Beauty Files: The 4 Makeup Brushes You Need In Your Arsenal

 In Style

One of the most frequent questions I am asked is how to pick brushes to achieve a certain look. The first thing is to ask yourself, “What am I trying to achieve? Color payoff? Do I want to blend/create a smokey eye? Do I want something very natural?”

Photo by Pawel Kadysz/ StockSnap

Photo by Pawel Kadysz/ StockSnap


The general rule of thumb is the denser the brush, the greater color payoff. The dense hairs have the strength to pack the color on. The fluffier the brush, the softer the application will be. The greatest example of this is a foundation brush verse a blush brush. Generally you do not want a streak of color on your cheeks so you use the lighter, fluffier brush. With foundation, you usually want more coverage than the blush, so you choose the firmer brush. Here is a rundown of a few favorites:

1/ The Small Angled Brush: This dense brush is great for gel eyeliner. The angle allows for a flawless cat eye. If wanting something more natural, you can use the brush to create a softer eyeliner made of shadow instead of a pencil look. Last but not least, I love using this brush to naturally fill in the brow. The fine line it creates mimics your natural brow hairs perfectly.

2/ The Soft Eye Shadow Brush: This brush is a great in-between. It’s dense to pack color in, but still soft around the edges to avoid harsh lines, and it’s great in a time crunch.

3/ The Blender Brush: As soft as a baby’s bottom, these brushes gently blend your crease for that natural look, or can blend the darker lid color into your highlighter for that sultry smokey eye.

4/ The Medium Natural and Synthetic Blend Brush: If wanting to cut down on brushes while traveling, this brush is a great foundation + blush brush combined. The natural hairs blend color well (like blush) and the synthetic hairs pack color in which is great for your foundation. Apply lighter pressure on the blush by holding the brush closer to the end of the handle and allow the hairs to do all the work for you (a good tip for any blending brush).

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