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The Ultimate Guide: How to Use Any Makeup Brush

We can’t be the only ones that are terrified every time we see a huge 36-piece makeup brush set. How many brushes can one person need? We’ve all been guilty of re-purposing the same one makeup brush for every step of our makeup routine. Partially due to laziness, but partially due to the fact that we would have no idea where to begin!

There seem to be hundreds of different makeup brush shapes and sizes, and they can be pretty intimidating. The truth is that as many makeup brushes as there may be out there, there is always a core 7 we must use. These core 7 brushes can come in different sizes and variations, but we’ve found there to be 7 family groups that every brush belongs to. We’ve broken the 7 down to this ultimate guide to the fascinating world of makeup brushes! Here are the 7 you need to pick up to grow your tiny collection…

Flat Eyeshadow Brush

The brush that most of us start out with. You know, the tiny brush that often comes with any makeup palette? Flat eyeshadow brushes like the one above generally have one purpose; to pack on product.

These are ideal for shimmer shadows or whatever bold color you want to apply concentration on your lid. A great tip is to spray the brush with some rose water before picking up shadow- it’ll give you some extra pigmentation!

Fluffy Eyeshadow Brush

Ah, a necessity for any eyeshadow lover. With any smokey eye or any eyeshadow creation really, blending is key. Blend, blend, blend and then blend some more. That’s precisely what this brush is for.

Fluffy blending brushes come in various sizes, all with the same purpose. This is going to be your go to brush for blending colors into your crease. Some actually even use this to roughly blend out concealer. They’re very fluffy and gentle and give you that blown out eyeshadow look in seconds!

Pencil Brush

This one’s for the more concentrated job. If you want to use concealer to cover your pimples, or if you want to apply a pop of color to your lower lash line, this is the brush for you. Pencil brushes are very thin and come with a pointed end.

Tapered Highlighter Brush

As the name would suggest, this brush is generally used to apply highlighter. The tapered fluffy end of this type of brush is perfect for packing the product onto the brush and lightly grazing your cheek bones.

The more tapered, the less product you can apply to your cheek. It really depends on how intense you want your highlight to be!

Angled Brush

Angled brushes can actually be used for a number of reasons. Now, this brush often comes in a fanned out shape that is very lightly packed. We find that the best use for an angled brush is for blush application.

The angled shape fits perfectly onto the apples of your cheeks. It gives you just the right amount of pigmentation where you need it!

Flat Contour Brush

Granted, this brush family is for the more advanced. Try as we might, many of us struggle with contouring. It’s a fine line between a beautiful chiseled shadow and a grey streak on your cheek.

Flat contour brushes are your best bet at getting a sharp application. The shape of them literally fits perfectly in the contours of your face!

Large Powder Brush

As is obvious, this brush works for powders. Now, while typically a large fluffy brush like this would work for applying powder to set your face, it can also work for bronzer. If you want to apply bronzer around the outside perimeters of your face, a brush of this size can be perfect for the job!


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