So I jumped on the BB Cream bandwagon. Wah. Wah. Wah.
BB Cream (stands for Blemish Balm or Beblesh Balm Cream) is all the rage in Asia nowadays, particularly in Korea and Japan. It started out as a German invention - a medicated cream with some coverage, healing and nourishing functions, meant for patients of cosmetic surgery to cover up and heal scars. Then Korean celebrities started using it out of convenience. After all, it is a multi-purpose all-in-one product that, depends on the brand and type of BB Cream, you'll get a base, primer, foundation, moisturizer, blemish care, anti-aging, and sunscreen!
See why BB Cream caught on like wild fire? It's supposed to eliminate all unnecessary steps in your daily priming routine, with the exception of the sunscreen, of course. Read my Sun Protection! post for more information, but to put it simply - you'll probably won't want to put a whole 1/4 teaspoon of BB Cream on your face just to get the ho-hum protection. For sun protection, it's best to stick with a separate and waterproof, budgeproof sunscreen!
The majority of BB Creams are Korean-made and the vast majority of Korean brands, big or small, carries a BB Cream of some sort. Many has a whole selection of them, each with its specific functions! And while BB Creams sound super duper and all, for me to take the bate is just completely silly since I don't use foundations, base, primer, or even tinted moisturizers to begin with! Doesn't that show just how curious I am with all the hype surrounding this product? I don't even use the stuff and they still got me to buy it somehow!
Anyway, I started out with Missha Korea (see their Missha USA site) because their 2 newest BB Creams caught my eyes: Missha M Watery BB Cream and Missha M Shiny BB Cream, both with SPF 27 PA++. The "Watery" BB Cream is supposed to provide a moisturizing but matte finish and comes in a darker shade, while the "Shiny" BB Cream has a pearly finish meant for a dewy glow and comes in a much lighter shade.
Missha M Watery BB Cream SPF 27 PA++
The box is a bit beat up, thanks to the courier treatment...
And here is possibly the biggest problem with BB Creams - they come in VERY limited shades. In fact, most comes in only 1 shades, although some brands do make a "bright" and a "natural" one. I think the rationale is that it's NOT supposed to be a full-blown foundation and is supposed to blend in with your natural skin tone with a sheer-medium coverage. However, coverage does indeed differ from brand to brand, and some BB Creams do provide more coverage than others. Either way, do some research before you buy one to make sure it will match your skin tone. I didn't, and I had to learn the hard way with Missha M Watery BB Cream.
Yes, unfortunately, Missha M Watery BB Cream is too dark for me - it's 1-2 shades darker than my facial skin tone! You can see how significantly darker it is in comparison to the SkinFood Aloe Sun BB Cream SPF 20 PA+ in #21-Bright (will review soon) on the back of my hand, and the back of my hand is already darker than my face...
SkinFood Aloe Sun (left) versus Missha M Watery BB Cream (right)
But with that said, all is not lost with Missha M Watery BB Cream and I have a trick or two up my sleeve to wear it still :D
1. I wear it only at night haha! :P During the day it would be too obvious and I've got no guts at all to go for the "ganguro" look.
2. I use very little of it on my forehead (upper part only, near the hair line), temples, nose ridge, cheekbones, and chin, faking a weak tan. For those who are fond of bronzing powders, I'd recommend trying this BB Cream along with an effective highlighter. Their combination will give you a beautiful glowing "tan"!
3. I use a shimmery finishing powder, such as DHC Q10 Face Powder in Transparent 01, as a brightening effect on my forehead (middle to lower part), around the eye area, and on the ball of my cheeks to soften the "tan lines."
4. I use an effective night highlighter as my last step, most often my secret weapon that is Victoria's Secret Mosaic Highlighter for a contouring effect, resulting in the "glow."
Overall, I actually don't dislike Missha M Watery BB Cream even though it's tricky to wear, being darker than my skintone. In fact, it got me curious about the Missha M Shiny BB Cream now too! Texture wise, it is easy to blend, dries to a very matte finish and actually stays matte all night! It contains a slight but not unpleasant fragrance.
And holycrap - is this really supposed to be sheer-medium coverage? Because it gave me air-brushed skin and I couldn't see my pores until I was less than 1 inch from the mirror! Woh! That took me sometimes to get used to, because I don't ever wear foundation to begin with (only transparent powders on the t-zones), so looking like I have perfect skin is just too much for me to come to term with. I kept staring at my face all night! haha :D
Another complaint, other than the darker shade, is that Missha M Watery BB Cream can be drying, yes, even though it is "watery" and is supposed to "contain a generous amount of moisture," according to the box. I wore my beloved Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream, which moisturizes my skin perfectly otherwise, underneath it and it still dried my face out by the end of the night! I know, where did all the water go, right? :D If you have normal skin though, I would suggest using moisturizer only where you need it most, and if you have oily skin, I would suggest you skipping moisturizer altogether and see how the BB Cream performs then.
Sweet September 2011 with Anna Sui GWP
1 year ago