I admit it…my daily look leaves much to be desired. Since I work at home, most days my outfit consists of jeans, sweats and t-shirts. And very little…ok, no makeup. So on the occasions that I do go out (which is hardly ever since I moved to Ohio), I try to look my best.
As I was preparing for my recent trip to the Essence Music Festival in New Orleans, I realized I was in need of some new products. Before I buy ANYTHING new, I always get samples—sometimes two! I like tinted moisturizer because it provides decent coverage but is not as heavy as a liquid foundation. I have tried and absolutely love Laura Mercier’s oil free tinted moisturizer. It’s perfect for those that don’t like to wear a lot of makeup. But before I could actually buy it, I started to hear all of these great things about BB cream. BB stands for blemish balm or beauty balm. This miracle cream is basically a tinted moisturizer, primer, concealer, moisturizer and sunblock all in one. It also controls oil. Apparently, it’s been around for years but has recently made its way to the United States.
I did some research and decided to try Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream. I stopped in Nordstrom’s to get a sample and was wooed over to the bareMinerals counter by a salesgirl with flawless skin to try bareMinerals Foundation. On one side of my face, she applied the bareMinerals Prime Time Foundation Primer, followed by bareMinerals Foundation and finished with translucent powder. On the other side, she applied the Smashbox BB Cream. It looked great alone, but she applied the bareMinerals over it for additional coverage. Both sides looked amazing, so I decided to try it all. I got samples of the Smashbox, but bought the bareMinerals because it came with the foundation, translucent powder, bronzer and 3 brushes and brush shampoo for $62! It also comes with a DVD so you can learn the “swirl, tap, buff” technique to apply it. Besides, Nordstrom’s has a great return policy, so I figured I would just take it back if I changed my mind or didn’t like it. The other thing I like about bareMinerals is that is does not carry bacteria like other foundations, so it does not expire. That’s a big plus for me since I don’t throw it out as often as I am supposed to.
A few day’s later, I was headed to New Orleans. For my daytime look, I used the bareMinerals primer, foundation and pressed powder. The primer is AMAZING! It really smoothed out my fine lines so my concealer went on really nicely I didn’t have to use as much. It has a bit of shimmer and really brightens the skin as well. (My friend tried it and ended up using it the whole trip!) At night, I used the Smashbox with the bareMinerals.
By the end of the trip, I only had only complaint—everything was a shade too dark (this is why I love samples). It worked out okay because it just made me look like I had a tan, so I skipped the bronzer. When I got back, I exchanged the bareMinerals with no problem and got new samples of the Smashbox in the right shade.
Unfortunately, I didn’t take any good close up pictures of my face, but trust me if you try any of the products, you won’t be disappointed. Just remember to get samples BEFORE you buy:)
- Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream $39
- bareMinerals Get Started Kit $63
- bareMinerals Prime Time Brightening Foundation Primer $23
*Note—If you think that the Smashbox is too pricey, try Maybelline Dream Fresh BB Cream. It’s featured in the August issue of Essence Magazine and is only $8.