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Alphabet Skincare: Your Guide to AA, BB, CC and DD Creams

Beauty or blemish balms, better known as BB creams, have elevated themselves from Asian trend to global makeup essential, becoming a favorite for women across all continents. Its huge success is owed to its perfect hybrid of makeup, skincare and SPF – the very definition of hitting two birds with one stone. Sounds like you’ve found your holy grail product, right? However, there are new additions to the so-called “alphabet skincare” with the arrival of AA, CC and DD creams.

What do they do? What are the differences between them? Which one is best suited for you? If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed, worry not! We’ll explain and break it down below.

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AA Cream

The abbreviation stands for ‘anti-aging’ and as the name implies, this cream helps your skin slow down the signs of aging that usually appears in your 30’s. During this time, wrinkles, fine lines and dark spots come more easily and takes longer to fade. The ingredients of AA creams are more heavily concentrated with anti-aging ingredients, like alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs), antioxidants, peptides and retinoid.

Photo from Olay 


BB Cream

The most popular product in the skincare alphabet, blemish/beauty balms were first popularized in South Korea. More than your standard tinted moisturizer, BB creams go above and beyond by providing coverage AND multiple skincare benefits. If a moisturizer and lightweight foundation had a baby, the BB cream would be it. It offers sunscreen, hydrating-boosters and coverage. But despite this, its texture is very light which makes it ideal for everyday use, quick and natural if you’re into the “no-makeup makeup look”.

Photo from MAC Cosmetics


READ: What Exactly Is Clean Beauty?


CC Cream

CC cream stands for ‘color correcting’. It is best used before applying foundation because it ‘corrects’ the discoloration on your face such as dark circles, spots, sallowness and hyperpigmentation. They often come in a variety of colors meant for targeting different skin issues: peach for covering up dark pigmentation, green for redness or rosacea, lavender for dull skin, the list goes on. So go ahead and pick your poison.

Photo from Clinique


DD Cream

The newcomer in the alphabet skincare craze, DD stands for ‘daily defense’ and is like the lovechild of BB and CC creams with a primary focus on anti-aging. DD creams serve to diminish fine lines and wrinkles with continued use. Along with that, these creams help balance out the skin tone. Boasting a bevy of benefits including brighter, firmer skin,  along with lasting repair results and easy coverage on the go. This just might be the cream to end all creams.

Photo from DERMAdoctor


Lead photos by Cheska Santiago