Brittany Gray responds to your call with her list of the best makeup brushes and how to use them.
Let’s talk makeup brushes! I’ve had a number of lovely ladies reach out recently to ask about brushes, which are the best to use for your eyes, your face, for contouring and everything in between. So I’ve compiled a list of a few of my favourites, which I consider to be some of the best makeup brushes on the market, and how to use them!
First and foremost, when it comes to applying your foundation there are a couple of directions that you can go to get the best results. In my opinion, your fingers are the number one tool when it comes to preparing your foundation for application. Why, you may ask? Your fingers are natural makeup warmers! The body heat in your fingertips allows for you to really blend your makeup on the back of your hand to prep for application in a way that brushes cannot. If, on the other hand, you have acne prone skin or acne scarring, I’d recommend using a trusty Beauty Blender. The Beauty Blender is one of my absolute favourite tools to use. Don’t use it dry though, it won’t work! Run the blender under water, soak it and ring it out and then start applying your foundation on your skin in a dabbing motion. The VIP Rouge Brush from Sephora is another fabulous tool. It’s their Pro Mini Flawless Airbrush Brush. I use these brushes, I have two, on my clients often, and they really allow the foundation to blend into the skin in a way that gives it that awesome airbrushed look. The other brush I love is a foundation brush for stippling from Sephora. It is more of a dome shape and is great if you prefer to stipple your foundation onto your skin. So, in order of my favourite tools and ways to apply foundation, number one would be with the Beauty Blender, two would be fingertips and palms of the hand to blend and three are the Pro Mini Flawless Airbrush followed by the Large Domed Stippling Brush.
Contour and Structure
Contouring is a really terrific beauty trick that I use on all of my clients, and often on myself as well. It really helps complete that full glam look, and if you’re all about it, you need the right tools! More often than not I take my brushes and dip them into the contour stick and then apply the product, as opposed to creating the lines on my face with the stick first. Just not my style. But when I’m contouring I like to use the Morphe G40 Brush, I’ll admit it’s probably my all time favourite contour brush. Having said that, there are a few others that are also comparable. Real Techniques has a couple of great brushes. The pink brush is best for petite faces as it’s a smaller brush as a whole, if you have a fuller face, go for the brush with the gold coloured handle. They’re both excellent for blending out contour.
Cream highlighting and creating more structure is best done with Mac’s 197S Brush. If you like the look of baking but don’t like using sponges, using this brush dampened with a little bit of Mac’s Fix+, then patting in your loose powder under the eye and underneath your contour will give you that perfect, flawless finish.
If you ever want to work with nose contouring, the Luxie 182 Nose Perfector nose contouring brush is perfect. One side of the brush is meant to help you create the structure, that is to say the lines you will create on your nose to contour, and the other side is used to blend it out.
Setting and Blush
Let’s talk setting the face and applying blush. There are a few brushes that absolutely stand out for me. Nars #10 Powder Brush is a beautiful brush that has a perfect shape, disperses the product really nicely and can be used for blush, bronzer and setting powder. It’s a real multi-purpose brush. The Morphe M509 and Mac 187 also really stand out. They’re incredible for applying blush and your final touches of bronzer. I’m not a huge fan of dense brushes, these two are extremely fluffy and don’t over disperse the product so they allow me the option to build the product as I go.
The Morphe R7 is a great powder brush if you’re looking to loosely apply powder or bronzer all over the face.
Applying highlight is one of my favourite things to do when I apply makeup to anyone. So I couldn’t choose just one brush! But I suppose if I had to, I’d choose the Inglot 4SS as it does stand out from the crown a little to me. This brush is incredible for hitting the top of the cheekbones with that highlight colour. It has to be the perfect size, not too small so as to disperse too much and make it look like a line, but not too wide that it goes over the blush. You can also use this brush to apply your setting powder to really get under the eyes. The Morphe M501, Morphe R31 and Morphe M438 are all excellent brushes for detailed work and for highlighting. Choose any of them and you won’t be disappointed.
When it comes to eyeshadow from day to day, my go-to is bronzer. The Marc Jacobs 102 Tantric applied with a domed brush in the crease of the eye really brings life to your look and adds that bright eyed feel. I would suggest having a few options when it comes to brushes for eyeshadow to assist you with the different application placement on your eyes. The Dual Fiber Brush by Mac, for example, is excellent for dispersing the transition colour between your crease and brow or crease and lid colours. The Morphe M502 would be the other brush I’d recommend for eyeshadow if I could only choose two, as it is great to have a blender brush and this one does the trick and does it well. You can also use it to dip into a bronzer and apply it right under your lash line for an extra soft pop.
For lid colour, using flat brushes is the way to go. Mac’s Standard Flat Definer Brush is great for packing on colour and pigments. I usually spray it with a bit of Fix+ and dip into the shadow or pigments and pat it onto the lid for that bit of a pop. I love a pop. This brush also works beautifully with cream based products and to create the highlight in the tear duct of the eye and right under that brow bone as well. Another flat brush style option is the Sigma Concealer F75. It’s made with synthetic bristles and is amazing for applying concealer and for blending it out wonderfully.
Brow brushes are generally used for powder products, and I do love using Anastasia’s Brow Powders with their Dual-Ended Angle Brush. It has an angled brush on one end and a little spoolie on the other. It’s a great brush and product combo to give that lovely arch and disperse the colour evenly through the brows.
A small pointer brush needs to be in your makeup kit arsenal if you’re looking to create that definition along your lash line. I usually use a brown or black colour and dust it along my lash line to create that beautiful, blown out eye liner look that doesn’t give that straight, hard line that a liquid liner would create. Morphe M515 is the best brush for that gorgeous look. If a clearer liner look is what you’re after, just use an angle brush like the Morphe brand’s to dip in and apply.
That is the roundup of my absolute favourite go-to makeup brushes and the skinny on how to use them. Don’t forget, if you have any questions give me a shout!. X
Beauty Blender // @beautyblender
Pro Mini Flawless Airbrush Brush // @sephora
Large Domed Stippling Brush // @sephora
Morphe G40 Brush // @morphecosmetics
Real Techniques // @realtechniques
Mac’s 197S Brush // @maccosmetics
Mac’s Fix+ // @maccosmetics
Luxie 182 Nose Perfector // @luxiebeauty
Nars #10 Powder Brush
Morphe M509 // @morphecosmetics
Mac 187 // @maccosmetics
Morphe R7 // @morphecosmetics
Morphe M501 // @morphecosmetics
Morphe R31 // @morphecosmetics
Morphe M438 // @morphecosmetics
Marc Jacobs 102 Tantric // @marcjacobsbeauty
Dual Fiber Brush by Mac // @maccosmetics
Mac’s Standard Flat Definer Brush // @maccosmetics
Sigma Concealer F75 // @sigmabeauty
Anastasia’s Brow Powders // @anastasiabeverlyhills
Dual-Ended Angle Brush // @anastasiabeverlyhills
Morphe M515 // @morphecosmetics
Morphe Angle Brush // @morphecosmetics