Tag:  powder brushes Archives - Beauty Banter

Makeup: The Brushes

By | makeup | 16 Comments

If I’ve learned anything in my many years in the beauty industry, it’s that the tools you use really do make the difference. You can own the most luxe makeup on the market (think Cle de Peau or Chanel), but if you are applying with merely Q-tips or applicators that come in your compacts, you’re missing out on the real beauty of the product. That’s not to say that there is never a time to use a Q-tip to apply eye-makeup (in fact, I love using Q-tips when I create the under-line in a smoky eye), but as with all rules, think of these as exceptions, not as the rule.

I’ve interviewed many makeup artists in my career as a writer and editor and, when it comes to makeup, the only point that is unanimous is this: makeup application is an individual preference. How you choose to apply your makeup is purely personal. Some artists use their fingers as they feel they have more control over the look by blending and blotting with their hands. Others, never touch a face with their fingers as they believe that there are too many bacterias that are then transferred to the skin. But I think that all will agree, there are a few basic brushes that are necessary in every makeup bag.

This list is long and in-depth but think of it as a study guide. The next time you walk into a beauty store and the sales person tries to sell you on a brush, you’ll know exactly what that brush does and if it’s used for an application that you do. Not every brush is for every person (I just learned the difference between a flat shadow brush and an eyeshadow brush and I can say, without hesitation, that I need both!). But there is at least one brush in this list for you. And now you’ll know what all those miscellaneous brushes on your vanity table are really for. May the tools we use light the way…

*Expert Application Tips for the Signature Brush Collection by Mirabella Beauty by Jasmine Dashtizad (in order as they appear in the second image):

Powder- The beautiful dome shape of this full, luxurious brush ensures that powder will go on flawlessly, just like an airbrush. Swipe the brush over powder, then smooth over skin to quickly apply a light dusting of powder all over the face. Use the powder brush to apply Pure Press onto bare skin for a sheer finish, or as a setting powder over Skin Tint Crème. Also great for those times when perhaps you’ve applied a bit too much blush…soften the color with the Powder blush and a light dusting of Pure Press over the blush. Instantly transforms any makeup application into a polished work of art.

Face Blender- This is truly a multi tasking brush. It’s great for applying just about anything from foundation and powder to bronzer and blush. This round, synthetic brush ensure a lightweight, diffused application of color. Simply dip the white tips of the Face Blender brush into foundation or color and, while working in circular motions, begin applying the makeup to your face to deposit a transparent, sheer application. Excellent for layering blush and bronzer as well. The result is a natural, seamless application.

Blush/Contour- Beautifully tapered blush brush creates naturally flushed cheeks in an instant. The slightly domed shape softly contours face without detection. Lightly tap the top of brush into blush duo and beginning at the perimeter of the face, work your way towards the center using concentric circles. Add a pop of color to the apples of the cheeks using the flat side of the brush, stippling for saturation.

Foundation- Since most people generally have the greatest discoloration around the center of their face, I suggest you begin there and work your way out. Pump a few drops of foundation onto the back of your hand and dip the flat side of the foundation brush into it. Then, starting just below your eye, begin applying foundation in downward strokes. Lightly feather your strokes to evenly blend into the skin, working towards the perimeter of your face. Lastly, apply whatever is remaining on the brush to your nose, since too much product can look obvious there. If you feel there are areas that require additional coverage you can go over them with another layer. Since the brush is synthetic, it won’t absorb product like a sponge, so you get more life from your foundation with minimal waste. The result is velvety, smooth skin.

Lip- This able brush is essential for precise lip application. Saturate the brush in lip colour or gloss and swipe over lips for a perfect pout. Use the flat side to drench lips in color, the tips to blend lip definers into lip colour. To simplify touch-ups, load brush with colour, replace cap and tuck into your purse for a quick, hassle free refresher later in the day.

Eye Blender- Instantly bring harmony to eye makeup by blending colors together with this petal soft brush. Use to ease transitions between eyeshadow colours and soften contours. Also great for applying highlighter to the temples and down the bridge of the nose.

Grooming- Smooth brows into submission with this brush. Perfect for combing brows into place and lifting the arch. Also makes an excellent groomer for men!

Concealer- This is the perfect sized brush for really getting into the small spaces around the eyes and for precision camouflage work. To neutralize undereye circles, dip the flat side of the concealer brush into Diminish concealer and apply underneath the eye area from the lower lashline (where redness can often occur) to the edge of the orbital bone. Apply a light layer to the eyelids as well to even out the skintone and act as a shadow base. To hide skin imperfections, use the fine tip of the brush to stipple Diminish concealer directly onto blemishes. Then lightly dust Pure Press over to set. Great for cleaning up makeup mistakes as well. Use the concealer brush to sharpen the edges around lips and prevent color bleeding.

Eyeshadow- Great for adding dimension to your eye makeup design. Saturate the flat side of the brush with eye colour and softly define the eyes, creating depth and drama. Use the tips to blend shadows together. Excellent for applying highlighter to the browbone or tear duct due to its small shape.

Small Crease- This brush takes the guess work out of how to apply contour colour. It fits perfectly into the crease of the eye. Just dip into shadow and wipe back and forth into crease to simultaneously define and blend eye colour.

Flat Eyeshadow- This beautifully cut brush is your go-to brush for quickly laying down washes of color to the eyelid. The shape of the brush is perfectly suited for the eyelid and prevents shadow fallout due to its tapered design. Press the flat side of the brush onto lids to deposit uniform color. Utilize the tips of the brush to apply a strong contour to the crease area for a sculpted, defined look.

Detail- This petite brush is fantastic for creating sultry, alluring eyes. Use the tips of the brush to smudge eye definers for a smoky look or to add precise definition with eye colours to the crease area. Allows you to get very close to the lashline and apply shadow in the tight spaces between lashes. The soft hair won’t tug at skin and makes applying shadow liner a cinch.

Angle Brow- This is THE brush for defining brow shapes. Use with eye colours to strengthen or extend sparse brows. The super soft hair will fill in brows naturally.

Kabuki- This was the brush that started it all! The perfect partner to our Pure Press powders. Simply tap the brush into the powder and begin swirling over skin to achieve a satin, full coverage finish. It’s compact, domed shape makes application of powder quick, easy and foolproof. It’s convenient size makes it perfect for on the go touch-ups.


Professional brushes are an investment and one worth maintaining. Deep cleaning is needed once a week or more often if brushes are used on multiple people. Use a moisturizing shampoo to remove makeup, rinse well and allow brushes to lay flat to dry overnight. Your brushes will be beautiful for years to come if cared for properly.

Buy one or buy all ($446.50), either way, peruse the Mirabella Beauty tools here, or TRY any of these convenient all-in-one brush sets: Bobbi Brown Basic Brush Collection ($190); Sephora Collection Prestige Luxe Brush Set ($125 / $325 value); Kevyn Aucoin Beauty The Expert Brush Collection ($245); Kevyn Aucoin BeautyThe Essential Brush Collection ($650 / $710 value *covet*); Laura Mercier Signature Luxurious Brush Set ($375).

Bamboo Brushes – Good For Your Skin, Good For the Environment

By | Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Going green takes time and patience… and a lot of trial and error. New shampoos, conditioners, skin and face products, make-up… and even new brushes! That’s right… do you know that the bristles of most brushes are made from animal hair (like goat and pony)?!? AND, the plastic handles only clutter our already overcrowded land fills! So, even if you are using synthetic brushes (i.e. taklon or nylon), you’re still debasing our planet with the aluminum and plastic used on the handle of the brushes… but this can ALL change!

Here is an affordable and easy solution to eco-friendly make-up brushes: ECOTOOLS, a line of earth-friendly brushes. EcoTools uses cruelty-free hair on the bristles and all natural and recyclable materials.
What you get:
A bamboo handle
Animal-free taklon bristles
Metallic ferrule made from recycled aluminum cans
Reusable pouches printed with plant-based ink
Besides doing my part to save the environment (I drive a Hybrid as well), I love how light-weight these brushes are. They practically feel like air! And they deliver just as stellar results as those other, non environmentally-friendly brushes. Make-up glides on smoothly and evenly.
EcoTools offers 6 brushes for all your make-up needs…
Powder Brush – $7.99
Blush Brush – $6.99
Angled Eyeliner Brush
Foundation Brush
Eye Shading Brush – $3.99
Lash & Brow Groomer
There really is NO excuse NOT to use eco-friendly brushes! But just in case you needed yet another reason, EcoTools has also partnered with 1% For the Planet, an organization that provides financial support to environmental initiatives. This means that by buying the brushes, 1% of all annual sales per item will be donated to this terrific cause! Sustainable beauty!!!

Looking beautiful is important, but looking beautiful while saving the environment is vital!

To learn more about ECOTOOLS, Click HERE!

Back with the MAC…

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I’ve been having loads of fun playing with my lovely new MAC products and I wanted to update my fellow beauty whores on some of my favorite items!

Let me start off with the brushes… Heirlooms … They are incredible! All of them – and the beautiful make-up bags (see picture to the left) that they come in… wow, I’m in beauty love!

Here are the 3 Heirlooms limited edition brush kits:

5 Basic Brushes for lips, eyes and face:
129SE, 219SE, 239SE, 266SE and 316SE

4 Face Brushes for the face:
168SE, 187SE, 190SE and 194SE

5 Eye Brushes for all of your eye needs:
209SE, 212SE, 217SE, 252SE and 275SE

All kits are $48.00

Tomorrow, we’ll dig into the Royal Assets Lip Compacts!

Mrs. McDreamy for Avon

By | makeup | 3 Comments

Upon learning of make-up artist Jillian Dempsey’s (and real-life wife of McDreamy, a.k.a. Patrick Dempsey) new color line, I just had to try it out (I have the hugest, platonic crush on McDreamy…. ahhhhh….). Jillian recently took on the role of Global Creative Color Director for our new favorite cosmetic giant, Avon. “Avon collaborate closely with her in a campaign to refresh its shade palettes, launch limited-edition seasonal color collections, as well as new product concepts, beginning in Spring 2007.”
Alas, we reach the part of the story where I get to actually TRY a product. My girls over at The Silver Spoon happened to have Jillian Dempsey for Avon sheer glow all over face powder. Can you imagine my excitement?!
I took the beautiful floral-designed palette home, broke out my MAC 187 Duo Fibre Brush(right) (“A large full circular brush used for lightweight application and blending of face powder or pigments…” a must-have brush – can also be used to apply wet foundation!!!)and began applying the taupe and pink colors…
First on my cheeks like blush, then a little on my nose, chin and forehead… and let me tell you… I glowed. It was a tad more pink then brown, which I didn’t mind, because it really gave me that Sun-kissed look. It’s more sheer then a bronzer and more nude then a blush…
So try Jillian Dempsey for Avon All Over Face Powder in Sandy Corals and tell us what you think!
Also available in a lighter hue, Peach Champagne.

A few of my favorite things…

By | favorites, hair, makeup, skin | 3 Comments

It’s been a while, but well worth the wait (I hope!)

On this beautiful and sunny Wednesday afternoon, I am going to share with you, fellow beauty whores, a few of my favorite things:

The Body Shop Born Lippy Strawberry Lip Balm – Why? Because it smells fresh, goes on smooth, actually moisturizes (yea!!!) and leaves the lips with the slightest touch of rouge… in other words, I can wear it daily without looking made-up but still looking magnificent.

Kevin Aucoin Super Soft Buff Powder Brush- Why? Because it is cut flat on top so, once dipped in your favorite blush, it covers the perfect amount of cheek… in other words, I don’t need to play the guessing game – where do I put the blush, how far up, etc. This brush does all the dirty work for me!

Cococare Coconut Moisturing Oil – Why? Because it’s a nice break from the old lotion routine. AND it smells simply delicious. And it leaves skin soft, smooth and shiny (like a wrestler, but sexy). And the best part is, it’s cheap!… in other words, I smell and look like a sex goddess without breaking the bank. I also love to mix oil with lotion and lather on my body after a nice long bath (post exfoliation)… there’s something about the combination that really makes the skin “pop.”

A Wide Tooth Comb – Why? Because it is the perfect detangler when hair is still wet AND it doesn’t break the cuticle or the tips. Also, since I have curly hair, it allows enough room for my hair to “breathe” as opposed to a brush which stiffles and suffocates the hair shaft… in other words, hair that’s combed is happy and healthy hair.

Neutrogena Skin Clearing Oil-Free Concealer – Why? Because everyone breaks out and who what’s their blemishes out there for the world to see? This concealer also contains salicylic acid which fights break-outs and reduces redness. So really, you get two in one – a zit zapper and a cover-up… in other words, this product is genius! (I use color medium 03 and I NEVER leave home without it!)

Tell us your favorite things by emailing beautybanter@gmail.com

ALSO, hair crazed Jenny is back in town so if you have a question for the lovely Jenny C, email us asap!!!

About Beauty Banter
Beauty Banter was launched in July of 2006 as a comprehensive beauty blog covering trends, tips and tricks, insider secrets, and weekly must-haves. Beauty Banter has a reputation of being on the cutting edge of emerging trends and product launches so our readers are always the first to know what’s hot and what’s just not.