Beauty balms are all the rage right now. With all my favorite brands launching one, talk about perfect timing for me since I am on the hunt for a new foundation routine! First off- what is a BB Cream? According to Google, they are blemish or beauty balms sold in Korea. How uncharacteristically not helpful of Google. After further investigation, BB creams are indeed native to Asia and have been popular there for sometime. They have recently become widely available in the US and are advertised as the best thing to happen to your beauty routine since…well, anything ever. It is a one step beauty product, claims to tighten pores, reduce fine lines, brighten skin and a myriad of other things. Could this one product replace my primer, foundation and setting powder? Seems too good to be true… I picked up two to try, the new Tarte 12 Hour Primer and Dr. Jart’s Black Label Detoxifying Beauty Balm. Tarte is one of my all time favorite brands, it was a must try and Dr. Jart seems to be the BB cream expert boasting rave reviews; a good place to start.
Tarte BB Tinted Treatment 12 Hour Primer in Fair
Right out of the box this BB claims to work as a primer, moisturizer, light foundation, anti-aging treatment and sunscreen. It comes in 4 different shades which I was really excited about since my skin is so fair and so many BB’s are ‘one shade fits all.’ There is an unspoken exclusion of Stella in that claim. Out of the tube the fair shade is ultra fair with yellow undertones, I could probably even get away with the light in summer- this is rarely the case. Unfortunately this product smells like foundation or the late 80’s. What a bummer, I was hoping for the botanical scent some of their primers have or none at all. It has the consistency of regular primer, it reminded me of a tinted version of Tarte’s Clean Slate Pore Perfecting primer. Sans moisturizer and primer, I applied as I would a liquid foundation. My forehead looked great, 10 years younger but it failed to deliver otherwise. I found that it settles in pores, clings to any dry skin and offers little to no coverage. It did next to nothing to smooth my skin texture, you would need flawless skin to begin with for this product. Also, you cannot touch after applying or it comes right off. Since the first disappointing test run, I have also applied this BB over my moisturizer and primer which totally defeats the idea of a BB and I am still not impressed. It does pack some pretty serious SPF and the texture was dreamy but I most definitely would not use this as my primary face product.
Dr. Jart+ Black Label Detoxifying Beauty Balm
Dr. Jart is one of the originals, claims to be the best suited for fair skin- awesome since it comes in the dreaded one shade. This particular formula is paraben free and also claims to be a 3 in 1 with the added perks of covering and soothing acne. Out of the tube (love the pump) the color is scary, like Jersey tan scary. It still smells eerily similar to foundation, starting to think this is characteristic of BB creams but can’t say for sure since I am not an expert (yet). It has the consistency of a tinted moisturizer, as it should. Again, barefaced I applied just like foundation. This is what BB dreams are made of! This product blends seamlessly, evens skin tone, brightens the complexion and gives you a dewy (not sweaty) finish. Love. Now, I did apply concealer as I do not have perfect skin and need a little extra coverage but otherwise I could see myself using this sole product for my daytime face regimen. I finished with bareMinerals all over face color in Glee and am pretty pleased.
50/50 for my first BB cream experience and cannot wait to try more (they better hurry up and stock the Urban Decay BB)! Old habits die hard and I am not sure if I could really ditch my beloved primer, but am willing to try! Until next time…