I was doing good trying to suppress myself from buying any more BB/CC creams because I just have more than plenty already in my collection! Until I saw this new offering from Origins – the Smarty Plants CC cream – and all my willpower's gone.
Smartly dubbed “Beauty with Brains“, the new Smarty Plants CC cream from Origins promises to color correct discoloration, perfect complexion, and protect your skin from environmental damages while minimizing the appearance of pores and fine lines and providing maximum hydration. A lot of scientific research was put into developing this product and it's quite entertaining to read what each ingredient does and how they work together to convert environmental stressors into the end product – water – for hydration.
It comes in only 2 shades (shocking, I know) – 01 Light to Medium and 02 Medium to Dark. Medium to Dark is definitely too dark for me so I grabbed the Light to Medium, it's a tad bit lighter than my skin tone but I figured it is easier to correct something that's light than starting with the dark. The product comes in a lovely olive green squeeze tube with a matching green cap and it has a faint citrus sweet scent to it that I find to be refreshing! It is formulated with all kinds of skin-perfecting ingredients such as Vitamins C & E and Green Tea to improve skin's clarity and keep it moisturized during wear.
In all fairness, this product can easily be described as your basic tinted moisturizer but with skincare benefits and SPF (broad spectrum SPF 20; Octinoxate 7.50%, Octisalate 4.00%, and Oxybenzone 3.50%). It has a very lightweight and creamy texture that sinks right into the skin without any oily or greasy feeling. It is smooth to apply and I didn't experience any stickiness or tackiness at all during application.
The Light to Medium shade that I picked up appears to be pinky beige in color but once applied and blended on the skin, it adjusts itself to my skin color and I don't have the problem with it being too light at all. In fact, the color adjusts itself so quickly – within a couple of minutes, it becomes a shade or two darker and more yellow-toned than the initial color (see swatch below). It doesn't seem to oxidize any further during the day, though and I'm happy with that! The finish is pretty natural-looking and I feel and look like I'm wearing nothing at all on my face.
In terms of coverage, it is sheer, almost barely-there and that makes it perfect to use on good skin days or when you simply want to achieve the no-makeup makeup look. With this CC cream on, my overall complexion appears to be improved. It does a good job at smoothing fine lines and making pores become less noticeable, however, it does very little in concealing redness, acne scars, sun spots, or hyperpigmentation, probably due to the low coverage. I normally have to follow with a dab of concealer to completely mask the discoloration.
I find that if I top with loose powder, my face stays matte for almost the entire day but if I top with a foundation powder, the shine seems to get through on my T-zone and subsequently requires some blotting. I think this CC cream would be good for people with dry to normal and normal to combination skin as it tends to keep the skin really moisturized but if you have oily skin or live in a more humid area, I have a feeling it will emphasize the oily areas of the face.
It is Winter now where I live and I seem to have been constantly reaching for this CC cream every morning. I seriously love the refreshing scent and how it keeps my skin so hydrated even in the harsh weather without the heavy feeling and looking too made up. There is one thing that I'm not entirely impressed with, though – the amount of SPF – 20 is considerably low in my opinion so I always make sure to apply my normal sunscreen with SPF 50 Broad Spectrum underneath.
If you are in the market for an easy, fuss-free tinted base that would simplify your morning makeup routine, I highly recommend this product. It does it all in one easy step – it moisturizes, protects your skin from harmful UV rays, and doubles as a face primer. Whether or not to follow with foundation depends on the coverage you are looking to achieve. Personally, I like the way it makes my skin look enough that I just skip foundation and everything else altogether.