They're definitely one of my favourite makeup items.. if not my very favourite! Makeup brushes make all the difference when doing makeup, although I don't feel like these are high on the priority list with casual makeup lovers. Before I got all into makeup and started purchasing MAC Cosmetics Christmas brush sets to kickstart my collection I applied most products with my hands. I didn't even apply any bronzer or blush (yes, my face was probably quite 2D), so didn't own any powder brushes of any sorts. I always applied eyeshadow with applicators that came with the little quads I purchased. Looking back, I now realise nothing was ever quite blended out properly - not that it mattered to me at the time. My bestie Annelies taught me all about popular makeup brands (hello MAC) & makeup brushes, and in turn I'm here to share the knowledge.. This is my ideal brush starter kit!
Going over these brushes from my personal collection from left to right..
- Chikuhodo Y-3: Initially meant to be a big eyeshadow brush, I use this to set my under eye concealer with power. It pats on the perfect amount of powder to keep the shine at bay.
- Hakuhodo J5522: This is a super soft blending brush with a tapered end - I like this especially for blending out crease shades. Blending is essential when doing eye makeup as it'll soften the look and make everything a little more natural.
- Lancôme #22 All-Over-Shadow: One of the best all-over eyeshadow brushes I've ever come across. It's.. perfect. Gets the job done quickly and efficiently - all you need when you want to sweep on colour all over your eyelids.
- Zoeva #226 Smudger: For blending out eyeshadow or kohl pencil on/under both lash lines. This is what you need for that perfect sultry smoky look.. Just apply some messy kohl and smudge it out like crazy. Can be used to smudge out cream products as well as it's vegan.
- Zoeva #322 Brow Line: An angled vegan brush I use to fill in my eyebrows with powder. As it's taklon, it can also be used with cream products. Deposits the right amount of product gradually, while being super detailed.
- Zoeva #227v Soft Definer Vegan: I use this to apply my cream eyeshadow base - my product of choice here is mostly one of the MAC Cosmetics paint pots. Using this brush instead of your fingers is not only much more hygienic, but it deposits way more pigment too. Win-win!
- Sigma F80 Flat Kabuki Copper: Buffs and blends in liquid foundation like no other. I knew this had been a Holy Grail status brush for a while, but I finally caved in when I saw the limited edition rose gold (copper, they say) version. So pretty!
- Real Techniques Powder Brush: This is one huge powder brush - and that's exactly what you need. I use this one to apply my Guerlain Météorites as the very last step of my makeup - it blends my whole look together perfectly. It's also the perfect brush however to use setting powder with.
- Real Techniques Blush Brush: The little pink sister of the powder brush, this is quite a big and fluffy blush brush. This is the perfect blush brush to start out with! Just swivel it into your blush powder and gently sweep it across your cheeks - your cheeks will look defined and flawless.
- Real Techniques Contour Brush: Small and super soft, this is the perfect brush for applying highlighter on your cheekbones, nose bridge and across other parts of your face you want to optically 'catch the light'.
- MAC Cosmetics 109 Small Contour Brush: This rounded small contour brush is perfect for contouring with a bronzer/contouring shade. I use this right under my cheekbones and on my temples to emphasise the shadows there.
Of course do keep in mind that you don't necessarily need these exact products.. These are just the ones I have and like! I wholeheartedly recommend Japanese brush brands such as Hakuhodo and Chikuhodo as they have an amazing quality for a decent price, but sadly they're not so readily available in Europe. I'm also a big fan of the brands Zoeva and Real Techniques - if you're looking for good brushes without needing to break your bank these brands will become your best buds. And if I could pick one luxury brush brand to shop with.. It'd definitely be Tom Ford. A girl can dream!