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How to choose quality makeup brush?
For makeup, there is without a doubt that makeup brushes are the MOST ESSENTIAL tools. If you are not fussy (to a point of being fanatically pedantic!) about your makeup brushes, then you have never experienced their ‘magic’ power. Makeup brushes can make or break your makeup. Not convinced? Just ask any professional makeup artist. Makeup artists are very attached to their tools and care for them meticulously to ensure they can achieve ‘miracle’ time after time. Their skills and talents are enhanced with the right high quality brushes. Even masters like the late Kevin Aucoin and William Tuttle swear by them!
In order to choose a high quality makeup brush, you must first understand the construction of Makeup Brush and brushes in general quickly. Why? Because, understanding this will help you choose or buy quality makeup brush which with proper care can last for a very long time. See our Makeup Brush Care page . Basically, a brush can be divided into three parts: Hair, Ferrule and Handle. Please read the Makeup
Brush Terms or simply click for further detail. The most important part about choosing your cosmetic brushes, of course, is choosing the right Hair Type to do the job you want. Once, you know what hair type you are looking at, you can then look at the overall construction of the ferrule and the handle. So, basically, you want to check for the following:
1. Hair (Most important consideration)
Check the hair type, density, cut and shape as they affect HAIR QUALITY.
HAIR TYPE: Makeup Brush Hair Type is THE most important factor when choosing your makeup brush. The best and the choice of professional makeup artists is natural hair type. The hair quality affects the prices of makeup brushes and ranges from the finest and most expensive Kolinsky sable
here) to the most common natural bristle. Kolinsky sable, squirrel, mink and weasel are used in top quality brushes.
Available here at A'SQUIRREL. Note: Famous brand names DOES NOT ALWAYS EQUAL higher quality ! (Also, see our Compare Quality (brand names,
hair types) and prices section ). Decent quality choices include Goat, Pony and hair blends. Synthetics such as Nylon and Taklon, are best left for use on eyebrows and for applying foundations, respectively.
CUT: This refers to the method by which the hair is harvested. It makes a huge difference because virgin, first-cut fur makes the softest makeup brush and can make not-so-high ‘grade’ hair types cosmetic brushes feel as soft as possible for that particular hair type. First-cut (Top grade) hair, is also cruelty-free, as they are sheared from the tips of the fur. That is why they are the softest on your skin. The best way to relate I guess, is to imagine how the tips of our own hair would feel after a hair cut. Blunt-cut hair refers to the ‘lower’ cut of the fur. They are much coarser and can feel prickly against your skin. Imagine
brushing cropped prickly hair against your face…OUCH! Blunt-cuts are widely used in lower quality cosmetic brushes because they are much cheaper than the first cut. Of course, this information is rarely provided but a good way to test is to look at the tips of the hair of the makeup brush. The finely pointed (natural-looking) ones are most likely the first-cut.
MAKEUP BRUSH SHAPE AND DENSITY: The shape and density determine whether they will perform the job intended, effectively and efficiently. You want the makeup brushes to do magic and do it fast!
In general, there are three kinds of makeup brush shape – square cut, chisel cut, and round cut. No, we’re not talking about diamonds here! :) When we talk about makeup brush shape we’re referring to the shape of the tips of the cosmetic brushes. High quality brushes are hand made, not machine cut, as hand shaped makeup brushes have their precious tips (first-cut) still intact. The machine cannot compete with the skillful hands of the ‘masters’. Why not? Well, that’s because machines can’t ‘shape’ the makeup brushes without sacrificing (trimming) the soft tips of the makeup brushes. That is why, high quality makeup brushes are hand made
hence are usually more expensive but A’SQUIRREL makeup brushes are hand made too but are not at all expensive! Don't forget to take advantage of our A'SQUIRREL
Free Gifts and more. To compare our quality and prices with other more popular brand names, please see our Compare our quality and prices here.
2. Ferrule (Metal part)
Check that it is seamless. That means, exactly that – no seams around it! Most makeup brushes are seamless. Metal types used include Aluminum (usually Aluminium Alloy as Aluminum by itself is impossibly soft), Copper and Brass (strongest). Whatever the metal type, ensure they are double crimped (2 circles around them) to avoid wobbly handles.
Check that it is made from hard wood and that the length or overall weight feels good in your hand. The length of the handle is a matter of personal choice but usually most prefer around 7” or thereabouts. Check out A'SQUIRREL makeup brushes.
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