Walk into your kitchen. Open the utensil drawer. Do you really need all those knives? If you think you don’t, try cutting a steak with a butter knife. The same is true of cosmetic brushes. Each one has its own individual purpose, carefully designed for its specific application. So how many brushes does a girl need for a fully functioning makeup kit? Introducing the top five makeup brushes everyone should own!
Powder and/or Foundation Brush
The largest of all makeup brushes, a powder brush is an absolute must in any arsenal. Used to apply powder foundation and other loose powders, this brush should be fluffy with medium density bristles. Perfectly round and symmetrical, it can be used freely over the entire face, neck, shoulders, body, back, and cleavage.
A smaller version of your powder brush but with a slight taper, this brush is designed specifically for applying color to your face. Whether it’s blush, bronzer, or highlighter, the more defined shape of the bristles allows for the same even distribution of product as a foundation brush, but with a smaller surface area. For even greater precision, an angled blush brush allows you to contour like an expert.
Tapered Eyeliner Brush
The short, stiff bristles of an eyeliner brush give you expert control, and when held at an angle, can create some amazing eye effects. Perfectly suited for gel formulas, eyeliner brushes are also great for turning your collection of eyeshadows into liquid eyeliners! Lightly dampen the brush with water, create a light paste-like mixture with the powder shadow of your choice, and voila: instant custom eyeliner. You can also use eyeliner brushes as an extra lip brush, for absolute pout perfection!
Allover Eyeshadow Brush
There are literally hundreds of different brushes designed for eye makeup in the market, but if there is one you should commit to, it’s an allover eyeshadow brush. It’s Popsicle stick shape and soft, dense bristles are great for delivering an even wash of product across eyelids. They can also be great for concealing, particularly under eye discoloration, as their flat design is magic for pressing product in order to build coverage. Note: only use with powder formulas; use a sponge applicator or your finger to apply a cream based shadow.
Made from the same type of bristles as those found in eyeliner brushes, lip brushes are designed for resilience and control. The blunt tip is for lining the lips and the flat side of the brush is used to fill in lip color. A lip brush allows the professional- and you- to take full advantage of the natural structure and lines of the mouth.
Want a glimpse of Jerome Alexander’s brush technique? Learn from the expert with this simple video tutorial!