Kashuk Tools: 3 Bargain Makeup Brushes that Rock

Published in: Drugstore Beauty Finds, Makeup Tools, Product Reviews


Bargain brush goddess Sonia Kashuk’s gone and done it again. Her Synthetic Flat Top Blusher Brush won me over a few weeks ago, and now I can’t live without several of the brushes from her Kashuk Tools line. I’ve been reaching for the Powder Brush ($19.99), Large Eye Shadow Brush ($12.99) and Angeled Eye Shadow Brush ($9.99) so often that I might as well have all three surgically attached to my hand.


Here’s why I love ’em, and why you might, too. ๐Ÿ™‚


Kashuk Tools Powder Brush

Use: To apply loose or pressed powder to the entire face
Price: $19.99
Makeup and Beauty Blog Rating: A

Confession time! I keep this brush on my work desk and periodically rub it all over my face for no reason other than to feel its softness against my skin. It sends me into a state of minor ecstasy. I’ll make ooh, ahh sounds, like when I’m eating dulce de leche ice cream. In general, I try to do this when nobody’s looking, but the other day El Hub caught me and said the act looked “kinda pervy.”

But Sonia’s powder brush has even more going for it than its amazing softness. It applies powder evenly on my skin, powder that doesn’t look caked-on, and leaves a lovely, natural finish I just adore.

If you’re tempted to save a few dollars by purchasing the $11.99 white-handled Powder Brush 01 from Sonia’s other Brush Collection line, resist the urge. I’ve used the white-handled brush, too, and it’s not nearly as soft.


Large Eye Shadow Brush

Use: To apply eyeshadow to the entire eyelid area
Price: $12.99
Makeup and Beauty Blog Rating: A+

Sonia’s Large Eye Shadow Brush multi-tasks like a mo-fo. The Kashuk brush brigade designed the thick, soft brush (with a slightly rounded edge) to apply eyeshadow over the entire lid — much like the MAC 252 Large Eye Shader Brush ($29). While I absolutely love the MAC 252 for fast, single washes of color over the entire eye, it doesn’t multi-task quite like Sonia’s Large Eye Shadow Brush does.

Not only do I use Sonia’s Large Eye Shadow Brush for color washes but also to apply color to specific parts of the eye, which I can’t really do with the 252. The rounded shape of Sonia’s brush fits nicely into nooks and crannies — ideal for the crease, under the brow bone or in the outer V.

In a pinch, it even works as a blending brush, too.


Angled Eye Shadow Brush

Use: To apply eyeshadow to the upper and lower lash lines
Price: $9.99
Makeup and Beauty Blog Rating: B+

For a long time, I’d been looking for a brush I could use to line my eyes with a soft, diffused line. When I’ve tried to use the otherwise wonderful MAC 266 (clouds part and angels with trumpets herald the 266!) to line my eyes with shadow, the lines have been thin and stark; with the MAC 219 pencil brush, the lines have been thick and messy.

With Sonia’s brush, though, I’ve gotten consistently soft, diffused lines with medium thickness. The brush head is remarkably soft — among the softest brushes I’ve ever used — and doesn’t scratch the delicate lash line area of my skin.

But its shape and softness limit the brush’s versatility. Although one could attempt to fill in her brows with it, I think the MAC 266 would do a better job.

That said, Sonia’s Angled Eye Shadow Brush need not apologize for failing to multi-task because what it does, it does very well — producing perfectly soft lines.


If you’re ever out driving and *surprise!* look up and see that familiar big red/white bullseye, pull into the Tar-ghay parking lot and get yourself some of Sonia’s Kashuk Tools, girl! Or, check ’em out on the Target website.

Happy Memorial Day, friends. I have a pretty low key day planned. I have to vacuum, but that’s about it. How are you planning to spend the day?

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,


For more sweet, sweet makeup lovin’, sign up to receive my updates by email. ๐Ÿ™‚


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So far, 46 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Meaghan says:

    Hi Karen, I too love my Sonia Kashuk brushes. I bought this set from Target awhile ago and love them. Her crease brush is perfect because I have smaller eyes and this set is nice because the shorter handle means I can throw them in my makeup bag and take them with me! Have you ever used any of her makeup products?

    Meaghans last blog post..MAC’s Neo-Sci Fi & Solar Field

  2. Chris says:

    I’ve always liked her line although the shadow pigment is not the best.
    Check out her new Blue blending sponge if you ever see it – the thing is great! Kind of oversized and blends like a dream for foundation.
    I was using the Beauty Blender pink egg shaped sponge but these are $6 less and easier to hunt down.

  3. Taylor says:

    I love the large shadow brush! I have one that I use for contouring, because it is so perfect for the nose and temple area, and more precision work. Most days I reach for this for my cheeks too, for it allows me to have more control. Now I have to get that powder brush…. lol

  4. Amanda says:

    cool-i have the contour brush from this line-I agree her brushes are great for the price. Your memorial day sounds pretty much like mine, LOL, just throw in some laundry too!

  5. Eru says:

    I love the shape of the brushes! Those handles look so cute, IMO ๐Ÿ˜€
    Hugs! :3

    Erus last blog post..Chi (Pink!) Ceramic Hairstyling Iron~~

  6. Karen says:

    Hi Chris,

    I haven’t tried her shadow pigments. I have tried a few of her eyeshadows and creme blushes, which are great. Do you have any other favorites that I should check out?

    The blue blending sponge is sitting on my dresser! I’m going to use it this week.

  7. Karen says:

    Hi Taylor,

    The Powder Brush is faboo. It’s so soft!

    I didn’t think of using the shadow brush for contouring/detail work on the face. Great idea, girl! I’m going to try and use it for applying highlighting powder on my cheeks; bigger brushes just get shimmer all over the place.

    Hope you are having a good day so far!

  8. Karen says:

    Hi Amanda,

    I have to do laundry, too (I swear, it never ends). I’m down to the last drops of detergent, though. I figure this is going to give me an excuse to go to Target (whee!) to look at more SK stuff. Then afterwards I can head to Sephora, which is next door. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Are you working today? You better not be!

  9. Karen says:

    Hi Eru,

    The handles are both cute and very functional. I find that my fingers fit perfectly into the curved section. The brushes are a lil’ lighter than my MAC ones, but I don’t mind so much because the price is so great and the quality is high.

    How’s your Monday been? **big hugs back!**

  10. Karen says:

    Hi Meaghan,

    Yup, I’ve done a few posts in the last few weeks on Sonia’s makeup/tools:

    Blue Lagoon Eye Shadow Quad face of the day
    Creme Blushes
    Flat Top Blusher Brush

  11. Holly says:

    Hi Karen,
    Im sooo dying to try out these brushes it would be lovely to find a cheaper alternative to satisfy my brush habit rather than Chanel or MAC!
    I wanted some advice from you actually, im looking for a new under eye concealer as i am not at all happy with any that i have tried so far, both premium brand and cheaper alternatives have disapointed me and i am going to have a little cosmetic shopping spree to celebrate the end of my finals next week and am making a list rather than revising at the moment!

  12. vivien says:

    I went out and bought the Powder Brush [instead of spening $50 on a MAC powder brush] after I heard all your raves about Sonia’s brushes. It REALLY is amazing, its like crazzzzy soft and is such a good brush, I love it!! Thanx for introducing me to this line of brushes b/c I will definitely be getting more in the future!!

  13. Ping. says:

    ahhh i would so love to try this brush… there is no Target here ๐Ÿ™

  14. Elena says:

    Hi Karen,

    I’ve been faithfully reading your site for some time now, but had yet to leave a comment. I have to say, thank you so much for your recommendations on the Sonia Kashuk brushes! I bought the flat top blusher brush based on your review of it, and now I can’t imagine living a day without it. Keep up the awesome budget friendly reviews! (This college student could really use them!) ๐Ÿ™‚

  15. JK says:

    Hey Karen!

    I love the SK brush line–I found my HG eyeliner brush from it! It’s angled and way easier to use than what I had before. I love finding a bargain, esp on something as key as brushed. ๐Ÿ™‚

  16. Shiny says:

    I really want a set of the brushes, esp the contouring one but there is no Target in Canada, nor is there shipping to Canada on their site. I even tried ebay but no dice ๐Ÿ™

  17. ParisB says:

    Sigh… more wants! ๐Ÿ˜› I hope there’s a Target easily accessibly in NYC so I can get my friend to pick these up! ๐Ÿ™‚

    ParisBs last blog post..Review: Makeup: Lavshuca Gradually Compact Shiny Sand Beach Summer 2008

  18. lindsay says:

    i’ve always wanted to try these, cause i heard they’re SUPER GOOD, and they’re cheap! i’ll be looking online for these, though the last time i checked, many of them were SOLD OUT -_____-

    happy memorial day (:

  19. Karen says:

    Hi Holly,

    WOOT! The end is in sight. Can’t wait till you get through your finals, girl!

    Okay, you know I’m a concealer freak. I prefer the liquid ones rather than the cream ones when it comes to my under-eye area… a few of my faves are Dior (in the blue tube), MAC Select Moisturecover, Biotherm (this is so great! I can’t find it here any more, though), and Make Up For Ever Lift concealer.

    Next time you got to NY you should definitely stock up on some Sonia brushes. ๐Ÿ™‚

  20. Karen says:

    Hi Vivien,

    Girl, that’s the exact reason why I bought the powder brush in the first place. I could not stomach the $50 price tag on that MAC brush!

    I’m so glad that you like ’em. Definitely get the Large Shadow Brush… it’s so fab. ๐Ÿ™‚

  21. Karen says:

    Hi Ping,

    Aww, sorry my dear! I hope someday that you’ll be able to find a way to get your hands on a few, as they are very good brushes.

  22. Karen says:

    Hi Elena,

    Nice to meet you! What year are you in school, and what are you studying? Do you enjoy it?

    Speaking of bargain stuff, I was planning on doing more reviews on Sonia eyeshadows, blushes, lipsticks and glosses. You’re in luck! ๐Ÿ™‚

  23. Karen says:

    Hi JK,

    I’m dying to get my hands on that brush, girl. I have yet to pick it up, though. I want to use it with Fluidline…

    I love finding bargains, too, especially when the quality is so high. ๐Ÿ™‚

  24. Karen says:

    Hi Shiny,

    Oh no! Next time you head over then you’ll have to hit up a Target and stock up, girlfriend. They are so amazing.

  25. Karen says:

    Hi Paris B.,

    I know! You’ll have to get your friend to send you the powder brush, ASAP. Oh, and of course you can’t forget about the Flat Top…

  26. Karen says:

    Hi Lindsay,

    Sigh, don’t you hate that? I remember seeing online that some take weeks to ship out. WEEKS! I guess the cat’s out of the bag; Sonia’s brushes are the sh*t!

    Happy Memorial Day to you, too. What did you do today?

  27. Ditte says:

    Hi Karen,
    they’re added to my “buy in the US” list – thank you ๐Ÿ˜€

  28. Holly says:

    Hi Karen,
    I know I cant believe the end is finally in sight this time next week it will all be over and I can relax!!

    Thank you for the reconmendations I have noted them all down and am going to be one of those annoying customers I hate who take up all the MAs time asking loads of questions and making all the different counters try the product out on me! Will make a change to my usual approach of just buying everything and then usually being dissapointed when i get home!

    Unfortunately I dont think they have Target stores in NY city, only in the suburbs so I will have to wait until I go to another part of the states! I am really annoyed with myself, my aunt has just gone away to Florida and I forgot to give her my list of American stuff to get me for half price over there ๐Ÿ™

  29. Glosslizard says:

    Those look great! I’m gonna have to grab a few… next month though, the last paycheck’s starting to run a little thin!

  30. Megan says:

    I’ll have to check these out after I try out the flat topped blusher brush i bought. I don’t know if I will pick up the eye brushes though…as I think I already have similar ones that multitask as well as these…these two in particular are my two favorites from CVS’s brand…but the powder brush is calling my name…

    LOL at the pervy comment from El hub…LOL too funny.

  31. Elena says:

    Hey Karen,

    Thanks for the response! I’m a Junior studying information technology in Orange County. It’s pretty fun, but I miss having my girls around to hang out and do the crazy weekend mud masks/make-overs that we used to do back in high school. It’s pretty guy dominated over here, which is actually why I started reading beauty blogs, lol. Can’t wait for more bargain posts, there’s a Target nearby and I’m rocking a pretty sad bank account. ๐Ÿ˜›

  32. Karen says:

    Hi Ditte,

    You’re welcome! I hope you like them. I don’t think you’ll be able to touch them when you’re in the store (they come in boxes), but trust me, they’re soft!

    By the time your trip rolls around your list is gonna be so long, LOL. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  33. Karen says:

    Hi Holly,

    You’re welcome! I hope one ’em works out for you. For sure hit up Dior… there’s is great if you can find a color to match your skin tone.

    Oh crap! Hmm, maybe you can take a train or something to the ‘burbs? That would be some serious brush dedication, LOL.

    You better call your Aunt, girl, so that she can pick up some goodies for you!

  34. Karen says:

    Hi Glosslizard,

    Waiting will just make it that much more sweeter when you get ’em. I hope you try out the Flat Top first… I heart it so!

  35. Karen says:

    Hi Megan,

    I can’t wait for you to try that brush. I used it again this weekend and I swear I think I saw stars… I love that thing, LOL.

    Want to hear something funny? I went up to El Hub with that very same brush and I started brushing his face with it, and he started oohing and ahhing, too. I dunno if he was making fun of me, but he did comment on its softness!

  36. Karen says:

    Hi Elena,

    Wow, so you’ve got the end right in sight! Good for you. It’ll come faster than you’d like it too, but soon you’ll be done and hopefully won’t be rocking the sad bank account (guuurlll… I so feel that pain!).

    I like having a mix of both drugstore and department store stuff in my stash. Sonia’s great, and I love her stuff so far. But other drugstore things that I love are Prestige for their pencils, L’Oreal Voluminous Carbon Black mascara, Rimmel for eye kohls (you gotta get Jungle Green) and Neutrogena for blushes!

  37. kia says:

    i’ve been going to all kinds of websites etc trying to get another good set of brushes to use on ‘clients’ but i’m just going to stop the never ending search and combine some of these with my fav mac brushes.

    kias last blog post..Yummy411: Contests and How I do my eyebrows

  38. Karen says:

    Aww, Kia, I want to be your client! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Seriously, you’ll love these. SO cheap and so well made… you can’t beat that!

  39. Caroline says:

    This sounds like a great deal! I’ve been looking to replace some brushes, and I don’t really want to shell out. Thanks! Oh, and ait amuses me to no end that the brushes are sitting on a copy of The Host.

  40. skatt says:

    Hi Karen

    First of all thanks a lot for all the posts and sharing. I really love them.
    Second: you are so pretty = ) I love all of your FOTD, learnt from you a lot.

    and yes finally I wanna ask if you have tried any of the Sonia Kashuk Kits? I am wondering which one from Target is best for travelling kit?
    1/ Sonia Kashukร‚ยฎ Essential Eye 6-pc. Kit with Case
    2/ Sonia Kashuk Brush set and case – 6pc
    3/ Sonia Kashuk Glamified Brush Set – 7pc

    Thannks a lot & happy weekend! = )

  41. Karen says:

    Hi Skatt,

    Aww, thanks hon! ๐Ÿ™‚ It always makes me smile to hear that I’ve helped someone.

    Anyhoo, regarding the brushes, I have yet to try any of the traveling brush kits! I’ve only used her regular full-sized handled brushes. If/when I try out the travel kits I’ll be sure to let you know.

    If you do decide to get any full-sized brushes definitely go for the ones with the black handles. They are much softer!

    Have a great weekend. ๐Ÿ™‚

  42. Snarkattack says:

    Too bad we don’t have this brand in Australia. I love synthetic brushes, because they’re cruelty-free! I do love the look of the first one you’ve reviewed.

  43. Renata says:

    Hi, Karen! I’m eager to get one of these SK flat top multitask brushes. I have the Philosophy Supernatural (flat top) and I love it!

    I like it because it is just as you said: “The foundation looked like it melted into my skin. No streaking, no cakiness, nada” And it works with full coverage foundations just as perfectly.

    So I wonder if you being a ‘concealer freak’ happen to know about a brush that could gave me similar results with concealer – flawless, no streaking and no cakiness. Do you?

    I wellcome any suggestions you may have.

    Thank you!

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