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If you frequently shop for makeup, you’ve likely seen BB creams and CC creams at the store. They’re typically found next to traditional foundation, tinted moisturizers, and other facial makeup.

You might wonder about the difference between BB and CC creams. You might also be unsure how they compare to standard face makeup. These products, after all, have only become popular in recent years.

Generally, BB and CC creams are multipurpose products. They combine makeup and skin care in a single formula.

Depending on the ingredients, BB and CC creams be used as a:

  • primer
  • concealer
  • foundation
  • highlighter
  • moisturizer
  • mattifying product
  • skincare treatment
  • sunscreen

As multi-tasking products, BB and CC creams are excellent for simplifying your morning routine. They can help you save time, money, and space on your vanity.

Still, BB and CC creams have some differences. The best choice depends on several factors, like your skin type and desired look.

Before buying a BB or CC cream, check out the following guide. Here, we explain the differences between the two, plus the best choice for your skin type.

BB cream is a makeup product with skin benefits. The “BB” stands for “beauty balm” or “blemish balm.”

It offers sheer coverage, so it’s best for concealing minor blemishes. The light finish also makes it ideal for “no makeup” makeup looks.

BB cream has ingredients that are often used in skin care. This means you can lightly cover imperfections while caring for your skin.

BB cream varies widely by brand, but many have ingredients like:

Benefits of BB cream

Typically, the main benefit of BB cream is to hydrate dry skin. It tends to have an emollient texture.

It’s worth noting that the SPF in BB creams can vary greatly. The American Dermatology Association recommends using a sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher each day. If a BB cream has a lower SPF, you’ll need to wear a sunscreen as well.

CC cream is similar to BB cream, but it has more coverage. The “CC” means “color control” or “complexion corrector.”

Specifically, CC cream is formulated to correct discoloration like:

Benefits of CC cream

In terms of skin benefits, CC cream shares many properties with BB cream. Examples of ingredients include:

Generally, CC cream focuses on anti-aging properties. Most CC creams are formulated with SPF, plus ingredients that blur wrinkles and age spots.

CC creams have a lighter consistency than BB creams. They often have a whipped, fluffy texture and matte finish.

When choosing between a BB and CC cream, it’s important to consider your skin type.

Here’s what you should use if you have:

Oily skin

CC cream is best for oily skin. Thanks to its matte texture, it’s less likely to slip and slide on your skin. BB cream, on the other hand, might be too emollient for your needs.

When choosing a CC cream, look for oil-free formula with mattifying ingredients like:

  • silica
  • colloidal clay
  • charcoal

Acne-prone skin

Similarly, use CC cream if you have acne-prone skin. Its lightweight texture is less likely to cause breakouts.

You can also look for oil-free formulas with:

Dry skin

BB cream often contains hydrating properties, so it’s best for dry skin.

Moisturizing ingredients to look out for include:

Foundation is a skin-colored makeup that’s used to even out your skin tone. It’s ideal for covering up discoloration like redness and hyperpigmentation.

You can find foundation in many forms, including:

  • liquid
  • cream
  • loose powder
  • pressed powder
  • mousse
  • solid stick

It also comes in different finishes (dewy to matte) and levels of coverage (light to full).

Compared to BB and CC creams, foundation is heavier and provides more coverage. Usually, it lacks skin-friendly ingredients, so it’s not a multipurpose product.

If you use foundation, you’ll still have to wear sunscreen, moisturizer, and primer underneath. You typically don’t need these products if you use a BB or CC cream.

Tinted moisturizer is a cream that contains skin-colored pigment. It’s meant to hydrate the skin while providing sheer coverage.

Think of tinted moisturizer as the simpler version of BB cream. Tinted moisturizer offers light coverage and hydration, while BB cream provides both plus added skin benefits.

Tinted moisturizer has less coverage than CC cream. Even then, it’s often heavier than CC cream, due to its emollient properties.

If you’re not a fan of traditional foundation, you may like BB or CC creams. Both products offer sheer coverage, so they look natural on the skin. Plus, BB and CC creams are multipurpose, so you can simplify your routine.

BB cream is a hydrating makeup that’s ideal for dry skin. It’s like a tinted moisturizer, but with added skin care properties like brighteners and mineral SPF.

Meanwhile, CC cream has more coverage than BB cream. It’s also lighter and more matte, so it’s best for oily and acne-prone skin. Most CC creams contain mineral SPF and anti-aging properties.