Thursday, January 3, 2013

Cleaning The Stash - The Brushes

So this is my brush stash. I definitely have more than I need, yet there are certainly holes in the collection that need filling. 

I have recently  moved the stash into this:

The one place I really lack nothing and have more than enough of is eye brushes.

The shadow brushes:

The crease brushes:

Angled/Liner brushes:

A few others:

Here is one more eye brush that I left out of the pics as I had just purchased it and it wasn't IN the stash when I took the photos. These two are my first experiences with smashbox and I must say I am IN LOVE! They are so soft and work really really well.

This brush, the smashbox 19 is AMAZING! Its a face and body brush and I tend to use it for a translucent powder as my finishing brush. It retails for 52.00 in the USA and I think it was $65 here in Canada and worth EVERY penny.

As you can see, my concealer brushes really vary in size and shape. The benefit one is very much like a smaller version of a foundation brush. The Chanel one is actually my least favourite as a foundation brush and I tend to use it more as an eye brush. It just is not a shape that works much for in any way as a concealer brush. The Trish McEvoy point brush is really my go to for foundation.

For foundation I have the Bobbi Brown and an elf one. The elf one is not bad, but it is in no way good or great. Its just meh. And the BB one is good. I tend to stick to my Laura Mercier sponges. But I have recently fallen in love with Chanel one and it is next on my shopping list.

For face brushes, here are two of my favourites in this picture. The Mary Kay cheek brush has a flat top and I really love everything about it! And the Edward Bess brush. What can I say about this? It is the Edward Bess Luxury Face Brush and it retails for $56 if I recall correctly. It is my bronzer brush, half the time its also my blush and powder brush. It is just perfect. It is so soft, it is dense enough to hold the powder well without eating it, and it is perfect to control.

As I said when discussing concealer brushes, this brush from Trish McEvoy is my favourite. It was a limited edition brush that took a lot of flack for its high price point for such a teeny tiny little brush. It was $40 or $50 dollars and the entire size from tip to tip is about the size of the HANDLE of my Edward Bess brush. And it is totally synthetic. It is also the BEST concealer brush on the planet. It is so tiny it gets in to every nook and crevice of your face and has so many layers in the brush it just blends perfectly.

These face brushes are nothing to right home about. The Nars Yachiyo Brush is not fantastic. It is a brush I would say is totally over rated and I think its fairly rough and just not so great. The Bobbi Brown travel face brush is ok, but I am totally sure that there are better out there!

This is the Nars lip brush from the Bento Box. It is the first lip brush I have ever used that I enjoy. And by enjoy, I mean LOVE! I think the Bento box is worth the $125 price tag for the brush alone (yes, that is a TON of money and I dont have that much lying around to blow on a brush. but it is THAT good!!). And this Hakuhodo brush is sculpting/highlighting brush that I always have off to the side as I have not found a great way to use this yet.

So here are my Hakuhodo brushes all together. I should explain how their system works. There are different "series" or collections. The difference between the series is all based on the handles and ferrells. The brush hairs themselves are exactly the same. So a brush named the B005 will be the EXACT same brush as the B104, J104 or S104 are the same brush head with different handles and different prices. I have chosen to stick with the bottom of the line handles as, well..... they are just handles. I have been immensely  happy with my brushes and can not recommend them enough!

From left to right, B110BkSM, B206BkSL, B116BkSL, B005BkSM, G533, B004BkSM, B264BkSM
B232BkSL, B532BkSL, B214BkSL, B524BkSL, B162BkSL and B242BkSL

And this is the Hakuhodo fan brush.

Now when my brushes were purchased (March of 2011) they were significantly cheaper than they are now. Here is the list of what I got and what the current prices are

Basic 5 pieces brush set - $108.00 (now $136)
B206BkSL Powder Brush round and flat - $41 (now $63)
B214BkSL Highlight Brush round - $18.00 (now $26)
B232BkSL Eye Shadow Brush angled - $22.00 (now $29)
B242BkSL Eye Shadow Brush round and flat - $18.00 (now $23)
B532BkSL Eye Shadow Brush round and flat - $27.00 (now $38)
B116BkSL Highlight Brush round and flat - $48.00 (now $57)
B162BkSL Eye Brow Brush and angled - $17.00 (now $20)
B524BkSL Eye Brow Brush L angled - $30.00 (now $42)
Fan Brush - $30.00 (now $44)

and the 5 piece brush set contains the following brushes:

B110BkSM ($46)
B005BkSM (not sold on its own, but the same brush head is on the J005 $18)
G533 (not sold on its own but the same brush head is on the J533 $18)
B004BkSM (not sold on its own but the same brush head is on the J004 $18)
B264BkSM ($22)

Now this is my travel brush set. I take this, and my Edward Bess face brush and Trish McEvoy The Point and I am good to go. But now here comes the issue I have recommending this set. I got this set as a gift in 2011 and I later bought a set for a girlfriend as a gift. It was very pricey at $216 but for 7 brushes that are SO AMAZING (I mean seriously they could be regular everyday set and you would not want for any more at any time!) that I felt they were well worth the price and the splurge. BUT........... As you can guess by the price increase of the regular brushes these too have gone up by a lot. The Kokutan (Ebony) Portable Mini Set is now $327. And while I LOVE the set and I feel like you cant find a better travel set if you tried, I know I would not be able to spend $327 on a set of travel brushes. But they are beyond amazing.

And this is the little brush that just came with my brand new Guerlain bronzer. I have not yet tried the bronzer with this brush (only the Edward Bess one) so I can not speak about it yet.


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