With the beauty community’s focus shifting from makeup toward skin care over the last few years, it’s no surprise that we’ve seen a several Korean brands popping up at major beauty retailers. K-Beauty’s reputation as experts in the skincare industry has led to an increased demand for Korean products and brands like Laneige, Innisfree, and Glow recipe have been steadily gaining popularity. The Erborian CC Creme is just one of many items that’s been making it mark on the US market.
Erborian Korean Skin Therapy was founded by a French skincare specialist and a Korean scientist. Their products are made in South Korea and are available at US beauty giants like Ulta and Sephora.
I picked up the Erborian CC Creme purely based off its description as a “high definition radiance face cream”. I’m always down to try any complexion product with the words “radiant” or “glowy” in the name, so this was a no brainer.
The Erborian CC Creme retails for $44 and contains 1.5 oz of product. It’s packaged in squeeze tube and there are 3 shades in the line. The product contains broad spectrum SPF 25.
Erborian CC Creme Review
Erborian describes the product as a low-maintenance CC Cream with white pigments that transform to match your skin tone. It’s supposed to enhance natural radiance, blur the appearance of pores, and even out the skin tone while providing light coverage.
The CC Cream has a cream consistency that easily breaks down as it blends and it seems to absorb fairly quickly into the skin.
It feels slightly hydrating and while I wouldn’t call it super heavy, I can definitely feel the product on my face. Once dries down there’s a bit of moisture left on the skin. Although it doesn’t leave a tacky feeling, I find it uncomfortable to wear. It’s like my skin is very aware that there’s something on it even after it’s been on for a while. I guess it reminds me of the feel of traditional sunscreen.
Straight out of the tube, the CC Cream looks like a white cream with tiny beads of colored pigment. The color develops immediately as the product blends and the beads release the pigment. My preferred application method is using fingers because their warmth helps to melt the beads and blend the color.
I’d classify the coverage level as minimal to light. Because the shade I use is warmer than my skin tone, I can easily discern where the cream was applied, so I can tell it’s not completely sheer. While it does visibly tint the skin, it doesn’t do much to cover redness or blemishes.
It can be built up somewhat but it won’t take you further than a light coverage at most. Even with two applications, I could still see sunspots and vein lines that are usually camouflaged by my lighter foundations. My skin in no way looked perfected or vastly improved while wearing the CC Cream.
To compare it to other products in the same category, it definitely falls on the lighter end of the coverage spectrum. It covers less than the It Cosmetics CC Cream, the Bye Bye Foundation, or the Misha BB Cream. I’d say it’s maybe comparable to Colourpop’s Pretty Fresh Tinted Moisturizer (in coverage only, the texture is very different).
While the Erborian CC Creme is supposed to be a “High Radiance Face Cream”, I didn’t find it particularly radiant. I wouldn’t call it a matte finish, but it doesn’t really leave any glow or added illumination either. It just kind of looks like actual skin, but not in a “your skin but better” way. It doesn’t provide that subtle dewiness that makes the skin look more vibrant. Rather, the finish is more similar to the way your actual skin looks without any product on.
To quote one Ulta reviewer who says “It seems to make my skin look a bit haggered; not smooth and fresh looking”, which is probably one of the best ways to describe the finish of the CC Creme. I didn’t feel like it did anything to enhance my complexion. On the contrary, it almost seemed to dull the look of my skin.
The Erborian CC Creme has a strong sunscreen smell that lingers after it’s been applied. I really dislike the smell of sunscreen and this one was still noticeable after several hours of wear. I can usually put up with mild to moderately scented face products if the smell dissipates. This one continued to bother me throughout the day and gave me a slight headache.
The Erborian CC Creme contains a broad spectrum SPF 25 that’s comprised of both chemical and physical sun protection ingredients. The active ingredients are Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate (Octinoxate), Ethylhexyl Salicylate (Octisalate), Titanium Dioxide, and Zinc Oxide.
The Erborian CC Creme is available in three shades, a light, medium, and deep option. The product, which starts out as a white cream, is supposed to adjust to your individual skin tone. I’m however, very skeptical of the brand’s claim. I think it’s more like the beads of pigment are suspended in the white cream and the warmth of the skin releases the color contained in the beads.
I wear the shade Golden, which is the medium option and it’s visibly too warm for my NC30 skin. The shade leaves a pronounced orange-toned tint to my face. A quick perusal of reviews on Sephora and Ulta’s websites showed many reviewers complaining that the colors are too pink-toned or that it turned orange on their skin.
If the shades were actually adjusting based on skin pH, having only three shades might not be so bad. The product is, after all sheer enough to suit a range of depths, so those with similar undertones should be able to make one of the shades work. However, if a brand is going release a product in such a limited range, I would think the best choice would be to stick to neutral undertones that, in a sheer formula, would work for both cool and warm skin tones. As it stands. it seems all the shades are rooted in pink/orange undertones and anyone with a neutral or yellow complexion will struggle to find a shade that matches.
With all the above in mind, the Erborian CC Creme does serve a specific function within my beauty routine. The combination of barely-there coverage, SPF, and the flat finish, ultimately leads me to consider the CC Creme as a tinted sunscreen rather than a traditional makeup item. This makes it ideal for outdoor activities and it’s my go-to product for the beach, the pool, sports, etc. All it’s really doing is tinting my skin while providing SPF, and that’s all I need when I know I’ll be in the water or high temperatures/humidity. While I’ve got several sheer options that make my skin look better than this product does, they’re not necessarily what I want for activities where makeup isn’t ideal.
Cruelty Free and Vegan Status
As per the Erborian website, the company states that it does not test its products, its ingredients or its raw material on animals, and they ensure that none of their suppliers test on animals either. Erborian products are not sold in China where animal testing is required by law, however Erborian is owned by L’Occitane, who’s products are available in China where they are subject to federally mandated animal testing.
Erborian states that not all their products are vegan as they do use honey in some of their products and honey extract is listed as one of the CC Creme’s ingredients.
Where to Buy the Erborian CC Creme
The Erborian CC Creme is available in two sizes. The full size contains 1.5 oz and retails for $44. The mini size contains 0.05 oz and retails for $24.
Sephora – Free shipping on orders over $50 and free returns.
Erborian USA – Free shipping on orders over $49 (currently free shipping on all orders). Limited international shipping available.
Soko Glam – Free shipping on orders over $35. Limited international shipping available.
Revolve – Free shipping and free returns. Limited international shipping available.
Regardless of where you choose to purchase from, make sure to check if Rakuten (ebates) is offering cashback. Sephora offers cashback for anywhere from 2% to 8% so it’s definitely worth looking into. If you haven?t signed up for Rakuten yet, you can do so here, it only takes a minute and then you’ll earn cashback every time you shop through their link. They also have an extension which I recommend installing, that activates cash back on all eligible websites with one click and it also scans for coupons.?
For me the Erborian CC Creme was kind of a miss as a low coverage makeup product. It didn’t provide enough coverage, the finish didn’t enhance my skin, and both the smell and feel bothered me. As a tinted sunscreen it works pretty well so it’s a good option if you just want a slight wash of color with SPF, (provided that you can find a shade that works). If you’re looking for a low coverage complexion product that will improve the look of your skin, I would recommend the It Cosmetics CC Cream or Bye Bye Foundation over this one.
Gives a slight tint to the skin
Very minimal coverage
Finish leaves the skin looking dull
Feels uncomfortable on the skin
Strong sunscreen scent
Very limited shade range, with shades that all lean orange
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