1. Revlon Photoready BB Cream Skin Perfector SPF 30, 1.0z for $10.99
When I heard that Revlon released a BB Cream called Photoready BB Cream Skin Perfector SPF 30, I knew I would have to get my mitts on it. Revlon is the only drugstore brand that makes a suitable shade match for my skintone: Golden Beige. Not perfect, but decent for a drugstore brand. I was curious to see Revlon’s BB Cream since they were so late jumping on the BB Cream trend. L’Oreal, Garnier, and Maybelline had all come out with their versions of BB Cream a while ago. I tried them all and found that the shade matches weren’t very good for me since they ran either warm ivory or medium beige pink tone. Revlon’s Photoready BB Cream Skin Perfector SPF 30 in Light/Medium is a great option for those with light-medium, warm beige undertones.
First, if you have ever tried an asian BB Cream, and compared to american BB Creams, you know that asian BB Creams are considerably thicker and offer more color coverage. But then you also know that they are not the greatest when it comes to matching non-asian skintones (or even many asian skintones for that matter). American brands offer a better shade selection for those within the Light to Medium range. Most of the american brand BB Cream versions feel like tinted moisturizers with a small shot of color. Revlon’s Photoready BB Cream felt thicker than most drugstore brands I have tried, such as Maybelline’s and L’Oreal’s BB Cream version, but offered more color coverage than L’Oreal’s BB Cream and Maybelline’s BB Cream.
Another difference between Revlon’s version and other drugstore BB Creams is that Revlon’s shade undertones run more beige-orange warm, as opposed to pinkish medium-beige. Across the board, Maybelline, L’Oreal, Garnier and Revlon offered a similar shade for the Light shade – a warm, light ivory shade suited for yellow, or neutral, undertones (but not very fair, pink tones). However, once they went up a level, the undertone differences were very distinct. Garnier was by far the most MEDIUM BEIGE PINK of the bunch. At the time that I tried Garnier, they only had two shades available, and Medium was a massive jump into a true medium beige shade. Maybelline offers a Light/Medium and a Medium, but they also have a medium beige undertone. L’Oreal was the closest to a warm, yellow-orange undertone but it offered, by far, the SHEEREST color coverage. Actually, L’Oreal’s BB Cream’s felt, and looked, like nothing at all. I am not sure why anyone would buy L’Oreal’s BB Cream. It felt like the leftover’s of strained tinted moisturizer – some water, hint of silicone and a bit of shimmer and tiny hint of color.
Revlon Photoready BB Cream shade range runs the closest to MAC’s NC 15 – 40 shade range. It has warm, beigey-orange/peach undertones. The overall shade range runs darker. So, you should stay away from this if you are very pale, or pink. This will not work on you. I was closest to the Light-Medium shade, which is well suited for anyone within the MAC NC 25-30 range. Medium is deeper and better suited for the MAC NC 30-40 range. Light can be worn if you still have yellow undertones and are MAC NC 15-20. I could swing Light in the dead of winter after it oxides. But no thanks. These shades do oxidize, so expect them to get a bit darker, after application.
Revlon’s Photoready BB Cream feels non-greasy and has a “siliconey”cream texture that offers a moisturized, satin-dewy finish on my oily skin. It is layerable. However, layering deepens the color of the BB Cream and oxidation, increases it even more. On me, more than two layers of the BB Cream gives me orange face. Learned that the hard way. Eeeek. If you have deeper, medium beigey-orange skin, you can do this. Also, it can appear a bit cakey if you use more than two layers. However, I can layer a thick primer/sunscreen product underneath this without any issues, such as La Roche Posay’s Anthelios SPF 50 Primer Sunscreen. There were no issues with pilling, clumping, or caking. Since Revlon’s BB Cream is technically a primer/tinted moisturizer hybrid that is pretty awesome. It may not be necessary to use another sunscreen with Revlon’s BB Cream because it has SPF 30, but I prefer to rely on brands with proven, stable sunscreen ingredients. I don’t rely on cosmetic SPF add-ons.
Quickly comparing other more expensive BB Creams sold in the american market that I have tried: Dior Hydra Life BB Cream (too orange and moist), Dr. Brandt Flexitone BB Cream (too orange), Smashbox CameraReady BB Cream (too orange and with a drywall texture), almost all of the Dr. Jarts (too light, either ivory or medium-pink), and Too Faced Tinted Beauty Balm (runs beige nudey-pink and VERY MOIST). None of these were appropriate for my oily, light-medium, warm yellow (with a hint of green) skin.
Revlon’s Photoready BB Cream offered the best shade match for me, in comparison to other drugstore brands, despite it being warm beige with a peachy-orange undertone rather than yellow. As someone who has SUPER oily, acne-prone skin, this DOES NOT GIVE A MATTE LOOK. It starts off satin, and then transforms into “dewy,” and then I do need to blot. So, if you hate dewy skin and prefer a matte look, stay away. Dewy skin doesn’t bother me, greasy looking skin bothers me and I can tell the difference between shiny, dewy and greasy. It also doesn’t break me out. But everyone has different acne triggers. I have been using this for the last couple of weeks after I am done at the gym. I have gone through quite alot of it already for a new product and I know I will be picking up another tube before spring arrives.
This is a great budget buy base option. I am curious to see how it will hold up in the summer. Since it does have a hydrating, creamy-silicone feel to it, it may not be suitable for the summer on my oily skin. For now, it works great in these cold, dry days.
Here are the swatches for the Light-Medium. It was shot by a window in natural light but it was an overcast day. I assure you it does NOT look very peach, or orange, on my face as long as I don’t use more than two layers.
Here is a dual swatch of both the Light and Light-Medium shot on a sunny day by the window.
As you can see, it is a significant jump in the color. If you were to blend both together, this is the shade you would get.
One more thing, if you are curious about Revlon’s new Nearly Naked Makeup, then know that Revlon’s Photoready BB Cream seems to run in the same shade family, has a thicker, “siliconey” cream texture that is more moisturizing, and it offers almost the same level of color coverage. Revlon’s Photoready BB Cream in Light was a dead match for the Nearly Naked Makeup shades in Ivory and Vanilla. I tried Warm Beige and Sun Beige and they were similar to Photoready BB Cream in Medium. Nearly Naked’s Medium Beige and Natural Beige seemed like a good match for the Photoready BB Cream in Light-Medium. Here is a tip. You don’t need both Revlon’s Nearly Naked Makeup and the Photoready BB Cream. It’s like they are ALMOST exactly the same product. Nearly Naked Makeup is an incredibly lightweight foundation that feels like nothing on the skin as you blend it in, while you will FEEL the Photoready BB Cream as you blend it in but then you won’t notice it later on (at least not in the fall/winter). The real difference between the two is that Revlon’s Nearly Naked Makeup offers more shades for darker skintones, within the medium-deep range. So, if you are MAC NC/NW 42, or darker, you could find a match within Revlon’s Nearly Naked Makeup, but Revlon’s Photoready BB Cream would be off limits.
One more thing, while I didn’t notice a distinctive smell from the Light-Medium tube, the Light tube had a really strong chemical scent that was a tad repugnant to me. I didn’t know why the Light had that scent but the Light-Medium didn’t. It did not dissipate over time. Everytime I opened the Light tube, the strong scent wafted out. So, if you are fragrance sensitive, these may not be right for you.
Here are the ingredients: