Back to BB: Rediscovering My First K-Beauty HG

Call me basic, but there is nothing like a good, natural-looking base makeup. From the dewiness to the “woke up like this” fresh-facedness (if that wasn’t a word before, it is now) – having the illusion of stunning skin has never gotten old to me. This is probably a direct result of my childhood acne – as a teen, acne truly took over my face. If you knew me, you knew my acne. Covered in cysts from my forehead to my cheeks to my chin and shoulders, anything that created a gorgeous base while providing sun protection and skin benefits was A+ in my book.

Back in the day, Skin79’s Super+ Beblesh Balm was all the rage. It boasted an SPF 30 PA++ and a unique grey-ish tint that guaranteed to blend with most skin tones (on the lighter side of the spectrum, let’s be real). This was also my EVERYTHING. It’s no joke when I say I used this every. single. day. Whether I was just going to the grocery store or being photographed, nothing beat this. I was mega-impressed by the fact that SPF could work in makeup (hey, I was 15), and the gray tint worked perfectly in combination with my problematic rosacea. I wore it alone, mixed it with full-coverage foundations, and used it as a primer for powder foundations. The best part? It made my aggressive acne look – and feel – better.

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available at w2beauty.com

7 years have passed since then and hundreds (if not thousands) of complexion products have been released by Korean brands. During this span of time, my skin has cleared up drastically and I have 10 steps of skincare to account for before applying my makeup. While I still adore looking shiny and pretty, my necessities are a bit more high-maintenance and my routine has become more complex.

While shopping in Koreatown after class, I stumbled upon my old pink friend again. At a random mall kiosk, there she was, staring back at me. Despite how much I had used this product, I was left with more curiosity than ever. Will this stand to the new, improved, clear-skinned test?

My base makeup checklist is pretty to-the-point and as follows:

Does it blend out with a sponge/puff?
I used to be all about the kabuki brush to apply my base – while I still use it occasionally, the convenience and effect of a sponge/puff is just so much better, let alone quicker and easier.

Does other makeup apply well over it (aka “will this become a patchy disaster”)?
While I don’t use much else than a cushion blush/light powder on regular ol’ days, I like to see if I can utilize the product for whenever I want to contour, bake, highlight, and all that glam, draggy goodness.

Does it last a full workday?
Lasting power is never much of a big deal to me, especially because I like to freshen up midday anyway, but it’s important to know that I can go in and out of the office not looking a mess.

Does it work with my skincare?
This one is probably the most important. My skincare is the base to my entire beauty routine. My mentality? Base makeups are replaceable, skincare is vital. Change the makeup, not the skincare.

 

With all these things in mind, I was more than eager to re-try. The first day, I used no powder, no additional product – just skincare and BB. The result was as follows:

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It lasted all day, didn’t sweat off, and maintained the pretty, healthy glow that I love. Pretty much what I wanted – no complaints so far.

The more important aspect for me, however, was how my other makeup works over it. There’s nothing I love more than an über-versatile product – it makes my morning routine, traveling, and life in general – much, much easier. Here was the result:

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YES. I used it all – powder, creme + powder contour, blush, brows, eyeshadow, you name it. Well, except for highlight. I wanted to make sure the BB maintained a glow even with the staying power provided by a powder, and boy, was a glow maintained! Obviously I’m not rocking a mega-shiny, blinding highlight, but that’s not my personal preference anyway. My eyeshadow (with the BB used as primer!) also lasted all day with no creasing or fading.

Overall? Good stuff. It was just as nice as I remembered. I can’t account for its acne-healing properties anymore, I did notice my skin looking calmer when exposed to the sun, so I’m sure the anti-inflammatory properties will also benefit those with acne as it did with mine. Although I’m not a fan of its lower sun protection (it’s crazy to think I consider  SPF 30 PA++ “low”, but the industry has gone a loooooooooong way in terms of SPF), I will stay reaching for this when I’m having shorter days where I’m not outside as often.

 

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