So just what DOES the BB in “BB cream” stand for?

Only kidding. I know the answer to that one. It’s “beauty balm”, silly. Although, that said, you’d have thought it’d be something a bit more specific than that. I mean, “beauty balm”. It’s just marketing speak. Doesn’t exactly bring to mind some unique, magical formula. If you ask me, it’s no Boswelox. It’s not even a Pentapeptide.

It does, however, possess that ingredient essential to all successful beauty products. It makes women feel crap. It does this because, basically, it’s tinted moisturiser for the gullible. And if tinted moisturiser can make you feel crap (and believe me, it will), knowing you’re gullible enough to by the version specially marketed to morons will make you feel even crapper.

Tinted moisturiser does bugger all to improve the appearance of normal skin (when I say “normal skin”, I mean the skin of most people. I don’t mean “normal skin” the way skincare manufacturers mean it, which is skin that doesn’t actually need any help but covers the body of someone browbeaten into buying products for it anyhow). The idea that a basic cream with the tiniest hint of colour can “improve skin tone” and “cover imperfections” is laughable. Still, you slap it on and think “it doesn’t work for me. It works for everyone else because it says so on the packet, so I must be exceptionally rubbish and ugly and therefore I need to go out and buy even more stuff” (I know you don’t literally think that. You feel it, though, and that’s enough).

The truly weird thing is, though, that even though the amount of colour in tinted moisturiser is tiny and doesn’t actually cover anything – after all, it’s just a tint – you can guarantee that it WILL NOT match your own skin colour and this will be OBVIOUS. It doesn’t matter if it’s specially formulated for light or dark skins (or even that elusive medium). The colour will be nothing like the colour you are and it will hence make you look a prat who either wants to be mustard yellow or already believes that she is. Normally this kind of colour exclusion is reserved for those whom the magazines like to call “ethnic” (unlike the rest of us, who don’t get a name in print but are probably Master Race in the beauty editor’s heads). With tinted moisturiser, however, everyone’s excluded. I suppose it’s an equality, of sorts.

I am not a fan of my BB cream, but I haven’t thrown it out because I don’t throw anything out. I keep it on my desk as a reminder of my shame at not having easily improved “normal” skin that can be “perfected” by light coverage. Sometimes I mix it with my normal foundation, just to use it up. But I know that’s cheating.

Beauty balm. I’m sure I could come up with a more meaningful explanation of the acronym. But I just can’t Be Bothered.

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