Maxime Poulin, international makeup artist for Guerlain, shares his expert tips for choosing and using the best makeup brushes for you.
FLARE: Which makeup brushes should every woman have?
MP: A good quality foundation brush will ensure an even and thin application of liquid foundation and a natural-bristle fluffy powder brush will have a really natural result in your powder application. Applying powder with the sponge that comes with the product almost always makes you look cakey.
FLARE: Is there any makeup that’s best applied with fingers or a sponge instead of a brush?
MP: For a very creamy foundation or for a concealer, I like to really warm it on the back of my hand before applying it to the face with fingertips. Pressing the concealer around the eye area with fingers always makes it look more natural and helps all the ingredients to penetrate the skin.
FLARE: Are there any makeup brushes that are best left to the professionals?
MP: Every brush has a specific purpose and every woman is the professional on her own face! You can use all the brushes but just don’t be shy to ask HOW to use it. For instance, use the sides of flat brushes in flat, caressing downward movement to apply and place colour. Round brushes are meant to be used with the tip, in circular motion, for blending. The denser the hair the more products it picks up and puts on your face. The softer the hair the more natural result you will get!
FLARE: What is a fan brush for?
MP: To apply some highlighter in very small quantity, as its hair is so sparse, or to remove any fallout of your makeup under your eyes, or to blend out the edges of a too heavy blush.
FLARE: How can you tell the difference between a powder brush and a blush brush?
MP: A powder brush is bigger because we apply powder to a larger area. The hair is the same. The powder brush will be more round because we really blend it in circular motion and it’s more fluffy so it’s applies less product. The blush brush is smaller, the size of your cheekbone, to give more precise application and help you to embrace the feature. Often the hair will be a bit denser to ensure a more even and heavier application of pigments.
FLARE: What are the different types of eyeshadow brushes?
MP: There are hundreds of them, but really in your kit you need 3 basics; a flat one to apply colours, a round one to blend into the crease, and an angled one to create all details around the lashline and the like. Be sure to have two of each so you don’t mix colours on the brush! And most importantly, a shampoo to clean your brushes is essential if you don’t want bacteria to spoil your makeup and your face!
Makeup Brushes To Try: