Let’s face it: there once was a time when you didn’t know a single thing about make-up or skincare. There was so much to figure out; and even the simple conundrum of what lip tint or moisturiser we should be using stressed us out. The beauty realm had undeniably been an intimidating space to enter—and one might proffer that it’s become even more so now with the rise of ‘BeautyTok’. Where the overload of information is highly probable, considering that something new comes with every scroll of one’s ‘For You’ page on the social media platform. But between the bewildering make-up hacks and endless recommendations of products to cop, one can get lost in the noise—especially at times when you’re seeking out information on the underdogs of the vanity table. Case in point? Your beauty brushes and the sort.
Depending on how complex your personal make-up routine is, or perhaps how complex you want it to be, beauty tools are your trusty heroes that affect how well your made-up face turns out. Yet we’ve all experienced sitting in a blur before our online shopping carts, wondering exactly what brush we should be getting for the various make-up products we own. From beauty blenders to blush brushes and a brush dedicated to filling in your crease lines with eyeshadow, the world of beauty tools was and still remains to be obscure territory; up till now, many depend on a trial-and-error approach to finding out what works for them. But whilst there are an undeniable slew of brushes out there that differ in size, shape and purported use, perhaps one might take comfort in the fact that you can pare it down to a select few. Eight, to be specific.
We’re talking only about the essentials, of course. So whether you’re just starting out with your own vanity table curation or you’ve been here all this while and still haven’t quite figured it out, Vogue Singapore has got you covered for some clarity of mind. This is the all-essentials guide to the beauty brushes and tools to own, now at your fingertips.
If this isn’t at the top of your list, it very well should be. The blending sponge acts as an all-in-one tool, almost rendering some of your other brushes with not much of real use—especially on days you’re going for a full-face affair.
Once damp, the sponge lends a gloriously smooth and airbrushed finish to your foundation or any other forms of liquid make-up you’re applying, such as concealer or cream blush. Its shining quality lies in its teardrop shape: the broader, rounded side of the sponge allows for an easy means of spreading the product whilst the tip allows one to really get into the crevices of your under eyes and nose.
Despite the need for a foundation blush to be seemingly reduced with the presence of a beauty blender in your arsenal, there are many who ultimately prefer having it on hand for hygiene purposes or for cases when they’re relying on powder-based foundation products rather than liquid ones.
In these cases, the foundation brush’s full, dome-shape quality will allow you to buff and swirl the bristles to stamp the product in, working best for an everyday look that requires light or medium coverage—with a fast, easy applicator.
It’s no surprise that this brush is on the list; most of us rely on our concealers nearly everyday, some even using it solo and without foundation, for days on which light and fast coverage is key. Be it covering up a recently tampered blemish or targeting the under eye area, the concealer brush presents you with the perfect size to hone in on a single section of the face. Its slightly flat form helps with blending the product out, to ensure that it doesn’t leave a clumpy appearance on the tip of your zits.
When it comes to achieving simple, everyday radiance—perhaps think the ‘Clean Girl’ make-up look everyone’s been trying out—blush is key. In order to unlock those effortlessly rosy cheeks of yours, it’s crucial to own that one single powder-based brush that comes with full, fluffy bristles you can run your fingers through.
It works not merely for dotting some powdered colour onto the apples of your cheeks, but it also does wonders for sweeping on the much-adored bronzer on days you’re looking to cinch a look in. Its long bristles aid in controlling the amount of product that actually gets onto your mien, giving you better control over just how flushed you want to look.
Slanted contour brush
When applying a full-face of make-up, contouring is a pretty essential step for many. We’re emphasising on the slanted angle of this particular brush; look out for bristles that are cut sharp and angular. They’ll make for a more clean and precise application of your contour powder, especially when you’re aiming for a clean sweep beneath your cheekbones.
Fan highlighter brush
The shape of the fan brush makes it easily recognisable and also unique enough for it to command a repertoire of its own. With its flat, pinched-out bristles, it makes for the perfect form to sweep a controlled amount of glitter glow on your cheekbones. After all, the key to a good highlighter moment is to ensure that it isn’t too little, but it also can’t be too much.
Eyeshadow crease brush
The key to a good eyeshadow look is really about how well you blend it out. The crease brush then, is your must-have brush for making the smokey eye possible—its soft, rounded form gives it the ability to merge the multiple colours together for a natural, diffused look. It’s the perfect size to not only get into your eyelid crease, but also control the amount of product that reaches the edges of your eye shape.
Flat eyeshadow brush
This is the solution to ensuring you’re getting all that pigment on your lids. Eyeshadow is a tricky thing to play with, but this beauty tool makes half the magic happen in an instant. Its flat surface ensures you’re getting an even application of your powder or cream shadow all over the lids, before blending it out. And whilst one’ fingers are the much-relied on tool for applying chunky glitter on your lids, this is the brush that does it with full control over the amount (and mess)—making it a hero in our books.