Aug 2, 2012

BB Cream Overview/Review

I currently own 4 BB creams and I am a little ashamed to admit that I was all about the hype of BB creams. I will also admit that I have never tried an Asian BB cream, but I have tried two from the drugstore and two from le Sephora/high end (er, forgive me... I've been reading rage comics all day). Before I continue with this post, I've changed the way I show pictures for this post. Let me know what you think! All of my photos are still taken via my iPhone and they will be until I save enough money for a camera. In all of the photos I have a swatch showing the texture of the product when it comes out of the bottle and below it is how it looks blended into my skin (which is difficult to pick up on my camera).

Name: Too Faced Tinted Beauty Balm
Shade: Vanilla Glow
Price: $32
Amount of product in tube: 1.5 fluid ounces
SPF?: 20
Coverage: Light
Number of shades available: 4 (the darkest is what I would call "medium")
Finish: Dewy (this has some shimmery elements to it, but said shimmers do not resemble Revlon Photoready, in case you were worried ;) - that being said, I still recommend trying to obtain a sample beforehand.
Promises: It promises to tint, prime, nourish, prevent, and protect
My perspective: This is the second BB cream I have tried and I even featured it in a monthly favorites post. Despite its dewy finish, it lasts most of the day on my combination to oily acne-prone skin. I do not see an increase in breakouts when I use this product. As with most BB creams I have seen, this can be worn alone or as a primer. I always wear powder over it and since I do not wear primer, I do not wear primer under it. This is really just a tinted moisturizer, but it is a nice tinted moisturizer I would consider buying again. One problem I have is the shade selection. Vanilla Glow is a little too dark for my ultra pale skin and there aren't any deep shades. If I blend the product properly then I don't look like an oompa loompa... my boyfriend said it just looked like I had a slight tan.
Overall rating: 4 out of 5

Name: Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream
Shade: Fair
Price: $39
Amount of product in tube: 1 fluid ounce
SPF?: 35
Coverage: Light, but buildable to medium
Number of shades: 5
Finish: Natural
Promises: Moisturize, prime, perfect, control oil, and protects.
My perspective: I adore this BB cream. I can almost (not quite, but almost) wear it without powder. It doesn't break my skin out and it has coverage that rivals some foundations I have tried in the past. It has a thick consistency, but it doesn't feel heavy on my face. There is a deeper shade called "Dark" but I have no idea how it compares to, say, MAC shades. As with the Too Faced BB cream, if you can get a sample before purchasing, do so. The reason this product does not get a perfect score is the price. Unless Smashbox releases a 1.5 ounce bottle and keeps the price in the $30's, it's overpriced. I love this product and I would repurchase it without any regrets, but I think the price will be a dealbreaker for a lot of people.
Overall rating: 4.5 out of 5

Name: L'Oreal Magic Skin Beautifier BB Cream
Shade: Fair (810)
Price: $10.99 (give or take a few - really worth it if you can find a coupon or get it on sale)
Amount of product in tube: 1 fluid ounce
SPF?: None.
Coverage: Light
Number of shades: 4
Finish: Natural
Promises: Primes, perfects, hydrates, corrects
My perspective: This product reminds me of Almay Smart Shade makeup, only this is what Almay Smart Shade SHOULD have been. The pigments in this are a little more "grainy" and it is difficult to capture what the beads look like with my camera, but this product actually evens out my skin tone. It doesn't perform miracles, but it is a nice product overall. It doesn't promise to control oil, but it almost controls oil as well as my Smashbox BB cream. There are only 4 shades and some people have experienced issues with matching because "Light" is actually pretty dark for a lighter shade (at least from what I have seen from other blog posts). I wouldn't say that this adjusts exactly to my skin tone, but Fair is light enough for my skin and that is something I can't say about a LOT of base products (from drugstore to high end). I'm not a fan of the fact that this lacks SPF, but I can deal with it since I wear sunscreen on my face anyway. I would say if you are looking for an affordable BB cream, this is a nice option. I recommend looking for coupons or sales so you can get the most out of your money.
Overall rating: 4 out of 5

Name: Maybelline Dream Fresh BB
Shade: Light
Price: $8.99 (roughly - since it is a drugstore product it could cost more or less. I have seen it for as low as $6.99)
Amount of product in tube: 1 fluid ounce
SPF?: 30
Coverage: Very light (basically none)
Number of shades: 5
Finish: Very dewy
Promises: Blurs imperfections, enhances, brightens, adjusts to skin-tone, smoothes, hydrates, SPF 30 protects, 0% oils and other heavy ingredients
My perspective: This product did not work for me at all. It's the runniest in consistency of all the BB creams I own, it covers the least (in fact, it has the same coverage as my ELF $1 tinted moisturizer), it makes my skin a greasy mess after 2 hours (even with an oil control powder). I was so excited to try this product and I was just completely disappointed. This would probably be fantastic for people with normal to dry skin and little to no redness. The shade selection is similar to the Smashbox BB cream and from reviews I have seen, the deeper shades do work on dark skin. Since most drugstores have great return policies, I would recommend keeping the receipt if you have a skin type similar to mine and you still really want to try this product. I don't want to call this a bad product because I know it works for some people, but this just didn't work for me.
Overall rating: 2.5 out of 5

Have you tried any of these products? If so, what did you think of them? Do you have any BB creams you like better than these?