My collection of makeup brushes for an average makeup wearer is both embarrassing and something I’m proud of – I guess I can only be as good as my tools! So, I’m going to get into all the different brushes and sponges I have and what I use them for.
I’ve included pictures of the brushes as a whole and then close up so you can see their density and size. Also, please excuse the lack of cleanliness lol (in my defense, they’ve only been used once since cleaned last week so aren’t due another yet haha)
Real Techniques Blush Brush
It’s a shame to have to start on this brush because I don’t really use it anymore! As a blush brush, I find it’s too fluffy and too dense at the top of the brush. So, either it doesn’t pick up enough blush, or it does but places it too concentrated on one spot.
This brush is good for other powder-based products and I have used it to wipe away my bake before, but I wouldn’t recommend it for putting down a product.
Real Techniques Contour Brush
I love this brush!! I use it to slightly contour my face, but with my bronzer. It’s quite small so it’s precise enough to blend out my bronze to make a clean shadow on my face, but it’s fluffy enough to avoid a harsh line.
I really recommend this one!
Boots Powder Brush
I love this brush too!! It was so affordable as it’s a Boots brush, it’s super soft and it does an amazing job at brushing away my under-eye bake smoothly without disrupting the rest of my makeup. It’s quite a fluffy big brush so it’s no good for anything precise.
Again, strongly recommend!
Real Techniques Pointed Foundation Brush
I’m not quite sure why this brush is named a foundation brush because it is definitely too small for that (imho) but I like it for placing my highlight on my cheekbones. It’s quite a dense brush and the pointed but flat end helps me place my highlight and gently blending it out before I go in with my sponge.
Real Techniques Expert Face Brush
This brush is my main foundation brush and I love it! It’s not too big for hard to reach places and is great for packing product on as it’s very dense. It really helps my foundation to blend well as well as preventing any brush streaks showing.
Highly recommend this brush for foundation! I think it’d also work well for concealer or a cream contour.
No7 Blusher Brush
This is the blush brush I use religiously and I love it so much! A fluffy brush yet small enough to keep the product in a concentrated place. It prevents packing too much blush on, but if you do, the fluffy-ness really helps it blend out super quickly.
It’s also a really lightweight brush which I like because it means I also keep a light hand when using it and when applying my makeup.
Real Techniques Buffing Brush
This is my second favourite foundation brush. It’s also really dense and the perfect size for blending foundation in. It’s round though so it’s not great for getting foundation into harder to reach areas. However, it also blends really well and doesn’t leave any streaks in my foundation.
I would recommend the Expert Face Brush over this one, but they both do the job really well!
No7 Foundation Brush
Okay despite the name again, don’t think it’s great for foundation. I find this shape is better suited for under-eye concealer, if you want to use a brush. I use this for blending my foundation and concealer together, so there isn’t a harsh line between the two.
I don’t find myself reaching for this brush very often, but it is very good quality and works well.
Revolution Pro Liquid Drop Foundation Brush
I got this brush as part of my haul from Revolution Beauty [read here] and it does work well to blend in foundation. I don’t use it with my current foundation though as, even though it’s a liquid, it’s not as ‘liquidy’ as drops would be and therefore I get a better result with my other foundation brushes.
If I used a liquid drop foundation though, I would reach for this brush more often.
Real Techniques Bold Metal 301 Flat Contour Brush
This is by far my most luxury brush and it’s really good! I use it to just place my bronzer down as a cheekbone contour before I blend it out with the Real Techniques Contour Brush (as shown above). It’s so great for its precision and its shape is perfect for mimicking a cheekbone shadow. Oh, and the bristles are so soft and luxurious.
My only qualm is that it’s not very easy to hold and it’s pretty heavy but I don’t have to hold it for long at all so not a big problem!
No7 Concealer Brush
These brushes are good for placing highlight sometimes, and I also use it to blend foundation in more hard to reach places. They’re alright brushes – nothing to write home about lol.
Next Eyeshadow Brushes
I’m not too fussy with my eyeshadow brushes because they all work well and I need lots of brushes for the number of colours I end up using!
I’ve numbered the brushes below and here’s how I use them all:
- Blending eyeshadow into my crease
- Blending my eyeshadow under my lower lash line
- Packing eyeshadow onto my eyelid
- Blending eyeshadow
- Placing eyeshadow under my lower lash line
- Placing my inner-eye highlight
This was a good set to get from Next seeing as it contains all the brushes needed for a full eye look and I don’t think it was very pricey!
Boots Eyeshadow Brushes
I use these brushes primarily for placing eyeshadow on my lids as they’re quite dense, or when I want to blend my eyeshadow but still leave the colour quite strong.
No7 Eyeshadow Brushes
These brushes are alright, but I don’t reach for them unless my other brushes are dirty!
Again, I’ve numbered the brushes and here’s how I use them all:
- Obvs don’t use the smudger and I use the other side to pack eyeshadow in smaller parts
- Packing eyeshadow onto my eyelid
- Packing eyeshadow onto my eyelid
Ecotools Eyeshadow Brushes
These are really good all in one brushes and a great starter kit addition (these were the first eyeshadow brushes I bought!).
Here’s how I use the two brushes:
- Top Brush – pack colour on with the leftmost and place colour under my lower lash line with the right
- Bottom Brush – pack colour on with the leftmost and blend blend blend with the right
Essence Glitter & Pigment Applicator
I love these! These were a great find at Wilko one day when I was checking out the Essence stand. I wasn’t really impressed with the makeup but this caught my eye.
These are made of silicon and I love them! They’re great for applying shimmery/glittery eyeshadows and mean you don’t have to use setting spray on a brush and you don’t lose any product in the brush.
I only bought one the first time around and loved it so much I had to buy another (and also because sometimes I need to use 3 shimmers for one look and I cba to clean the other one!)
No7 Flawless Finish Blending Sponge
I really love this sponge and use it for baking under my eye. The flat edges are really good for placing powder and the dirty side (oops) perfectly fits under the eye. It’s also a cheaper alternative to the Beauty Blender.
The sponge is quite stiff though so I wouldn’t recommend using it for foundation or concealer as it might be too harsh on the skin.
I’ve always owned the Real Techniques sponges but they’d gotten so old I had to throw them out. I thought this was a good opportunity to try the Beauty Blender as I’ve had friends say its better and Beauty Bay had a cheaper bundle for the sponge and the cleanser.
I really like this! It’s super soft and bouncy and the colour is super cute. I use it for blending my concealer in as I find it really pushes into the skin and blends it effortlessly and ‘creaselessly’.
Tbh though, I probably wouldn’t buy it again and would probably get the Real Techniques sponge instead. I don’t think the Beauty Blender is that much better, especially with its price tag. Besides, the Real Techniques sponge also has flat edges which I find useful when blending concealer too.