Jul 17, 2011

TAG: brush collection & favourite brushes/everyday brushes. and a brush hair ramble.

i was tagged by Magalie from Les Belles Affaires to do the everyday brushes post - thank you for thinking of me, Magalie! so i thought i would combine it with the brush collection post i was about to do anyway ;)
above you can see my brush collection at the moment, a few are sorted out, a few are on their way to me. yes, i am a severe brush-lover. i love good brushes, i don't hesitate to invest in expensive ones (if my budget wouldn't set me a limit) because i enjoy a good brush a lot further than the result it achieves. i love to pamper my skin with a soft brush, i prefer natural hair brushes over synthetic hair.  i will never appreciate a synthetic hair brush the much as i do with a good natural hair brush.
as with the natural hair discussion, i will quote myself from one of my former comment answers:

... this is really a topic that i‘ve been thinking about after i had uploaded this post. my opinion is not yet fully well-thought-out with regard to their formulation, but i need to answer you right now. therefore my words may sound harsh and ignorant and selfish.
i‘m not a big conservationist, organic-shopper or sustainability-fanatic. i „protect“ the nature because i want a nice environment for myself, buy organic because or if i like more intensive flavor and when it fits my budget, and when i act sustainable, i can only think of the generation of my child at the most and yet no further. i stand up against non-species-appropriate keeping of animals if i can (for example in a homeland zoo), but in my opinion this already begins with the feeding of pets (like chocolate for dogs??!! „cat-milk“?? are you kidding me?)
i eat meat, i enjoy meat. i like parquet floor and solid wooden furniture, i appreciate fine leather shoes, leather sofas and purses. i don‘t know how i would feel about fur if i a) would find it beautiful and b) would have the money for it (while i would never save for a fur, i think vintage furs are indeed the more responsible).
i think it‘s barbaric to use free living wildlife for that and would not do it when these are rare and endangered animals.
i could cry when i see hunting trophies, a bear- or tiger skin as a rug in front of a fireplace, rhino horn, tiger bones or bear gall as a „medicine“.
but with animals that are bred for the purpose of fur production, i see it rather darwinian. so also with brush hair.
however, a few things will always dim the joy of the best brushes: the uncertainty, especially how (and if - against the statements of some brush manufacturers) the animals are killed in the process of production. but this sadness and fear shadows me with every meal that contains animal products. the second fact that saddens me is the uncertainty about what happens with the animal carcass after that. when it‘s used to provide meat etc. it still calms me more than the mere throwing away. but about this concern i have to admit that i still haven‘t gone deeper into the subject (but partly because of my repressive mentality that is to criticize - i probably fear to face the terrible truth).
i support the complete utilization of materials which arise when even one animal must die for it. if you eat a filet lace, you should not shy at an aspic, a kidney, chitlings, a tongue or blood sausage. i eat the chicken from its feet up to the crest. from the fish‘s eye to the tip of the caudal fin.
i can‘t answer you more than that at the moment, i would love to hear your thoughts, suggestions or also criticism. but please be assured that you have triggered something in me and i will not stop thinking about it with the end of this comment. as i said, i need to organize my thoughts - edits or dementia are not excluded. ...

ok, on to the fun part: my brushes!
you see i have a lot, most of them will rotate in usage, and the big amount allows be to be even lazier with my brush washing regime ;)
after over a month, my "dirty brush glass" looks like this:

so bear with me when you see quite a few dirty and used brushes in this post, but on the other hand they are only proof of my love ;)

first i will introduce my collection to you by brand:

miscellaneous low end/drugstore brands
Zoeva - Fabiani - Artdeco - Kosmetik Kosmo - Boots No.7 - L'Oreal - The Body Shop - Alverde - Essence - For Your Beauty (Rossmann-brand) - Coastal Scents

Ebelin (dm-brand) and a few Essence Blush Brushes

i like to put a Blax on my Ebelin Powder Brush to adjust its head size/firmness for foundation application.
the Essence Blush Brushes (with the beige bristles) are excellent for foundation application. the Ebelin Highlighter Brushes (the fluffy ones) are great to use as powder brushes for the undereye area.

miscellaneous high(er) end brands
Burberry Face Brush - Hourglass Foundation Brush #2 - Illamasqua Blush Brush #1 - Cover FX Foundation Brush 170 - Estée Lauder Blending Brush #25 - By Terry Eye Sculpting Brush - Da Vinci Small Blender 4194

2x Sephora: Professionel #45 Mineral Powder Brush, Professionel Platinum #55 Foundaiton Airbrush - 2x Edward Bess: Luxury Face and Eye Brush - 3x Rouge Bunny Rouge: Blush Brush, Large Shader and Crease Brush - 3x Louise Young: Super Foundation Brush LY34, Crease Brush LY38, Brow Brush LY30

Pure Squirrel Brush Set

Powder Brush, Blush Brush, Shader Brush, Blending Brush

Paula Dorf
Powder Brush, Bronzing Fan, Eye Blending, EyeshadowEye Glimmer, Defined Eye

Trish McEvoy
Bronzer Brush #37, Sheer Blush Brush 2B - Face Blender #48, Tapered Blending Brush #29

the ones on the top are sorted out. Synthetic Face Kit reviewed here.

of course MAC
182 - 181 - 134 - 138 - 187 - 131 - 129 - 116 - 168 - 109 - 165 - 227 - 224 - 217 - 222 - 226 - 239 - 242 - 272 - 219 - 231 - 195

Face Powder - Cheek Brush - Eye Shadow Brush L - Eye Shadow Brush M

Squirrel L - Brush 2 - Brush 3 - Eyeshadow Squirrel M

reviews here, here and here.

and now to my favourite brushes and brushes that are most used  - of course everything with the premis of: at the moment! ;)
since my collection is that big - i can't go for only one for each category, so bear with me.

foundation application

last winter i re-discovered the BeautyBlender for foundation application and it's my most used tool until now. it's easy, gives a beautiful finish and causes less micro-exfoliation of your skin than with the circular motions i liked to use to apply/blend in my foundation.
other than that i always enjoyed the fluffy synthetic brush type for this purpose, i love the infamous Sephora #55 Foundation Airbrush the most but it's drugstore dupe, the Essence Blush Brush, i like just as much.

setting powder

my favourites are the RMK Face Powder Brush and the A'Squirrel Pure Squirrel Powder Brush for a quick all over application of a thin veil of setting powder. my favourite for a targeted powder-up (e.g. the T-Zone) is the IPSA Brush 2 - it's soo soft and i love the round shape. i love squirrel hair powder brushes, they feel divine and glide on your skin effortlessly without messing up your foundation.
my special brush is the Artdeco duo fibre brush  - it's the best brush out there to use with the Guerlain Meteorites pearls (if you never liked the Meteorites, maybe this brush can even change that for you!) but i only use it for that.

bronzer application

these are my favourite bronzer brushes, however i like to use them with specific products. the Paula Dorf Powder Brush is my favourite brush to apply the Edward Bess Ultra Luminous Bronzer. it's fluffy and loose, and soo soft! it applies and blends the bronzer seamlessly and evenly. 
for my Dior Aurora bronzer i haven't found a better (match) and brush than my Trish McEvoy Bronzer Brush #37 - it's soft but firm and the round tapered shape is just perfect to blend the bronzer in circular motions.
the MAC 181 is the perfect brush for the Chanel Bronze Universel cream bronzer. it's the ideal size and shape to fit into the hollows of the cheek but also to blend the bronzer on the sides of the face. it blends the bronzer perfectly and always picks up the right amount. this is the regular, but discontinued version of this brush, i can really recommend it if you still find it somewhere around. i don't know if the special edition versions (that sometimes come with Mineralize Kits) are as good.

blush application

my favourite brush for liquid/cream blushes is the small duo fibre brush, mine is from Sigma. the loose fibers apply the product sheerly and don't mess with your foundation. i like to only use it in stipling motions.
for rather firmly pressed blushes or low pigmented blushes, i like the MAC 116. it has a good size to blend the blush and place it precisely.
for a generous application of soft colour my favourite is the fluffy MakeUpShow Blush Brush. it's quite rounded, so the blending work with the tips is quite effortless.
for pigmented blush or when my skin is rather sensitive, my brush of choice is the ultra soft RMK Cheek Brush.

contour powder

i like the MAC 138 and Hakuhodo S103 just the same for contour powder. both brushes are similar. the shape makes it especially easy to apply and blend at once for a soft contour. if i want a more defined contour, i like the dense round Hakuhodo 210 Blush Brush.


i love these stubby Hakuhodo highlighting brushes to apply and blend my undereye concealer! they are soft and dense and have the perfect size and shape. i use either the slightly bigger 212 or the smaller B214BkSL for that. 
my favourite brush to apply setting/brightening undereye powders is the synthetic Ebelin Highlighter Brush. it's fluffy and since it's synthetic it doesn't shed or scratch.


a generic spooley wand (mine is very old and from For Your Beauty) and an angled brush if i use brow powder. i use the Louise Young LY30 Brow Brush, it's dense but not too hard and picks up a good amount of product and applies it evenly.

eyeshadow application

hands down the MAC 242. it applies every colour soo intense! it's the perfect size and since it's rather thin and firm, it doesn't absorb too much product. for a sweep of colour i have a dozen other brushes, but when it comes to colour application, i always reach for this one.

crease colour

to apply a dark crease colour i have a few favourites depending on the result look. the tapered fluffy brush type for a soft and blended crease are covered by Trish McEvoy Tapered Blending Brush #29 and Louise Young Crease Brush LY38 (forget the scratchy MAC 226, girls!). for a intense crease colour i like the pencil-shapes, my faves are the Hakuhodo Kokutan Brush T and the Da Vinci Small Round Blender 4194 for a super defined colour. 
the mother of all pencil brushes for me still is the MAC 219. it's pointed and firm and perfect to do a cut-crease or to smudge out eyeliner.

cream eyeshadow

i love cream eyeshadows, especially when you can wear them on their own and not only as a base. these brushes (or any similar MAC 217-type shape) makes cream shadow application a cinch. blending and even application at once, what more can i want?

eyeshadow blending

a good eye blending brush for  me must be substantial. these here (Estée Lauder Blending Brush #25, Edward Bess Luxury Eye Brush, MAC 217) really do deliver: they are medium soft, are fluffy and dense. makes blending really effortless.


if i use gel liner, my favourites are: the MAC 231 for a thicker line or to apply the liner on the waterline, very effortless handling; my special tip is the For Your Beauty (Rossmann brand) Lip Brush (which is too small to be used on the lips) to use as eyeliner brush for a medium thick liner, also to fill the line into your lashline with the fine tip; and for a really delicate line i like this Hakuhodo K007.

lip brush

my favourite lip brush is also the MAC 231. perfect size, great thin edge for exact work, dense synthetic hair doesn't aborb product but applies it evenly and streak-free.

so that's it. many brushes still to come (RMK, Stila, Lunasol, Hakuhodo, Le Métier de Beauté,...) and many still on the wish list (SUQQU! Chikuhodo! Hakuhodo!) ;)

which are your favourite brushes? how do you think about natural hair brushes?

i tag everyone who wants to take part, but especially: 


  1. Danke für den großartigen Post- und den TAG ;)! Werde mich Morgen mal ranmachen ;):

  2. die aussage bezüglich der tiere, die extra zum menschlichen "gebrauch" gezüchtet werden, finde ich sehr, sehr zweifelhaft.
    macht es das leben der tiere weniger lebenswert, wenn der mensch ihnen nen zweck vorgibt?haben die dann weniger recht auf leben?was wäre, wenn man menschen extra züchten würde für nen bestimmten zweck - wären die dann weniger schützenswerte menschen?die man einfach umbringen könnte und das wär ok, weil sie ja extra dafür "hergestellt" wurden?ich esse selbst fleisch und nutze abfallprodukte der fleischindustrie (leder).denoch finde ich es widerlich, wie der mensch meint, über leben und sterben anderer arten bestimmen zu können. es ist respektlos und ekelhaft der natur gegenüber. JEDES TIER (und dazu zählt der mensch genauso) hat dasselbe recht auf leben. nur weil man tiere züchtet um sich ihr fell umzuhängen fühlen diese lebewesen genauso wie jedes andere, wollen genauso leben. ihre schlachtung ist nicht mehr gerechtfertigt als jegliche andere...

  3. WOW!
    Ich bin wirklich SPRACHLOS geworden....
    Du hast sOOOOO vieeeeele und sOOOOO wunderrrrrschöne Brushes!!! Einfach mega mega mega schön!
    LG :)

  4. wow, im not even close to owning as much brushes as you do. but im on my way...if they werent that expensive. but i totally agree the more expensive they are the better they usually are...and they work magically :) make sure to visit my blog and maybe you follow me, too on http://thisisurbanista.blogspot.com

  5. Unglaublich wie viele tolle Pinsel du hast! Ich beneide dich :)

  6. Das ist wirklich mal eine Kollektion! Ich finde es schade, dass du keine synthetischen Pinsel magst. Ich persönlich kaufe nämlich keine Echthaarpinsel und es ist nicht so leicht an gute und ausführliche Reviews über synthetische zu kommen, wie du sie immer schreibst. Aber ich lese deinen Blog natürlich trotzdem, es gibt ja noch so viel mehr als Pinsel!

  7. I love hakuhodo brushes:) they are awesome! btw I think this is my first comment :D love your blog!

  8. ahhhh...I'm going to faint...all your brushes look so soft and cuddly..thanx for sharing! =)

  9. great post! I also love the mac 217, EB luxury eye brush and mac 239.

  10. Wow....das muss ja ein Vermögen gekostet haben, ich bin sehr sehr neidisch:)
    Tolle Sammlung<3

  11. wow so many brushes! loved watching your collection - thanks for sharing xx

  12. ...I have like...seven brushes and most of them are really awful! ; w ; Please share! haha! I really want to try Sigma's F80 for applying my liquid foundation.

  13. Wow, ich wusste doch, dass du genau die richtige für diesen Tag bist! Vielen lieben Dank, dass du uns deine großartige Sammlung gezeigt hast! Ich bin schwer beeindruckt! :-)

    Liebe Grüße,

  14. supertolle sammlung :-) bin ganz neidisch!
    ich stoße pinsel immer ab, wenn ich einen neuen (und besseren) ersatz gefunden habe.. ich habe angst, dass die beauty-sachen sonst überhand nehmen ;-))


  15. Love all your brushes! I will definitely need to reference this post when I need to purchase some more. Very helpful.

    I am actually interested in purchasing the Burberry Beauty Eye Brushes. They are very soft and beautifully made in person.

  16. What an extensive collection! This really is comprehensive and helps to decide on which to invest in. I'm thinking about some other brushes by Le Metier. What do you think of those?

  17. Hi, i just want to tell tell you that i recently descovered your blog, and since then i visit every day. It is amazing, you are truly an inspiration for a makeup lover like myself. Keep it up, have a nice day :*

  18. Bows down to the brush queen herself! *bows*. Girl, you have the most extensive collection I've ever seen. I will have to do this tag, I love brushes, thanks for thinking of me! :)

  19. This post is brilliant thankyou for making it! It is really useful and detailed, I love your collection!

  20. I am in awe of your collection - AWE I tell you - and I say this as an admitted, devoted, obsessed-with-brushes fanatic! lol
    I, too, have an impressive collection of high-end brushes, but they pale in number and variety compared to yours. Kudos!

  21. how do you think of Hakuhodo brushes?

  22. i love most of them - just check the reviews. :)

  23. I'm surprised not to see any Nars brushes! Have you ever tried them?

  24. @anna: well, they are just not very appealing to me.

  25. I note that you have gotten a lot of Hakuhodo brushes since this review. Would you update your favourites or are they still the same? Thanks

  26. Ooh there are some brands in there that i've never heard of and the brushes look super soft and dense. will have to check them out! thank you for the in-depth review.
    in relation to the point about using animal products ... while i do love animals, i can't say i am completely against it, as you noted, i too love my leather handbags / shoes / sofas ... and shamefully live in a pretty superficial "bubble" and try not to think too much into it. but i'm sure if i did ... i'd have a different point of view.

  27. Gosh, what an admirable varied collection of great bushes. My synthetic collections - Two Faces retractable brushes & eye brushes/Urban Decay eye brushes/Elizabeth Arden Mineral Powder brush set/Ecotools - like them all except Ecotools which are ok only. But like you, I prefer natural brushes. My collections, Mac (like them less than Ecotools)/T-DeClerc entire brush set/Shu Uemura eye brushes/Hakuhodo brushes. Really love my Shu Uemura kolinsky / sable brushes... Likewise I love my Hakuhodo S103, S114, S133, G5513BkSl/G5514BkSl ... Will continue to Shu Uemura #15 and more Hakuhodo brushes... I'll continue to drool over Chikuhodo/Suqqu.... I am so glad that there are so many like minded folks around!


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