• About
  • The Edit
  • The Review
  • The Video
  • Contact/PR

I wish I had at least two of these brushes...

When I first started the blog, I had exactly three kinds of brushes:  paddle brushes, angled brushes and one lonely oversized paddle brush that I referred to as a fluff brush.  It really wasn't a fluff brush.

My brush collection has since grown, and even with the number I've collected, I can still tell that I'm comfortable with certain shapes of brush.  I often find myself reaching for the same brushes over and over for different products, and wishing I had backups.  Theoretically, brushes should last forever (if you treat them right), but spot cleaners shorten their lifespan dramatically.

Counterclockwise from the left...

Real Techniques Deluxe Crease Brush
I use this brush for concealer every single day all over my face.  The synthetic fibres are so beautifully even and dense that it's almost like using your fingers to blend out the colour, except that this gives a much more airbrushed finish.  I don't like using face brushes more than once (especially since this one covers blemishes), so having one (or two) more would come in really handy.  It's also great for blending out cream products.

MAC 239
This quintessential shader brush is sneakily thin -- it's greatest quality.  Not only does this effectively lay pigment onto the eye, it's thin enough to line under the eye and the inner corner.  I used to use only one brush for my entire eye look, so it's not like this is the most revolutionary of notions, but the 239 makes it so easy.

MAC 217
Here's a secret:  I already have two of these.  I want a third one.  I use one for powder products, the other for cream, and I desperately want a third to blend out product.  I always finish my looks by using a clean brush to blend out the edges, and none do it so perfectly as the 217.

MAC 263/266
I'm not even sure which one this is, but they're both great.  The 266 is slightly stiffer, but the difference is extremely minimal.  I use these for my brows, for my liner, for my lipstick, for my inner corner highlight, and most often:  drawing webs/stars/lace on people's faces for Halloween.  Yes, it happens once a year, but that's when they get the most use.

Shiseido Perfect Foundation brush
This is one of my favourite liquid foundation brushes.  The best part is, I think it could be used for powder and cream also, which is why I want a second one.  I regularly use this for cream blushes that lack pigment like the Tarte cheek stains, and they buff in the product beautifully.  The bristles are so incredibly dense that they'll blend out any cakiness and leave your skin with an air-brushed finish. Watch this video where the makeup artist uses the brush with all different textures.

MAC 187
This is hands-down my favourite brush for ultra-pigmented blushes, cream, gel or powder.  It just stipples on the tiniest amount and makes the colour much more manageable.  It's also easy to build up a concentration of colour.  I often use this with my cream bronzer for a more natural-looking contour.  I want a second one for powder -- it gives the most beautiful, light dusting.  I usually use it with pressed powder or my Guerlain Meteorites.

NARS Yachiyo
I love, love, love this brush for blush, bronzer and highlight.  Here's a secret: I also use it for foundation on days that I want high, but light-feeling coverage.  I think I could own three or four of these.  I wish they made them in a smaller size!  It'd be even better for focusing colour.  If I'm not mistaken, Hakuhodo makes a similar one?

What brushes do you wish you had multiples of?  Share below, I can't wait to check out your recommendations!

my current lip balms.

Lips are one of the few places which I've ever had a problem with dryness -- usually in the winter, but if I even go one day without enough water, I start reflexively peeling the skin off my lips.  That was likely too much information. Regardless, it's hard to find a balm that actually hydrates instead of just being phenol-licious, so I tried to include a few that I love for the colour, and a few that I love because they work.

La Roche-Posay Ceralip
I'm not crazy about it.  It's a thick, translucent consistency that spreads easily over the lip, but it doesn't really hydrate.  What I use it for is to seal in a balm that actually hydrates.

Nivea Cherry and Labello Strawberry
These are actually the same company as they were selling these Labello balms in the Nivea Haus in Hamburg.  The cherry is a more cool-toned berry stain and the strawberry is warmer, but more natural-looking on me.  In terms of the colour's lasting power, both are more or less gone around the same time the gloss wears off.  These are ultra-soft so you run through them rather quickly, but the moisture they give is rather temporary.

Burt's Bees Tinted Lip Balm in Rose and Hibiscus
These aren't as soft as the Nivea balms, but definitely way softer than their regular, untinted counterpart.  Rose is more or less the same colour as Nivea cherry, maybe slightly more of a true red, but once you apply it, it looks the same.  Hibiscus is a pinky-nude, and I use it on days that I want to look "appropriate" but not put any effort into it. I think I use Hibiscus more often because I feel that Rose tends to get patchy if I over-apply.  Like the Nivea, the moisture is superficial.

Jack Black's Therapy Lip Balm
Here's one that actually hydrates.  This is a clear balm with a bit of shine once it's applied, but definitely not as shiny as the texture would suggest.  Mine's an old one, so ignore that SPF label -- the active ingredients don't actually work.  I love toting this around with me because I don't like dipping my fingers into pots when I'm about and about.

I think this is being discontinued, but I love it so much, I need to say something.  I don't know if it's my actual favourite out of all these balms, but it's the one I reach for the most.  It's really nothing more than Vaseline mixed with calendula, but it's so much less sticky than normal petroleum jelly, and it just seals in moisture better than anything else.  I've put this on at night to find that it hasn't fully absorbed in the morning.  We'll miss you, Homeoplasmine.

Korres Lip Butter in Rose and Plum
I love, love, love the texture of these.  The only word to describe such a thing would be cushy.  If you've used these before, you'll understand what I mean -- they're just so buttery and smooth that when you dip your finger in, it's like sinking into an extremely soft couch.  Rose is a dark red that sheers out to a mid-tone pink if you use a small enough amount.  Plum is exactly what it sounds like, but it's harder to build up to the pot colour.  It's one of those "my lip but better" colours on me, leaning towards a mauve-y pink.

Nuxe Reve de Miel
I'm in love.  This is insanely expensive lip balm in Canada (and not that cheap even in Europe), especially since it's a pharmacy product but I think I have to repurchase it.  It's a blend of beeswax, shea butter, calendula and god knows what else, but it smells AMAZING and it actually works!  This makes my lips feel better from the inside -- a huge difference from my usual experience.  It gets gritty, but don't let that bother you -- think of it as a gentle lip scrub.  Also, it's completely matte so it's great for lipstick prep, and for people who don't like a shiny lip.

Jurlique Love Balm
I use this light, yellow balm on everything -- my brows, my cuticles, elbows and under the eye. On my lips I use it when I feel like getting a punch of real moisture, but want something lighter than Reve de Miel.  It's a little shinier than RdM, but it absorbs rather quickly, so there won't be much shine after a while.  When I warm this up in the pot, it almost feels like it's going liquidy between my fingers. I love this for my cuticles because it absorbs almost instantly.

I was thinking about doing a video for this post, but I'm fairly certain it would have been about half an hour long, given how obsessed I clearly am with lip balm.

Got any lip balm recommendations?  Share it in the comments!

Design by | SweetElectric