Friday, September 2nd, 2011

Temptalia Asks You

How many brushes do you use for your average makeup routine? What are they?

Temptalia's AnswerFor eyes, I usually reach for: 239 x2, 272, 224; for cheeks, 116 and 165; for face, 109, 134.

Thanks to DLB for today’s question!

Got a question idea? Submit yours here.

Discussion and debate are highly encouraged, and we expect community members to participate respectfully. When asking a question, please check the FAQ section (above) for information about purchasing, price, dupes, and the like. If you have general feedback or need technical support, please contact us.

Comments that include advertisements, self-promotion, insults, etc. may be in violation of our comment policy and subject to deletion. Please see our comment policy for more information.

53 thoughts on “How many brushes do you use for your average makeup routine?

  1. Alyssa

    Eyes- 1 flat shader (I have a towel handy if I use >1 color, you have to blend anyway right?) and 1 fluffy blender
    Face (here’s where I get excessive)- 1 flat paddle for bronzer, 1 angled for blush, 1 ecotools blush brush for setting powder/powder foundation and 1 clean kabuki for blending

  2. Katy

    For eyes I usually use a combination of MAC and Sigma brushes- 239, 219, 226, 217, not sure of the sigma numbers but one for brow bone. Also an Anastasia brush for brows. For face I use the Beauty blender for foundation, a Sonia Kashuk powder brush, a MAC 168 for bronzer and another one for blush, and a Benefit fantail brush for highlight! I also use some random Kabuki brush I picked up someone to blend everything together!

  3. Fitrah

    usually, 5: 3 for eyes, 2 for cheeks

  4. BooBooNinja

    I’m surprised that you don’t reach for your 226!
    I’m curious about how you use your 272. Do you use it to pack on shadow (like the 239) and also to blend (like the 217)? Would you say that it’s a brush that is a mix of both the 239 and 217?

    I wonder if MAC will ever bring back the 272… because I’d like to get my hands on one! :)

    • I use the 272 for highlighting, actually. I’ve been doing simpler looks, so I’ve just used the 239s. I also have some old school crease brush I’ve been loving lately, too. 272 is really big but fluffy, which is why I like it for highlighting the brow bone :)

      • BooBooNinja

        Thanks for replying, Christine! I didn’t expect it TBH, as you are probably inundated with hundreds of comments every day.

        I got hooked onto the 272 after a MA at the MAC Pro store used one on me a couple of weeks ago. I don’t have much in the way of brushes (bought the 226 for my lil’ Asian crease on Aug 25 though!), and was debating on whether to go with the 239 or to hunt down a 272. My other brushes = 2 angled brow brushes (one for brow wax, one for applying brow powder) and a cheapo blender brush like the 224.

  5. Kristabelle

    Oh god a lottt haha.
    Face- 3 concealer brushes, one kabuki brush for powder, one blush brush, one bronzer brush, one contour brush, one highlight brush.
    Eyes- for a smoky eye around 7 or 8. Plus two more for liner setting and brows.
    But hey, at least I get good use out of my brushes haha.

  6. John

    Brow: MAC 266 or equivalent and one of those brush/spoole things, which I don’t believe has a MAC equivalent. xD

    Face: MAC 182 or equivalent for powder contouring, though I should probably use something that’s a little more precise for my nose, like a MAC 109. I mean I find that the 182 works fine, I just have to be a bit more careful. But the 182 distributes the products over a larger surface area, resulting in more natural (less harsh) and graduated-looking shadows.

    And that’s it. :]

  7. Angela

    I use a total of 7 brushes.
    4 brushes for the eyes : Mac 224,217,239, and 219
    3 brushes for the face : Mac 187,109, and 129.
    When I finally get around to buying a liner brush then it will be 8.

  8. Kayla

    I usually use 4 or 5 for eyes, depending on how complicated the look is that I’m doing. I use 3 for my face on a regular basis, sometimes 4 if I’m doing foundation (versus just TM and setting powder). All of my brushes are Sonia Kashuk but I just ordered the purple Sigma set, so I’m excited to start using those.

    • Kayla

      Actually I totally forgot about brow & liner, so for eyes, I use 6 or 7! But this is just more proof that I need to simplify my make up routine (I’m really tryin’ to!) 😛

      • BooBooNinja

        Isn’t it great when you look at your makeup head-on?It’s plenty revealing and often surprising! I pulled out my makeup collection the other day to see what colours I wanted to get and I was surprised with all that I had. I am into eye makeup and am new to makeup but somehow I have amassed 4 palettes and have the Muppets one on the way!

  9. Pawsha

    As many as I can get my paws on in a sitting. Love brushes!

  10. Tigress

    I use at least 5 on a daily basis, sometimes more depending on the look I’m doing.

  11. Veronica

    Oh, goodness, it really depends on what I’m doing. I have five or six different ones for the eyes, though the ones that get the most use are probably my large shadow brush and angled crease brush.

    I tend to use large, fluffy brushes for blush (my cheeks are somewhat naturally rosy, so I want light coverage) and a more tapered one for bronzer.

  12. Maria

    FACE: (7 brushes total)
    For Pressing Down Bare Escentuals Mineral Veil: Bare Escentuals Maximum Coverage Face Brush
    Foundation (Bare Escentuals Matte Foundation): Bare Escentuals Heavenly Face Brush
    Concealer (Exuviance Coverblend): MAC 227
    B.E. Well Rested: B.E. Maximum coverage concealer brush
    Bronzer: MAC 165
    Blush: B.E. Blush Brush
    B.E. Natural Light Face-Lifting Duo: B.E. Light Stroke Brush

    EYES: (5-7 total, depending on difficulty of look)
    Highlight/All over base color (powder): MAC 225
    Blending Out Cream/eyeliner: MAC 217 &/or MAC 219 (sometimes MAC 214 for more controlled eyeliner) smudging/placing)
    Placing Color: MAC 239
    Crease Work: MAC 226
    Blending out everything: MAC 224

    I firmly believe a brush can make/break a look, so once I know what brushes work best for me, and with what techniques I can do with them, I quickly go through a few to achieve the desired look that I want. Sounds like a lot of work, but it actually isn’t because I know what i’m doing (after much practice).

    • BooBooNinja

      “I firmly believe a brush can make/break a look, so once I know what brushes work best for me, and with what techniques I can do with them, I quickly go through a few to achieve the desired look that I want. ”

      Maria, thanks for your comment. I am quickly discovering the same. While I am new on the makeup scene and have heard the importance of quality makeup brushes, I admit that I fell into the trap of purchasing 3 cheapo brushes. In three words: I detest them. They are rough and make my eyelids hurt. I was so excited when I purchased my MAC 226. It is my most expensive makeup item yet, but it is my most loved item. It does all the work for me. My lack of skill and makeup aptitude ceases to be an issue with this wonderous brush!

  13. Polly

    I usually use 7-8 brushes for an everyday look… wow I’m surprised I use that many!

    1 concealer/liquid foundation brush
    1 loose powder brush
    1 blush brush
    1 fluffy blending brush for nose shading
    3 eyeshadow brushes: fluff, flat, and pencil brush

    Oh, and 1 brow brush that comes with browpencil… and 1 eyeliner brush!
    Way too many, I think =w=; Only picking them up and putting them down may take 5 mins a day!

  14. Xia

    I usually only do eyes and brows because my skin is even.

    I use all Sigma and MAC, so I start with a 1) flat shader 2) crease 3) fluffy blending 4) pencil for highlight 5) angled fluffy for brow highlight 6) pointed liner brush for fluidline 7) angled brush for brow… for a grand total of

    SEVEN BRUSHES! :) Wow that’s a lot more than I thought O_o Lol.

  15. toxicangel101

    For general day to day its probs about 5 or 6. But if its full face night out makeup then probs about 14 or 15, possibly more depending how Im doing my eyes. Lol I like my brushes! x

  16. artemis

    I don’t have any good brushes :”) but i would use loads if i did :))

  17. t_zwiggy

    Eyes: MAC 239 for lid, Sigma SS224 and (if I need a more defined crease) Hakuhodo E0183), Sigma SS239 for brow bone highlight (mostly because my MAC 239 is dirty by then and I prefer to apply highlight last :P), Paula Dorf Eye Definer Brush for lining upper waterline, Hakuhodo pencil brush (don’t remember the name/number) for a soft wash of color to lower lash line and sometimes Stila 28, but only if I want to really deepen the color really close to the lash line.

    Brows: Anastasia #7 brush

    Face: Jane Iredale Handi brush for foundation, MAC 129 for blush, Jane Iredale Detail brush for concealing blemishes, Jane Iredale Camouflage 10 brush for undereye concealer, Paula Dorf Eye Blender brush for setting powder under eyes (it’s like a really fluffy 227 – LOVE it), Sigma F05 for highlight.

    Yikes! That’s 14 brushes. But I LOVE brushes (collect them even), so it’s okay I guess ._.

  18. wendy h

    Eye: 3 to 4
    flat one for cream eyeshadow base
    Smaller flat for lid
    One to blend
    One for outer V
    Face 2-3
    Big one to clear extra setting powder.
    For blush

  19. Mariella

    Usually 2 for my eyes (239 and 217 or “non-Mac” equivalents), 1 for concealer (224), one for my face (Sephora 55 or MAC 130 or if I’m using mineral foundation, the Sephora 45 mineral powder brush) and 1 for my cheeks (MAC 130 or a PurMinerals angled brush similar to MAC 168), I use a Quo smudger brush to smudge my eye liner and their lipstick brush for my lips.

    • BooBooNinja

      Mariella, how do you find the Quo smudger brush? I purchased one (the Professional, black-handled one) and returned it because it wasn’t dense enough for my liking.

  20. 4.
    Face: a liquid foundation brush for foundation, a powder brush for loose powder, I don’t wear blush.
    Eyes: a hard angle brush for highlighting my brow bones, a eye shadow brush for concealer. I don’t wear eye shadows usually, they tend to make me look like thirty something woman while in fact, I’m still underage. But that brush came in with a set, and I use it to apply liquid concealer, so far, it’s okay.

  21. uhm.
    Face: big concealer brush for concealing, buffer for mineral foundation, a small blush brush.
    Eyes: 1 flat shader (if I choose to apply two colours I use both sides), 1 blender (whether fluffy or precise relies on what look I’m doing)

  22. Face: 187 for primer+foundation+contour+blush, I swipe it on a dry paper towel in between and when I’m done I swipe it on a paper towel with some brush cleanser on.
    Eyes: 188 for primer+concealer+base cream color, same cleaning as above. Also 239+217 and 208(I use it for the brows too).
    When I’m in a hurry, I skip the 239+217 and use only one color with a 227.
    P.S. I LOVE my 187 brush!

  23. heidi

    Oh man it very seriously depends on the day, my mood, and how late I’m running. For foiundation I usually blend with fingers or a stippling brush. For concealer I never use a brush. For powder, if its pressed I use a powder puff, if its loose a kabuki. For blush it really depends, if its a cream or stain I just use my fingers, if its podwer I usually use the posh angled blush brush or regular one unless its crazy pigment(I’m very fair) I’ll use a my elf studio fan brush. I harder wear bronzer but if I do its the posh angled blush brush and for a powder highlight I use whatever I used for blush. Eyes for cream shadow nada for powder usually my elf flat shader, my essenence of beauty large pencil brush, sonia kashuk large blending brush and potentially a smudger brush. If I’m using gel liner an angled brush. I use mac brow set so I don’t use a brush for them. So basically between 0 and 8.

    • BooBooNinja

      Hi Heidi,

      What are your favourite Sonia Kashuk brushes? Are there any of her eye brushes that you could recommend? (I have sensitive eyes so they would need to be soft.) I am heading down to the States this weekend and am eager to try them out.

  24. Amy

    The brushes I usually use are a mostly sigma but also with some extras.

    Under eye Concealer F70, blemish concealer Sephora 110 foundation brush, setting powder kit kabuki, translucent powder for under eyes E25, blush F40, highlighter F50, bronzer F30, eyes Eco tools eye shader, E55, E25, E40, gel liner artiste manicare pointed eyeliner

    So a total of 12

  25. Ada

    Eyes: mac 226, 217, 239, elf contour brush, ecotools angled eyeliner brush(for brows), sonia kashuk angled eyeliner brush
    Face:mac 187, ecotools bronzer brush(setting powder), ecotools brush brush, elf blush brush (for contour), ecotools concealer brush

  26. Devi

    0 brushes. >.< A loser is I. xD

  27. On most days: Five.

    Shu Uemura Natural 12 to apply a base colour on the eyes, another brush to contour (Shu Uemura Natural 10 or Chanel 12), the Shu Uemura Kolinsky 15 for spot application of powder under the eyes and to set concealer, a blush brush (Nars Yachiyo or MAC 129) and a powder brush (Mecca Cosmetica Powder Brush or a blue squirrel MGPin brush).

  28. Mel

    Eyes: UD flat eyeshadow brush, CS Large pencil brush, CS Destiny Blender brush, Bare Essentials crease brush(added blending) this would be for a regular look, if the look is more complicated I’d use the CS small crease brush for added definition.
    Face: 187, KVD Concealer brush

  29. TygerKitty

    Hmm… I use a concealer brush, a brush for bronzer, another for blush if I wear it (or highlighter), an eyebrow comb and a minimum of one brush for eye shadow. Generally it’s 2-4 for eye shadow though. Oh and a brush for foundation.

    So, that is… 7-10 brushes total I guess!

  30. Lindsey

    On a *normal* day I use five: two for eyes, two for face, and one for brows. If I’m doing a more elaborate look, or if it’s a special occasion or something, I’ll probably use around 10 or so.

  31. Shannon

    I use for my face my sigma F80, MAC 168, and Sigma F20. For my eyes, MAC 239, 224, 275 and 263/209. Do that is a total of 7 brushes… Wow first seem like that many lol

  32. Becca

    eyes- ecotoold flat shader brush, sigma small tapered brush (E45) or sigma E35 or MAC 217, girlactik angled liner brush, spooly, sigma short shader (e20)

    face: MAC 187, MAC 195, sigma F35 (only if I’m wearing a highlight), sigma F20 and sigma F10

    lips: nada

  33. Maya

    No brushes for foundation (when I even wear it) or concealer, just my fingers
    MAC 129 for blush (although I’m considering purchasing the MAC 116 or NARS Yachiyo)
    If I wear bronzer, the Sonia Kashuk Blush Brush
    MAC 168 if I highlight

    MAC 217 always (and sometimes that’s all I need)
    I also use my 239 often and I’m really liking the 226 I just bought!
    I’ll use the 224 or 222 if I need any extra blending
    MAC 209 if I use gel eyeliner

  34. msharma3

    239, 217.
    kabuki for foundation (eco tools), powder brush for blush (i prefer it fluffy, easier to blend, not as concentrated). i exchanged my 226 for 239, really like the stiffness of 239. 226 did not for me that 217 didn’t do.

    though i would like to buy back ups of 217,239; specially 217.

  35. beachgal

    3 eyes, 2 cheeks – if doing extra highlighting will use another 1-2 for highlighting or pull in a makeup sponge depending on the highlighter product.

  36. grace

    for my full face of makeup:3-4 eye brushes and 3 face brushes.
    daily face: just my powder brush to set my powder

  37. Niki

    I use way too many brushes and although I love brushes that are multi-tasker, I tend to use my brushes for one type of product b/c I don’t like the co-mingling of products on a brush.

    Eyes: 6 or 7 brushes
    Revlon All-Over Shadow Brush
    Lancome 17 Belnding Brush or Estee Lauder 11e Blending Brush
    Revlon Contour Shadow Brush or Smashbox 15 Definer Brush (if I am wearing a contour/outer V color)
    Eco-Tools Angle Eyeliner/Eyebrow Brush
    Crown Brush – Italian Badger Spoolie
    Stila 4 Eyeliner Brush
    Crown Tools – Metal Eyelash Definer Comb

    Face: 4-7 brushes
    Bdellium Tools 955 Finishing Brush (to apply my loose mineral primer powder, if I am wearing it)
    Crown Brush – Syntho Eyeshadow Brush (to apply corrector/concealer)
    Prestige Crease Shadow Brush (to apply powder to set concealer)
    Smashbox 19 Face & Body Brush (to apply mineral foundation, if I am wearing it)
    Lancome 6 Blush Brush or Bdellium Tools 965 Duet Fibre Blusher Brush (to apply blush)
    Stila 24a Brush (to apply highlight, if I am wearing it)
    Smashbox 1 Powder Brush (to apply my finishing powder)

    • Joan

      I have an extensive collection of MAC brushes and love giving them near equal opportunity usage. Otherwise, why have them, and it’s just so much fun.

      Eyes: 239, 217, 219, 211/210, 208 & 226, 204, 214, 231

      Face: 187/130, 188/129, 116, 195, 182/179

      Lips: 318

  38. Leticia

    For face: 190 or 187 for foundation
    For cheeks: 129
    For face: Ecotools brush for finishing powder
    For eyes: 239, 217, 224, 275

  39. Meg

    Eyes: Flat shader brush, wide eyeshadow brush for browbone, fluffy blending brush, eyeliner brush

    Face: Flat topo Buffer Brush from CS, an angled brush for contour, blush brush and powder brush, a kabuki for blending

  40. Mel

    Face: RT Foundation Brush, angled one, for all over moisturizer and liquid foundation in the center of my face, RT Buffing Brush to buff in all over mineral foundation, RT Multitask Brush for bronzer, RT Blush Brush and RT Contour Brush for setting powder in the shinning areas.

    Eyes: RT Domed Shadow Brush for all over lid, RT Base Shadow Brush for crease, RT Brow Brush for shadow to brows and Sonia Kashuk Spoolie for blending and combing brows.

    (Real Techniques – RT)

  41. Leenie

    I usually use 5 to 6 brushes, it depends on what products I use.

  42. Jennifer

    About 4…2 for eyes, one for concealer and one for blush.