The Basics: Brushes and Tools

In my mind, there is no right way to applying makeup because everyone has their own techniques of what works for them. As an extension of this, there is no one brush you have to have, but rather the brushes that work for you. If you look at makeup tutorials on youtube, every girl is using her own technique, applying things in her own order, and no two gurus are using the same brushes in the same way! The beauty of makeup is to really tailor your routine and products to what you like. 

So today I’m sharing my essential brushes that get me through a full face. When buying brushes I always think of how many ways I can use it and whether I will get my money’s worth out of it. Essentially you need a brush for every stage of application (Foundation, concealer, blush, etc. ) but you want to double up in areas to make things a little easier. 

On my simplest day I can keep it to these main six tools but sometimes less!


1. Beauty Blender: If I could only have one makeup tool, this would be it! It blends my foundation seamlessly, and never leaves me looking uneven or cakey. After I’m finished applying all my makeup, I like to dampen this sponge with water or MAC Fix+ and go over top of my features with this to make sure all my products are blended smoothly and melt onto my skin. Unfortunately, I have not found an alternative to this but I have heard good things about the Real Techniques Sponge. 

Face Powder

2. Real Techniques Blush Brush: I never use this brush for blush. I use this as my all over powder brush and to set my under eye concealer because it is perfectly tapered to pick up the right amount of product and allows the product to go on evenly without looking heavy or uneven.


3. MAC 168 Large Angle Contour Brush: This is a great brush designed for powder contouring, but I also use this for bronzing and blush. The size and shape of the brush is perfect for the sides of the face and angles of where I am typically trying to concentrate color. I also use the very tip of this brush to softly apply highlighter. I like using this brush for all of these things because I think it  helps to blend one product into the next for a seamless diffused effect. 


4. Anastasia Beverly Hills Eyebrow Brush: I never go a day without using this! I like how thin the angle brush is tapered on the ends and it is obviously convenient to have the spooly on the opposite side for taming unruly hairs. I personally wouldn’t try to find an alternative to this brush because it is so fine and precise, where other angle brushes I have used tend to be too thick or lack enough control for precise placement of brow color. 

Eyes/ Concealer

5. MAC 219 Pencil Brush: Even my most basic eye looks require this brush. It smudges eyeliner perfectly and allows you to get shadow and liner close to the lash line without a mess. I also use this brush to get clean lines when applying lipstick. 

6. MAC 217 Shadow Brush: This was the very first MAC brush I ever purchased. I use it most often to blend concealer under my eyes and around my nose. This helps to alleviate creasing in those tricky areas without leaving a lot of product caked up. I of course also use this brush for applying eye shadows! Blending in my crease colors and washes of all over color is made easy with the 217. If you have no other eye brush, it should be one like this. 

With the exception of the pencil brush, I use each of these brushes everyday and have kept my travel bag light by only packing these whenever I go out of town! If you are looking to purchase a set of brushes instead of individuals, I would look for a set that has multi-tasking tools that will start you with the basics of accomplishing a full face. 

I hope this was helpful!


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