Five Must-Have Makeup Brushes For Your Cosmetic Bag

I really want to start bringing this blog back to the basics for all the girls out there that are just starting to get into makeup and experimenting as well as building up your makeup collection. For me, the most important thing to start out with is a good collection of starter brushes that will cover all my bases. For beginners, I might suggest you start out with an inexpensive drug-store brand (perhaps CVS’s Essence of Beauty) that you can abuse guilt-free for a long time before graduating to a more expensive brand like MAC.

To start with, here are five brushes I believe every girl needs to have in her cosmetic bag:

Eyes: Blending Brush

This is probably the number one brush I’d recommend for any girl’s makeup collection. It’s definitely a must have for contouring your eye crease / eye socket and blending out your eye shadow for that sultry smokey look. You could probably get away with using those cheap sponge applicators that come with every drug-store brand eyeshadow palette (which I would never actually recommend), as long as you finished up with a Blending Brush to get rid of any harsh lines and soften up your look.

Eyes: Small Precision Angle Brush

This versatile brush is essential for filling in your brows or lining your eyes with powder, cream, or gel products, and will also save you money from buying eye liner or brow filling powders because you can just as easily use the eye-shadow that you already have. I definitely tend to use black shadow as my eye liner  because it’s just easier to get that perfect winged eye line that I love so much! MAC has a couple small angle brushes, like the 266 or 263; but again – for beginners, there are definitely less expensive options out there.

Face: Kabuki/Buffer Brush

I LOVE my Kabuki Brush for all over application – it feels sooo soft on my skin and does the perfect job of flawlessly blending out my powder. When I started out using makeup, I would always use the round sponge applicators that came with my powder and I just never got that smooth porcelain look I vied for. A lot of other powder brushes would eventually feel very rough on my sensitive skin, but when I tried this brush out at the MAC counter, I instantly fell in love. This is one of the higher end MAC brushes in terms of price, but Essence of Beauty at CVS has a great Kabuki brush too – not as soft as MAC’s, and maybe wont last you as long, but definitely worth a try.

Face: Angled Contour Brush

This is a great brush for applying blush and contouring your face with bronzer. You can also use it to highlight your face too! It’s very versatile and really helps speed up your makeup routine in the morning since you can use it for all three things. My face is really round and I don’t get a lot of color in my cheeks, so I use blush, bronzer, and highlighter every morning – in fact my face is often just one big optical illusion =P.

Face: Foundation Brush

The Foundation Brush is another must-have in your makeup arsenal, especially if you wear foundation or tinted  moisturizer every day. For younger girls, I always recommend a little tinted moisturizer only on your problem areas (perhaps to cover any discoloration or redness), rather than a full face of foundation, but in either case, the foundation brush is what you’d need. Just like for my powder, I would always use sponge applicators or even my bare hands to apply foundation, but it would just get so messy at times and I never got that flawless look every girl dreams of. Your Foundation Brush will do a great job of blending the foundation into your face so that it barely looks like you’re wearing makeup at all.

[poll id=”6″]Obviously, even a beginner’s brush arsenal will be a lot bigger than whats listed in this post, but I believe these are the five most important brushes you’ll ever put to use. Again, I definitely recommend CVS’s Essence of Beauty brand if you’re looking for something inexpensive to start experimenting with – the face and eye travel kits have all the brushes I’ve listed above  and more, and they’re each only $9.99! They’ll last you a good long while, and since their so cheap, you won’t feel bad for abusing them like I did when I first starting out.

Edit: Correction, the Essence of Beauty Face and Eye Travel Kits do not include the Kabuki brush, but they do sell it separately for $9.99.

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  • Aikyrie

    December 18, 2010 at 11:59 am
    Reply

    Have you tried ELF brushes? I'm replacing all my old ones with MAC now but ELF brushes were a really good start for me. They […] Read MoreHave you tried ELF brushes? I'm replacing all my old ones with MAC now but ELF brushes were a really good start for me. They also just started selling it at Target. They're only a $1 each for the regular brand but you order the nicer ones online for a couple bucks more. Read Less

  • Jenn

    December 19, 2010 at 1:57 am
    Reply

    @Aikyrie I've heard of ELF! It's pretty popular, but I heard the quality of the brushes isn't that great. If anything, I'd say it's a […] Read More@Aikyrie I've heard of ELF! It's pretty popular, but I heard the quality of the brushes isn't that great. If anything, I'd say it's a good starting point for beginners. :) Read Less

  • Dee

    December 19, 2010 at 8:24 pm
    Reply

    This is a great guide to brushes. I'm usually confused as to what each is used for but thanks for breaking it down. Foundation, bronzing, […] Read MoreThis is a great guide to brushes. I'm usually confused as to what each is used for but thanks for breaking it down. Foundation, bronzing, and blush brushes - oh my! This is very explanatory though! :) Read Less

  • Katherine

    December 20, 2010 at 2:47 pm
    Reply

    I think this post was a great idea because most people don't even realize the damage they are doing to their face by not using […] Read MoreI think this post was a great idea because most people don't even realize the damage they are doing to their face by not using clean brushes. Brushes help with not only application (obviously) but with acne breakouts. Thanks for the advice on which brushes you think are the top. I have to agree. I also nwould add a small angled eyeliner/eyebrow brush. Read Less

    • Chrissy
      to Katherine

      December 20, 2010 at 3:15 pm
      Reply

      Hi Katherine! Thanks for the comment, I'm glad you liked it. I did include the Small Precision Angled Brush for eyeliner and brows, but maybe […] Read MoreHi Katherine! Thanks for the comment, I'm glad you liked it. I did include the Small Precision Angled Brush for eyeliner and brows, but maybe you're talking about a different brush? Read Less

  • Christina Pham

    October 15, 2011 at 2:09 am
    Reply

    I lost my blending brush last week :[ I'll have to buy a new one. I'm crippled without it!

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