Tuesday, July 14th, 2009

Beauty Basics: MAC Face Brushes

Beauty Basics is a series covering basic products and tools that help to make applying your makeup easier. To view the entire series to date, be sure to visit the beauty basics, or you can view posts within the series about MAC Face Brushes.

Focus On: MAC 190 Foundation Brush

MAC 190 Foundation Brush ($32.00) is a flat, paddle-shaped brush with very rounded edges and almost comes to a soft, rounded point. It’s fairly small, and it is thin. It’s a firm, densely-packed brush with fibres that make it easy to use with liquid and cream products, particularly foundations. I like it more for initially applying liquid/cream products onto the face rather than as a tool to blend or actually give me full coverage. I find fluffy brushes like the 109 are much more to my taste for application of foundations, but they can get a bit gummed up if you simply get the foundation on it from the get-go. Often using the 190 to dab on the product to my face, and then using the 109 to blend it out, works best for me. While a quality brush, I rarely reach for it, so I wouldn’t consider it a must-have.

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Sunday, July 12th, 2009

Beauty Basics: MAC Face Brushes

Beauty Basics is a series covering basic products and tools that help to make applying your makeup easier. To view the entire series to date, be sure to visit the beauty basics, or you can view posts within the series about MAC Face Brushes.

Focus On: MAC 189 Face Brush

MAC 189 Face Brush ($40.00) is a flat, paddle-shaped brush with rounded edges. It is made out of synthetic fibres, which makes it good for both powder and more emollient products. This was originally launched with Mineralize Skinfinish Natural, and I will say I do like it with it. I really like this brush for applying pressed powders to the face, and I also like it when applying creamy products like a moisturizer or a cream blush as more of a highlighter or if I want more precision. Typically, though, I use it mostly for pressed powders. It’s a very soft, dense brush. It feels heavier than some of MAC’s other face brushes, and it feels fairly firm. There’s definitely no fluffiness to it, but the softness makes for easy blending as necessary.

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Wednesday, July 8th, 2009

Beauty Basics: MAC Face Brushes

Beauty Basics is a series covering basic products and tools that help to make applying your makeup easier. To view the entire series to date, be sure to visit the beauty basics, or you can view posts within the series about MAC Face Brushes.

Focus On: MAC 188 Small Duo Fibre Brush

MAC 188 Small Duo Fibre Brush ($34.00) is a flat-topped, circula brush with a blend of goat and synthetic fibres. This is a smaller version of the larger and pricier 187. Both brushes are ideal for softer, more controlled application that allows you to build-up color and intensity through layers rather than diffusing color from the get-go. I actually prefer the 188 for creamy blushes and highlighters, because the small size allows me to apply it exactly where I want it and nowhere else. I can then use the blush to blend it outwards if necessary, but I never apply or have too much when I use this brush.

If you’re on a budget, I’d probably recommend the 188 over the 187, just because it is about eight dollars cheaper, and I think they’re both incredibly useful. However, the 188 is smaller, so it allows you to do things the 187 can’t. You can do many (if not all) the things the 187 can do with the 188–just some things might take you a minute or two longer (e.g. foundation), because it is a bit smaller.

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Monday, July 6th, 2009

Beauty Basics: MAC Face Brushes

Beauty Basics is a series covering basic products and tools that help to make applying your makeup easier. To view the entire series to date, be sure to visit the beauty basics, or you can view posts within the series about MAC Face Brushes.

Focus On: MAC 187 Duo Fibre Brush

MAC 187 Duo Fibre Brush ($42.00) is a brush made famous by mineralize skinfinish fans everywhere. It is a large, densely bristled brush packed with a blend of both goat and synthetic fibers. It also better known as a stippling brush. I originally used this brush primarily for applying liquid foundation (Studio Fix Fluid), and I loved the results! It was really soft, light coverage spread everywhere and gave a soft finish. I personally found the 182 to give me even better results, so the 187 is no longer my go-to for foundation. One of the reasons I preferred the 182 is sometimes the 187 would give me a few streaks that I’d have to work a bit more at blending out; the 182 doesn’t give me any streaks at all. Though for a cream-based foundation, I much prefer the 187 over the 182 — the 182 is a bit too dense for that purpose.

I do like the 187 for sheerer application of blush and highlighters. If you’ve ever owned an ultra pigmented blush, you might struggle, as I do, with applying just the right amount. The 187 is amazing at picking up just that right amount of blush and lightly depositing it on your cheeks. For using them with mineralize skinfinishes, I’ve found the result is a softer look; kind of like a subtle glow rather than a super shiny or glittery cheeks. I do often use other brushes for my mineralize skinfinishes, often treating them as I would a regular blush. It definitely depends on the mineralize skinfinish and preference, though.

The 187 does shed a bit, particularly in the beginning, but after a few washes, it seems to stop shedding. It is a pricey brush, but it’s one of my favorite brushes. I also like its smaller twin, the 188, and if I had to buy only one, I’d probably go for the 188, just because the smaller size lets you do everything the 188 can do, but also the 187 (it’ll just take longer). Though if you’re in the market for a brush to use for your liquid foundation, you’ll likely want the 187 for the time-savings from the larger size.

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Monday, July 6th, 2009

Beauty Basics: MAC Face Brushes

Beauty Basics is a series covering basic products and tools that help to make applying your makeup easier. To view the entire series to date, be sure to visit the beauty basics, or you can view posts within the series about MAC Face Brushes.

Focus On: MAC 184 Duo Fibre Fan Brush

MAC 184 Duo Fibre Fan Brush ($22.50) is a blend of both synthetic and goat hair fibres to create a flat, fan-shaped brush. It’s incredibly soft, lightly fluffy, and it doesn’t shed at all for me. It is a PRO only brush, but maybe they’ll bring it to freestanding stores someday. I like fan brushes like this one to apply a light dusting of loose powder or highlights (like an all-over highlight) to face and forehead, especially. I also find this useful in removing any product fall out under eyes. (One great tip is sprinkling loose powder underneath your eye, and then sweep it all away.) This brush isn’t in my top ten, but if your budget allows, it is definitely a handy and worthy-of-your-purchase kind of brush.

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Saturday, July 4th, 2009

Beauty Basics: MAC Face Brushes

Beauty Basics is a series covering basic products and tools that help to make applying your makeup easier. To view the entire series to date, be sure to visit the beauty basics, or you can view posts within the series about MAC Face Brushes.

Focus On: MAC 182 Buffer Brush

MAC 182 Buffer Brush ($45.00) is large, densely-packed dome-shaped brush with dyed-black goat hair bristles. My photos are of the limited edition release of the 182 brush from MAC’s Couture Collection (I believe these retailed around $54), and I fell absolutely in love with it so much so that I purchased a second one. I actually really love the square handle on it, but the round handle works just as well.

The brush is extremely dense and full, but the most amazing thing about it is how flawless it makes your face look. No matter what powders, liquids, or blushes you use, the 182 is always there to soften your look and eliminate any harsh edges or unevenness. I also LOVE it for applying liquid foundations like Studio Fix Fluid (moreso than the 109 and 187). I do find this is a high quality brush, so I personally believe it is well worth the cost.

This ranks amongst my top five must-have brushes if you’re on a tight budget! However, if this is just too expensive for you, I recommend putting it on your wishlist for birthdays/holidays. Everyone should have at least one buffer brush, though — MAC or another brand!

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