When it comes to stocking your kit with the essentials, turns out you only need these ten makeup brushes to get the job done. And while there are plenty of options available, if you’re looking for brushes guaranteed to last—and perform—here’s what the pros recommend.
Synthetic or natural brushes? It’s been a long-debated subject, but it’s all about picking the right tool for the job. “New synthetic fibres are actually very close to natural hair in terms of feeling and application,” explains celebrity makeup artist Beau Nelson, who’s worked with Kristen Stewart and Blake Lively. Synthetic brushes don’t have a cuticle and won’t trap or soak up as much liquid product, while natural brushes are more durable, have softer, fluffier bristles that move more freely, and won’t trap as much powder. The take away? “Synthetic fibres are best for creamy products and natural hair works best for powder products,” says Nelson.
Click through for a definitive makeup brush guide so you’ll know just what you need to complete your makeup kit.
The basics: Eyeshadow brush
M.A.C 214 Short Shader, $30, maccosmetics.ca
This short, rounded, double-chiseled brush has soft, natural bristles and can be used to smudge your liner to create a softer look. It can also be used for more intense shadow application. “It’s the perfect does-it-all shadow brush,” says Nelson. “I have 15 in my kit.”
When it comes to choosing an everyday eyeshadow brush, makeup artist and Sappho New Paradigm founder JoAnn Fowler suggests looking for “bristles with slightly flayed ends to hold pigment and then deposit it evenly.”