Your Say: Do you need expensive makeup brushes?

by Paris B on · 85 comments

in Brushes etc.,Discussions,Tips

I haven’t been buying a lot of makeup lately (I’ve developed a bit of an unhealthy obsession with other things like skincare and gasp! scented candles) but there’s one thing I’ve been indulging in recently and that’s makeup brushes. Not just any makeup brush, I recently took the plunge and went for a couple of high end, pricey makeup brushes notably from Tom Ford, Hakuhodo and Wayne Goss.

So, I was talking about it online to my friend who’s my sounding board and we got round to discussing these really expensive makeup brushes. I have started seeing a lot of these luxury makeup brushes appear in people’s blogs and Instagram feeds and how everyone goes “OMG you NEED this! It’s perfect for applying blush/eyeshadow/powder” blah blah and I can’t help feeling that it’s not all true, because statements like this sway people and make them irrational.

makeup brushes Your Say: Do you need expensive makeup brushes?

Despite the fact I do own some luxury brushes and I enjoy using them, I don’t think anyone actually really “needs” these brushes at all. In fact, while I agree that you need good makeup brushes, I don’t agree that you have to sell a kidney to buy that Hakuhodo or Tom Ford brush, no matter how amazing it is, because you could quite easily get similar results from a more affordable brand, but a GOOD brush.

I think it’ll be interesting to hear your thoughts on this, or if you have compared a luxury brush to a regular one and think that my statement isn’t quite accurate icon smile Your Say: Do you need expensive makeup brushes?

I liken these luxury makeup brushes to a luxury bag. We all want one. We lust after one. We know that for the most part, they are well made, are made of better quality material and will last longer with regular use.

Yet, we also know that a good quality more affordably priced bag, can serve the same function just as well. Think LV Neverfull vs Michael Kors Jet Set tote icon razz Your Say: Do you need expensive makeup brushes?

Ditto makeup brushes. What you want is a good makeup brush because a good brush can actually make your makeup look better. For example, a good blush brush will ensure that the amount of product that is picked up is sufficient, that it will deposit it on your skin without streaking and that it will be comfortable to blend on your skin, without scratching it to bits. You get good blush brushes in the expensive brush category – Lunasol, Tom Ford, Hakuhodo – but you can also find a good brush in the inexpensive brush category – The Body Shop, Real Techniques, Ecotools – are a few that come to mind.

makeup brushes2 Your Say: Do you need expensive makeup brushes?

Here are some tips I have for getting good brushes without burning a hole in your wallet.

Brush Kits or Travel sets

When I first started using makeup brushes, I got myself a travel set from one of the MAC holiday collections. It was pricey, but I got a set of brushes that I could practice with. They aren’t the best quality brushes around, but they could cost as much as one full size MAC brush so I think it’s a good start. Incidentally, despite MAC not being my favourite cosmetics brand, I do have a soft spot for some of their brushes and still use a couple to this day. The MAC239 gets a lot of use and abuse daily.

Later, when I wanted to get into Shu Uemura brushes (also very high quality and pricey brushes) I too got a travel kit from one of their holiday collections. It allowed me to get the feel and to understand how much more superior their brushes were to many others in the market, and I got them at a more affordable price tag. To be fair, the quality in the kits aren’t as good as the full sized ones, but honestly, can you tell if you aren’t an expert makeup artist? I couldn’t and I still can’t because the results I get are similar.

Synthetic bristle brushes are usually more affordable

If you want something affordable, then my suggestion will be to look into synthetic brushes. Real Techniques have good brush sets and their singular brushes aren’t too pricey either. Ecotools too does fairly good brushes (I still use their blush brush) as does The Body Shop and Sigma synthetic brushes are impressive too for the small price tag.

Sometimes, look into the indie mineral makeup brands. They usually have very affordable brush kits that do a good job, or singular brushes that similarly do a good job. I’m not much of a fan of mineral makeup, but the one good thing that came out of the trend were the affordable, good quality synthetic brushes.

makeup brushes3 Your Say: Do you need expensive makeup brushes?

The other upside about synthetic brushes is their softness and the fact that they are definitely cruelty free since they are made from man-made fibres, and if you have religious concerns then synthetic brushes are the safest because no animals are involved. Personally, I’m not so into synthetic brushes, as I explained here, so I don’t use many, but if you use a lot of cream based products then they are your best friend because they will clean out easily and dry quickly. One exception to my no-synthetic-brush rule is the white handled Tony & Tina eye brushes you see in the picture above. They are excellent bar none and cost me just US$10 for a set. Well, a little more because I had it shipped to me but they are great (and discontinued :P).

Expect to pay more for good quality natural hair brushes

A common thing you will notice among luxury makeup brushes is that they are usually natural hair brushes. After playing around with brushes (I do have a lot of them, but I just don’t talk much about them :P) I have come to learn that for the most part, for natural hair brushes, those that come from Japan are superior to most that come from China, and they are also more expensive.

This is true in the quality of the brush, the softness, the density and the make. A good natural hair brush feels softer and more delicate against the skin. One that isn’t as high quality can feel rough and irritate the skin. So, if natural hair makeup brushes are your thing then yes, expensive brushes can quite often mean a better makeup brush because it is just better made. However, we are also starting to see many little Japanese makeup brush companies appear on the scene. Hakuhodo and Chikuhodo are 2 I know of, that sell their own brushes as well as make them for many luxury brands. Even then, their own name brushes aren’t cheap even if they could be cheaper than their branded counterparts. But the quality is impressive.

That said, you don’t NEED that Tom Ford Bronzer brush that costs US$115 (even if it’s really nice to use) or that US$100 Hakuhodo brush. While pricey, the Lunasol Cheek Brush N that I love (and that I know many of you love too) does a good enough job for RM150 (US$47). I was going to say try the Shu Uemura #20 blush brush but I think it could be pricier than the Lunasol (I can’t remember the prices so if someone wants to help out, please do!). But it is also for this reason of softness and quality that I couldn’t like natural hair brushes from brands like Sigma or even MAC because they really grated against my skin for face brushes.

Can I use a paint brush for makeup instead?

Logically and technically you can. Practically I wouldn’t because that’s just me. Besides, as any painter can tell you, a good quality paint brush can be very pricey too, and a cheap one isn’t always good. I’d stick to brushes meant for makeup.

Are you into makeup brushes? Do you think expensive makeup brushes are necessary?

As I said above, I think luxury makeup brushes are like luxury bags. They aren’t necessary. We all want one but the reality is that not all of us can afford one off hand; and whilst it’s nice to talk about saving up for one, if you ask me, I’d rather eat and enjoy myself or travel, while using a good quality but more affordable makeup brush. Truth to tell, few of us general users can tell the difference in results icon wink Your Say: Do you need expensive makeup brushes? But if you can afford it then I think some brushes are very splurge-worthy!

Paris B

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[ 85 comments… read them below or join the discussion ]

Sze Ling October 22, 2013 at 8:41 am

Ditto. Expensive brushes are not a need. Please don’t go charging your credit for these if you absolutely do not have the budget for it.

Plus, expensive does not equal good. I’ve collected way too many brushes over the years, and have learned a few lessons or two about buying brushes just cause so-and-so was raving about it. Some of them are just sitting in my brush roll right now. Sad.

If you’re jus starting out, please do check out Real Techniques. Not only are their brushes affordable, they’re pretty good too. :)

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:00 pm

That budgetary tip is applicable to everything! I agree that a nice brush is the ideal, but seriously, how many of us are expert enough to tell the difference? So long as we get something that applies product well, does not irritate our skin and fits our budget, whatever that budget might be, that’s enough. And yes, Real Techniques brushes are a good place to start. I haven’t tried their eye brushes, but the face brushes get the thumbs up from me!

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Nicci October 22, 2013 at 8:58 am

It totally agree that you can get similar results with inexpensive brushes! But I think it also depends a lot on what your skin is willing to put up with. For the longest time I had trouble blending eyeshadow because my brushes made my eyelids red and sore; I didn’t even realize that wasn’t supposed to happen until I got a natural hair brush with un-cut hair tips. It really boils down to figuring out what you need/want- sometimes that’s functionality at a low cost, sometimes it’s a brush that’s more luxurious to use – and then doing the research to figure out what brushes will give you that.
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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:02 pm

Thanks for weighing in, Nicci and I do know how you feel because I too used to have my skin irritated by cut brush bristles and didn’t understand why a pricier brush would actually work better. Now I do :) That said, there are good quality synthetic brushes that don’t irritate the skin either and those are generally more affordable for many. Still, it’s nice to have some nice luxury brushes, if only because they feel so amazing on skin :)

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Nicole's Mirror October 22, 2013 at 9:11 am

NO!!! Because affordable brands carry excellent brushes! One of my newly found affordable brush brand is Zoeva! You should really try that one out! Quality is very similar to Sigma but half the price! Luxola carries them :) but occasionally they will be out of stock, which is sad!

AND YES! Women occasionally do need expensive brushes :P I present myself expensive brushes or other makeup tools occasionally as a reward! hehehe
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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:03 pm

Thanks for the Zoeva rec, Nicole :) I am a little wary about Sigma brushes because I didn’t like their natural hair ones (too scratchy for me) but their synthetic brushes are really quite good. Will take a look at Zoeva. Not a fan of shopping at Luxola but we’ll see ;)

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Brianna October 22, 2013 at 9:26 am

Definitely not needed. Even my Mac brushes that I own, I bought in a holiday set so that they were more affordable. Some of my favorite eyeshadow brushes I own are some no-name brand I got like 10 years ago and they’re still going strong. My other favorites are the Real Techniques brushes which are also very affordable. As long as they function and perform as they should, then I don’t care if they’re luxury or not.

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:04 pm

I agree about Real Techniques brushes. Affordable and effective. Nothing much else to ask for eh? ;)

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Ting October 22, 2013 at 9:29 am

I am not crazy about them, but one needs to have core brushes and call it a day. Whatever the price tag, a good quality brush (not necessarily expensive) does make a difference to the look you want to create. Also, a good quality ones also last through many cycles of repeat cleaning – a long term saving in my opinion! :)

For newbies in makeup brushes, get Real Techniques and period. :p

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:05 pm

Haha I wish I could call it a day, Ting :P I love brushes so I’m always looking for something else that is as good to fit the bill. Had to bite the bullet and see what was so great about some expensive brands but now that my curiousity is slaked, I can turn to others that may not be as pricey, but may do as good a job :D Also, agree with you about RT brushes. Haven’t tried the eye ones, but the face ones are very good!

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Lily
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 9:48 am

No, it is not a “NEED”, that’s for sure. Luxury brushes are nice to have. I wouldn’t recommend MAC travel brushes though. The face brushes are really scratchy, and for the price, I’d rather spend on Real Techniques or Ecotools brush sets. However, for face brushes especially, I can really feel the difference on my face and in application.
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Lily
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 9:50 am

And with the last line, I meant I could really feel the difference between a higher end and a cheaper one with decent quality. But you knew that :-P

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:07 pm

And yeah, I got that :)

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:07 pm

MAC Travel kits used to be quite good back in the day. They’ve since really deteriorated quite drastically so you’re right. I wouldn’t recommend them anymore but back in the day, they were comparable :) I would agree that RT brushes are for the moment, the best budget brushes out there. Haven’t tried the eye ones, but the face ones are amazing for the price! Helps that they are synthetic I guess. Keeps the cost down. Harder to keep costs down with natural hair because quality really shows in that one!

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Nellz October 22, 2013 at 9:54 am

Hehe what a timing, i was just cleaning my brushes over the weekend when this thought came to me. My best eyeshadow brush cost me just RM1.30! And it does the job pretty well :) So really, brushes do not need to be costly..

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:09 pm

Wow RM1.30! That’s certainly value for money Nellz :D So long as it works for us, that’s the important thing! No point having an expensive brush that we don’t have the skills for eh?

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xin
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 10:18 am

Lol! I definitely think that it’s more of a want than need, there’s bound to be a cheaper alternative for similar results. With that said, one day I will also be getting the real hair brush :p also agreed that good quality paint brush that offers precision, can cost more than a body shop blush brush!
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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:12 pm

Yep, everything has a cheaper alternative. We just have to work within our budget :) Which real hair brush do you mean? For painting or makeup? :P

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Sam Bear October 22, 2013 at 10:21 am

Hmm I’d love to get my hands on some nice high end brushes but it’s exactly like you say! They’re just like branded bags and while nice to have are not really necessary since there are cheaper and just as good options out there.
I can’t quite justify splurging on nice brushes since most of my make up routine doesn’t involve a brush!
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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:13 pm

Haha now having a brush would be a luxury then! ;) I used to be all about using fingers too and I still do, when rushed. I got a bit mad when I started getting into brushes and while I agree that a nice brush can last a long time and feel really nice, ultimately it comes down to how much use we get out of it. Cost per wear :D

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LeGeeque October 22, 2013 at 10:47 am

I have crazy-ass expensive ones (for my budget) down to the manicare one I picked up on sale for $4.95. The expensive one while nice, is not a miracle tool. I don’t instantly turn into Lisa Eldridge just because I’m waving it around. It feels FANTASTIC against my skin and yes, it’s a price paid but my Lunasol one a fraction of the price feels good as well and does the job too! Is it a must-have? Nope. Is it a nice-to-have? Yea, but you don’t have to own every single one in the collection. Most of us have limited funds and there’s almost an unlimited supply of brushes out there fighting for our pennies. Pick and choose your tools ;)
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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:17 pm

“I don’t instantly turn into Lisa Eldridge just because I’m waving it around” Bingo! Ultimately, as with everything, it will come down to our skills and how well we know how to get the best out of the brush. The Lunasol one is fantastic right? I told you so ;) While I’d say it’s affordable next to Tom Ford, it is still pretty pricey, so affordability is very subjective.

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Applegal October 22, 2013 at 10:50 am

The brush is just the tool. It’s not going to make me look like Fan Bingbing or Angelina Jolie with a swipe. It’s the skill. So long as the bristles don’t come off easily, are soft and pick up colour right, I’m fine. I don’t buy dirt cheap brushes (because quality can be an issue), but I don’t think expensive brushes are necessary.

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:18 pm

I think that’s called a magic wand, Applegal hehe… Well said! I agree with you too about dirt cheap brushes. To me, they are cheap for a reason! Also if they are natural hair, gosh, it’s like taking sandpaper to the skin :P That said, I think “expensive” is also relative, isn’t it? :)

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Tracy October 22, 2013 at 11:08 am

My brushes are mainly MAC, Real Techniques, and a few mineral makeup ones, and a couple of MUFE ones. I’d LOVE to try some of the expensive luxury brands, but the ones that I have do the job just fine. I agree with Applegal up there who said it’s also skill. Heck, a lot of times I’ll just use my fingers with eyeshadows. And if I use a cream blush, fingers. Foundation, fingers. Who needs brushes LOL?:P I’m such a brat hahaha. You can have the most expensive brushes around, but if you don’t know how to use them and don’t blend enough…well…you know. Why? But I am REALLY interested in seeing your review on those Wayne Goss brushes! The price for the set wasn’t really outrageous, and I hear they’re pretty decent.
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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:20 pm

MUFE brushes! I’ve been wanting to try them. I hear lots of good things about them! In a pinch, I use fingers too. Quick and easy right? Just because you have an expensive brush doesn’t make you a makeup artist. I think that’s the take away from this. It’s so easy to think that owning a pricey brush will make your makeup look better but as you said, if you don’t blend it out, hello clown cheeks! I didn’t pick up the full set, just a couple of brushes. Off hand, I really like the tiny #8 brush for tightlining. Seriously amazing and not too expensive either! :D

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gin October 22, 2013 at 11:34 am

i save up and splurge on “semi expensive” ones like rmk and lunasol because i think it is worth the money. then i stop buying any.
in my opinion, i actually get to save some money this way instead of buying cheap brushes just because they are cheap and later dislike them.
i only have one powder brush, one blush brush two foundation brushes but i love them to bits!!!!!

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:21 pm

Good point, Gin :) I think for now, RMK and Lunasol are pretty amazing enough without having to bust your budget and go any higher. Their brushes are apparently made by very good and reputable Japanese brush makers so the quality is there :)

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Victoria October 22, 2013 at 11:43 am

I am still new to makeup brushes but I would say that expensive makeup brushes are really unnecessary because it takes skill and practice to apply makeup well. But having said that, I love the Lunasol Cheek Brush that I bought and applying blush every morning has been such a breeze. I used to struggle with blush application because I could not make my other brushes work. My Etude House blush brush seem to apply blush unevenly and I seem to over-apply blush when I used the Body Shop one. This could also be down to skill though.

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:22 pm

Yep, it will and does come down to skill although good tools help of course :) Part of the reason I prefer natural hair brushes is because they apply product more delicately. That might be why you find the TBS brush deposits product too heavily. Synthetic brushes don’t disperse product as well, based on my experience. But then, with the Lunasol, it’s about the only blush brush I can live with anyway – amazing right?

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Hanny Daforcena
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 11:45 am

One of my favorite brushes is actually a China-made one I bought from Sasa for about RM 15, it’s a flat, synthetic brush which picks up eyeshadow beautifully. Among the ones I own, the most expensive ones are from Sigma and I use them every day heh heh. I think it’s down to how you use the brushes, and how you take care of them?
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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:23 pm

Proof therefore that cheap isn’t always bad although I think that is more true for synthetic brushes than natural hair :) Sigma brushes aren’t half bad, I agree but I found their natural hair brushes were really rough. It could be me though because everyone else loves them!

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Shamim de Varax
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 12:16 pm

My favourite brushes are from real techniques, they’re soft and works great and drugstore affordable. I’d say there are some brushes worth investing in from pricier brands, I’m interesting in trying out hakuhodo for example but it’s just a matter of finding what works for you.

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:24 pm

Sounds like RT brushes get a lot of love and rightly so too! :D Hakuhodo has high end and lower end brushes too. I’ll be honest and say that barring the blush brush I got, I have not yet been wowed by their eye brushes so I’d splurge on the face brush and just stick to whatever else I’m using for the eye. Or it could be my (lack of) skill ;)

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Shamim de Varax
Twitter:
October 23, 2013 at 7:04 am

did you get the wayne goss eye brushes? did you like them? I hear they’re smaller and I’m thinking might suit my asian eyes better, am kindda lemming for the push liner lol. oh and multitasking brushes are the best. I use the RT crease brush for concealer and it’s amazing. and my favourite eye brush is from nyx which is cheap cheap cheap.

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 23, 2013 at 10:52 am

I got a couple of the Wayne Goss brushes. They come in different sizes for the eyes although I’m sure Hakuhodo does small brushes too. They were made for Japanese anyway :) So far I don’t have much to say about the brushes I got except for Brush #8 the tiny push/liner brush which I absolutely adore for tightlining. I’ve done away with liner and mascara, and only use this to tightline with a dark shadow. (I’ve stopped wearing mascara for other reasons, but this allows me to get away with it) :) I used to have a couple of NYX eye brushes. Not bad. Not quite what I wanted, but the quality wasn’t bad.

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Amanda October 22, 2013 at 12:26 pm

I was JUST thinking about this today! I don’t have a single high end brush so I couldn’t really give you my personal opinion between the difference. I’m satisfied with what I have though, so, I tend to think that a lot of the times you’re just paying for a name rather than actual quality.

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:26 pm

Being satisfied with what you have is most important, Amanda, never mind the price ;)

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Shija Rahim October 22, 2013 at 12:34 pm

I do invest for luxury brushes but I do love all my Elf Brushes too…

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:26 pm

The good thing about having some inexpensive but good brushes is that you don’t feel that heart sick when you have to travel with them because heaven knows, I don’t travel with my good brushes :P

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Jess October 22, 2013 at 4:14 pm

It’s not a neccesity but then of course if one have the extra money why not invest in good brushes if one is using it everyday & good brushes are usually expensive. I do think one need to brush on the skills first before investing in expensive brushes or else really no point.

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:28 pm

Haha true! Good skills are as important as good tools. I have to admit that a good tool does help e.g. with the Lunasol blush brush, any blush is almost fool proof on my skin. Yet, when it comes to my eye makeup, I find that not all high end brushes apply product as well as my cheaper brush. It could also be my lack of skills but then, it could also be the brush! How’s the Dior foundation treating you? ;)

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jk October 22, 2013 at 4:20 pm

For the longest ever, all my brushes are freebies – they come in the promotional festive season make up sets especially from EsteeL. Then years ago I bought some (guess now considered) inexpensive eyebrow lining/flat brushes from Red Earth. Then, it was like a luxury item. The only other 2 brushes which I ever bought which I consider (extremely) are pricey to me are the eye gel lining brush from BobbiB and in a momentary lapse (and just to make up the figures to get the freebie), a kabuki (I think) brush from Guerlain. I am no authority on brushes – just as long as they don’t scratch my face/eyelids. I did try to check out the Lunasol brush at Isetan Gardens after your review some time back (surprise surprise) but they ran out of stock (no surprise no surprise) and I had not gotten around to following up yet..
Oh.. a conclusion after the roundabout ramble, I don’t need expensive brushes. Can make do to make up.

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:31 pm

Haha You know, making that transition from freebie brushes (if you mean Estee Lauder, gosh their freebie brushes SUCK!) to a proper brush was my moment of awakening as it were. It was when I realised that a proper brush could actually make my makeup look better! I didn’t buy expensive brushes of course. Used brands like Ecotools which were great :D It’s interesting that you have that Guerlain brush. I couldn’t bring myself to buy it because it’s so scratchy (to me) but I hear it applies Meteorites well. But you know, if you really want a good blush brush, definitely get the Lunasol one. The only one you’ll ever need :D (and I need to claim some commission or something :P )

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PositivelyNice October 22, 2013 at 7:14 pm

I do! Strangely, I do not own any high-end (4 digits) bags!! I have held out for this long, maybe because the price really is that much higher. But I can afford to indulge in high-end brushes because they are still cheaper in absolute price. So I definitely LOVE my luxury brushes to bits, and feel that nothing else can replace them.

I do love the more affordable brushes for specific purposes. For example, none of my high-end brushes have come close to EcoTool’s blending brush. That is just the best at getting its job done. And none of any expensive brush has come close to my Sasa lip brush. The Real Techniques Blush Brush and Stippling Brush are also not replaceable, because they are so niche, it is so difficult to find another brush that is the same shape, softness, density, and does the job in exactly the same way.

I also like MANY of Sephora’s brushes and Bdellium Tools. All are under affordable brushes category.

Yet at the same time, Tom Ford, Estee Lauder, Hakuhodo, and Lunasol blush brushes, together with NARS Yachiyo, are equally irreplaceable for me.

Rae Morris has an awesome #10 eye brush that is pretty unique too.

ARGH, I couldn’t get my hands on Wayne Goss. T_T

PS: Haha! I am in the same situation as you right now – indulging in all these stuff that nobody sees, and never blogging about them, ever. =P Sometimes I feel bad that I am “secretly” using all that good stuff.

LOL@candles. haha. Went through one round of that. Still have some of my stash of candles. I am into aroma oils at the moment (not crazy yet).

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:35 pm

I think if one looks for exact dupes of high end brushes in the budget or more affordable category, it actually is hard or almost impossible to find a “dupe”. What I’d rather do is like you, pick up a brush that works, be it luxury or not. Some do double duty, but they could look or apply products differently and feel different on skin. So, whilst I still don’t think an expensive brush is necessary, finding that good brush to work for you is :D I hear Wayne Goss brushes are back in stock by Nov so you can try checking them out then. So far, I’m most impressed with #8 which is excellent for tightlining. The others I got haven’t quite wowed me to be perfectly honest.

As for our secret indulgences, I think some things don’t have to be shared ;) Also, sometimes people get really judgmental and I hate that :P

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PositivelyNice October 22, 2013 at 7:19 pm

Sorry, I need to add MAC #217. They keep saying Sigma is the same, but I don’t find it so. The MAC #217 really does not have a luxury replacement.

Generally, MAC brushes ARE madly expensive for their quality though.

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 22, 2013 at 7:36 pm

I actually only have 1 full size MAC brush the #239 which I love and I think I got it for RM80 back in the day. Didn’t consider it too expensive but I didn’t like their face brushes, no matter what anyone said. I found I preferred Shu Uemura’s brushes which are also incredibly expensive :P

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Stepford Witch October 22, 2013 at 10:17 pm

I am so glad you posted this because right now I’m experiencing brush envy and dying to get a hak to try out. But I cannot find it in me to dole out that much cash. I’m quite happy with some brushes I have from MUFE (the old ones), NARS & MAC.

By the way, what do you think of the Wayne Goss set?

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Paris B
Twitter:
October 23, 2013 at 10:40 am

Hi Stepford Witch < - cute name ;) I know what you mean about experiencing brush envy. I went through that phase too, and it’s so hard when everyone is bragging about their latest expensive brush acquisition right? It sounds like you already have brushes you like that work but yeah, doesn’t stop us wanting more eh? ;) I didn’t get the whole Wayne Goss set, only a few brushes. So far, I’m on the fence about them except Brush #8 which I love! I’ll have a post about it soon :)

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Shay October 22, 2013 at 10:21 pm

Actually I seldom buy expensive brushes because I buy some some nicer quality travel brushes eg lancome, laurer mercier, etc from eBay. I don’t like all of them. Sometimes I prefer no brand brushes I got cheap from websites.

Anyway, I realized that how good a brush is really how they suit me. Softness, length of hair, control, handle length, makeup used, etc

All these contributes to how much I like brush. But I have also learnt to make do. The next thing to work on is being diligent in washing the brushes.

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Paris B
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October 23, 2013 at 10:43 am

To be honest Shay, I don’t think much of Lancome or LM brushes. I know Laura Mercier brushes get a lot of love but I don’t like them. Estee Lauder does one of the most horrible brushes IMO :P You’d think that if they wanted to focus on makeup, they could come up with some good brushes, considering their might :P But yes, not everyone likes natural hair brushes and in that case, synthetic brushes are great. They are almost always soft, and affordable. Brush washing? Now that I have to be more diligent in too! Might be why I collect brushes – saves me from washing too often LOL!

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Jennifer October 22, 2013 at 10:26 pm

Interesting topic :) We might perceive that the more expensive and branded tools and makeup products that we use, we will get a better and desired outcome. To a certain extent, that is the wonder of branding and advertisement. Of course, we get what we pay for and the price tag will commensurate the quality. I like the way you purchase the travel sets to test drive the brushes from various brands.

I read the review of Hakuhodo and Chikuhodo brushes with excitement and marvel at the wonders of these brushes. But they are beyond my league while my skills catch up with me. I am attracted by Sigma’s colourful brushes and got a set. I must admit that I have not appreciated the full set like the reviewers did. I like the eye makeup brushes but the powder brushes were so so. I also got a travel set from Loving Mineral and this is the opposite of Sigma. I love the powder kabuki brush and duo fibre stippling brush. Haha, maybe there is no one set that fits it all for me yet.

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Paris B
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October 23, 2013 at 10:46 am

That’s true, Jennifer. The common perception is that the pricier the object or product, the more likely it will work better. Sometimes, that’s true. Quite often, it isn’t :) If I’m to be honest, I’d say that Sigma’s eye brushes aren’t bad. But their face brushes scratch my skin to ribbons (if they are natural hair) Loving minerals does very nice brushes because it’s synthetic and therefore softer. I think a travel kit is a good way to start but full size individual brushes are the way to go forward once you work out what you need :)

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