July 19th 2013
The world of cosmetics and beauty is constantly changing and evolving, leaving even the most avid Mari Claire reader at a loss from time to time. In a bid to bust beauty myths with a solid dose of science, we’ve bought on board Ceri, founder of top Central spa, Glow with Ceri Silk. In this regular beauty blog, Ceri will talk us through the ins and outs of an industry with many faces.
BB verses CC and now DD. Is it more buxom the better?
BB, CC and even DD creams are a new and exciting generation of 3-in-1 products combining moisturiser, foundation and sunscreen all in one. These creams are proving hugely popular in Hong Kong because with our high humidity, the alternative of layering a separate moisturiser, sunscreen and makeup just doesn’t work. As we all know, it all tends to slide off your face in a sticky and unpleasant mess!
BB cream (which stands for a beauty or blemish balm) provides hydration, colour and protection in one handy cream. BB creams were first developed in Germany as a remedy for dermatologists looking to protect the skin after aggressive facial treatments, such as laser resurfacing. They were intended to protect the skin from the sun and environmental factors, regenerate the skin after treatments, and conceal any possible redness by providing moisture and radiance.
The concept was then picked up with enthusiasm by consumers in Korea, where plastic surgery is very popular. However, instead of only using the creams after intensive facial treatments, Korean women began using BB creams in place of their usual daily moisturiser and foundation. Many women found that a BB cream was all they needed to wear on their skin in the daytime, as it met all of their skincare and makeup needs.
From Korea, the popularity of the product soon spread, taking Asia, and then the rest of the world, by storm. By 2012, BB cream was a must-have skincare item. With the popularity of BB creams, the competitive cosmetic industry has scrambled to capitalise on the trend, and we now see CC cream, and even the DD cream for sale.
CC creams, otherwise known as “colour corrector” or “coverage control” creams, claim to be the next generation of complexion perfecters, offering lighter but better coverage than a typical BB cream as well as additional properties such as acting as a primer, brightener and a foundation. They also generally contain more anti-aging ingredients.
DD creams, or “Dynamic Do-All” creams, are the new kids on the block, boasting even more properties than BB or CC creams. However, there are only a few brands on the market as yet, and they are basically the same as a lot of BB and CC brands. In fact, in the United States, DD creams are defined as “heavy duty body and foot creams”!
So what’s the difference?
Some say, “CC creams generally have a lighter texture and more anti-ageing properties than BB creams”. However, I’ve found the difference in texture and skincare benefits depends more on the brand of the cream than whether it says BB or CC on the tube. So shop around and try before you buy to find the best coverage and texture for your skin type. The original BB creams were definitely thicker, but many BBs launched in 2012 are on a par with the CC creams launched at the same time, also containing anti-aging components and light reflectors to help smooth out skin texture.
What’s the best cream for you?
This will depend on your skin type and lifestyle. If you are out and about in the sun, then choose a cream with SPF 30 or above; however, if you’re mainly under cover in the office or the shopping centre, then SPF15 will be fine.
If you’re 30+, consider a BB or CC cream with anti-aging properties. I don’t recommend these creams for anyone under 30 however as they can be too rich and cause congestion and possibly pimples. As yet, none of the above contain acne-fighting ingredients, although no doubt that will come soon.
Opt instead for a tinted moisturiser or foundation especially designed for rebalancing oil production and preventing bacteria build-up. If you like a lot of coverage from your foundation, you may find BB and CC creams don’t give you enough coverage by themselves. You can however layer the cream underneath your current foundation, because most act as a primer, meaning they help to keep your makeup looking fresh longer.
For most, however, this new generation of all-in-one creams are the perfect fix for Hong Kong’s summer climate. My top tip: worry less about the letters (BB, CC or DD) and choose a brand that works for you.