Makeup Brush Breakdown: Get to Know What Each Brush Can Do

If you're new to makeup, or not obsessed with it, like I am, then you're probably overwhelmed by the amount of makeup brushes on the market. Some are gimmicks, but some are must haves. Here's a break down of each brush and which ones are a MUST HAVE.

Lets start with the face.

1. Foundation: The foundation brush comes in many shapes and sizes from thick, round and pointed at the tip, to flat and stiff. These brushes are used to apply liquid foundation all over the face. These aren't a necessity because there's so many options when applying foundation, like using your fingertips. The thick foundation brush with the tip is used for getting into tight corners like the eyelid or nostril. Ew, I hate that word.

2. Mineral Powder Foundation: These brushes are different from a regular powder brush because they are much thicker, less tapered and they are able to pack on the powder and blend without losing a lot of product. You can tell by grabbing the bristles if its a powder or mineral foundation brush. Think of it like a pony tail, some friends have super thick hair when you grab it, that you wonder how they even blow dry it. Well that's the mineral powder foundation brush. You only need this brush if you plan on using a powder foundation like Bare Minerals.

3. Powder: Much like the Mineral Powder Foundation brush, this brush is full and large, except in this case much softer and, fluffier, for lack of a better word. It has a lighter consistency and dusts powder all over the face for a finished look. This brush is a necessity.

4. Concealer: Used to apply...concealer! Duh. Make sure to get one that is wide and the base, for blending larger areas like under the eye, and fine at the tip so you can easily cover tiny blemishes without making a mess. You can also use these brushes as a lip or cream shadow brush. Just make sure you chose which brush you want to use for which area. Don't want to mix them up! A must have.
5. Stippling: The stippling brush can be used for so many things. It comes in many sizes and most are preference based. Choose a larger brush for applying liquid foundation. Applying the product in a swirling motion, with a light hand, you will achieve a sheer, light finish. With a heavy hand you will have a full coverage look. Grab a smaller version for applying blush, predominantly cream, but can also be used with powder. Applied in the same circular motion, the stippling brush will leave a beautiful airbrushed look.

6. Angled Cheek Brush: This brush can be used for applying colour to the cheekbones or contouring. Whichever you prefer. Suck in your cheeks to find the cheekbone, and use delicate upwards strokes.

7. Blusher: If you don't own an angled cheek brush this can be used for contouring or cheekbones as well. If you don't think its worth it, you don't need both. This brush, however, is used best on the apples of the cheeks. Apply in light handed patting motion or delicate upward strokes, whatever is easier for you. Must have because it can be used in multiple areas.

8. Fan Brush: This is really just a preference brush. You can use it for blush, contouring, highlighting, or just for dusting off access product. Take your pick!

9. Contour Brush: This brush really packs on the product so make sure to use with a light hand, and dust off access product. Great for contouring the forehead and jawline.

10. Kabuki: This brush can be used to apply powder or for blending. I use it when Ive applied too much blush and need to blend it out or soften the look with some tinted powder. Apply product in a swirling or sweeping motion, however you prefer.

11. Bronzer: If you apply bronzer everyday, all over your face (which I don't recommend but if you want to do it, I wont judge) than this is a necessity. Its large and fluffy and applies the bronzer in an even all over way so you don't have spots darker than others. Its also a time saver.

That's it for the face brushes, lets move onto the eye.

12. Eyeliner: There are so many eyeliner brushes I wont go into detail for each one, but they all look pretty much the same, accept different sizes. Grab a thinner tip for a thin, precise line, and a thicker tip for a fuller application. (think Adele) A must have if you use potted, or cake eyeliner.

13. Eyebrow Brush: These brushes are angled and stiff, so you can make precise lines like fine hairs. They can also be used as an eyeliner brush if you see fit. A must have. Because all brows need to be tamed at some point or another!

14. All Over Shadow Brush: These brushes can come two ways, stiff, or fluffy and are used to apply product to the eye in a patting motion. They come in a lot of sizes, you don't need all of them, but you might opt for a larger one and a smaller one for more precise work such as the lower lid. Dispenses a lot of colour at once so saves time. The stiffer form is used for shadows that contain glitter, or a lot of fall out, because it holds the product well and really sticks it to the eye when patted on. The fluffier version can be used for every other shadow as it blends the colour on beautifully. A must must must have!

15. Crease Brush: These brushes are thick and round at the base and come to a soft point at the tip. Perfect for applying colour right into the crease or the outer eyelid. Really grabs alot of colour because they are such a dense brush, so make sure to tap off access product.

16. Blending Brush: This brush comes in multiple sizes. The larger version can be used to apply highlighter to the face or to blend out eyeshadow. The medium size is perfect for applying colour to the brow bone just above the crease, as it applies a delicate amount of colour with an airbrushed affect leaving no harsh lines. You can also use this brush to apply colour to the lid if you see fit. A must have!!

17. Smudge Brush: This brush is SUPER dense, and short. Like a little midget brush! (not the handle just the bristles) Its perfect for blending in pencil or kohl eyeliner for a softer look or applying a line line of shadow instead of, or over top of, eyeliner. I use it for applying shadow to my lower lid because it stays in a straight thin soft line. Must have! Once you use it, you wont know what you missed.

18. Lip Brush: Pretty basic, for applying lipstick or gloss to the lips. If you use lipgloss or lipstick in a palette than this is a must have. If not, skip it. (not an eye brush i know but it definitely wasn't getting its own category!)

19. Small Fan Brush: This bad boy is used for applying cake mascara to the lashes. I love cake eyeliner because it never clumps and looks super soft and natural. More on cake mascara another day.

20. Eyebrow Comb: For brushing out eyebrow hair so its nice and neat. Also for un-clumping lashes.

21. Push Liner Brush: Just like the name says, this brush is used to push liner into the lash line where you cant draw a straight line. Right in where the roots of your lashes lay. Its used best with cream or cake eyeliner. This one takes practice but it really thickens up your lashes when used correctly!

These are the brush basics, there are so many brushes out there by all different brands, so I'm not going to even try to go over every single one. But if you have any questions, send me a photo of the brush in question and Ill help you out the best I can. Cheers!