Good makeup brushes are essential for proper makeup application. This is even more true if you use drugstore makeup, because it often is not as well pigmented, making good application rather important. Drugstore items are also often packaged with cheap applicators that don’t really cut it for proper makeup application. If you purchase more expensive makeup, there often will not be any applicators included, as the companies assume that you already have decent makeup brushes.
So, choosing the best makeup brushes is important. Fortunately, quality makeup brushes do not have to break the bank. While some pricey brushes are also very high quality and provide excellent results, there also are some pretty good inexpensive makeup brushes available at your local dig box retailer or drugstore.
There are four primary differences between lower end, affordable makeup brushes and the more expensive professional makeup brushes
(1) Price: the most obvious difference is price. Drugstore quality makeup brushes are often under $10, while professional brushes can run $20-40 or more. But before you scream at the difference, pro brushes are made to last. You will replace even the best of the drugstore quality makeup brushes more often, as they simply do not hold together as well or for as long.
(2) Materials: Professional makeup bushes are generally made of animal fibers, which holds and applies pigment more evenly. This allows for the best possible look. For liquid makeup application, animal fibers tend to work the best at providing a streak free look. For the nest eye shadow application, pro makeup brushes also are often preferable.
(3) Durability: Professional makeup brushes last longer. A pro brush will not lose bristles to the extent that a cheaper brush will. They also will last longer overall, as they are less likely to break. Inexpensive makeup brushes often lose a few bristles, especially when they are new. But often once they are broken in, they usually can work nearly as well as the pro brushes. Some brands are better than others though. For example, Eco Tools tend to hold up pretty well, but Sonia Kashuk makeup brushes have a history of losing a lot of bristles.
Below are some choices of great brushes across several price points.
The Best Drugstore Makeup Brushes
Low on money? One of the best cheap makeup brush brands is Eco Tools. The Eco Tools line of makeup brushes are very affordable, and they are quite easy to find in both drugstores and big box store. Eco Tools brushes also tend to hold up pretty well. They don’t lose bristles all that much. the brand is also ecologically sound, with the brushes constructed out of recycled materials. The brushes come packaged in natural cases and the brushes themselves have attractive bamboo handles.
Sephora also makes a line of fairly good makeup brushes. These run a bit more in rice than Eco Tools, but there are a wider range of options and kits, and generally the line is still quite affordable.
The Best Professional Makeup Brushes
There are numerous excellent choices in professional makeup brushes. Probably the most popular and widely respected are the MAC Makeup Brushes. MAC makeup brushes are always quality and when it comes to price, they actually are fairly reasonable for the quality that you get from the brush. For a good deal on MAC brushes, watch for the MAC holiday brush sets that come out every year. The brushes in the sets are the same high quality as the standard brushes, but they are made with shorter handles, something I personally prefer anyway. Buying one of the MAC holiday sets can be an excellent opportunity to purchase quality brushes while saving quite a bit of money.
There are numerous other higher end brushes, and just about anything from one of the top department store brands is going to be a quality brush. Lancome makes nice brush sets, as does Laura Mercier and Trish McEvoy. To view a number of excellent brushes, take a look at the Nordstrom Makeup Brush Sets. As with the MAC brushes, finding travel sets can be a nice way to save money.