The Beauty Brushes You Actually Need

Photo: Getty Images

Photo: Getty Images

Many of us have dozens of makeup brushes, tools and accessories hanging around, even though we may only use a few of them. The truth is that shopping for makeup accessories is much like shopping for makeup—we have a lot of options. Try these tips when paring down your makeup tools.

1. Get one great small angled makeup brush. 
“I often will use a narrow angled eyebrow brush for both the eyebrow and as a lip brush. I like to use the angled feature of this type of brush to give me a sharp lip line for my lipstick applications, being that most lip brushes have a rounded tip shape you cannot get that precise line that is so attractive, especially when you are using a killer red or a deep shade of color,” says Melanie Harris, make up artist and founder of  FemBot cosmetics.

2. Choose a small round brush for your blush.
Don’t use a powder brush to apply your blush. “Use a round blush brush, not an angled one. Angled brushes are really meant for contouring, and you shouldn’t contour with color.  The shape of your brush is also going to determine the shape of the color, so don’t use an angled brush for a round area,” says makeup artist Donna Kelly.

3. Use an eye shadow brush. 
Stay away from those sponge applicators that come in your eye shadow kits.  They can hold a lot of bacteria after use. “They are just fillers for the cases and should be thrown away. You can’t blend an eyeshadow with a sponge applicator properly,” says Kelly.

And remember, whether or not you have every brush ever created in your arsenal or just a chosen few, it’s essential you care for them. Our secret tip is using  baby shampoo to clean makeup brushes, but a gentle soap and water is good too. Remember, these brushes are hanging out in all the dirt, grime and oil from your face and cosmetics, and they can keep on redepositing it back on your face if you don’t keep them clean.

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