey' if applied too much at once. This BB cream gives a semi-matte finish and would be good for oily skin and my friend (once again) tested this out for me and said this controlled her oily skin for a full 8 hours with no need for blotting.

Having never used a BB cream before but reading numerous 'mixed' reviews I did not know what to expect and without doubt Korean BB Creams to do come with a 'learning' curve in regards to application. I tried numerous ways including damp sponge, Beauty Blender and brushes but found the best way was by using my fingers.
BB cream is best applied after allowing it to 'warm' in the palm of the hand as this allows the cream to blend into the skin so much easier.
Little is more when using a BB cream, as over application is an easy error to make when first starting out. Blend from the center of the face out towards the temples and jawline for a smooth and flawless finish. Also remember that BB creams can be applied underneath your regular foundation be it mineral powder or liquids as they create a perfect canvas allowing you to skip sunscreen,  moisturizer and primer as these are already included in all Korean BB creams.
But hold off purchasing any of the above as I will shortly be placing a review on a product I have tried and tested for over two weeks now and feel is even better than BB creams (including my favorite Oriental Gold) with all the same benefits but some added bonuses!