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How to Make Your Own Tinted Moisturizer, DIY BB Cream and CC Cream

How to Make Your Own Tinted Moisturizer, DIY BB Cream and CC Cream

Welcome to the next installment of the Pale Girl’s Guide – How to Make Your Own Tinted Moisturizer, DIY BB Cream and CC Cream! Ever feel like it’s hard to find the perfect match in a foundation or tinted moisturizer? That’s why I decided to do a DIY.

How to Make Your Own Tinted Moisturizer, DIY BB Cream and CC Cream

This post contains a mix of press samples and products purchased by me.

BB Creams (Asian ones like the Holika Holika Orange that I used to love) are supposed to have the following properties – moisturizer, SPF, foundation, concealer, anti-wrinkle, brightening, nourishing, all in one. They’re supposed to be lighter than a foundation but have more coverage than a tinted moisturizer.

CC Creams, on the other hand, are supposed to be color correcting, have SPF, be brightening, nourishing and have less coverage than a BB Cream but more than a tinted moisturizer. I thought that with Spring here, you might be interested in lighter coverage base makeup.

In this guide I will show you how to DIY (do it yourself)

  • Tinted moisturizer (lightest coverage)
  • CC Cream (light coverage)
  • BB Cream (light-medium coverage)

Cover FX’s CC Cream was my favorite foundation type product for a long time. It has great medium coverage but can be sheered out to make it lighter in coverage if you want. I think it has a subtle dewy finish, which is perfect for my dry skin. It’s oil free and has good anti-aging and nourishing ingredients in it like licorice root extract, which helps to brighten your skintone over time. (sadly, it has been discontinued)

Now, to be clear, I ALWAYS put on moisturizer with SPF before I put on any makeup. I look at the SPF in makeup as a BONUS, not something I rely on for my skin. So I always slather on the moisturizer with SPF to get the full benefits and coverage. But when it comes to my tinted moisturizer, BB Cream or CC Cream, I tend to apply those more sparingly, so that I don’t have any cakeyness going on. (see my current skincare routine)

To make my tinted moisturizer, BB Cream, and CC Cream, I mixed a bunch of products in my makeup stash together, but you can do it with whatever you like. I encourage you to shop your stash and repurpose products you haven’t used in a while. Have a foundation that’s too dark or too thick? We can fix that! At the very basic level, you’ll need your foundation and a serum or moisturizer to mix with. The illuminator is optional but I love the glow. The white foundation mixer is key if you have a foundation you like that’s too dark for you. You need to mix together the foundation and white mixer first until you have the right shade. You can also try this to make a foundation darker, warmer or more olive toned. The Body Shop has darkening and lightening foundation mixers. Nyx also has a pro foundation mixer that comes in Olive, Warmth, Deep, White, Luminous, and Opalescent.

The Basics

  • Foundation
  • Serum / Moisturizer
  • Illuminator (optional)
  • White Foundation Mixer (optional)

To address my dry skin’s needs, I used Illamasqua Hydra Veil, however you could also use a hyaluronic acid booster, too. To add illumination, I used a few different products – Nyx Pro Foundation Mixer in Opalescent, Nyx Born to Glow Illuminating Primer, and NARS Illuminator in Copacabana. I also used a few drops of Manic Panic Dreamtone White. If you don’t like your foundation to have illuminating properties, skip the illuminator and just go for a great serum.

Products I Used

Equipment You’ll Need

You want to clean the airless pump bottles, silicone bowls, and spatulas with 70% alcohol and let them air dry.

How to Make Your Own Tinted Moisturizer, DIY BB Cream and CC Cream

DIY How to Make Your Own Tinted Moisturizer
My DIY Tinted Moisturizer on half of my face
DIY How to Make Your Own Tinted Moisturizer
Bare vs. Tinted Moisturizer

Tinted Moisturizer
The first mixture I made was basically a tinted moisturizer. I wanted to create a sheer product. You really want this mix to be about 45% serum or moisturizer + 45% illuminator + 10% foundation or concealer, since the goal is light coverage. If you don’t want to use an illuminator, make the serum / moisturizer around 80% and the foundation 20%.

What I put into my tinted moisturizer

  • 45% Supergoop City Serum
  • 30% Nyx Born to Glow Illuminating Primer
  • 10% Nyx Pro Foundation Mixer Opalescent
  • 10% Cover FX CC Cream N-Xtra Light
  • 3% NARS Illuminator in Copacabana
  • 2% Illamasqua Hydra Veil

I’m personally not a fan of tinted moisturizers because of my rosacea, but not everyone has that issue. This will give me a bit of color, but it won’t fully even out my skintone or cover my redness. If you have good skin, or freckles you want to peek through, this is the formula you should try. You can always bump up the coverage a bit if you need it by adding a tiny bit of concealer.

DIY How to Make Your Own CC Cream
My DIY CC Cream on half of my face
DIY How to Make Your Own CC Cream
Bare vs. CC Cream

CC Cream
The next mixture I made was a CC Cream. This is a light coverage product, but it will cover my redness and even out my skintone. You want this to be about 35% foundation + 20% serum + 10% moisturizer + 35% illuminator. This is a thinner texture than the BB Cream and using a serum will help it to be more like a CC Cream than a BB Cream.

  • 35% Cover FX CC Cream N-Xtra Light (mixed with a bit of Manic Panic Dreamtone White)
  • 20% Supergoop City Serum
  • 20% Nyx Pro Foundation Mixer Opalescent
  • 10% Illamasqua Hydra Veil
  • 10% Nyx Born to Glow Illuminating Primer
  • 5% NARS Illuminator in Copacabana

One thing I did experiment with was putting on the tinted moisturizer all over, then just spot concealing with the CC Cream to cover the worst of my redness. That actually worked pretty well, but I’d still rather just use a product with more coverage.

DIY How to Make Your Own BB Cream
My DIY BB Cream on half of my face
DIY How to Make Your Own BB Cream
Bare vs. BB Cream

BB Cream
The last mixture I made was a BB Cream. This is a light-medium coverage product that gives a beautiful glow. I can apply it with my finger tips and it looks good, though I prefer a damp beauty blender. It covers my redness. It’s 35% foundation + 35% illuminator + 30% moisturizer. The Illamasqua Hydra Veil gives it a thicker texture that is easy to blend out.

  • 35% Cover FX CC Cream N-Xtra Light
  • 35% Nyx Pro Foundation Mixer Opalescent
  • 30% Illamasqua Hydra Veil
With my hair styled by the NuMe Pearl Curling Wand
Wearing the BB Cream
How to Make Your Own Tinted Moisturizer, DIY BB Cream and CC Cream
Wearing my custom mix BB Cream

The DIY BB Cream is my favorite of the 3 that I made and I’ve been wearing it a ton lately! This would be great for repurposing a full coverage, thick foundation like Kat Von D’s Lock-It Foundation.

How to Make Your Own Tinted Moisturizer, DIY BB Cream and CC Cream
In my lightbox
How to Make Your Own Tinted Moisturizer, DIY BB Cream and CC Cream
Outside in direct sun

From Left to Right the Cover FX CC Cream in N-Xtra Light – my Tinted Moisturizer – my CC Cream – my BB Cream – Cover FX Liquid Foundation in N0.

Have you ever tried making your own perfect foundation? Will you be making a tinted moisturizer, cc cream or bb cream?

More to See



  • Now this is a great post! Not only do I get to learn how to make something but I get a peek into some of your products you like 🙂 I also like that I could customize the color for the time of year and my face color!

    • I don’t think it’s cheaper than a store made one, except for the fact that I shopped my stash. But I was able to make a product that matches my pale skin and addresses my dry skin issues, which is great.

  • I’ve been enjoying the NYX mixer in white. Does the opalescent lighten foundation as well as the plain white?

  • fantastic post!! I never knew all of that about the points of BB and CC Creams. I haven’t tried any so I thought both would be more sheet than a tinted moisturizer. I love your pink hair!

  • Great post! I have to shop my stash of unloved foundations and repurpose them into something I can actually use. I think the CC cream looks great on you, btw. Very natural, and yet, no redness!

  • Fascinating article. This is a great one to refer to often. Where do they sell Illamasqua now and where did you purchase the empty pumps?

  • I agree, you went into lots of detail….and so appreciated. I have Cover FX CC cream in N medium and am going to find some NYX drops to add to it for summer. I wasn’t even aware NYX made them so thanks for the heads up. I have so many age spots on my face so any suggestions on a great foundation to use is appreciated.

    • My two favorite foundations (after the Cover fX CC Cream which is discontinued) are the Cover FX Liquid Foundation and Too Faced Born This Way Foundation.

  • Holy smokes, this post must have been a lot of work to prepare! Thank you for your time and for the info. I know I won’t attempt to make my own products but I’m sure others will!

  • Your custom mix BB cream is perfect for you. I know that CC cream is supposed to be lighter weight, but my IT Cosmetics is the heaviest product I own, and Lumene CC Cream is the 2nd heaviest. The new water serum style foundations are pretty amazing because they’re so lightweight but provide medium-full coverage. I’ve been using my Custom FX Drops to tweak my foundations or to mix with Embryolisse but I don’t have the patience to create one completely from scratch. However, your BB cream results are very impressive!

  • I find myself mixing moisturizer and foundation products more often than not. Most days, I use a mix of MDSolarSciences sunblock in the red tube and the Nuance Salma Hayek CC cream. The physicians formula foundation in the dropper bottle was way too dark for me, so now I use it to tint mineral sunblocks that are too white.

  • I DIY my own, as well! The one thing I’ve learned to watch out for is how some colors oxidize much more based on what I mix with. Some moisturizers turn my foundations darker or more orange and I can’t mix them at all. Others seem to remain neutral. It took me a lot of experimenting, but I was usually pretty pleased with the results.

    • In the past I had issues with foundations oxidizing and I was told it was because my skin was slightly acidic. I don’t have that problem now (different skincare), but that can sometimes cause it with some formulas.

  • I’ve mixed up my own tinted moisturizer before. I did have varying degrees of success based on the moisturizer I used. Some blend together really well. Some prevented the product from sinking in and it looked streaky and just sat on top of my skin. I’ve done well with CerVE AM moisturizer and Urban Decay Naked Foundation. Sometimes I mix in the Urban Decay Beauty Balm too.

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