Essential Makeup Brushes

This was supposed to be a Friday Fives post; however I'm lame and didn't have this posted timely. Friday evening I planned on writing this up and posting it, but I ended up taking too long getting ready for a soiree and ran out of time. My friends and I (finally) celebrated Galentine's Day by going to dinner and then moving the party back to someone's place. I ended up getting home into the early morning, attempted to write this up, but threw in the towel. And then yesterday I was busy, got home late, took pictures; however the quality wasn't great at all due to artificial light. Me being me, I wasn't going to stand for cruddy photos, so I took more today. At last this is up. Better late than never! 


When I first started wearing makeup and really becoming interested in it, brushes were one of those things that I avoided. There are a bazillion different kinds of brushes out there, so I wasn't sure where to begin. It probably would've been easier to figure that scene out if there weren't multiple shapes and densities of brush that could be used on the same part of the face. I found it overwhelming. 

Then I began reading up on makeup brushes and tools and learning the significance of each one. Frankly I still think there are too many; especially since I've been able to weed through many and narrow them down to five essential that will result in a quality finish for a full face look. (concealer, foundation, powder, brows, shadow, liner, mascara- the works)

Kabuki or Powder
Kabuki brushes and powder brushes are interchangeable. I happen to prefer kabuki brushes because they're denser. Due to kabuki brushes' bristles being bound tighter together, you'll end up having that flawless finish of powder. The powder will be more even on the skin, which not only looks nice but will help your foundation stay put, too. A powder brush is better if you desire that light dusting. I happen to need that extra coverage hence why I opt for a kabuki brush. Whether you prefer a fluffy powder brush or kabuki brush, having one specifically for this product is necessary in order to get that picture-perfect powder look.  

Real Techniques
This is my holy grail face brush. Not too long ago I brought this into my collection and am very glad I did. I've found this to be the best brush to put liquid foundation on with. The finish is better than what fingers or your standard rounded foundation brush could manage. If you're like me and put on concealer first, this will blend the foundation and concealer together nicely. This brush will leave you with a light finish; however where you need that extra coverage just stipple on the product and blend a bit. Any beauty lover should invest in a handy tool like this. 

Real Techniques
This is one of those tools that can be used for various aspects of the application process. People use it for foundation, bronzer, and blush. My personal favourite is to use this with blush. It provides an even coverage, and makes the blush look very natural and seamless on foundation. Foundation wise, this provides a great coverage because the bristles are so close together. Multipurpose tools are always the best to purchase!   

Beauty brands try to sell the idea that we all need a brush for each section of our eye: one for inner corner, lid, outer 1/3, crease, blending, etc. While it's nice to have that option, it's not necessary. For years I used one or two eyeshadow brushes and still ended up with a nice finish. You may have to wipe off shadow in between sections, but as long as you apply from light to dark then that shouldn't be too much of a hassle.

Small Angled
Once again, we have another multipurpose brush! This little guy is great for brows and liner. It is perfect for when needing that precision. With the right product, this brush works wonders!


If this wasn't written up as a Friday Fives post, I'd also say a contour/blush brush is quite handy to have. *cough cough* The pro to using one of these over a buffing brush or denser brush is that the long bristles will definitely leave foundation and powder undisturbed. Plus, it leaves a little bit of product on the skin at a time, thus making it more buildable.

Is it nice to have a variety of brushes, yes. But is it necessary, no. If you're trying to figure out brushes, or even aren't willing to waste money on items you don't need, hopefully this has been a helpful guide. Or for those who have quite the collection, like myself, hopefully this has brought a bit of perspective as to what you actually need. OR if you're going on vacation and want to pack on the lighter side, this is a great list for must-have brushes to bring! (I'm leaving for a short vacation tomorrow and am definitely taking these!)

What brushes do you find are essential when creating a full makeup look?



  1. Loved this post, I love real techniques, but don't have the stippling brush so I I'll have to check it out! Thank you :)


  2. I use a paint brush for eyeshadow! It's really the best I've ever used :D and it was cheap!
    Nice post honey!

    xoxo Colli // tobeyoutiful

  3. What do you use to clean your brushes? I'm struggling to find something that works well to clean them. Great post, I loe the buff ing brush but definitely need that stippling brush in my life!

  4. I also love thse brushes by Real Techniques. I actually have a LOT of brushes mainly I use them to create eye looks but in the end you don't need that much really. To this list I'll add a buffing brush to create a soft smokey eye :)

    I've just started a giveaway on my blog. Come and join it! Is really easy to participate! xx

  5. Love Real Techniques brushes!

  6. I really need to try out the real techniques makeup brushes!

  7. Hello, sweetheart!
    Nice to meet you!
    I just followed your blog via Google Friend Connect and I hope that you follow back!
    Have fun!
    Joanna (From Syros2J’s)

  8. I love Real Techniques!

    I am following you on gfc, would you like to follow me back so we can stay in touch?

  9. Just love makeup and brushes! Great post!


  10. Loved this post! I've just nominated you for the Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award! Check out my post for more details :) x


  11. Lovely post, I really need to invest in some new brushes, I'll have to pop back over here when I do :)

    I've nominated you for the versatile blogger award! good luck, the rules and all the details are up on my blog

    Love & Hugs
    Frances xoxo

  12. I LOVE the Real Techniques brushes, and recommend them to everyone!
    I love your blogs! Thankyou

  13. Great post :)
    I've also nominated you for the This or That tag. All the details are over on my blog!

    Natalie Ann xo // Petal Poppet Blogs ♥