BATTLE OF THE BB CREAMS: Drugstore vs. Departmental

Courtesy of Ashley McKernan

It’s been nearly a year since my first Battle of the BB Creams post, and BB creams are still as popular as ever. Everyday, different brands produce new BB creams hoping to woo consumers to their product line. While BB creams officially started in the luxurious market, now they can be found in our everyday drugstores through our everyday favourite brands.

I’ve just received two new BB Creams – one from L’Oreal (the drugstore) and one from Caryl Baker Visage (departmental / brand name). It got me thinking – which BB creams provide better results for the price? Do drugstore brands provide the same benefits and coverage as the departmental? Are departmentals worth the price? Can you get more with less of your money? Here’s my thoughts!

Product: Caryl Baker Visage Perfect 10 BB Creame

Price: $35.00 CAN

Available: In Caryl Baker Visage stores 

What It Claims: “…10 benefits: primes, tints, hydrates, nourishes, strengthens, evens out skin tone, sunscreen 30 SPF, protects on contact, gives skin luminosity, age defying peptides…”

Review: First thing I noticed? The BB Cream has a very strong SPF smell. Perfect if you love the smell of sunscreen, not so perfect if you don’t (i.e. like me). 

Courtesy of the Caryl Baker Visage Facebook page

The BB Cream provides a pretty great coverage. It provides consistency and wearability like a foundation, but it’s definitely not as heavy. What I instantly noticed was it’s ‘mattifying’ properties – it tints the skin just enough to provide a healthy glow, but also covers up and evens out any skin inconsistencies. You truly wouldn’t need anything else on top of this BB Cream! While I can’t confirm it’s age-defying peptide, I can confirm the skin luminosity – your skin glows! 

Product: L’Oreal Paris Age Perfect BB Cream

Price: $26.99 (CAN)

Available: In all major drugstores February 2013

What It Claims: “…created especially for mature skin, deeply hydrating, replenishes, events, perfects, reduces age spots and wrinkles…”

Review: I don’t mind that this product is for ‘mature skin’. I think it’s never too early to start working about wrinkles and age spots – what’s the harm? This BB Cream contains Vitamin C and Soy Seed proteins – amazing for a BB cream, and products that definitely help improve your skin tone.

Courtesy of L’Oreal Paris US

I love the smell of this one better than Caryl Baker’s. It’s infused with a clean scent (thank god) that’s really pleasant to the nose! 

A major difference? This BB cream dispenses white. It’s not tinted like most BB creams are – it seems to match / adjust to your skin tone after application. Personally, I like it but I can see that some might not be used to the issue.

The first thing I noticed after application? Instant moisturization! This BB cream provides luxurious hydration – my skin felt perfectly moisturized like I just applied cream! That moisturizer provides a luminous glow and sheen to the skin – perfect. Does it provide any sort of coverage? Yes, but it takes a little bit to come in. I didn’t even realize how dark the BB cream actually becomes until I say it in the light. It provides coverage that’s definitely on par with Caryl Baker’s, that’s for sure! 

LEFT: Caryl Baker Visage
RIGHT: L’Oreal Cosmetics
Courtesy of Ashley McKernan

The results? Hard to choose! For 10 dollars more you receive more benefits in coverage in the Caryl Baker Visage BB Cream than you would from the L’Oreal BB Cream. But that’s not to say that L’Oreal didn’t have it’s amazing properties – L’Oreal is hands down the better moisturizer and has better ‘natural’ qualities within it’s formula. And if you’re picky about scent, Caryl Baker definitely has a more poignant aroma. But, in terms of BB cream battles – L’Oreal Cosmetics wins this round by a super slim margin, because I absolutely love the added properties and it’s light texture! 

Has anyone tried any of the BB Creams (or planning to, considering L’Oreal’s comes out this month)? Any thoughts? 

Tweet me at @AshleyMcKernan, or email me at!

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