Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Essential Brushes

Been browsing through YouTube 'How to & Style' channel again and found some video dedicated to the essentials in makeup brushes. I know that most individuals who wears makeup, they make do with the applicators that comes with the products or even with their own fingers. However, for all makeup lovers everywhere, we know that a good brush can actually help you achieve that polished, professional look that can be seen in magazines.

I definitely would've posted up the video showing all the necessary makeup brushes but somehow I dont think that it would be a good idea. Not that the videos were not any good, (those people went through a lot of research to make the videos, so kudos to them) simply because they weren't really targeted to the market here. Other than Mac, which seems to be the unanimous favourite for makeup brushes among these makeup afficianados, where are we suppose to go for Sephora or Loew Cornel and what-nots? So to help fill in the blanks, I shall list down the 'must have' essential brushes according to these helpful makeup mavens and also according to my own humble experiences and where to find them.

There's like a gazillion types of makeup brushes out there so its best that you don't get fooled by the false pretense that you need every single one of them. Plus If you tried to buy them all, you would run out of money and places to store them. For normal everyday usage, all you need is 5 essential makeup brushes to achieve that flawless professional look.

1. Flat Head Concealer Brush

This brush is basically used to apply concealers, hence the name. The flat head allows for more precision and better control for blending. It doesn't matter if you use liquid, cream or powder, a small concealer brush will make covering up tiny imperfections a snap. Cosmetics brands such as Mac, Bobbi Brown or Stila would usually price this brush from RM65 to RM100. However, for those with a smaller budget you can get this brush from Elianto or Sasa.

2. Eyeliner Brush

Most people tend to prefer using pencil liners rather than deal with tricky liquid eyeliners or gel liners. However, liquid or gel liners offers longer lasting results than the pencil liner which smudges or wear off pretty quickly, sometimes leaving you looking like a raccoon without you knowing it (I have suffered this incident countless times. To all my friends who were too polite to tell me, bless them). A plus at having a liner brush is that you can use your favorite eyeshadow as an eyeliner by applying it with a thin eyeliner brush. You can vary the effect by using the brush wet or dry, and the colours are limited only by the eye shadows you have in your collection. This way you can cut cost from not buying different coloured eyeliners to suit your makeup moods. If you're willing to invest, you can fork out around Rm45 for this brush but if you're not then just head to Sasa (elianto doesn't have the thin brush) and get it for RM20. The eyeliner brush can come in two designs, either the thin brush (looks like a really thin paintbrush) or the slant brush (the bristles are angled). I prefer the angled brush myself as it allows better control.

3. Foundation Brush

This brush is usually used to apply powder mineral makeup to achieve that flawless finish though it works equally as well with liquid or cream foundation. It makes blending easy and makes pores disappear. If you use the brush for a liquid or cream foundation remember to wash your brush with warm soapy water frequently. Usual price for this brush would be around RM75 - Rm100. For those on budget, head on down to Sasa or Elianto. I even saw some good brushes being sold in Guardian and Watsons as well.

4. Kabuki Brush

Also known as the blush brush. Was pretty clueless when kabuki brushes was mentioned but when I checked my own collection, turns out I already have one but with a longer handle! So anyways, this brush is perfect for applying bronzers, powders and blushes. Look for a Kabuki brush with thick, heavily packed natural hair bristles as they deliver a smooth, even coat of powder or mineral make-up with a few strokes. Short Kabuki brushes are perfect for those who are usually on the go as you can always stash them in your purse. Prices for this brush usually starts from RM75. The Body Shop is also another cosmetics company that carries good makeup brushes and you know for a fact that they dont torture animals to manufacture these brushes.

5. Large Eyeshadow Brush

Sometimes, a simple wash of colour over the entire eyelid is more effective (and subtle) than heavily stylized eye makeup. Besides it simple to do and perks up your eyes instantly. To get a clean, natural look, a large rounded eyeshadow brush is a must. A good brush will evenly apply colour from lash base to brow bone in a few strokes. It will also keep powdered shadows on the eyelid instead of on the cheeks or nose. Sasa is selling these for around RM30, Elianto, Guardian and Watson should be selling these at a far cheaper price. Bigger cosmetic companies usually price these brushes around RM80.

So these are the top 5 makeup brushes that a girl should have. If you don't have them, go get them! If you do... then good for you!

There's several other items that I feel would complement these brushes.
  • Sponge Wedges - Good for blending concealers in small tight spaces like under your eyes.
  • Q-tips/ Cotton buds - Get the tapered-end cotton buds as they are perfect to correct little mistakes or smudges. Found some good ones in Guardian.
So that's all the makeup tools that you need for your everyday makeup needs. But as you go along your makeup tools will probably start to build up according to your needs. It's like my case where I suddenly realised that I had more stuff than I remembered buying. So I hope the list has helped. If any of you out there knows any other specific places here in Malaysia to get good quality makeup brushes and makeup tools here in Malaysia, would love to hear from you. Feel free to leave a comment!

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