Are you wondering what the rage is about BB creams and how BB creams work? Also known as blemish balms and beauty balms, these creams have recently taken the beauty world (and the United States) by storm. So what is this amazing new product? A blemish balm is a tinted moisturizer with extra benefits. It contains SPF, disguises blemishes, and soothes and moisturizes skin—some versions even contain anti-aging properties! Depending on your needs, BB creams can replace foundation and moisturizer—depending on your skin type, you can wear them completely on their own!
The History of BB Creams
The first version of BB cream was developed in Germany in the 1950s by dermatologist Christine Schrammek, M.D. (who still sells the original version on her website!) for her patients after they had finished treatments such as skin peels and facials. This BB (Blemish Balm) cream was designed to soothe skin while camouflaging redness with its tinted color. 30 years later, BB cream was introduced to the Korean market, then quickly became popular throughout Asia. Korean celebrities became obsessed with the product, attributing it to their flawless skin and calling it a “miracle cream.”
How BB Creams Work
Essentially the ultimate all-in-one product, BB Creams offer strong sun protection, prevent pimples, cover imperfections, and contain anti-aging, skin soothing properties. They also prime the skin and prevent shine (tinted moisturizers never took off in Asia because no one wanted to look dewier in the humid climate). But before now, BB cream was only available in one shade, which made it unsuitable for the US market. Some Korean varieties even contained whitening agents! The most popular brands in Korea have been Missha and Dr. Jart+, and BB creams alone even have their own aisle in Asian pharmacies.
New BB Creams
In order for BB cream to hit U.S. shelves, it had to be developed in a slew of different shades, yet still contain all of the beauty benefits. "BB cream is perfect for a busy woman," says New York City and Miami-based dermatologist Fredric Brandt, M.D. (he looks after Madonna’s skin!), who is releasing his own version—Dr. Brandt Flexitone BB Cream—this March. "It has broad spectrum protection that's been approved by the FDA, soothes and moisturizes skin, disguises blemishes, and has anti-aging properties. Essentially, it’s a moisturizer, anti-aging cream, sunscreen, primer, and foundation all rolled into one.” Dr. Brandt’s twist on the popular product? A self-adjusting color that works for women of all skin tones!
So is BB cream right for you? If you want coverage that not only brightens, soothes, moisturizers, primes, and provides UV protection and anti-aging properties, then be sure to add BB cream to your beauty arsenal.