I’ve talked a lot about makeup… but nothing about the brushes! Although being tempted by cheap drugstore makeup brush sets is totally valid… investing in higher quality will save you way more dollars and frustration/tears (who wants a loose piece of mink hair stuck in your eye after you’ve beautifully applied eye makeup for the day). We carry a few options for natural, vegan, and environmentally conscious makeup brushes here at the shop, which I’ll guide you through. I’ll talk more about the benefits of opting for synthetic hair brushes over animal hair brushes later on, along with the importance of choosing the right brush for the job, and how to ‘properly’ care for synthetic brushes.
In terms of our selection, we carry Pure Anada’s full line of eco-friendly bamboo brushes and occasionally stock select brushes from Ecotools, Relaxus, and Sappho Cosmetics (psssst! Our Sappho products are all 25% off right now). What’s nice about Pure Anada, is that they offer high-quality, locally produced products at affordable prices. Accessibility is important to us! The overall cost of organically, ethically, and locally produced cosmetics will always be set at a higher price point than companies/products that choose to comprise quality/labor rights/the environment over costs. However, Pure Anada has mastered how to provide consumers with quality, organic, vegan products at an attainable price point.
I’ll begin with Pure Anada… because its my numba one (as always). They offer a full set of bamboo brushes with vegan bristles. You can purchase any of the following separately OR you can pick up the set of mini brushes (meaning mini handles… full size bristles) packaged in a cute organic cotton carrying case.
Flat Top Foundation Brush
This brush is ideal for applying liquid foundations and mineral based finishing powders/foundations.
If using liquid foundation, take a small amount of product and apply to the back of your non-dominant hand. You don’t HAVE to use your hand… a small pallet or a clean hard surface will do just fine. However, using your hand will help to warm up the product, making for an easier application and smoother finish.
If using mineral foundation, shake a small amount of product to the top portion of the foundation packaging, dip your brush and proceed by tapping off excess powder. Although it may be tempting to load up your brush, flat headed brushes grab mineral makeup very well. It might not look like a lot of product on your brush, but a little goes a long way!
If you’re using the flat top foundation brush for a finishing powder, application will be the same as above!
All blushes we carry here in the shop are mineral based. Therefore, Pure Anada’s blush brush will pick up the product easily. Similar to the foundation brushes, less is still more. This is particularly important to remember when applying blush if you’re going for a ‘natural’ rosey cheek look, if you want more of an intense pink cheek, load that brush right up!
Pick up product with your brush and gently swirl the blush onto the apples of your cheeks. From here, guide the brush up your cheekbones (do this as lightly as possible). When I’m guiding blush up my cheekbones I always aim for the top of my ear. But we’re all different! If you can’t identify the outline of your cheekbone at a glance, feel it out! Aim more for the upper part of your cheekbone. Applying blush where your skin naturally becomes rosey will make a world of a difference!
Duo Eye Brush
This brush is magical! It features a flat sided eyeshadow brush AND an angled brush, all in one! Typically, flat eyeshadow brushes are perfect for applying a base colour to your entire eyelid. However, I’ve used the flat side of this blush for applying loose glitter as an eye look.
It works best for looks that require a full colour eyeshadow (it’s also great for building up product).
The angled side of this brush is perfect for applying loose mineral brow colours (or anything that requires precision/ fine lines). I’ve also used this side to apply lip colour and gel/liquid eyeliner.
If using the flat side, pick up product with your brush and spread across your eyelids in a windshield wiper motion for intense colour. Use this technique if you’re looking to build up your eyeshadow. If you’re going for a lighter look, pick up product and gently pat on top of your lids.
If using the angled side for eyeliner, pick up a small amount of product and gently guide the brush along your lash line. For this, you’ll want the shorter end of the brush to be facing outward. The same technique can be used for applying mineral/gel brow colour. If using a mineral based product, be mindful that less really is more. Grabbing less product will make application WAY less frustrating!
Contour Crease Brush
This brush is perfect for applying a contrast colour just below the brow bone or at the inner corner of your eyes. Although this brush might seem unnecessary, having an actual contour brush will make adding darker colours (which are already tricky to apply/blend) to your look easy peasy.
Grab product with your brush and tap off excess powder. Typically, contours are usually applied (semi) lightly. To achieve this kind of look, move the brush in circular motions. If you’re feeling extra spicy and want a heavier look, use the windshield wiper motion technique.
Tapered Blending Eye Brush
This type of brush can be used with or without product! Use to lightly apply a colour to the crease in your eyelid or go over harsh lines in your contour colours to create a seamless perfectly blended transition.
If you’re a perfectionist, like me, this brush from Eco Tools is perfect for applying lip colour precisely.
I usually put a little bit of lipstick onto the brush and outline my lips first. Then I fill in the rest of my lips by using the actual tube of lipstick. This brush will also work for applying colour to the inner portion of your lips. Applying lipstick with a tube takes practice! This brush can help you if you’re not a fan of using the tube exclusively.
Every time I read something about brush care I end up feeling guilty as heck because I am lazy and sometimes skip out on cleaning my brushes (especially if I’m only using them on my face). I don’t want to guilt you in to shampooing your brushes weekly… but, this is the best option. If you’re going to invest in any one of these brushes, it’s worth it to take care of them!
However, if you’re feeling real unmotivated to take care of your brushes ‘properly’ Pure Anada has an excellent mineral based antibacterial brush cleaner. Ideally, you should use this spray in between each use… but it also will keep your brushes bacteria free, which at the very least should be the thing you definitely don’t want coming in contact with your face.
When I do shampoo my brushes, unscented castile soap is my go to. I like to stay away from all cleansers with essential oils in them when cleaning my brushes. This will help your brushes last longer!
As always, there are many “rules” and “do’s” and “don’ts” when it comes to makeup. But what I feel is most important to keep in mind when considering these is that… none of it really matters! Sure it’s nice to have guidelines and references to go off of. But we are all different! Whether in the way we think about makeup or the reason behind wanting to wear makeup. Every experience is valid. Find the brush and technique that works best for you. Experiment and feel free to use makeup tools for purposes they are not necessarily intended for.
I’ll say it again and again and again… I love talking about makeup. I love helping people find exactly what they’re looking for! Stop by the shop with any questions about our beauty section. We’re here to help ya!
Beauty Adviser/ Marketing Manager