In the beauty world, it’s easy to get a little overwhelmed by such an epic amount of products available. Let’s take BB cream and tinted moisturizer. The two products seem pretty much the same. But guess what?

They’re not!

Keep reading to learn more about the difference between these two products. And let’s shed light on the showdown of BB cream Vs tinted moisturizer.


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What Is Tinted Moisturizer?

A tinted moisturizer is a moisturizer formulated with pigments to hydrate the skin. It also provides light coverage for a flawless finish to your skin.

In other words, you get the benefits of both face cream and makeup with just one product.

Best of all, you can find tinted moisturizer at literally any drugstore. It’s everywhere, and it’s relatively easy to find a good one without having to spend a fortune.

Tinted moisturizer is the perfect choice for someone who’s already got pretty clear skin with few blemishes. Someone who just wants a little glow or color adding to their complexion. On that note, because they’re so lightweight, these formulations are actually quite good for oily acne-prone skin types, as they’re not as heavy and pore-clogging as others products.


How is Tinted Moisturizer Different to Traditional Foundation or BB Cream?

While BB cream and tinted moisturizer may seem like the same thing, they’re absolutely not.

Tinted moisturizer has two main functions:

  • to hydrate
  • to provide your skin with light coverage

They’re typically much lighter than BB creams.

Tinted moisturizer is the product you use when you just want a sheer coverage; a bit of a glow and dewiness. It’s safe to say, if you don’t have any major skin issues you’re looking to cover, then this is the product for you.

It’s a quick and easy product to use for a little complexion pick-me-up.

BB cream is a liquid makeup product, much like foundation. It acts as an all-in-one skincare essential for priming the skin, providing coverage, hydrating skin, and offering sun protection. Some BB creams also provide shine control.


Pros and Cons of Tinted Moisturizer


  • Hydration: Tinted moisturizer is made with hydrating ingredients to nourish and moisturize the skin.
  • Natural finish: if you’re going for the no-makeup, I woke up like this look, tinted moisturiser is your go-to. It gives a perfectly natural finish to the skin.
  • Light coverage: favor dewy over matte? Want to even out your complexion without overdoing it with foundation? Tinted moisturizer is your BFF!
  • Quick and easy: It’s a working person’s favorite because it’s quick and easy to apply. You literally only need a minute or two to for a fresh-faced finish.
  • Sun protection: originally, tinted moisturizers didn’t offer sun protection. Newer formulas come with varying SPF levels.


  • Minimal Coverage – for some people, light coverage is a good thing. But if you’re looking to cover your breakouts, scars or redness, tinted moisturizer probably isnt your go-to. It only delivers light coverage.
  • Shine – while tinted moisturizer is more breathable than foundation, it’s extremely hydrating. It is a moisturizer, after all. So, for oily skin types, this could leave your skin a little on the shiny, greasy-looking side.


Who Is Tinted Moisturizer Ideal For?

Tinted moisturizer is best for a dry skin type, simply because it’s a master-moisturizer. That being said, if you choose an oil-free formula, it can also be suitable for oily and acne-prone skin because it’s more lightweight than other makeup products.

Those looking for a little moisture boost and dewiness will benefit the most from this product. If you’ve got bad acne or discoloration, tinted moisturizer isn’t the right product for you, because it won’t provide the coverage you seek.


My Favorite Tinted Moisturizers


Ilia Super Serum Skin Tint SPF 40

Ilia Super Skin Serum Tint SPF 40

Okay, so technically it’s a serum, but this is such a divine product, how could I not mention it here?

Ilia’s Super Serum Skin Tint comes loaded with the following features:

  • SPF 40
  • hyaluronic acids
  • plant-based squalane
  • niacinimide (or as we know it, Vitamin B3)
  • silicon-free
  • fragrance-free
  • non comedogenic
  • checmical screen-free
  • oil-free
  • softens fine lines and leaves you with a dewy, even complexion
  • available in 18 shades

No wonder it is given award after award, year after year!

Find Ilia Super Serum Skin Tint SPF 40 here!



NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 30

NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer SPF 30

NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer is definitely up there with the best of them.

It is backed by these features and ingredients:

  • oil-free
  • paraben-free
  • offers a sheer, buildable coverage
  • synthetic fragrance-free
  • broad spectrum SPF 30
  • non comedogenic
  • available in 16 shades

Find it NARS Radiant Tinted Moisturizer here.



L’Oreal Paris True Match Lumi Glotion Natural Glow Enhancer

L’Oreal Paris True Match Lumi Glotion Natural Glow Enhancer

This drugstore favorite is loaded with the following goodies:

  • contains glycerin and shea butter
  • will give you that unatainable “glow”
  • hydrates
  • luminizes
  • available in 4 shades

Find L’Oreal Paris True Match Lumi Glotion Natural Glow Enhancer here. Phew, try saying that quickly!


Saie Slip Tint Dewy Tinted Moisturizer

Saie Slip Tinted Moisturizer SPF 35

Slip Tint Dewy Tinted Moisturizer offers these features:

  • hyaluronic acid for hydration
  • licorice root to brighten and refine the skin
  • gluten-free
  • cruelty-free
  • 100% mineral zinc oxide for a cleaner SPF 35
  • pansy flower as an anti-oxidant
  • available in 14 shades

Saie Slip Tinted Moisturizer also took home a slew of awards from Allure, Cosmopolitan, and Women’s Health in 2021, to name a few.

Find Saie Slip Tinted Moisturizer here.


Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer

Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer

Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer gives you these fine benefits:

  • increase your skins moisture levels
  • contains glycerin to soften lines and revitalize hydration
  • contains vitamins C and E
  • SPF 30
  • create a naturally dewy finish

Find Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer here.


What Is BB Cream?

Okay, so now you’re up to speed with tinted moisturizer, but what about BB cream?

BB Cream is a foundation alternative that offers hydration, sun protection, shine coverage, and makeup priming. Some formulas treat additional skin concerns like breakouts.

BB cream is your one-stop shop when it comes to smoothing, protecting, blurring, and tinting. You really don’t need a ton of products hanging around when you have BB cream. It’s definitely a multifunctional product with a lot of benefits.

BB cream goes by various names, so if you haven’t heard of it before, maybe you’ve heard of beauty balm or blemish base? They both mean BB cream.

Ultimately, it’s the perfect product for those wanting coverage without having to put on a face full of foundation, which just happens to be way timelier.


How is BB Cream Different from Traditional Foundation or Tinted Moisturizer?

BB cream is similar to a foundation in regards to color, coverage, and finish.

However, unlike traditional foundation, BB cream comes with a few added skincare benefits, such as sun protection and hydration.

It’s a great lightweight option and gives you a much softer, lighter coverage than a full-face of foundation will.

Compared to tinted moisturizer, BB cream shares two of its main qualities – hydration and light coverage – but offers a few more benefits such as being able to treat blemishes, hide shine, and serve as a makeup primer.


Pros and Cons of BB Cream


  • Hydration – BB Creams help to moisturize your skin. They tend to be formulated with natural, hydrating ingredients to relieve dry skin and retain moisture
  • Antioxidants – they are formulated with Vitamin E and other oxidiants. BB creams keep your skin protected from sun damage while offering anti-inflammatory characteristics as well. Basically, giving your skin the love it needs when you’re making it up!
  • Light coverage – if you’re after a little dewiness, BB cream will provide you with the right amount of coverage to give you that natural, glowing complexion without looking cakey.
  • Quick and easy – it’s neither time consuming, or too tricky to apply your BB cream. In fact, it’s simpler and easier than a traditional foundation.
  • Master at Multitasking – from sun protection to shine control, blemishbanisher to makeup primer, your BB cream does all of this at once!
  • Mutliple formulas – BB creams are designed to suit different skin types. If you have acne or oily skin, you can choose a more matte formulation. Discoloration? Many BB creams will prime and correct. Basically, there’s a lot to choose from!



  • Some formulations can cause acne flare ups. So choose wisely! Some BB creams contain ingredients like aloe vera and hypericum that have beenknown to cause acne, so it’s worth reading the fine print, and knowing your skin!


Who Is BB Cream Ideal For?

BB cream can be suitable for all skin types and most skin concerns.

Whether you’ve got dry skin or oily skin, acne, or discoloration. There’s a BB cream out there that can blur out your complexion issues.

It’s a perfect way to enhance your natural beauty without looking like you’re in heavy makeup.

If you have dry skin, you will benefit more from using a BB cream than a foundation because BB creams are intensely hydrating. And then you won’t have to worry about flaking foundation anymore with BB by your side (or even better – on your skin!).


My Top BB Creams


Covergirl Clean Matte BB Cream

Covergirl Clean Matte BB Cream

Find Covergirl Clean Matte BB Cream for Oily Skin here.



L’Oreal Studio Secrets Magic Skin Beautifier BB Cream

L’Oreal Paris Studio Secrets Magic Skin Beautifier BB Cream

Find L’Oreal Studio Secrets Magic Skin Beautifier BB Cream here.



Dr. Jart Premium BB Beauty Balm SPF 40

Dr. Jart Premier BB Beauty Balm SPF 40

Find Dr. Jart Premium BB Beauty Balm SPF 40 here.



Physician’s Formula Super BB InstaReady BB Cream

Physician’s Formula Super BB Insta Ready BB Cream

Find Physician’s Formula Super BB Insta Ready BB Cream here.


Okay, so now you know your BB’s, we must discuss your CC’s!

What’s CC Cream all About?

CC cream stands for color corrector.

Your CC Cream neutralizes the appearance of discoloration by utilizing colors opposite each other on the color wheel to help fade out blemishes. Let’s say you deal with redness in your skin. Green and red are opposite each other on the color wheel, which means they cancel each other out.

So if you wanted to neutralize red skin or reddish blemishes, using a green-toned CC cream would counteract the redness.

CC creams serve multiple purposes including hiding imperfections like dark spots and redness, as well as offering hydration to dry skin.

“Generally speaking, CC creams color correct, are self-priming, offer buildable coverage, have additional skincare benefits, and much of the time contain an SPF,” explains Los Angeles-based makeup artist Allie Renee.

CC cream is suitable for all skin types, as it comes in different formulas to cater to different skin types and concerns. Matte, natural, or radiant – you can decide your finish.

BB Cream Vs CC Cream Vs Tinted Moisturiser

CC cream comes out on top for offering the most coverage out of the three.

And when applied correctly, it also doesn’t look thick and cakey like traditional foundation. This makes it perfect if you want to hide blemishes or discoloration without looking heavily made up. And let’s face it – that insta makeup look was sooooo 2020!

BB cream is generally lighter than CC with less coverage but in terms of everything else the two products are quite similar.

Tinted moisturizer is by far the most unique out of the three as it typically only performs two functions. And they are to hydrate and provide light coverage.

Having said that, some newer formulas now contain SPF.

CC cream is perfect for you if you are someone who wants full coverage while getting sun protection and shine control.

BB cream should be your go-to if you are wanting light coverage for a dewy finish while enjoying other benefits like sun protection and treating blemishes.

Tinted moisturizer is best if you are just wanting the convenience of hydration and a little color boost in one product.


The Lowdown on BB Cream Vs Tinted Moisturizer

Overall, I’d say it wouldn’t hurt in investing in both a good tinted moisturizer and BB cream or CC cream. But it truly all comes down to your personal preference.

A tinted moisturizer is a quick and easy way to look naturally dewy and glowing if you’re lucky enough to have few skin issues.

BB cream is handy to have if you want a little extra coverage and additional effects – like sun protection and shine control.

And having all 3 will give you complete flexibility to change your mind, well, as often as you change your makeup!




Featured Image by Hitesh Dewasi

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