As you know (by now) that I'm obsessed with makeup brushes, and I thought I'd give a very condense & complete list of absolutely essential brushes, personally.

If I had to absolutely pick the essential brushes to do all my makeup, these would get my picks! Of all the brushes from my collection, I use these on a regular basis, often some more than the other because I don't do full makeup everyday.
Here's a break down of brushes per sections.

Face brushes

(from top to bottom): Piccasso Brush FB15, NARS 07 Flat Concealer Brush, Piccasso Brush 401

These 3 brushes are for foundation and concealer. Personally, I find that even, healthy-looking skin (on its own) is the best makeup.
  • Piccasso Brush FB15 is the classic foundation brush. It's quite dense, yet flexible enough. I usually apply my foundation then just pat the flat side of the brush to get rid of brush strokes.
  • NARS 07 Flat Concealer Brush is (obviously) for concealer application. I use this brush for bigger areas of my face: cheecks, forehead, chin, around my mouth, etc. However, you can also use this for cream eye shadows, and etc.
  • Piccasso Brush 401 is the best for pinpoint concealing (i.e. blemishes). However, this brush is very technical, so it takes time/practice to adapt.

(from top to bottom): MAC 138, NARS 27 Yachiyo Kabuki Brush, NARS 21 Ita Kabuki Brush, MAC 165

Above brushes are powder brushes: blush, highlighter, bronzer, and loose powder.
  • MAC 138 is my go-to brush for loose powder, but it can be doubled or tripled as blush and/or bronzer brush because it's very directional due to its shape. On me, this brush is quite big, hence why I use it for dusting powder. I love it nonetheless. It's super soft, what more do I need to say?
  • NARS 27 Yachiyo Kabuki Brush is my blush brush. If I had to pick the brush for blushers, this would be it. I actually don't need any other brushes because it's that good. With this brush, my makeup becomes subtle, beautiful, natural, and yet applied perfectly. Again, it's directional because of its domed shape. It's not the softest brush, but it still wins any other brushes.
  • NARS 21 Ita Kabuki Brush is used as bronzer brush. I'm not quite sure why, but it's that flat shaped that just makes it perfect for bronzer application.
  • MAC 165 is so perfect for highlighter. I actually had to hunt this brush down because it was limited edition, but I only discovered it years later. I was lucky that I found this brush on duty-free in Korea. It just fits perfectly on my cheekbones, and again the bristles are very soft.

Eyes & lips brushes

(from top to bottom): MAC 239, MAC 217, MAC 219, Piccasso Brush 717, MAC 204,
Shu Uemura Kolinsky Portable Extra Lip Brush

For my eyes, I'd say those 5 brushes are just enough. If I want to be more technical, extra brushes are greatly appreciated, but that's not very practical.
  • MAC 239 is awesome. Sometimes, I like it more than MAC 217. It's great for packing colour, crease, and blending as well. For me, it's a multitasker because my eyelids don't have that big of a space. By putting the brush sideway, it fits my crease perfectly. I've found that MAC 217 can be slightly bigger than what I would like.
  • MAC 217 is still on this list because no other brush can beat this brush in blending. It makes a world difference.
  • MAC 219 is a pencil brush, but to be honest, I would prefer more pointy in shape. I find it scratches a bit as well... I put this brush here for the necessity of a pointy brush, not this particular one. I think I will get a pencil brush from Picccasso Brush when I go over to Korea.
  • Piccasso Brush 717 is somewhat unusual eye liner brush, at lest for me. I was so used to using MAC 209 that I did have some trouble getting used to this brush. However, thinking over on its multitasking ability, it beats MAC 209 by lots. I can use it for tightlining, regular eye lining, and under eye lining. There is a preferred brush for tightlining (Piccasso Brush 306), but it can only tightline because it's too chunky as a eye liner brush for my taste (I like thin lines).
  • MAC 204, again, is on this list for a brow groomer brush (or spoolie, whatever you call it). It absolutely doesn't have to be a MAC one. I got this one because I had a gift card, and I felt like splurging.
  • Shu Uemura Kolinsky Portable Extra Lip Brush is, in my opinion, the best lip brush - ever. It just delivers, and it's ultra soft. Kolinsky hairs are the top of the top in terms of hair quality. No more comment.

There you have them all. 13 brushes in total (eek), but if you really think through, I guess you can cut down even further (we are no pro-makeup artists) depending on your needs. Just remember that it all depends on what you need, not what you want (unless you like collecting brushes like I do). I do think that a good foundation and concealer brush are extremely important because powder brushes can be found practically everywhere at various price range that are equally as good as others. One good eye shadow brush with one eye liner brush that you can use, with a brow groomer, would be my tip. You don't really need a lip brush because a concealer brush can double as lip brush (because it's synthetic, most of the times). I hope it was at least bit helpful. And, remember, brushes are not limited to one-type use; they can all be multi-type use.

1 comment :

  1. Lovely, I've been eyeing Nars brushes...thanks for the info!