May 4, 2013

Will ZZ creams work better for me?

BB creams. They've been in the market for years and years, long before our Western brands started launching their own versions. They were once an Asian hype that beauty lovers all around the world would get on eBay or from Hong Kong based stockists.

I tried a lot of them, but I never was really convinced. I must say, though, that the Asian ones often have very pale colors, sometimes greyish, and aren't suitable for all the Western skintones.
When the Western BB creams got launched, I did understand from the reviews I read that they were more of a new kind of tinted moisturizer than an equivalent for the Asian products. So I gave some of them a try.

Unfortunately, they did not work for me either. In all honesty, I find them thick, hard to blend (that is probably because of the SPF in them but then regular sun lotions are so much lighter, why can't that be achieved in BB creams?) and where the Asian ones were too light, most Western BB creams are too dark and/or orange even though they usually come in several shades.

Last one I tried (after I got a sample - I wouldn't have purchased it without trying) was the Dior Nude one. To say things simply: this just enhanced everything I don't like in my skin. Dry patches looked dryer, texture looked less smooth, and slightly oilier areas looked like a greasy mess. It could not have been more wrong. That's probably when I decided that I would give up on BB creams for ever.

Then came CC creams. CC as in Color Correcting. They're supposed to be a different thing, and I heard fellow BB detractors swear that CC were a completely different business.

The first one I tried was the L'Oreal Nude Magique CC cream, the one meant to correct redness. I got it in full size in a beauty box so it was a perfect occasion to try it. I actually did not hate this one. The texture is very light and easy to blend, it's much more like a serum and not at all thick or hard to blend. 
But I don't have any redness issue, really, so it wasn't really meant for my skin. Also, it was unfortunately a bit too dark again once blended. And given this doesn't have enough coverage to be used without makeup on top, I don't really see how I could blend my pale foundation on top of a darker CC cream. Hence I gifted it to a friend who has redness issues and a darker skintone than me, I hope she likes it. 

After this better experience, I thought maybe another CC cream with a more suited shade might be a good solution for me and I was given a sample of the Clinique Moisture Surge one in the lightest shade.

Now yes, this is a bit easier to spread and blend than a BB cream. But it's still rather thick. It did not make my skin much more even, nor prettier. Actually I thought I looked less good with it on than I looked with no makeup - which is really counter-productive. It also feels to heavy on the skin, in my opinion, to wear another layer of foundation on top so I'd rather skip it. And finally, after a few hours, it made my pores look more visible, my skin texture less even, and my t-zone completely oily.

I hear that the first DD cream will be launching this Summer, released by Julep. DD will stand for "dynamic do-all". I will probably not be trying it. If these things are the next generation of tinted moisturizer, I'm going to be stubborn and stick with the old stuff. I found it hard enough to find TM's that I like already.

If things keep improving at this rate, maybe ZZ creams will be better for me?


  1. I hope ZZ creams will help me get the sleep I crave with a 3-year-old and a 1-year-old in the house. But seriously, of all the BB creams I've tried, the only one I really like is the Jane Iredale Glow Time one, which is more like a full coverage foundation, and close to Illamasqua Skin Base in performance, but with added spf.

  2. Aww, I'm so sorry to hear none of these works for you! I watched Lisa Eldridge's latest tutorial today, and I think she's right. It's nice if you could find a formula that works, but there's no need to get too wrapped up by the marketing. I had a great summer with Dior Hydra Life last year. In all honesty I don't think there's much left in my tube. I'll take it out when I've got a bit more of a tan this year.

  3. hehe, I first thought you refered to the latest (or not that latest among Asian bloggers as they have it for 4 years or more) -> sleeping masks.

    I'm not that impressed either by the latest diffusions of CC/EE/FF of Western brands

  4. I think a lot of the OTC makeup brands (cover girl, maybellene garnier) just used the same TM formula but put BB cream on the label. A lot of them seem too pink toned, even orange for me. I'll have to check into a real Asian BB cream since I'm generally white with olive undertones.

  5. I'm pretty much death white and I share your pain! I'm about N5 in Mac and I'm neutral toned so everything is too dark and yellow/pink. But actually I tried the Maxfactor CC Cream today and... I quite like it. It's a bit hydrating but not greasy, it's an alright colour match- wonder of wonders! Not sure about availability (I'm in the UK) but it might be worth checking out :) xxx

    1. oh I haven't seen that here yet, thanks for the rec!

  6. I like clinique cc it goes on smooth for me. Thx for the post it was interesting.

  7. I've not come across a BB cream that I like, I don't think I really 'get' them, but I am super picky with base products!

    Jennie xo |


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