10 of the best complexion-perfecting BB creams
The brief? Natural beauty
By Delaney Loane
Digital Beauty Editor / January 19 2022
BB creams may not be new, but we swear that even all these years later, they're still underrated. An amazing BB is the type of product you stow away, reapply in a rush one day, and then wonder why you ever stopped using it. Because they truly do provide the perfect amount of polish for errand days, brunch dates and all the other gloriously low-key events that you really don't need a full face of foundation for.
If you’ve heard the word BB cream thrown around, but are still wondering what BB cream is used for, it’s actually surprisingly simple. Think of it as tinted moisturiser on steroids; the ‘BB’ stands for beauty balm or blemish balm, which granted isn’t super clear, but 'clear' is just what it'll help your skin appear. They're fabulous formulas all up – our only gripe is that the shade ranges could use a lot of work. That’s why we extend our BB collection with a handful of skin care-infused tinted moisturisers and lightweight foundations. MacGyver who?
Originally, BB creams were even used by dermatologists post-skin surgery to help mask redness and heal skin at the same time; if that's not a ringing base-but-better endorsement, we don't know what is.
Narrowing down the massive amount of BB creams on offer can be tricky though, especially considering that the very point of a BB is to combine a couple of your own specific skin needs into one subtly-tinted formula.
Honestly, you could continually add favourites to your kit, because you’ll probably find you need a few to fit your ever-changing beauty brief (lacklustre skin today, breakouts tomorrow).
But, because we know that sounds overwhelming as hell (and because there are obviously still some standouts), we're here to help you get started on your BB cream collection with our edit of the best formulas in Australia...
Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing BB-Gel
While we may gripe over the lack of shade options in the world of BB creams, this universal BB gel magically transforms to match your complexion, delivering a sheer wash of colour where you need it. While the ‘Transforming Tint Release Technology’ unifies tone, it also imparts a touch of brightening radiance to combat signs of fatigue and dullness.
$30 at MYER
Jane Iredale Glow Time® Full Coverage Mineral BB Cream
Harness the skin-perfecting powers of a full-coverage BB cream and a glow-inducing cream-based illuminator with this 2-in-1 complexion product. Send blemishes, pores, wrinkles and texture packing with a sheer layer of this completely vegan formula, and amp up the glow while you’re at it too.
$79 at Jane Iredale
Fenty Beauty Eaze Drop Blurring Skin Tint
Lightweight, flexible and almost undetectable on skin, this Fenty Beauty blurring skin tint is available in a wealth of shades (surprise, surprise), and bridges the gap between your skin care, primer and foundation for streamlined application. Humidity, sweat and transfer-resistant, this sheer tint holds up against even the hottest (or most humid) of summer days for long-wearing, buildable coverage.
$55 at Fenty Beauty
M.A.C Cosmetics Studio Radiance Face And Body Radiant Sheer Foundation
We’re big fans of the industry-approved Face and Body formula, but M.A.C’s new radiant sheer alternative hits that no-makeup makeup sweet spot like no other. We’re talking eight hour waterproof wear, and a non-comedogenic, lightweight, hydrating skin-perfecting sheen.
$55 at M.A.C Cosmetics
Bobbi Brown Nude Finish Tinted Moisturiser SPF15
Unwanted redness got you down? This tinted moisturiser is set to tackle the issue post haste while unifying skin tone for a flawless complexion. The lightweight, sheer formula delivers glowy, plump skin, while SPF 15 protects against minimal UV exposure.
$75 at Bobbi Brown
Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturiser Oil-Free
If the sound of all these radiant-finish options makes you squirm (oily-skinned folks where you at?), then we’d love to introduce you to Laura Mercier’s oil-free formulation. Featuring oil-absorbing powders that minimise shine and leave skin with a soft matte finish, this sheer coverage pick targets uneven tone and a lack of hydration too. Vitamin E moisturises and protects against pollutants, and licorice root soothes irritation (a must for acne-prone skin).
$67 at MECCA
bareMinerals Complexion Rescue Tinted Hydrating Gel Cream
We can’t talk about sheer coverage options for dry skin without mentioning this award-winner. Offering a super lightweight gel consistency that melts into skin, this tinted moisturiser is formulated with hydrating olive squalane and mineral electrolytes that rebalance moisture levels in the skin too.
$47 at MECCA
NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturiser
Just like your skin but better, this lightweight tinted moisturiser amps up your natural beauty with a touch of coverage and a healthy sheen of radiance. Light-diffusing pigments minimise the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and pores, mineral rich sea water softens, smooths, and brightens skin, while French Polynesian Konesia hydrates and promotes cellular turnover.
$64 at MECCA
ULTRA VIOLETTE Dream Screen SPF50 Tinted Veil
We love a multitasker and this tinted veil straddles the realm of sunscreen and a skin care-infused moisturiser with ease. Enjoy SPF 50 protection while perfecting your complexion effortlessly thanks to a Kakadu plum-infused formula that brightens skin and protects against environmental aggressors simultaneously.
$55 at Sephora
Rimmel London Kind & Free Tint
We love a bit of coverage but we love having hydrated skin more. This vitamin E, pro-vitamin B5 and aloe vera amplifies hydration levels in the skin for up to 24 hours post-application. Fresh, glowy skin and lightweight sheer coverage is just a bonus really.
$16.49 at Chemist Warehouse
Available in 10 Rose Ivory, 150 Rose Vanilla, 160 Vanilla, 201 Classic Beige, 210 Golden Beige, 400 Natural Beige, 410 Latte, 503 Mocha, 504 Deep Mocha, 510 Cinnamon, 601 Soft Chocolate, and 605 Deep Chocolate