How to Choose Between Foundation, BB Cream, and CC Cream?

When it comes to base products, the makeup aisles are loaded with a plethora of products whether it is foundations, tinted moisturizers, BB creams, or CC Creams. On top of that, knowing your correct shade range and skin-flattering finish is another challenge! Years ago, base makeup used to be simple. It was just the foundation and powder but over the years, we have got way a lot more options than ever – maybe too many options! From tinted moisturizers to alphabet creams and more, choosing which one is THE ONE for you may be overwhelming. But worry not I’ve done my research and am here to lay it all for you to make your life a little simpler.

What is Foundation?

Foundation is a classic base makeup option for makeup artists. It generally has the widest shade range and offers good coverage. Usually, for a foundation, different finishes are available from matte to dewy. If you want something to give you an airbrushed look and last all day, a foundation is a right pick for you! Foundations also come in a wide range of coverage options – from light to medium and full coverage. The heavier formulas of the foundation are great for photos, long wear, and any event where you want to look glam. 

What is Tinted Moisturiser?

A tinted moisturizer is exactly what the name says – a moisturizer with a hint of colour. In terms of coverage, it provides the minimum coverage and is, therefore, great for those who want to look just a little put together without a lot of makeup on their face. This is also a good option when you want to get out of the door fast so a 2-in-1 product like a moisturizer with a bit of tint works the best!

What is BB Cream?

BB cream stands for Beauty Balm or Blemish Balm. It has a lot of skin benefits and has ingredients that are often used in skincare. In terms of coverage, BB creams are very sheer and are best for concealing minor blemishes. BB creams provide natural-looking light coverage. A coverage somewhere between a tinted moisturizer and foundation. BB creams act as a barrier to protect your skin from environmental toxins like antioxidants. BB creams mostly have the amazing goodness of vitamins, antioxidants, ceramides, collagen, hyaluronic acid, niacinamide, and more. It is great for dry skin due to its emollient texture but also amazing for acne-prone skin due to ingredients like salicylic acid in them.

Swatch of Mary Kay CC Cream – Medium to Deep
Swatch of Mary Kay CC Cream – Medium to Deep

What is CC Cream?

CC cream means color correcting or color control cream. It corrects discoloration and reduces the appearance of red, blotchy skin giving a more even skin tone. It has a bit more coverage than a BB cream. It hydrates and softens your skin and has anti-aging properties as well. In addition to the ingredients of a BB cream, CC creams might also have soothing ingredients like green tea, soy, and shea butter. If you have hyperpigmentation, dark spots, or acne scarring, CC cream like one from Mary Kay is the right pick for you! Most CC creams have SPF as well and the Mary Kay CC Cream comes with SPF 15.

Now that we know how these base products are different from each other, we can easily choose which one is good for our skin type.

Until next time, Ashh xo


Multi Awards Finalist & Brides Magazine Contributor with a strong love for high-end Beauty & Fragrance and also a soft spot for highstreet finds here and there. Full-time Digital Content Creator & Product Photographer living in Buckinghamshire, UK. Top Influencer for Atelier Cologne - Mar'19, Liberty - Feb'19 & Net-a-Porter – July’18 | Fohr Verified

1 Comment

  1. Thanks for sharing all of these. This was super helpful.

    Curated By Jennifer

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.