Brushes or Sponges? Fluffy or Dense? Silicone or Porous? Electric or Manual? Authentic or Synthetic?? With the makeup world making a boom in this era, more and more innovations have been sprouting out at every corner. It’s just so hard to keep track of it all! Should I stick to the classic beauty blender or try out this new state-of-the-art electric blending face brush? The options are wild, my dears! Things you never even thought of using for curling eyelashes or getting a winged liner on fleek are all the rage on Instagram too! Remember that spoon on the eyelid trick? Or that fork for liner hack? Don’t be shy, I know you’ve tried it! But, not all these tools/ hacks are as efficient as you think or give you the results you need. Here’s a list of makeup tools that will help those starting out or just those that find all them brush kits unnecessary!
Let me begin by saying that I am only including the most versatile of tools in the bunch. Thus, a smaller collection for those just starting out or who want a smaller stash of makeup tools. I will sequence this blog based on how I do my personal makeup routine on the daily. First, I start off with my base face products: foundation and concealer. I would then either move on to a cream or powder-based blush, bronzer, and highlighter. After which, I’d set everything in place with powder. Next up would be my brows and eyes. Then, for the finishing touch, lips and setting spray. Although, I won’t be including any makeup tools for this last part.
Makeup tools for the face
1. Beauty Blender/ Face Sponge
Not everyone believes in the magic of a damp sponge. I, for one, consider this as my holy grail beauty tool (for anything related to base face makeup). It is the most versatile of the bunch as it can apply any formula of makeup from liquids, creams, gels and even powders! I use it every time I do my makeup since I’m too lazy to wash a bunch of brushes for every section of my face. Just turn the sponge around and there you go: a clean makeup tool! They also come in different shapes and sizes depending on your need. Smaller sponges can reach nooks and crannies under the eyes, while sponges with a flat side are good for baking.
A sponge applies and blends product onto the skin leaving a nice light, blended, and buildable makeup base. The softer it is, the more control you can get in how heavy you want the application to be. This is contrary to a more full-coverage application from a dense brush. It does so by soaking up some of the product into its pores for a more controlled stamping application. It is also the same with powder. Since the sponge is damp, it can lessen the “powdery” look in case you go powder happy.
Pro tip: I like using my slightly damped and “foundation-ed” sponge to correct any mishaps in applying too much bronzer or blush. While a brush can diffuse the pigments atop your skin, a sponge can soak up the extra product.
2. Stippling Brush
In my experience, a stippling brush is the brush counterpart of a damp sponge. It can also apply any formula of makeup leaving an air-brush blended finish. This brush is just as versatile too! You can create a fan brush by flattening its bristles with two clips for highlighter and contour application. You can use it to diffuse setting powder, blush and bronzer. You can even use it to apply your liquid foundations! This brush, however, will leave you with medium coverage, heavier than a beauty blender but lighter than a denser brush. It makes use of finer, synthetic bristles to give you an even complexion.
Note: Honestly, these are the only two makeup tools for the face I really use. You can always add some brushes specific to each part of your face like a fluffy brush for the apples of your cheeks, or a concealer brush for under the eyes. This will prevent the makeup from mixing. It is also an option to choose denser brushes for full-coverage looks, but you can always just layer up the product with these star-out tools.
Makeup Tools for Eyes and Brows
(Ok, so I probably saved most of my budget on these two parts of the face. Although eye makeup isn’t always applied on the daily and there are such things as “eyebrow pencils,” having these makeup tools for the eye area can take you from start-out to expert with just a flick o’ that wrist! Keep in mind also that these brushes come in varying names, which is why I’ve included pictures for you to be guided accordingly.)
1. Flat Eyeshadow Shader Brush (Square and Domed)
Now, I bet you’re wondering why I’ve included two of the same type brush but with a different shaped tip. These two brushes are actually the most versatile of this bunch as they are not only used to apply eyeshadow. They were made mainly to pack on pigment on the eye for an overall color. The squared top brush can be used for two other purposes: (1) to diffuse shadows or smudge eyeliner on the lower lash line, and (2) to fill in the brows. I use it specifically to fill in my brows with pot eyebrow products or brow powders. Some also use it as a brow blending tool to achieve a more natural set of brows! The domed top brush is what I use for adding concealer on my lids to create a cut crease or sometimes to blend out concealer on my actual under eyes.
2. Eyebrow Spoolie
You can usually find this brush on the opposite end of an eyebrow pencil or paired with an angled brush. This mascara-wand looking brush is used for brushing your brow hairs in place before filling in the brows or blending away harsh lines after brow product application.
3. Eyeshadow Blending Brush
This is one of the more important brushes and it is good to have spares of this type of brush in your kit. A good blending brush should be made of natural bristles, fluffy enough for seamless blending but dense enough for better control. You can blend eyeshadows together by dipping into a lighter shade then buffing it above a darker shade, or it can be used clean, to fade out harsh lines and darker pigments already on the lids. Sometimes I use this to add a bit of contour to my nose too!
4. Domed Eyeshadow Brush
These smaller brushes call for more precise eyeshadow applications. Use this if you want to deepen your crease or the outer edges of your lids to add some depth to your look. You can also use this to add an inner corner highlight!
5. Crease Brush
This brush is used, as its name implies, for the crease! They are relatively flat and densely packed towards the neck of the brush, then flare out and taper at the tip. Crease brushes are mainly used to add and buff shadows on the creases of your eyes. First, I’d apply the shadow with my brush horizontally positioned using windshield wiper motions to start out the transition shade. Then, with the brush vertically positioned, I’d blend the shadow upwards. I would also follow up with more blending using a clean blending brush to help the pigments fade into my skin.
Pro tip: As a general rule, purchase natural bristled brushes for powder products, and synthetic bristled brushes for liquid and cream products.
6. Angled Eyeliner Brush
Some people prefer an eyeliner brush that is slightly bent with a thin tip. It will always depend on your preference, but I would rather use this brush. I find that the thicker and tightly packed a flat brush is, the more guided you will be in creating the shapes you want. As compared to a thinner and pointier brush, the shape and density of this brush in itself helps guide your eyeliner application, managing straighter and more even lines. Its diagonal tip specifically helps me draw on wings and cat-eyes so sharp it could cut you! It is a good brush for beginners.
7. Eyelash Curler
This is a must-have tool for those who were with blessed with short, stick-straight, uncooperative eyelashes, like me. Not just any curler can bend these babies! If you’d rather not spend 50% of your time trying to apply false eyelashes or spend a boat-load of cash at a salon, then invest on a good eyelash curler. There are certain brands that most people swear by, but as long as its curve matches your own lash line contours, the pads are soft, and you have a nice grip on the tool, you’re good to go!
Pro tip: Adding some heat with a blow dryer before usage could keep the curl longer!
8. Metal Eyelash Comb
Not everyone is aware of the existence of this tool nor its amazing effect. The most I used to do to avoid clumpy eyelashes was to wipe off the excess mascara on a tissue or the side of the mascara tube. Spider lashes aren’t always that great hun! Ever since I purchased this baby, my lashes never looked this natural and full. It distributes the mascara evenly, all the way from the base to the tips, and removes all the unnecessary clumping and extra product you don’t want.
BONUS: Q tips and Petroleum Jelly
You probably already have these two things lying about in your home somewhere. They are great tools to have around while doing your makeup. This is most useful for eyeliner mishaps! Just add a little jelly onto one end of the q tip and apply it on the area that needs fixing. With the dry end of the q tip, rub away the jelly and your mess will follow through. A little tweaking your makeup here and there, and presto! Problem solved.
That’s your eleven makeup tools essentially detailed for you to begin with. As you explore more in your makeup journey, you will discover more of these tools to add on your basic list.
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