Are these multi-tasking miracle workers all they’re cracked up to be?

WHO WASN’T THRILLED AT THE PROSPECT OF A TRUE ALL-IN-ONE PRODUCT WHEN blemish and beauty balms started sprouting at cosmetic counters… practically everywhere. Almost overnight, makeup lines both high-end and drugstore labels alike, were on board the BB train—fashioning their own renditions of the seemingly “holy grail” of complexion perfectors. And while many brands have yet to unveil their namesake BB creams, a new breed of multi-taskers have already surfaced. Enter: the CC Cream. “Color Correcting ” or “Color Controlling,” these new skin potions are also similar in their priming/moisturizing/sun protecting/complexion smoothening capabilities. Is there a difference?

Heather Barshaw, cosmetologist at The Spa at Trump in Waikiki says there is. “CC creams are basically similar to BB creams, where they have an anti-aging serum, a tinted moisturizer, and SPF in it,” she shares. “But the difference between the two is that CC creams, like its name implies, have corrective pigments in them that illuminate and correct skin tone and texture.” She also adds, “BB creams are usually recommended to those who want to preserve and improve the integrity of their skin over time, and CC creams are for those who need to correct something right now.”

But still, there are some types of CC creams that claim to solve skin issues—short and long term. We spoke to Supergoop! founder and CEO Holly Thaggard for more detail in her own line of CC Creams. “Our scientists combined the functionality of a primer/foundation with the anti-aging benefits only found in skin serums,” she elaborates. With benefits that include brightening skin, toning down redness and giving skin a more refined texture, this new variety appears worthy of the “CC” name modification.

Do these creams deserve a space on your top shelf? Barshaw says BB and CC creams are ideal for those who want to cut their daily beauty routine down to one or two steps after cleansing in the morning instead of the usual four or five. The creams are also good for those who prefer something light on the skin and want just a bit of coverage. But when it comes to getting professional photos done (or perhaps your cameo on 5-0) you should stick to your usual foundation for more coverage.

And snicker if you’d like, but as of press time, we did spot a “Dynamic Do-all” cream in the blogosphere. DD creams? We’ll let more time pass before we weigh in on that one…

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CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: BOBBI BROWN BB Cream SPF 35, $42; DIOR Hydra Life BB Créme SPF 30, $56; DR. JART+ Premium Beauty Balm SPF 45, $39; CHANEL CC Cream, Complete Correction SPF 30, $55; PETER THOMAS ROTH CC Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 30 Complexion Corrector, $48; SUPERGOOP! SPF 35 Daily Correct CC Cream, $32; SMASHBOX Camera Ready CC Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 30, $42; CLINIQUE Moisture Surge CC Cream Hydrating Colour Corrector Broad Spectrum SPF 30, $35.

FROM HOME REMEDY TO SKIN SAVIOR…

Known for its use of natural ingredients such as sugar, soy, black tea, rose and rice, Fresh cosmetics co-founder Lev Glazman says many of the products they develop are inspired by personal home remedies carried over from generation to generation, such as the use of sugar as an antiseptic on cuts, scrapes and even bug bites. Fresh’s first product? Artisanal soaps.

But its newest product to arrive in September is the Créme Ancienne Ultimate Nourishing Honey Mask—composed of pure honey from the Buckfast bee and exquisite ingredients like meadow seed oil, sea buckthorn oil and echinacea. “Since I was a little kid, whenever I have a cold, I drink honey and echinacea tea [to get] better,” shares Glazman, who made his first visit to Hawai’i earlier this year. “The principle here is very similar, except now you’re using it on your skin.”