BB creams (Blemish Balms to the uninitiated) are the new hottest thing in Hollywood – all-in-one products that replace serum, SPF and foundation. But which is best for YOU?
The latest beauty buzzword for the Hollywood hotlist is BB or Blemish Balm creams.
Like the beauty equivalent of a brand new iPhone, BB creams are multi-functional products that harness smart new technology and ingredients so you can replace your serum, moisturiser, primer, foundation and sun block, all presented in one neat little all-in-one package.
This new hybrid product, which sits between skincare and make up, gives skin a natural luminous look – meaning BB creams are fast becoming the beauty secret of celebrities and their make-up artists worldwide.
BB creams have taken the beauty world by storm since they came onto the market
BB creams originated in Germany where a dermatologist gave it to her clients who had undergone laser treatments, which left the skin sensitised and vulnerable to the sun.
BB creams then quickly become popular in Korea and across Asia in the mid-Noughties and most recently amongst A-listers and make-up artists for their amazing skin nourishing benefits, which also leave skin primed and with a healthy glow.
If you’re anything like me, so time poor and stressed out juggling kids, deadlines and work that some mornings I barely have enough time to run out the door without having passed a brush through my hair, let alone having a seven-step skin regime that would put a beauty obsessed Japanese Harajuku girl to shame – BB creams seem like some sort of salvation.
Lieve Declercq, Origins Global Spokesperson of Plant Physiology and Molecular Biology explains: ‘BB Creams should provide broad-spectrum SPF protection from UVA and UVB rays to protect against sun damage but can also help conceal hyper-pigmentation, acne, scars and blemishes, hydrate, whitening as well as having anti-aging benefits’
Rodial, the go-to beauty brand of celebrities such as Angelina Jolie and Lady Gaga, have just launched their new Rodial BB Venom Skin Tint (£35, www.rodial.co.uk), which comes in three shades, rather fabulously named Capri, Hamptons and St Barts.
The Spice Girls looked like they hadn’t aged a day thanks to the magic cream
For the eye area, there is a triple-action brightening concealer, Rodial BB Venom Eye (£29, www.rodial.co.uk), which comes in two shades: a cooler pink-toned shade called Aspen and a warmer yellow tone called Malibu (you get it), which sold out within a week of their launch this summer.
The success of these BB creams is based on SYN-AKE, a neuropeptide, which inhibits the contraction of innervated muscle cells, thus providing a mild, non-invasive temporary Botox-like effect on fine lines and crow’s feet.
The BB venom skin tint even made an appearance at the closing ceremony of the Olympics this summer when the Spice Girls’; make-up artists used it – the result being that the girls looked like they hadn’t aged a day since they taught the world how to Spice up their lives more than 10 years ago.
Jessie J is also a huge fan of BB creams and her new softer, more sophisticated look can be put down to James Read BB Tan Face Pen, £22.50, www.jamesreadtan.co.uk, which she is said to carry around with her everywhere.
Clever James Read, the celebrity tanner to the stars whose fans include supermodels Lara Stone and Rosie Huntington- Whiteley, has just launched a range of 11 at-home professional self tanning products and his BB cream pen with added gradual fake tan is the fastest selling product in the range.
BB CREAM: THE SCIENCE
- BB creams originated in Germany where a dermatologist gave it to her clients who had undergone laser treatments, which left the skin sensitised and vulnerable to the sun
- They brighten skin in the same way a primer does, evens out complexion like a lightweight foundation, covers blemishes like a concealer, has the hydrating properties of a moisturiser, soothes skin like an anti-inflammatory and contains UV protection
If you’ve been suffering with dry, post-summer, back-to-school skin which is now taking a battering from the cold, wet and windy conditions outside, check out the Body Shop’s BB offering. Their All-in-One BB cream, £12, www.thebodyshop.co.uk) is highly rated, and has sold at the rate of one every 27 seconds since launching in August this year.
It contains skin protecting and soothing vitamin E and hydrating community fair trade Marula oil for 24 hour hydration that not only leaves you feeling good about your skin but also your conscience.
As well as tackling dehydration, fine lines and wrinkles, redness and radiance, at the very heart of a BB cream is a high SPF protection, which I love because there are now no more excuses not to protect skin from the damaging and aging effects of the sun all year round, as advised by skin experts and dermatologists.
Giorgio Armani’s new Luminessense Bright Revelator Greige BB Fluid SPF 50/PA++, £60, www.armanibeauty.co.uk, might be an eye wateringly pricey option when it comes to a BB cream but it does help you get your glow on and leaves all skin tones including the very deepest ones looking even – as well as having one of the highest SPF protection on the market.
Some BB creams especially those created for the Asian market that can now be found in the UK can sometimes leave a white or chalky appearance on deeper skin tones but if you’re looking for light to medium coverage as well as anti- aging skin benefits grab yourself Origins A Perfect World BB SPF 15 Age-Defense Tinted Moisturizer with White Tea, £27, www.origins.co.uk.
It smells heavenly with an essential oil blend of sweet orange, lemon and spearmint, which will put you in a good mood at the start of a hectic day and also comes in six shades with a blend of mineral pigments for super quick and easy airbrushed-looking skin.
Ateh Jewel has 10 years experience in the beauty industry and has written for several prestigious titles
Award winning freelance beauty and lifestyle journalist and blogger, Ateh Jewel (www.atehjewelbeautyinsider.blogspot.co.uk) has 10 years experience in the beauty industry and has written for titles such as Vogue, Sunday Times Style, Grazia, Metro, Elle and Marie Claire where she was a columnist for two years to name a few.
She also appears as a beauty expert on TV and radio and co-founded and runs her digital production agency Couture Communications, www.couturecommunications.com.