BB cream and foundation – can they be used interchangeably?

BB Cream is a versatile cosmetic that cares for the skin and evens out its colour. Some women use it instead of a foundation. How does BB cream work and how does it differ from the foundation?

How does BB cream work?

BB cream (beauty balm or blemish balm) is a multifunctional beauty cream, which combines the properties of a moisturizing cream, a makeup primer, a foundation and a concealer (for hiding imperfections). In addition, BB cream is designed to protect the skin against the harmful effects of UV rays and to mattify and highlight the complexion.

BB cream and foundation – differences

Coverage level

BB cream is a combination of cream and foundation, therefore it contains a certain amount of pigment that covers small imperfections of the skin. Although the cosmetic provides a subtle coverage and makeup finish, it cannot hide larger beauty defects such as acne pimples, visible broken capillaries and dark freckles. For this reason, BB cream is intended primarily for young women with normal skin or with minor skin defects.

Sun protection

Most BB creams contain a complex of chemical and mineral filters that provide high protection against UVA and UVB radiation. BB creams with the SPF 30 factor stop the sun’s radiation by about 97 percent, and thus prevent the formation of not only wrinkles but also skin cancer. Meanwhile, traditional foundations contain the SPF 15 factor, which protects the skin from the sun only to the medium degree.


Both foundation and BB creams contain many beneficial substances. Typically, these are minerals, vitamins and glycyrrhetinic acid, and sometimes also natural ingredients, such as white tea extract and sugar leaflet, which improve the condition of the skin.

How to use BB cream?

BB cream works comprehensively, so you do not need to supplement it with other preparations. Just apply it to your face and wait until it is fully absorbed. Women who struggle with imperfections may use BB cream as a makeup primer. For this purpose, apply concealer and the foundation to the skin covered with BB cream and apply a bit of loose powder. This way, the durability of the makeup will be extended.

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