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Wednesday, May 5, 2010


Until fairly recently, I didn't use make up brushes too much. I pretty much used cotton swabs, sponges, or my fingers. I still do use each of those sometimes, but the right tool makes everything easier (and look better). So I figured I'd do a review/collection post about the brushes I've amassed over the past few months. There's quite a few so I'll divide it into two parts: eyes and face.

First up: Eye Brushes

EcoTools Angled Eyeliner Brush

The bristles are made of taklon, a synthetic fiber. They're soft but firm and densely packed. I love this brush--it's pretty much the only way I can do liquid liner without making a mess. I actually have two of these: one for eye liner and one exclusively for filling in my brows. (There's nothing worse than thinking you're using a clean brush only to realize later that you have purple sparkles in your eye brows. I would definitely buy this again (and clearly I already have). I think it was about $3 but it's also available in a 5 piece set for $20.

Elf Studio Small Angled Brush

To be honest, I'm not sure exactly why I bought this brush, since I have two angled brushes already. That said, I'm glad I did. Also taklon, but not quite as soft as the Ecotools brush. The bristles are a bit firmer though. I pretty much use them interchangeably. This is $3 on the elf website, but they have 50% off studio sales fairly often.

Ecotools Eye Shading Brush

This is my go-to brush for eye shadow. This is taklon too (notice a pattern?) and, again, super soft and I haven't had any trouble with it shedding. I use this for everything: my lid, highlight, to place colour in my crease, and sometimes to blend. I have two already and I'm tempted to get another. I'm not sure of the individual price but it is available in the set for $20.

Elf Studio Small Smudge Brush

Also taklon, and soft but firm and very densely packed. The bristles are only about 5mm long. I use this mostly for placing colour in my crease, but also for smudging shadow under my eyes. A must-have, I think because it helps with smaller areas or detailed application. $3 from elf website.

Elf Studio Small Precision Brush

The bristles on this one (yes, taklon) are about 2-3 mm longer than the smudge brush and much looser packed. I probably use this the least of my eye brushes, simply because it doesn't do anything I can't do with my other brushes. It's only $3 but I'd probably pass on it (especially if you have the smudge brush and any blending brush).

Ecotools Lash & Brow Groomer

I actually am not a fan of this one. I got it in a set or I would not have bought it seperately. The bristles on the brow brush aren't firm enough to do anything and the teeth on the lash comb are pretty flimsy so I'm a little afraid to comb through mascara clumps with it. I guess in terms of positives I could say I like the handle. It's made from bamboo (I love bamboo; I don't know exactly why but that's a sure way to get me to by something) and recycled aluminum. I much prefer this...

Random Lash & Brow Brush

The bristles are firmer, the comb is a lot sturdier. And, it has a spoolie on the other end. I wish I knew what brand it was but I picked it up at Zellers a while back for two bucks. I'm not crazy about double-ended brushes (or brushes with interchangeable pieces) but I've made an exception for this one because it works.

*Just a quick tip about spoolies: don't waste your money to buy one. Every time I finish a mascara, I clean the wand and use that. They're great for grooming brows, combing lashes, and Petrilude has a great video for using them to clean up mascara smudges. And for anyone who isn't familiar with Petrilude, WATCH his videos. He does the most amazing make up.

OK, so back to brushes...

Elf Studio Eyeshadow C Brush

I don't really use this brush much. It's a bit too wide for my eyes so I usually use the Ecotools brush instead. But I do like it for blending, or for neutral or sheer colours. And the bristles are soft and don't shed. (I guess I've been lucky with soft bristles.) For $3, it's nice to have but if you only want one shadow brush, I wouldn't choose this one.

Elf Studio Contour Brush

The picture doesn't show it but the bristles on this one are in a nearly perfect circle and spread out as you move away from the handle. It is amazing for blending out the crease. Buy this brush.

I also just bought the Fyrinnae crease brush and a pack of mini art brushes. So I'll have pics and reviews up for those soon.

Face brushes are here.

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