Topic: Makeup Tools

Why You Absolutely Need a Duo Fiber Face Brush in Your Life Like Yesterday

Published in: Makeup, Makeup Tips/How To, Makeup Tools

A finishing brush, otherwise know as your new BFF!

My “well-loved” (a.k.a. dirty) Laura Mercier Finishing Brush

Duo fiber face brushes, which are sometimes called skunk brushes, are great if you like wearing foundation or tinted moisturizer and really like it when your face makeup looks natural.

The one I’m holding here is the Finishing Brush by Laura Mercier, and it’s my favorite duo fiber face brush because of how wide it is, which I love because it covers a large area and speeds up blending, but really, there are lots of them out there that work well.

One thing I’ve noticed, though, is that the higher-priced ones usually don’t shed as much as drugstore versions do and tend to last longer.

But that’s not a hard and fast rule.

I use ’em to fine-tune my blending and thin-out my face products — liquid foundations, tinted moisturizers, stick foundations, powders, etc. — wherever I’ve accidentally applied too much. I’ll gently run the brush across my cheeks, nose, mouth, chin and forehead after I’ve applied whichever face products I happen to be wearing, and that helps everything look more even and seamless.

One of the things I’ve been super obsessed with lately (in case you haven’t noticed) is even skin tone, except without my makeup looking heavy, caked-on or obvious, and duo fiber face brushes really help with that. Their brush heads and bristles usually aren’t as dense as regular powder and blush brushes.

Ones like the this one from Laura have a very light touch that really blends and pushes product across the skin, while other, denser brushes will often lift foundation and tinted moisturizer away from the skin, thereby removing it.

(read more…)

The Kit + Hooks Brushbar Holds Your Makeup Essentials Upright at Attention

Published in: Makeup Tools, Product Reviews

kit hooks brushbar

So I was spelunking through my bag for MAC Costa Riche yesterday when I realized, “Yeah, OK… I’m going to need one more of those Brushbar thingamabobs.”

Because once you get a taste of That Organized Life? — man! It’s must be how newborn vampires feel on the first night, or people who’ve never had ice cream before when they get their first taste of Rocky Road.


kit hooks brushbar

Technically, The Brushbar by Kit + Hooks is designed to hold your makeup brushes upright so you can find them easily, but I don’t see why you can’t also use them to hold other things like eyeliners and lipliners.

Ideally, one for eyeliners, one for lipliners, one for eye brushes, another for face brushes, and then one more to hold the 19 pens and pencils rolling across my desk at any given moment. 🙈

kit hooks brushbar

(read more…)

5 Awesomely Affordable Makeup Brushes for the Face

Published in: Guest Post, Makeup Tools

powder and face brushes

I love having LOTS of brushes at my disposal, so for me, affordable makeup brushes are the way to go! But all makeup brushes are not created — or priced — equally.

For face makeup brushes, here are a few that have earned my gold star sticker of approval.

5 affordable face brushes

Some of the affordable — and still awesome — makeup brushes in my collection

1. Sonia Kashuk Star Struck Large Powder Brush (Disc.)

sonia kashuk brush

The Sonia Kashuk Star Struck Large Powder Brush is one of the softest natural hair brushes I own. In fact, none of my higher-end brushes can apply bronzer as well as this one.

I like this full rounded brush because I can really work powder into my skin with it. Unfortunately, the set I got it with has been discontinued…and I also didn’t love any of the other brushes in the set. Still, I would re-buy the set just for this one brush.

2. Sonia Kashuk No. 29 Domed Blusher Brush ($17.99)

sonia kashuk no.29 brush

Another Sonia Kashuk brush, except that this one IS still available (it’s permanent). My nickname for the No. 29 brush is “the bunny butt” brush because it’s so round and soft! It’s the perfect medium size to fit into the cheek contour or right on top of the cheek as well.

This one is a little bit pricier than my other brush recommendations, but I think the plastic handles hold up very well over time.

(read more…)


Brush Up on Bright With the New Sonia Kashuk Brush Couture Brush Set

Published in: Drugstore Beauty Finds, Guest Post, Makeup Tools, Sonia Kashuk

sonia kashuk brush couture brush set

The brushes + the makeup bag = perfection!

Now, I thought the Zoeva Complete Brush Set brushes were/are gorgeous, but I was floored by the brushes in the Sonia Kashuk Brush Couture Brush Set ($21.99)!

The brushes in this four-piece set all have colorful floral-print handles and coordinating bristles, and they’re a sight to behold, but looks are nothing when it comes to brushes. What I want to know is how do they work? Do they make it easier to apply my makeup? Does my makeup look better when I use them? Let’s see…

sonia kashuk brush couture brush set

The view from above…

The Sonia Kashuk Brush Couture Brush Set comes with a domed powder/blush brush (purple), synthetic contour/buffing brush (orange), tapered powder/highlight brush (pink) and a duo fiber foundation/concealer brush (yellow), and I think we can all agree that these are some super cute brushes.

Are they as good as they look?

Well, the domed powder/blush brush works nicely as a blush brush. It’s a little smaller and more dense than what I typically reach for, but it picks up pigment nicely and is very, very smooth.

Here’s a comparison of it to other blush brushes in my collection:

sonia kashuk brush couture brush set

The Sonia Kashuk domed powder/blush brush compared to the Zoeva Luxe Cheek Finish Brush and the Zoeva Luxe Highlight Brush

sonia kashuk brush couture brush set

The Sonia Kashuk domed powder/blush brush compared to the Zoeva Luxe Cheek Finish Brush and the Zoeva Luxe Highlight Brush.

The Sonia Kashuk domed powder/blush brush is larger than the Zoeva Luxe Highlight Brush but smaller than the Zoeva Luxe Cheek Finish Brush, so it’s on the small size for a blush brush. That being said, it does a fine job of applying my blush.

(read more…)

I Hung Out With James Vincent and All I Got Was This Brush Set*

Published in: Guest Post, London Brush Company, Makeup Tools

James Vincent x LBC

James Vincent x London Brush Company

I was oohing and ahhing over pots of glitter when I felt someone tap my shoulder. I turned around to see James Vincent smiling at me saying, “Hi, Nicole.”

A mutual friend introduced us. I have long since admired James Vincent, but meeting him in person, artist to artist, was so wonderful. I met him at The Makeup Show in San Francisco last year. If you aren’t familiar with The Makeup Show, it’s a pro-focused beauty convention that travels the US every year. Bigger brands and smaller local brands attend, and you can find tons of goodies at a pro rate. They also have classes! I could listen to James Vincent teach for hooooours. And I did.

When I met him, he told me about this brush collection from the London Brush Company (it looks like they’re sold out as of right now), and I obviously needed it. The brushes are vegan Mongoose hair, and very simple in design with only James Vincent and London Brush Company on the ferrule. They’re very soft, and very versatile.

Let’s break it down: there are 3 pyramid brushes and two bent ones.

James Vincent x LBC

James Vincent x London Brush Company Pyramid Blender Brush

The biggest pyramid brush works for so many base products. That’s something I LOVE about LBC — the multitude of uses a single brush is made to have. I’ve used this brush for moisturizer, primer, foundation, setting powder, and contour. It’s bloody brilliant. The fine point makes it easy to get in there and contour precisely and the pyramid angle helps blend it out. It applies powder so easily with not too much product (I’ve been using it with the Laura Mercier Loose Setting Powder and the Rimmel Stay Matte Pressed Powder).

James Vincent x LBC

James Vincent x London Brush Company Pyramid Blender Brush (medium)

James Vincent x LBC

James Vincent x London Brush Company Pyramid Blender Brush (small)

The next two pyramid brushes I’ve been using mostly as eye brushes, but also for contouring my nose (which I don’t do often, but it helps in photos and when I’m hanging out with drag queens and feel under…painted). Again, this pyramid thing is bloody brilliant. Apply with the tip, blend with the edges. It also makes crease work so damn easy because the flat part of the triangle sort of blocks pigment from blending down onto your mobile lid. Brilliant I tell you.

(read more…)

Page 1 of 25