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What is the difference between CC cream and BB cream?

7 minutes

If you like the look of foundation but not the heavy feel, BB and CC creams are for you! These products are one-part make-up and one-part moisturiser. They have some pigment to help even out your skin tone but are sheer enough to look and feel completely natural. While BB and CC creams share a ton of common characteristics, they’re not quite the same.

Read on to discover what the difference is between CC and BB creams, what their main skin benefits are, as well as how to use them as part of your daily skin care routine.

What is CC cream?

CC stands for ‘colour corrector’ or ‘complexion corrector’. An effective 2-in-1 skin care product, a CC cream delivers much the same results as using a colour correcting concealer together with a foundation.

CC creams neutralise the look of skin imperfections by utilising colours opposite of each other on the colour wheel. For example, if you were to have purple undereye circles and veins, you’d want to go for a peach/orange colour CC cream, and if you’re dealing with redness associated with rosacea, sunburn, acne, or broken capillaries, a green CC cream would work well to neutralise the reddish colour.

What does CC cream do?

In addition to offering a lighter coverage than a foundation, CC creams provide you with extra anti-ageing properties (AA + BB = CC!) and have a more airy texture compared to the thick and heavy texture of BB creams. CC cream is recommended for those with

  • enlarged pores

  • redness caused by rosacea

  • or uneven texture.

Look for CC creams with Niacinamide as well as Vitamins B and E to help recapture your skin’s youthful glow. Niacinamide helps exfoliates skin to reduce the look of wrinkles, while Vitamins B and E help strengthen your skin's natural defence against moisture loss. For our most potent complexion corrector action, check out Olay Regenerist CC Cream SPF15, available in two shades, light and dark. It boasts the same skin benefits as our BB creams, but contains 50 percent more skin perfecting ingredients for a more visible effect. It also contains SPF 15 to protect your skin from sun damages caused by UVA & UVB rays.

When to use CC cream?

When you’re in a rush and want to cover up your imperfections in the least amount of time, or you simply don’t want to wear too much make-up, instead of choosing a foundation, go for CC cream equipped with broad-spectrum SPF, and make use of its many added skin care benefits.

Total Effects BB Day Cream, Fair




What is BB cream?

BB cream is short for ‘blemish balm’ or ‘beauty balm’, and it’s used to moisturise, protect, and correct your skin.

BB creams became popular in South Korea in the mid-1980s but were actually created in Germany in the 1960s to help patients recovering from laser treatments and surgery. The trend eventually made its way from the beauty epicentre in the East to the beauty bags of women in the West around 2011. The buzz for BBs quickly made them a make-up bag must-have.

What does BB cream do?

Considerably lighter and offering a more sheer coverage than foundations, these pumped-up, tinted moisturisers provide skin-perfecting benefits to

  • refresh

  • brighten

  • hydrate

  • smooth

  • and even out your skin tone for a flawlessly radiant look.

An additional BB cream benefit found in most BB creams is sunscreen, which helps protect your skin from the sun’s damaging rays.

For the best results, use a BB cream containing ingredients such as glycerine, Niacinamide and at least SPF 15. Glycerine helps hydrate skin by holding onto moisture; Niacinamide helps increase surface cell renewal to lift away dead skin cells for a fresh, even, rejuvenated complexion; and SPF protects against UV rays. Our recommendation is Olay Total Effects BB Day Cream, fair to medium. It instantly evens out your complexion with a touch of foundation as well as nourishing and protecting your skin to deliver 7 benefits in 1: hydrating, boosting glow, evening skin tone, minimising pores visibly, smoothing and plumping, reducing fine lines and wrinkles, and protecting from environmental factors such as UVA/UVB rays with its SPF 15 protection.

When to use BB cream?

BB creams are safe to use on a regular, daily basis, but as one of the most versatile skin care products on the market, they’re especially useful when you don’t have time to apply, a moisturiser, primer and foundation: Just throw on a bit of BB cream (preferably one with SPF) and you’re ready to conquer the day!

The differences between CC and BB cream

One of the most significant differences between a CC and a BB cream is that while a BB cream offers light coverage and added skin care benefits, a CC cream also aims to colour correct. It’s primarily meant to help correct the colour of redness, dark spots or pale skin and is meant to go under a foundation.

In contrast, BB creams are useful when you want a bit of coverage with added sun protection and hydration, without looking like you have make-up on.

BB and CC creams also differ from regular tinted moisturisers, which is a type of lightweight face cream that offers a dash of colour.

If you’re more of a visual type, look at our below BB cream vs CC cream comparison table and decide which one suits your skin needs better:

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Discover Olay’s BB and CC creams for flawless coverage

BB and CC creams have been around for nearly 60 years; yet it is only within the last decade that they have become popular and widely used by women everywhere. Now it’s time for you to join in on the fun, too! 

Whether you want to minimise the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, nourish dry or sensitive skin, or even out your skin tone and cover blemishes, Olay is here to help! 

Take a look at our great range of BB creams, and find the perfect product for your daily skin care routine.


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5 minutes

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Detox & Glow Daily CleanserDetox & Glow Daily Cleanser

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03 Moisturise

Total Effects BB Day Cream, FairTotal Effects BB Day Cream, Fair



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