Archive - Makeup Tools

5 Awesome Face Makeup Brushes I Use Every Day

Published in: MAC Makeup, Makeup Tools, NARS

5 awesome brushes

Survey says that I WILL use most, if not all, of these five face brushes every. Single. Day. They’re my brushes with destiny! — my makeup main squeezes, and my main workhorse tools.

1. NARS Mie Kabuki Brush ($55)

LBD, baby! Little black dress. The NARS Mie Kabuki is the little black dress of my face brush collection because of all the many things it can do. Sometimes I’ll use it to apply face powder, other times I’ll use it as a bronzing brush, and sometimes I’ll use it to highlight or apply blush.

Unfortunately, the price. It’s $55… Buuuut, it can do so much, and above all, it blends like a mofo! I can really see a difference between when I use Mie to blend bronzer or blush, and when I use something else, and I think it’s because of that point in the tip (see the pic below) and how the tip slopes. It makes it easy to buff out edges and get smooth gradients. If you like the sound of that, Mie is available now at NARS counters, boutiques and online.

2. MAC 138 Tapered Face Brush ($53)

Another pointy tip! I mostly use the MAC 138 to apply face powder to specific spots, like the center of my forehead, on and around my nose and mouth, just below my cheeks and on my chin, and while big, fluffy face brushes are fun to use with face powder (and feel great on my skin), I still prefer this smaller brush.


Well, because when I apply too much powder, my face makeup looks heavy and très obvious, and with the 138, I can really target where I’m placing my powder, which means that I can generally get away with using less. It’s available now at MAC counters, stores and online.

3. MAC 109 Small Contour Brush ($35)

The MAC 109 face brush has a small, rounded head that fits just perfectly in the hollows of my cheeks; that makes it a bronzing/contouring champ.

I’m a big bronzer gal, so I rarely use this one for contouring, but I think it’s an absolutely awesome bronzing brush.

I always have to resist the urge to go heavy with bronzer, and I’m tempted put it everywhere (NO, SERIOUSLY), but this brush basically saves me from myself, LOL! It’s available now at MAC counters, stores and online.
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Ulta Adventures: Trina Sun Daze Makeup Bags

Published in: Makeup Tools

trina sun daze train case

The $30 Trina Sun Daze Double Zip Train Case, toot-toot!

I need to go on vacay so I have a really good reason to stuff these juicy makeup bags to the brim.

These fruity cuties are by Trina, and I spotted ’em the other day at Ulta.

They are…

trina sun daze wristlet

Trina Sun Daze Floral Wristlet ($20)

trina sun daze pencil case

Trina Sun Daze Floral Pencil Case ($12)

trina sun daze valet

Trina Sun Daze Valet ($25)

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The MAC Wash and Dry Collection Brushes, Makeup Bag, Bronzers and Pro Longwear Waterproof Brow Sets

Published in: Collections, Eyes, Face, MAC Makeup, Makeup, Makeup Tools

mac wash and dry collection

Clockwise from the top, the MAC Wash & Dry Makeup Bag ($35), 126SE Split Fibre Large Face Brush ($46) and 125 Split Fibre Dense Face Brush ($38.50)

Hmm… Just five quarters left!

That should be enough for this last load of MAC Wash and Dry collection products. We have two brushes, a makeup bag, four bronzers and some bits for brows.

Beginning with the brushes and bag…

MAC Wash and Dry Collection: Brushes and Bag


  • How many are there in the release? There are two brushes in the collection — the 125 Split Fibre Dense Face Brush ($38.50) and 126 Split Fibre Large Face Brush ($46)
  • Uh…what’s a Split Fibre Brush? Good question. The brush heads are like two sides of a coin and have natural fibers on one side, and synthetic fibers on the other, so it’s designed to work with both cream (the synthetic fibers) and powder products (the natural fibers).

    They’re surprisingly handy. Mostly, I’ve been using these for applying products and blending them out, and I’ll apply whatever I’m working with — bronzer or blush, for instance — with one side of one of the brushes, and then I’ll flip the brush over and blend out the edges with the other side. It’s akin to having two different brushes in one.

    Both sides feel soft, with the synthetic bristles being slightly stiffer, which makes them ideal for picking up lots of product (like with the Studio Sculpt Bronzing Powders).

  • How well do they work overall? I think the 126 Split Fibre Large Face Brush ($46) is probably the better value. I like the size of the brush head. It’s big, so it covers a lot of surface area and is good for quickly erasing and diffusing edges. I’ve used it with bronzer, powder and blush, and it works well for them all. It’s a true multitasking tool — yes, on the expensive side, as it’s almost $50 (!), but it’s well-made and versatile.

    As for the 125 Split Fibre Dense Face Brush ($38.50), it’s an adequate contouring brush, and it looks cool…but unless you plan to contour every day, you may not get as much use out of it as the Face Brush.
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3 Fascinating (and Slightly Frightening) New Beauty Tools From Sephora

Published in: Makeup Tools, Product Reviews, Sephora

3 Fascinating (and Slightly Frightening) New Beauty Tools from Sephora

1. Sephora Collection Show Curl XL lash curler ($17)

Sephora Collection Show Curl XL

Sephora Collection Show Curl XL

I’m a dedicated Shu Uemura lash curler girl, and when mine went missing a few years back, I seriously lost my sh*t! Like, I had a full-on ballistic meltdown.

But I’m also a curious kitty who likes to meow new thangs.

This one is designed, first and foremost, for deep-set eyes (which I don’t really have) and incorporates advanced Cyberdyne Systems-like technology, like an “extreme curved band shape” for dramatic lash curls. It’s also extra large and has a long handle to help you get as close as mathematically possible to your lash lines…

Or something like that. More importantly, it comes in three colors (of course my favorite one is the one with the hot pink band), and each one includes two spare replacement pads.

Sephora Collection Show Curl XL (bottom) with a Shu Uemura Lash Curler (top)

The Sephora Collection Show Curl XL (bottom/front) with a Shu Uemura Lash Curler (top/back). See how Show Curl’s band is curved?

“But does it work!?” she cried, clenching her fists by her sides and stomping her feet in a fresh storm puddle.

Yeah…it actually does, but it takes a little getting used to. It’s quite large, and I kept pinching my lashes on my first few tries, which could be partly due to muscle memory, since I’ve spent 10 years using Shu’s curler.

This curler nicely lifts my lashes, though — especially the ones on the ends that are inherently harder to curl — and the effect is pretty dramatic and defined. It’s a good starting point for mascara.

Sephora Collection Show Curl XL (right) with a Shu Uemura Lash Curler (left)

Sephora Collection Show Curl XL (right) with a Shu Uemura Lash Curler (left)

I’m still hooked on Shu’s curler and don’t see myself ever giving it up, but the Sephora Collection Show Curl XL is a worthy contender. It might also be the cat’s meow if you have deep-set eyes.

2. Sephora Collection Long Lashing Contoured Eyelash Comb ($14)

Sephora Collection Long Lashing Contoured Eyelash Comb

Sephora Collection Long Lashing Contoured Eyelash Comb


The first time I ran the comb through my lashes, I thought of that chant from the end of A Christmas Story. “You’ll shoot your eye out, kid!”

Thankfully, I have not, yet.

Not as of 2:56 p.m. on February 9, 2015.

Um…so this one’s truly innovative. It’s a lash comb, but the teeth are arranged vertically, so instead of holding the handle parallel to your lash line, you hold it perpendicular.

Sephora Collection Long Lashing Contoured Eyelash Comb

I think it’s about a million times easier to use than conventional lash combs, like, I don’t have to hold it at weird angles. I just hold the brush above my lashes, and brush down a few times.

That’s it.

It’s way more intuitive and, I guess, ergonomic than old-fashioned lash combs. Definitely easier to manipulate and hold, and it separates lashes well.

Sephora Collection Long Lashing Contoured Eyelash Comb

Added bonus? The comb folds in half for travel-friendly convenience.

Bravo, Sephora! :)
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What Are Your 5 Favorite Makeup Brushes Right Now?

Published in: Just For Fun, Makeup Tools

Happy Tuesday, beautiful brush lover. :) What are your five favorite makeup brushes right meow? Here are mine…

1. NARS #42 Blending Brush

NARS #42 Blending Eyeshadow Brush
Last year NARS completely revamped their brush line, and this brush, the NARS #42, is already one my favorite brushes of all time. I love it even more than my beloved MAC 224 (I KNOW!)…

I mean, I still love the 224 (both brushes have similarly shaped heads), but the 42’s bristles are wider and fuller, and I think it actually is better at diffusing and blending color, especially in the crease.

It’s my go-to brush for blending transition colors together, and if I ever reach for it and find that it’s dirty because I forgot to clean it, I freak out a little…

OK, I freak out A LOT. Available now for $32 at NARS counters and online.

2. NARS #47 Angled Eyeliner Brush

NARS #47 Angled Eyeliner Brush
I don’t think I could, or at least would want to, line my eyes with anything other than this brush. The NARS #47 draws crisp, precise edges and defined cat eye flicks like an architect draws plans, and it deftly handles lines of varying width, from thin to thick to semi-skinny — whatev.

You get supreme control over whatever product you’re using it with, and it also diffuses pencil, gel and eye powders perfectly. Works great as a brow filler, too. Available now for $28 at NARS counters and online.

3. Laura Mercier Pony Tail Brush

Laura Mercier Pony Tail Brush
I am trying very hard to write about this brush without quoting that Ginuwine Pony song right now.

It’s so hard, though!

Ride it, my pony…

Anyways, Laura’s Pony Tail Brush is another fantastic transition shade/crease tool. Like the NARS #42, which has a slightly shorter brush head and a less tapered tip, it’s fluffy and full, so any powders you’re scooting around with it in your crease or on your lids blend together beautifully.

I like Laura’s version better for applying transition colors in the lower part of the crease, and I also use it all the time for buffing out under-eye concealer because the tapered tip allows me to really get into those hard-to-reach areas in the inner corners and lower lash line. Available now for $29 at Laura Mercier counters and online.

4. Sephora Pro Angled Shadow Brush #13

Sephora Pro Angled Shadow Brush #13
On one hand, I feel like I really need to stop stress-shopping at Sephora…but on the other I’m like, “How else would I find gems like the Pro Angled Shadow Brush?”

Dude! What a great stress-shopping find. It’s so easy to perfectly place shadow into the outer corners and lower crease thanks to this brush’s angled shape. At the same time, it doesn’t lay down so much product that I end up having to spend forever and a day buffing. Available now for $20 at Sephora and online.

5. Sonia Kashuk Lash & Brow Comb

Sonia Kashuk Lash & Brow Comb
For me, the largest measure of success for this brow/lash comb combo is the fact that I have yet to poke my eye out with it.

Knocks on wood! :)

Seriously, though, this collapsable contraption is great. It’s kinda like a pocketknife, which makes it nice and portable, but most importantly it gets the job done right. Plus, it costs less than a fancy cup of coffee. Available now for $4.99 at Target and online.

How about you, babe? What are your five favorite makeup brushes right meow?

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,


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