Oh, BB: Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish Cream Review

Sadly, it’s about that time of the year when I run out of my current BB cream. Now, I’m not a makeup addict as much as a skincare addict—I pretty much, like, buy one or two makeup things every year or so and then receive Sephora rejects from my more addicted friends. However, I’ve been lazily shopping around for a new BB, even venturing into cushions for the first time, finally, with mixed results! Fortunately, the Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish Cream was a chance for me to go back to my simple, BB-cream-tubey roots. (Ew, what? Okay, you know what I’m getting at.)

(By the way, this is part two of two in a pair of Dear Klairs makeup reviews. Read my review of their Creamy & Natural Fit Concealer here!)

Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish BB Cream review - front

This product was provided by Wishtrend for review. All content on A River Lily reflects my honest opinion. This post contains some affiliate links. Check out my Policies and Transparency page for more info.

The Claims

As it says on the box,

“DearKlairs Illuminating Supple Blemish Cream gives your skin whitening and wrinkle improvement effect for silky smooth skin while safety protecting skin from UV rays A and B with strong sun protection function and natural skin tone also.”

Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish BB Cream review - back

As I mention pretty constantly, I am naturally wary of a single product promising to be a blend of multiple different products.

Firstly, there may not be enough of the whitening ingredient(s) to actually have an effect on you (see my explanation in the Ingredients List section). Second, you won’t be using nearly enough BB cream for it to provide proper sun protection! Stephen at KindofStephen mentions that you may need, ideally, about 2 mg of sunscreen per cm2 for you to receive the actual SPF on the label. Plus, you’ll need to reapply your sun protection product every 2~4 hours to keep the full coverage and protection due to sweat, wiping, the mechanics of how sunscreen works with UV rays, and so on. But anyway, this is not a sunscreen post! All I’m saying is, do not rely on makeup to double as your sunscreen.

My point is, until we advance our skincare technology, I am going to continue to be wary of these shenanigans. Sorry!

Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish BB Cream review - box back ingredients

Ingredients List:

This has silicones, which I know some of you may be sensitive to, and a few other potential irritants. It also has talc. These darn pore-filling, skin-texture-altering products, eh?

I’m also a little overwhelmed by the number root extracts and fruit extracts; it’s like they tried to stuff an entire botanical garden in this thing. At a certain point, I wonder if such minute amounts of each ingredient would actually allow any of these ingredients to have any effect at all.

Finally, it looks like sodium ascorbyl phosphate (SAP), the only ingredient in here that I know lightens or brightens skin, may have a similar quantity issue. It’s way down in the last third of the ingredients list, meaning there’s a very low quantity of this in the cream, and making me doubt this BB cream’s “whitening” properties. By the way, SAP is a somewhat new, less-well-researched derivative of vitamin C compared to something like L-ascorbic acid—which you can find in the ever-popular OST C20 and C21.5 vitamin C serums—and is typically offers milder, non-exfoliating effects when used in skincare.

Well, this is all judging just from the ingredients list, so we’ll see! Here’s the full ingredients list; see Cosdna for more details. Those with 1 or higher “Acne” or “Irritant” value, as well as a red “Safety” value, are bolded*:

Water, cyclopentasiloxane, butylene glycol, ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate, betaine, cetyl ethylhexanoate, titanium dioxide, caprylic/capric triglyceride, niacinamide, polysorbate 60, dimethicone, cetyl peg/Ppg-10/1 dimethicone, zinc oxide, yellow oxide of iron, isoamyl p-methoxycinnamate, diethylamino hydroxybenzoyl hexyl benzoate, bentonite, sodium chloride, silica, red oxide of iron, bis-ethylhexylphenol methoxyphenyl triazine, stearic acid, dimethicone/vinyl dimethicone crosspolymer, chlorphenesin, talc, black oxide of iron, tocopheryl acetate, fragrance, centella asiatica extract, sodium hyaluronate, glycyrrhiza glabra (licorice) root extract, portulaca oleracea extract, piper methysticum leaf/root/stem extract, illicium verum (anise) fruit extract, citrus paradisi (grapefruit) fruit extract, nelumbium speciosum flower extract, paeonia suffruticosa root extract, scutellaria baicalensis root extract, 1,2-hexanediol, caprylyl glycol, butylene glycol, adenosine, sodium ascorbyl phosphate, linum usitatissimum (linseed) seed extract, hibiscus esculentus fruit extract, aloe barbadensis leaf juice, arctium lappa root extract, hibiscus mutabilis flower extract, corchorus olitorius leaf extract

*Note that these values do not indicate universal truths. The amount of ingredient actually in the product, as well as the product’s overall formulation, greatly affect the potential for irritation. Not everyone will be sensitive to these bolded ingredients, and you may be sensitive to ingredients that are not bolded. Every individual’s skin may react differently. Your Mileage May Vary (YMMV).

The Evidence

Performance:

To give you as accurate an evaluation of this BB cream alone as possible, I did not use any powder to set, or apply any other makeup that I would usually wear such as eyeliner or lip color.

Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish BB Cream review - swatch

Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish BB Cream review - swatch

I like that this comes in a hygienic squeezy tube (though I’ve been spoiled by Missha’s pump tubes, cough cough). It goes on very smoothly. It is somewhat quick-drying. I was actually concerned that this BB cream would not match my face at all—you can see from the swatch that the ONE SHADE it comes in may be too light. It might pass as a concealer shade, but it’s just too light for my NC35~40-ish skin! But, again, let’s give it a shot before passing any ultimate judgments.

Here’s a “before” picture:

Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish BB Cream review - before
(I don’t look at the camera for these photos because staring into the depths of your soul frightens me.)

Now, when I first put it on, there was a very distinct white cast. White, I tell ya!

Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish BB Cream review - face pale blended

After about five minutes, though, I realized it just needed some time to warm up and sink in to my skin. You know, just like many other foundation makeup products. Woops.

Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish BB Cream review - face blended test after

Before and after side-by-side:

Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish BB Cream review - face blended

The coverage isn’t perfect, and the redness around the nose and of some healing CCs aren’t completely gone. But hey, it’s not a concealer, and it intends to offer a natural look, right? Besides, hyperpigmentation spots on my nose from my glasses’ nosepads are just historically stubborn. The still-red spots on my forehead and cheeks have faded satisfactorily. So, it indeed gives me the light coverage it promised to deliver. Plus, it lasted several sweaty hours (sorry, it’s been really hot) from around mid-morning to mid-afternoon, and this was without setting.

As for the quality of that coverage, the BB cream lightly evens out my skin tone without being overbearing, feeling heavy, or settling into my pores. I mainly worry about the potential drying it can cause; if you aren’t oily like me, or if you don’t use a nice, dewy setting mist, this may make your skin look flaky or splotchy. Look closely at my nose and you may notice some slight flaking on the right side.

Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish BB Cream review - face blended test after

Unfortunately, I did not feel that it helped control my sebum by itself. And trust me on that, because I just can’t shut up about being oily, right? From the before-and-after photo earlier, it looks like it reduced my shine along with the uneven skintone, but the shine came back after about an hour or so. (Granted, it’s been a very hot summer.) After my first couple of weeks’ experience with this BB cream, I would also recommend using a setting powder. This isn’t unique to this BB cream at all, though; if you don’t set properly, it can go back to greasy as usual for the oily life.

By the way, do you guys want to see my BB cream dotting/application technique?

Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish BB Cream review - face test dot dotting
AhhHHhHhHh!

On a serious note, you do want to avoid slathering or wiping anything on your face. Even sunscreen! For a more even application and less product waste, it’s better to apply it in strategic dots on your face and blend it out by either patting with your hands, or using a makeup blender/sponge, if it’s makeup. Even bigger dots than mine are perfectly acceptable. Anyway, that’s what works for me! I like to use either my fingers for the warming-up aspect, or a dampened makeup sponge for even better blending.

Fragrance:

I’m personally not sensitive to fragrances, but this scent may be a hint stronger than even I prefer. (Or is it just my nose?) It reminds me a little of a floral body lotion. Fortunately, it doesn’t linger, although I’m still really not sure why makeup companies even add fragrances, other than to counteract any offensiveness in the pre-fragrance formulation, I suppose. Hmm, maybe I just answered my own comment, huh?

Value:

You can get this on Wishtrend.com for around $18.99~$24.99, depending on if you can catch one of their many sale events. Fun fact: Wishtrend’s parent company, Wish Company, actually owns Dear Klairs and is its primary seller. This is also sold by Wishtrend and fulfilled by Amazon for about $20. Considering many BB creams can go for $20~30 and up, this is about an average price for my personal standards. I guess I’ve really been spoiled by my trusty $10~15 Missha M Perfect Cover, eh? Still, it’s good to get out of a routine sometimes!

Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish BB Cream review - face blended test pose after
Say hi to my fans!

The Verdict

I am overall happy with the natural-feeling, light coverage the Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish Cream promises and delivers. However, it skimped on the other skin-nourishing properties such as whitening, wrinkle care, and sebum control, which seemed to be large parts of the product’s claims. I completely understand their marketing purposes and all, and I am sure Dear Klairs gave it some heart, but it simply didn’t work out this time.

Overall, it felt like they tried to do way too much in one single, simple, but perfectly OK product. It would have been fine just advertising the natural, light coverage! Plus, this only comes in one rather light shade considering Wishtrend/Klairs’ international reach; I was surprised to see it work fine with my skin. Anyone darker than NC40 or so would likely be out of luck, though.

While I do sound a bit disappointed, I’ll have to say, I could actually continue using this until it runs out. With a proper setting powder (like the magical Innisfree No Sebum Mineral Powder…hnnng), this BB cream can get through the day, whether you’re running errands or having a casual day out. This may not work well for everyone, but if you catch a sale, go ahead and give it a shot. Be aware that it can exaggerate dry spots. Normal to dry skin types, and oily types with a mattifying powder, will find this to be an easy, unassuming, light-coverage foundation.

Overall Rating: 3 / 5

Rating system:
5 / 5: HOLY GRAIL STATUS. I dare you to pry this from my cold, dead, kpop-glowy hands.
4 / 5: I really liked this! Would repurchase until I find a better alternative.
3 / 5: So-so. Unimpressive results, but may work better for others with different conditions.
2 / 5: Would not repurchase. Possibly caused some issues for me, but may work for others.
1 / 5: This lied to me. It did nothing that it said it would, and caused some issues.
0 / 5: Do not buy this. No one should have to suffer the way I did.

Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish BB Cream review - front and box

Have you tried Klairs’ makeup before? What’s your current foundation of choice? 🙂

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9 thoughts on “Oh, BB: Dear Klairs Illuminating Supple Blemish Cream Review

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