Top 5 Brushes + Brush Care 101

Hello everyone and welcome back to my blog! Did you see all of the great stuff I got for my birthday? I should be receiving my Ipsy bag in the mail any day, so I will have that to review for you.

I am taking a cue from the YouTubers and starting a Top 5 series. I’m not going to set many rules for this one, because I know it has the potential to get really fun. I thought I would start out with my top 5 makeup brushes. These are the brushes that I use pretty much every day, and I can’t wait to tell you about them!  Don’t forget to check out my brush care section at the bottom!

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I’ll start with the two outermost brushes by EcoTools. I’ve been a fan of EcoTools since they launched in 2007. At the time I was only 17 and my makeup needs were pretty minimal. They were always available where I shopped and have always been super affordable. They’re cruelty free tree free, and use recycled materials. They don’t even use tree-paper for their packaging!

Obviously these two brushes are smaller than your average brushes. I purchased them in their Mini Essentials Set – the most appropriately named brush set ever. The set includes these two brushes plus a mini eye shading brush (a fluffy shadow brush) for $5.99. Yes, please! These bristles are super soft and they perform better than some of the higher-end brushes I’ve owned. The blush brush is small enough for my face, but fluffy enough for flawless and precise blush application. The angled liner brush is perfect for my preferred Laura Mercier cake liner. I even like the third brush for blending super small areas around my eyes. Their lettering is pretty  much gone, because I’m pretty sure I’ve owned these for at least eight years. EIGHT years. That’s huge for the lifetime of a brush, and they’re still in perfect condition. I’ll always be happy to purchase anything from EcoTools.

Next, lets talk about the Wet n Wild brush. If you haven’t bought one of these for yourself, or haven’t heard about them yet, you’re really missing out. It really wasn’t hard to pick which of these adorable white brushes from their collection is my favorite, because I use this brush every time I do my makeup. Labeled as their Crease Brush, this brush is perfect for your transition color application, and for blending out all of the colors you may use. It’s a little fluffier than I’d like for my crease brush, though. I finally purchased a second one, so I’ll have a clean one just for blending as I need it.

If you’ve read any of my posts you probably know how much of a Wet n Wild fan I am. Like EcoTools, I’ve used this brand since day 1 of my makeup experimentation. They’re cruelty free, and being some of the cutest and most affordable brushes, they’re probably hard to find in stores in your area. You can purchase each brush on their site individually from $.99-$2.99, or all 17 brushes for $23.99.

Finally, let me introduce you to my two most prized brushes. I had never heard of Luxie Beauty before I received my pink brush in the February 2016 Ipsy Glam Bag. I know that they are also included in some Boxycharm boxes as well. They’re only about 2 years old, so that’s a smart way for them to get their products out there. They started because the creator wanted synthetic brushes that actually perform well.

The 231 small tapered blending brush belongs to their Rose Gold collection, and is entirely vegan, cruelty and paraben free. This is the brush that I love to use for my crease and outer-V color application. It’s the perfect size and fluffiness to accomplish some more precise blending. This brush is always dirty, and I think I use it every day.

Likewise, my 522 tapered highlighter brush is used for each of my looks. I got this in my April 2016 Glam Bag, just before I got into highlighters myself (perfect timing!). This brush is fluffy enough to give you a light-handed dusting of glow, with the taper for concentrating on a more precise area. This brush is part of the Dreamcatcher collection, and is listed individually for $17. Like the other Luxie products, this too is vegan, cruelty and paraben free.


 

Since we’re on the subject of brushes, I want to talk about proper brush care and cleaning. Before I do that, let me add the disclaimer that this is not a universal way to wash or clean brushes, as some are made from materials requiring certain cleansing procedures. That being said and no matter what brand you use, any brush you use daily should be washed at least once a week. This is most important for eye and lip brushes, as they carry extra bacteria, and are used in such vulnerable places. Build-up on brushes from makeup, oils, and poor quality soaps will cause your brushes to stop working properly!  Your brushes are an investment, no matter where they came from, and you should care for them as such.

Before I add my next link, I want to remind you that I don’t plug or talk about products that don’t work. Everything I show you and tell you I like is preferred because it works. I won’t ever steer you wrong in my blog, and I strive to give you enough info to help you start researching and making your own decision. I wrote an in-depth article Pink Poison Changed My Life, and I meant it. I have chronic pain and disability issues that involve my hands on most days – meaning, cleaning my makeup brushes was extremely laborious, painful, and frustrating. I now use the product in the above link, and cleaning my brushes has become very easy and pleasant. If you decide not to purchase a specially-formulated solution, please make sure you use a gentle, clarifying soap or shampoo with conditioning properties and NO SULFATES! Your bristles need to stay conditioned and cleansed to perform properly.

Once my brushes are clean, I gently but firmly press out any extra water between a towel, reshape the bristles, and allow to dry flat (usually happens in less than 3 hours with Pink Poison). Please make sure to store your brushes bristles-up (upright) or laid flat to ensure a longer life. If you don’t use your brushes often, make sure they’re covered or stashed away in a drawer so dust or other impurities (like pet hair) don’t take up residence deep between the bristles (which will happen if stored upright in open air). Don’t store brushes in direct sunlight and always make sure all excess product is tapped or wiped away gently before you put them away.

Please let me know if there is anything else you want to learn about brushes! I thought this would be a good introduction into the topic, and a basis for you to have in order to start formulating some questions. I know a lot more that I’d love to share, if you’re interested!

As always, love

-Feliz

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