One of my favorite things to do when I travel is to visit local drug stores or apothecaries and scope out the favorite hometown beauty products. I swear by my deodorant from Berlin, toothpaste from Paris and body soap from Prague. In fact, when any of my friends travel they know to expect a check and a shopping list from me! My first trip to Tokyo was nearly ten years ago and aside from wanting (and nearly buying) just about everything I saw, my ultimate must-have was skin care and makeup. Of course genetics play a big part, but I knew the flawless skin I saw on every woman was due in part to products. It was here that I was first introduced to BB Cream, and I am excited to see it now gaining popularity stateside.
BB Cream, which stands for “blemish balm” or “beauty balm” is an all-in-one miracle product. According to makeup lore it originated in Germany, but it gained popularity in Korea before spreading across Asia and into Europe. BB Cream will moisturize, conceal, treat and provide your skin with SPF. It is light and silky, and leaves your skin looking flawless. Truly. I also no longer need primer to hold my makeup to my skin when I wear it. Because I tend to lean toward the dry side I apply moisturizer before my BB Cream, but those with normal to oily skin
won’t find that step necessary. For heavy blemishes (yep – I still get those on occasion!) I will also use a dab of concealer, but I generally no longer need it at all. I turned my mother into a devotee and she still dabs on a little under eye concealer, but again, just a minimal amount. Some brands are now offering BB Cream in a variety of shades to chose from, but I like those that hold true to the original formula, which blends to any skin tone (my mother has a rich, olive skin tone and I am incredibly fair, yet we both use the same BB Cream).
I used to rely on The Face Shop, a line of Korean beauty products with a few locations stateside, for my BB Cream (you can also purchase The Face Shop products on Amazon) and now as the product trend takes off we have many more options to choose from. Sephora now has an entire BB Cream category, andGarnier makes one you can pick up in just about any drugstore. I don’t think it will be long before every brand offers its own version of this miracle product.
Out of all the BB Creams available right now – and trust me, I’ve sampled most! – my absolute fave is Dr. Jart’s Premium BB Cream. It never leaves me oily (as some tend to do), it lasts until I wash it off, and it creates a flawless canvas for my skin. Plus, it has SPF 45 PA+++, higher than most others on the market. Celeb makeup artist Nicole Bryl, who has worked with Naomi Watts, Molly Sims, and Sandra Bullock calls BB Cream one of her best beauty buy’s. We agree!