Monday, 10 September 2012

My most-used face & eye make up brushes // Mini reviews


After what feels like years of searching, I finally have a set of make up brushes that I am happy with and love using. For so long I was sure that the only thing for it was to bite the bullet and buy everything from Mac - But after buying and using a few of their brushes amongst others, I actually found that there are so many brushes that do exactly the same job whilst being much kinder on my purse. 
Whilst my 'favourite' brushes seem to change relatively often, here are my most-used brushes at the moment, starting with face make up brushes. 

Elf studio stipple brush £3.75 - I do have Mac's 187 and honestly, this is almost exactly the same; the bristles are a little more sparse, but I think I prefer this for flexibility! Also, because its cheaper, the Elf version wins the top spot for a stippling foundation brush. These days, I much prefer to stipple and buff foundation for a near-on flawless finish, and its so much easier too! 
Essence of Beauty duo brush £5 as a set - On the rare occasion that I do fancy using a flat brush, this is the one I reach for. Its bristles are stiffer than some, firm but flexible I'd say. Both ends are also tapered, and probably gives the most streak-free finish of this brush that I've tried. The concealer brush on the other end though, may be a little too stiff to use around the eye area without streaks.
Real Techniques buffing brush £21.99 as a set - At first, I didn't understand the hype for this brush. Whilst it gave a similar finish to the Elf stippling brush, it took so much longer due to its small head. After some practice though, its now much quicker to use, feels amazing and gives a much better finish than any  foundation brush I've ever used. I use this in the same way as a stippling brush really - Stipple, then buff! 
Real Techniques  contour brush £21.99 as a set - Amazing brush for contouring and highlighting, the perfect size and cleverly tapered too! I love the Real Techniques brushes, the bristles are so soft!
Japonesque Kabuki* £19.50 - This has immediately taken the top spot for applying loose powder over foundation. I roll powder over my foundation with this, apply blusher and whatever else, and then use this brush again to blend and finish. Firm but soft, very densely packed with bristles and gorgeous too! 
Lancome blusher brush - I've never been too sure what to look for in a blusher brush, but this has always done the job so well, I've had it for years! Its slightly domed and is a good size to work with. 

And onto those brushes used for eye make up...

EcoTools shading brush - A standard, stiff eye shadow applicator brush but with a nicely tapered end - I tend to use this more for colours in the outer corner and cream eye shadows as its quite stubby. 
Models Own eye shading brush £4 - Most brushes in this style are too big for my eye lid and are somewhat difficult to work with on the front of precision, but this brush is a perfect width, doesn't shed and also wins points in the softness area. Who likes scratchy eye brushes anyway?
Japonesque crease brush £11.75 - Small cone shaped brush which is the perfect size and pretty much effortless to use. I use this for applying colour to the crease of the eye and gently blending. An absolute must have in my eyes (ha)! 
Models Own flat angled brush £4 - Astronomically thin and firm brush, great for lining the eyes - I've used so many brushes like this and never deemed them to be so significant until I used this one - I love it! 
Mac 224SE blending brush £22 full size - Fluffy tapered brush, perfect for blending and 'pulling together' eyeshadow. Unfortunately this is a little scratchy at times, but it does the job so well I can forgive this fact. I'm not sure how its full sized counterpart performs but I'll be looking into that when and if this one ever falls apart. 

So there we have it - My favourite make up brushes! I'm sure this list will change over time but it just goes to show that it is not always necessary to splash out to find quality - The Models Own brushes are so cheap but will always be well used. 

What are your all time make up brushes?
Also, what are the worst you've tried?!

S xx



  1. That Japonesque kabuki is amazingly gorgeous!!!!

  2. Really loved this post, esp the pics. I have just purchased the Real Techniques set & am looking forward to trying the buffing & contouring brushes even more now. I was about to photograph them yesterday before using and my battery died grrr... trials of being a blogger eh?! ;)

    Will def try the Model's Own flat angled brush as am not in love with the mac one and this one looks great. Been really impressed with EcoTools & Bdellium - sensationally soft - both from

    Nic x

  3. Lovely post and photos! I have been wanting to try elf brushes but always hesitate because I'm concerned with quality but I think I will check them out. I'm your newest follower :)
    Please check my blog out to see if you like it.

  4. Love this post, you have a great collection! I'm currently using brushes from The Body Shop after I found a set in the January sales which was worth about £40 - I got it for £15 :) The worst brushes have to be the little ones that come in make-up palettes - no one ever uses them! xx

  5. Cool pictures! Great collection :)

  6. Japonesque kabuki is so so so so gorgeous !!! I love it ! Bisous !!!


Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment, I love hearing your thoughts! Do feel free to contact me at xx

© Friday is Forever | All rights reserved.
Blog Design Handcrafted by pipdig