The best makeup brushes for every task in 2021, from foundation to blush

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When it comes to finding the best makeup brushes, consumers are spoiled for choice. Thanks to the internet and the plethora of beauty companies out there, there are thousands of options out there. All of this variety can be overwhelming, but luckily, experts can demystify the process. Here is a guide to everything you ever wanted to know about makeup brushes, from tools every beginner should try out, to how to clean and maintain your investments.

The perfect starter kit

Unless you’re a dedicated collector, professional makeup artist, or beauty junkie, you don’t need to have a lot of brushes. According to experts, only a handful is needed. “I think there are five essentials, maybe six if you factor in a concealer brush,” says makeup artist Troy Surratt, whose eponymous brand includes a range of ultra-luxurious hand-made brushes in Kumano, Japan. The trick to keeping it simple is to find multitasking tools. “A good starter kit would be a medium density facial brush that can be used in multiple ways,” explains Surratt. “It can be used for powder, bronzer, powder foundation and even blush. ”

After investing in a powder brush, Surrat offers a small face brush and three dedicated to eye shadow. “You will need a fluffy brush that can apply color to the lid, a smaller one that looks more like a pencil shape, then a domed brush to add color to the crease of the eye or definition. at the lash line. »The last essential? A well-designed lip brush to perfect your pout. “Some people are good at just sliding their lipstick straight out of the tube, but the lip brush gives you that extra precision,” says Surratt. “You can create a sharper lip line and blend the color into the texture of the lips, resulting in an indelible, longer look. ”

Kristen Kjaer Weis Essentials Beauty Pouch

Luxie Glitter Set

Luxie Glitter Set

Natural vs synthetic

One of the most important things to consider when choosing a makeup brush is the quality and type of hair it is made of. Many natural options include the Saikoho goat, gray squirrel, silver fox, and even Kolinsky sable. Each type of material has a different purpose and varies in softness.

Increasingly, brands are using synthetic materials like Taklon and Micro Crystal fiber that mimic the functionality of natural hair. “The technology behind synthetic hairbrushes is so amazing [and] I can achieve a beautiful and refined application on myself and my clients by working with them, ”says Gucci Westman, whose Westman Atelier range is handcrafted by Japanese artisans using cruelty-free nylon bristles and wood. Birch from an FSC certified forest. “Synthetic brush fibers can be shaped more like virgin hair [which] gives a soft touch and a smooth application. Quality can mimic natural ones so closely that it can be difficult to tell the slightest difference on the skin.

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