Makeup brushes are probably something you use every day but you might not pay that much attention to them but they can seriously be the difference between a flawlessly applied face or not. But, with so many makeup brushes on the market, it's hard to know where to start building your kit. We break down which brushes are best for what makeup.
#10 Huda Beauty Bake & Blend Setting Complexion Brush
This dual-ended synthetic brush is great for baking as well as applying bronzer and blush and it's super convenient thanks to the double brush head, which also makes it great for traveling as you don't have to bring as many brushes. The slanted end is great for contouring while the fluffy end helps to sweep away excess powder.
Use for: Powder foundations, blushes, and bronzers
Real life review: “What a great brush. Does the trick and keeps the powder compact and on the other side really perfect to swipe away the baking powder after the baking. Love the softness of it,” – Jess
Cost: $39 @ Sephora
#9 Nars Kabuki Ita Brush
A few years ago it felt like every beauty YouTuber had this cult Nars brush! It's definitely an oldie but a goodie. Made from black goat hair, the flat angular design is perfect for contouring and sculpting your cheeks – it's basically a contour lovers best friend.
Use for: Powder bronzers, blushes and highlighters
Real life review: “This is a contour for dummies brush. You just can't get it wrong if you're using the Ita brush. The only downside is that the brush hairs do fall out easily but I'll always love it because it gives me what I need very easily,” – Karen
Cost: $84 @ Mecca
#8 Zoeva 129 Luxe Fan
Fan brushes are the best for lightly applying highlighter to the apples of your cheek and this particular brush is super affordable and amazing quality. You can also use this brush to apply blush and bronzer and it’s also great for brushing away any eyeshadow that might fall on your cheeks during application.
Use for: Highlighters, blushes, and bronzers
Real life review: “I love this brush! It feels so soft on my skin and the product it deposits isn’t too much. It comes in a plastic pouch and a plastic guard so that it keeps its shape,” – Marion
Cost: $23 @ Sephora
#7 Nude by Nature Mineral Brush
The bristles on this synthetic brush are packed tightly, which means that it only picks up the right amount of product and it's perfect for applying setting powders. It's also certified cruelty-free so it's a win-win.
Use for: Setting powders
Real life review: “So easy to use, so soft & makes it really easy to apply any loose powders & build these up,” – Ghick
Cost: $16.95 @ nudebynature.com.au
#6 Fenty Beauty Cheek Hugging Highlight Brush
Fenty Beauty have changed the game when it comes to beauty and this brush is no different. The cheek-hugging brush embraces the design of your cheek and helps to sculpt cheekbones as well as brow bones and the bridge of your nose. The shark-tooth shape gives you more control over the product as you can be precise with your brush strokes. It's also 100 per cent cruelty-free.
Use for: Powder and cream highlighter
Real life review: “LOVE this highlighter brush! It applies powder product perfectly to the cheekbones in the perfect position and applies it on better than any other brush I have tried! A bit expensive but I would say it is worth the cost as I use it daily,” – Emily
Cost: $46 @ Sephora
#5 Napoleon Perdis Camera Finish Kabuki Brush
Made from synthetic hair, this vegan kabuki brush is quite small but it delivers amaze results. The short and soft bristles are perfect for powder application and the sturdy handle allows for even application.
Use for: Setting powders, blushes, and bronzers. This brush is also great for sweeping highlighter across your body as well.
Real life review: “I love this brush. It is so big, soft and fluffy, it's great for setting your makeup with a dusting of translucent powder - or for body powders,” – Peter
Cost: $29 @ Priceline
#4 Mecca Max Blushing Beauty Blush Brush
Another vegan brush, this one is super soft and bushy and it feels super luxe but it’s pretty affordable. This one is great for sweeping powder across your cheeks or buffing in contouring product.
Use for: Blushes, bronzers, and highlighters.
Real life review: “You can battle and change between hundreds of contours, bronzers, and blushes, yet you will always need a great staple brush to apply them with- and this is the one. It's super soft, easy to use, picks up the colour well and disperses it evenly on your face. Mecca Max brushes are very good quality and value for money. You'd be silly to not purchase one,” – Jordan
Cost: $30 @ Mecca
#3 Zoeva 223 Petit Eye Blender Brush
This teeny brush head is made from soft synthetic bristles, which work perfectly with cream products. And because of its small size, it’s great for getting into the small areas of your eyes and allows for more precise application.
Use for: Cream and powder eyeshadow
Real life review: “This is a great brush for people with small hooded Asian eyes. I find that most brushes are too big but this one is perfect. Would definitely recommend and the quality is great!” – Chelsea
Cost: $17 @ Sephora
#2 Real Techniques Expert Face Brush
Not only is this brush super affordable but the quality is also amazing. It’s great for liquid foundation as it buffs the product into your skin seamlessly and gives you a 'your skin but better' lewk.
Use for: Cream or liquid foundation and concealer
Real life review: “I love this brush so much. I recently got this brush to blend my foundation and concealer out. It worked so well for that and even blending under eye concealer was a dream to blend. It gave me full control and there wasn't any product left on the brush. This brush is so soft and bristles did not fall out of brush either. I definitely recommend this brush for anyone wanting a streak-free, flawless complexion,” – Charlee
Cost: $22.99 @ Priceline
#1 M.A.C 217 Blending Brush
There’s a reason why this brush has been lauded as one of the best in the biz because it just is. It had ultra soft bristles, which help pack eyeshadow on the lid and is great for blending out. The oval shape also fits perfectly into the contours of your eyes and make eyeshadow application a dream, so while it is on the pricier side, it's definitely worth the money.
Use for: Powder, gel and cream eyeshadows
Real life review: “Just the softest nicest go-to brush for blending out you'll ever get (at this price point). There's a reason makeup artists always rave about this one. I use it first as a transition and add a little extra colour for the crease and it's great for mixing shades. I have about 3 that I rotate because I always need one between brush cleans,” – Meghan
Cost: $46 @ Mecca