When was the last time I did a makeup review? I’m back today with one of the biggest brands to rise up to (almost) the top in all of the drugstore brands, The Saem, with one of their products from the cake line, the Water BB Cake. I’ve never used The Saem before, other than the concealers a few times (thanks to my friend E who often leaves her pouch unattended, leaving me the opportunities to raid and “borrow” things from her). The Saem was launched back in 2010 with the mindset that the 샘 (saem – meaning spring water) is the foundations of the wisdom of beauty. Their O² bubble mask, which was endorsed with the aid of Lee Seunggi (an incredibly popular actor and singer) became their number one seller, which helped to promote their store to become a huge staple in many people’s skincare and makeup regimes. I’m reviewing today one of their BB cakes, the Water BB cake. Unfortunately for myself, I wanted the SPAU BB cake, which became out of stock upon my order, so I got the next best thing. Let’s jump right into it.
3 Efficiancies: UV Protection, Whitening and Anti Wrinkle. The matte BB cake containing moisturizing coconut water makes skin look bright and moisturized. The cake contains patented sebum controlling powders to keep your makeup fresher for longer and contains SPF to protect your skin from the sun, giving your skin a natural cover for a brighter complexion. The water drop technology that uses 50% coconut water creates a milky essence for a more moisturized base and the cooling agents in the BB cake provides refreshment for your skin.
I received my BB cake from W2Beauty, along with my other base products. Initially, as I said earlier, I wanted to grab myself the SPAU BB cake, but they ran out of shade 23, and since I’m really dark, I didn’t want to risk getting the 21 and looking ghostly. I opted for the next best one to suit my skin type, which was the Water BB cushion. There was another cake, called the Serum BB cake, but since that was intended for more dry skin types, I assumed it would be too oily for my skin to handle, so I played it safe. Glad I did since this baby is now one of my all time favourite BB products, sitting alongside my go to BB cream from Missha.
The BB cake comes in two shades from what I know, shade 01 Light Beige (similar to 17-21 in other BB brand colors) and shade 02 Natural Beige (similar to 23 in other BB brand colors). The 23 swatched on my hand seemed pretty dark, so I was worried that it may actually tone down my skin color to even darker than it already is, but once applied properly on my face, it seemed normal, albeit slightly darker than my other BB products. The finish gave me a not too matte but not too dewy finish, almost velvety with a beautiful glow to it. Dragging the sponge along the cake produces tiny water droplets to form on the surface of the makeup, and using your fingers (though I don’t advise you to do so, since fingers carry a lot of germs) produces even more water. The makeup is so moist and hydrating it’s crazy.
Now for the claims. First off is UV protection. The BB cake contains SPF 50+ so the level of protection is pretty high, although, a standard in Korean beauty products, with a PA scaling of 3 pluses. I wore this omitting my usual sunscreen I generally wear underneath, and my skin didn’t seem to get irritated out in the sun (which usually happens if I don’t wear any form of physical sunblock). I tried the cake on top of my usual sunblock but I found it to be a tad heavy, so I wouldn’t recommend it on hotter days where thick layers can feel uncomfortable on your skin. Dryer days should prove no problems though, so I suppose it’s up to your own personal preference whether you’d like to apply sunblock prior or not.
Second claim, whitening. Whenever I put the BB cake on, my face goes a shade lighter due to the coloring of Korean products. I’m not actually fussed by it, rather I do prefer my base to be a shade or two lighter than my actual skin tone, as oxidization does occur with almost everything, and secondly, I look better with a brighter complexion than I do darker. This BB cake came off a bit darker than what I’d prefer, but it’s still pretty decent color wise. After wearing the cake all day, my skin tone didn’t seem to get darker after the oxidation process which usually happens with other BB products I’ve used in the past. When I go to wash the makeup off, my skin looks quite pale, so I guess that’s the sunblock working it’s magic on me, but no darkening suggests that the whitening seems to be present in this product. Okey next.
Third claim, which is anti wrinkle is very hard for me to try and assess since I’m only in my 20s and not a single wrinkle to be seen. However, I did notice that if I didn’t powder on my easy-to-age areas, like my eyes or forehead for example, the product would settle into fine lines that are aggravated with my constant forehead movements or squinting eyes. The makeup also seems to cake up under my eyes where the 애교살 (aegyosal – bottom eyelid) sits if I don’t powder. I suppose with the sun protection, the remarks are true that it may give off anti aging effects with the benefits of sunblock, but as far as application for wrinkling goes, then it will settle in quite easily if you don’t blend properly or set the makeup. I can see this fitting perfectly well for the younger generation. As for the older women (and men) out there, not so much.
I wore this once without my go to primer, and my skin soaked in oil after a long day wearing the cake. The product does produce water upon application which I like, and it helped to keep my skin super hydrated, but it didn’t go as well to control my heavily oily nose, or my not so oily t-zone. However, it wasn’t a nasty oily, more healthier looking as if my skin were glowing. The scent might aggravate some noses, because it’s definitely noticeable, and definitely not light in the slightest. I’d keep that in mind if you wanted to try this out. Now, as for different skin types, it seems pretty decent on sensitive skin, possibly too much for oilier skin types, but perfect for those with dry skin. The cover is a solid medium to heavy coverage, and since getting the cake, I’ve been omitting concealer since it does a pretty good job at covering my redness, scarring and even under eye circles. Wearing a long wear primer though, that can help to control oil very well makes this baby a dream to use. You don’t look overly oily with the dewy finish that the cake provides, but you don’t look bone dry either, so if you want a healthy or radiant skin appearance, this is something you need in your lives.
Again, from what I know, there are only two colors to choose from; 01 being the fairest and intended for lighter skin tones of possibly NC15-25 and 02 for those with skin tones darker than NC25. If you’re worried about how pale the shade 02 is, then I’d probably avoid using the cake for those with a darker skin tone than NC30, because I find NC30 from MAC is too dark for me, and this BB cake can really only suit those below that tone of skin. In the heat, I noticed that the BB cream will melt off my face if I let my sweat take the layer off with it, otherwise it stayed on my face exceptionally well. During the cold, the makeup was super hydrating and I didn’t feel my face getting dry whatsoever. I can definitely say that this product is suitable all year round with no issues, provided you’re not overly oily skin type. The sponge is something I didn’t want to talk about though, since it’s a run-of-the-mill sponge with nothing special about it. I’d prefer the BB cake to have an air cushion to accompany the product with, as I’ve used both a sponge, and an air cushion. I find that the finish is exactly the same, but the ease of using an air cushion makes it that much better, than with the simple sponge included. Using a brush seems to be pretty good as well, but I prefer sponges than brushes personally. Otherwise, you get the same finish using your favourite brush, without under compensating on the hydration factor, or the coverage. In fact, I find using a brush gives you an even higher coverage than the sponge does, so definitely recommended for those people who need extra help concealing their flaws for a beautiful finish.
Bare Faced before applying the cake
Applied only on half of the face. You can see that it swatted pretty light. Remember that I got the darkest shade too, so be wary if your skin tone is darker than an NC30.
After oxidizing for 10 or so minutes, and applied to my full face, the tone of the BB cake overall became fairly natural, albeit a smidgen lighter than my actual skin tone. For me personally, I thought it was a bit too dark for my liking, since I prefer my skin tone to be a bit brighter.
After half an hour and flu oxidization, eyebrows are done and lip color toned down, the BB cake makes my skin appear natural and near flawless. I didn’t apply any concealer at all, and it did a pretty good job at hiding my dark circles, my spots and acne scars on my forehead and chin area.
- Super hydrating with the coconut oil essence
- Powders included in the product controlled oils up to a certain extent, but was able to give me a dewy finish that looked healthy, rather than disgusting
- Solid medium to high, buildable coverage that can work to even omit concealers
- Very strong lasting power, even wearing the cake for longer than 12hrs (which is the benchmark limit for most base makeup where it will start to fade and deteriorate on your skin)
- A little goes a long way, so using the cake adequately and using an appropriate amount each time, can see you through 3 or 4 months with ease (if you were to use everyday)
- Just like a BB cushion compact, you can repurchase refills to place into your BB cake shell
- Didn’t cause any breakouts or irritate my skin
- High SPF factor means I can go without wearing my sunblock during hotter days where too many layers becomes overwhelming
- The sponge is crappy
- For oilier skin types, be warned that you may end up looking incredibly shiny and the water BB cake is definitely not intended for those with oily skin types AT ALL
- The scent can be a bit too much for those who don’t enjoy fragranced products
- The Saem doesn’t seem to be very popular overseas, so it was definitely hard to find in Australia. I had to order mine online from W2Beauty because nowhere else stocked the Saem BB cakes, or any Saem products at all for that matter
- Creases and settles into fine lines and wrinkles without powders to set makeup into place
REPURCHASE RATE ★★★★★
★☆☆☆☆ – I want all my time wasted and all my money back for this crap. If I could turn back time and tell my past self not to use this, then I would without a single doubt. If I find this in my collection or if someone gave it to me, I’ll set it on fire and pray to the All Maker to repent for using such a terrible product.
★★☆☆☆ – It’s pretty bad and I definitely wouldn’t recommend this to anybody, but it’s nice to give it a go for myself. I’ll only use it if it was given to me for free and I’m severely desperate.
★★★☆☆ – It’s nice but I wouldn’t go out of my way to get another one for myself. Maybe if it was on special then I’d consider buying it, otherwise there are better products that I like a lot more than this.
★★★★☆ – It’s quite good and I would repurchase definitely. It’s not a staple yet, but if I can’t find anything better, then I’ll happily stick to this product.
★★★★★ – OH MY GOD GET YOUR HANDS ON THIS BECAUSE IT IS A LIFE SAVER AND WORTH EVERY SINGLE PENNY EVEN IF YOU BECOME POOR BECAUSE OF IT OMG
Now that you know what the stars mean, you can figure out what I mean by my personal ratings.
I am definitely recommending this to every single person I meet, because it has now made it’s way into one of my all time FAVOURITE products to use on my face. I love the finish, the formulation, and the fact it didn’t cause my nose to become excessively oily to the point that it looks disgusting is a major plus in my books. If you have a long wear primer, or an oil control primer, then this product is a beauty. I have an incredibly oily nose, and my t-zone tends to get out of hand as well, and it was nice using a hydrating product on my face that didn’t give me an unhealthy appearance. The price for the cake was awfully cheap as well; I picked my BB cake up for $18.85 on W2Beauty which is SOOOOO cheap compared to other place online where I’ve searched. You can get a direct link to the online store by clicking here, and using the code 0524238410 to sign up for your purchases can earn you a voucher for $5 in order price (minimum of $30 spent). Even so, the makeup is less than $20, which might I add is a HUGE bonus since Korean products are notorious for BB creams of any kind to be over $25, whether they’re bad quality or amazing.
How did you like this review? Let me know down below or through my Facebook whether you found this product to work with you or not. Have you tried any other Saem product before? I’m thinking to personally try a few of their other products, since the Water BB cake worked exceptionally well for me. You can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for anything else at all. Feel free to leave me any messages if you had enquiries, or just for a simple chat. I’ll leave it at that for now, and remember to always stay beautiful.
Anthony signing out.