An average product by any name is still just an average product. So whether this is called a beauty balm, BB cream, or skin perfector, it ends up just being a tinted moisturizer with questionable sunscreen properties.
Dream Fresh B.B. has a fluid, lightweight texture that sets to a soft matte finish that's ideal for normal to oily skin. With only 1.15% titanium dioxide as the sole active ingredient, we’re surprised this earned its SPF 30 rating. That's a very low percentage to reach even an SPF 10, but we have to assume Maybelline did due diligence in terms of FDA-mandated sunscreen testing (which determines a product's SPF rating). Maybelline's claims of eight skin benefits (blurs imperfections, evens skin-tone, enhances, etc.) could be met by most standard foundations or tinted moisturizers, so don't get overly excited about that; this doesn't edge out dozens of other complexion enhancers.
The fragrance-free formula has some beneficial ingredients, but its downfall is that it also contains the preservative methylisothiazolinone, which is generally not recommended in leave-on products due to its sensitizing effect.
The shades range from Light to Deep (which is more medium tan than deep) and go on sheer, but really why bother when there are better BB creams and tinted moisturizers on our Best Tinted Moisturizers/BB Creams list.
- Soft matte finish, ideal for normal to oily skin.
- Contains some skin-beneficial ingredients.
- Contains potentially irritating methylisothiazolinone.
- Over exaggerated 8-in-1 benefits.
- Low amount of titanium dioxide considering its high SPF rating.
Active: Titanium Dioxide (1.15%), Other: Water, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Glycerin, Octyldodecanol, Silica, Pentylene Glycol, Octyldodecyl Xyloside, Phenoxyethanol, Sodium Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Isohexadecane, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, PEG-30 Dipolyhydroxystearate, Sodium Dehydroacetate, Pentaerythrityl Tetra-Di-T-Butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate, Caprylyl Glycol, Disodium EDTA, Citric Acid, Polysorbate 80, Potassium Sorbate, Propylene Glycol, Methylisothiazolinone, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract. May Contain: Titanium Dioxide, Iron Oxides
Maybelline is one of the best-known and most recognized mass-market makeup lines in the world—it's available in 90 countries. Throughout its long history, which began in 1915 when T. L. Wilson founded the company and named it after his sister, Mabel, and Vaseline (which he combined with coal dust to concoct a mascara for her), the company has prided itself on bringing innovative products to the marketplace. L'Oreal purchased the company in early 1996 and that's when things really started getting much better. Both companies specialize in offering a large selection of lipsticks, nail polishes, and mascaras, and many of their foundations have the same strengths and weaknesses (smooth textures and finishes plus the inclusion of sunscreens that are often without much-needed UVA-protecting ingredients).
The powders, several mascaras, pencils, matte-finish concealers, and Superstay Lipcolor are impressive and inexpensive. Although L'Oreal remains the more sophisticated and refined of the two lines (and now they have credible products, not just sleek ads, to back this assertion), Maybelline's latest urban image is a positive step, as many of their latest launches have been innovative without resorting to "been-there, done-that" gimmicks. Price-wise, Maybelline is the least expensive of the L'Oreal-owned cosmetic lines (which also includes Lancome, Biotherm, Vichy, and Kiehl’s), and smart shoppers will note the similarities among brands that, with conscientious shopping, can really save you money without sacrificing quality or performance.
For more information about Maybelline New York, owned by L'Oreal, call (800) 944-0730 or visit their interactive Web site at www.maybelline.com.