Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

MAC 128 Split Fibre Cheek Brush

MAC Semi-Precious Brushes: 128, 179, 234, 235

This is not a review. I will do my best to test these out over the next few days and write more of a review, but since I haven’t had ample time to test these, I’m not prepared to review or really answer any questions about these! I prefer only to answer questions once I’ve had a chance to use a product, so please give me some time and I would really appreciate your patience :) At that time, I will suggest uses, provide more detailed size measurements, etc. At this time, I did, at the very least, want to share photos of the new brushes.

  • 128 Split Fibre Cheek Brush is an unusual sized brush. It’s compact and densely packed with a slight rounded edge. It contains both synthetic and natural fibers. It seems smaller than the 116, almost like a flattened 109. This brush is $32.00 and limited edition.
  • 179 Angled Split Fibre Buffer Brush contains both natural and synthetic fibers. It’s comparable to the size of the 182, and the handle is similar (I don’t have a real 182 with that handle to compare, so I’m going by memory for that distinction, as mine have a SE handle). Also worth noting, MAC originally launched a 179 Body Buffer Brush with Skinsheen back in 2008, which is completely different from this one. This brush is $47.00 and limited edition.
  • 234 Split Fibre Eye Blending Brush is a slightly tapered, round-edged brush with a fluffy feel with the same split of synthetic and natural fibers.  This brush is $22.50 and limited edition.
  • 235 Split Fibre All Over Eye Brush is a flat, slightly stubby eye brush with a barely domed edge. It looks like a taller 214 in a way. It has a synthetic and natural mix of fibers. This brush is $30.00 and limited edition.

Generally, based on what I have heard from MAC artists in the past, synthetic brushes are often better for blending, as well as for applying cream and liquid products. Natural brushes are better for packing on color and initial application of powder products.

Do any of these catch your eye? Are you excited for new brushes?

See more photos! 

MAC 128 Split Fibre Cheek Brush

MAC 128 Split Fibre Cheek Brush

MAC 128 Split Fibre Cheek Brush

MAC 128 Split Fibre Cheek Brush

MAC 128 Split Fibre Cheek Brush

MAC 128 Split Fibre Cheek Brush

MAC 128 Split Fibre Cheek Brush

MAC 179 Angled Split Fibre Buffer Brush

MAC 179 Angled Split Fibre Buffer Brush

MAC 179 Angled Split Fibre Buffer Brush

MAC 179 Angled Split Fibre Buffer Brush

MAC 179 Angled Split Fibre Buffer Brush

MAC 234 Split Fibre Eye Blending Brush

MAC 234 Split Fibre Eye Blending Brush

MAC 234 Split Fibre Eye Blending Brush

MAC 234 Split Fibre Eye Blending Brush

MAC 234 Split Fibre Eye Blending Brush

MAC 235 Split Fibre All Over Eye Brush

MAC 235 Split Fibre All Over Eye Brush

MAC 235 Split Fibre All Over Eye Brush

MAC 235 Split Fibre All Over Eye Brush

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.

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79 thoughts on “MAC Semi-Precious Brushes: 128, 179, 234, 235 Photos

  1. that looks good! 😀

  2. selina

    Are these perm or LE? I really like the concept of these, I think I want to pick them up.

  3. i really want the 235, but i feel like the 234 would be hard to work with

  4. Catherine

    These look they should have been released with the Cruella part of Venomous Villains.

  5. Brie

    I pre-ordered the 128 and am excited to try applying foundation with it as well as cream and/or powder blush. The MAC rep mentioned how I could use the synthetic side to apply liquid or cream products, then flip it around to apply powders. I’m hoping it’ll serve as a double- or triple-duty brush!

    • madison

      how do you pre order?

      • Brie

        Well the MAC counter at my Nordstrom has a display out that you can’t purchase from yet but they’ll take a pre-order and hold the items for you as long as you leave your credit card info/contact info, then you can go back to pick it all up on the 7th :-) Not sure if other department stores are doing the same thing or not!

  6. Am very excited for these brushes…I wonder how current artists using them are liking them?

  7. Tania

    Hi, Christine.
    What would you use the MAC 128 for??
    Maybe foundation?


  8. Glitterati

    As they are released with SP, I assume they all work best with mineralized products, right?

    • Roo

      The face brushes should be good with mineralized products but I think I’d only use the eye brushes with emollient products (should have come out with the Big Bounce shadows!). I played with the whole collection tonight. The shadows are complex and work best patted on gently with a flat brush like the 242.

  9. marielouise

    YES! I can’t wait!

  10. Edelmc

    I am like a kid at Christmas looking forward to these brushes!!!

  11. Fay

    Hi Christine

    I know you just answered a question on limited availability …… but I remember when you posted the initial details of this collection you mentioned the brushes were limited edition but would run for a year or so (I can’t remember what the term for this is?) Is this still the case or will they just be available with the collection until it runs out?

    Kind regards x

    • Hi Fay,

      As far as I know, these were always going to be limited edition and when they sell out, they’re gone, though the press release says that they’re “limited life.” Based on the information MAC sent, the end date for selling this collection (which only means that it will be available, whatever is left, for at maximum time) until August 2011. In the past, limited life means they’ll sell for a finite duration but keep restocking – like Viva Glam Gaga ran for a year – but MAC did not specify that these would be restocked or that these would run for any longer period than the collection itself.

      • Fay

        Thanks for your amazing info as always! I will buy straight away everything I would like for my collection then! I will be interested to see what you think about them and how they perform after you have had chance to review!…….. ps I want to squeel with excitment that you replied to me I am a massive fan of your site! My sister will not believe I got a message from you when I tell her in the morning! ha! Any news on the International Jealousy Wakes competition? as I may need to start ebaying! Kind regards x

        • Hey Fay!

          I emailed all winners but I haven’t heard back from one, but they have another day to respond back. If they don’t, then I’ll have to pick an alternative winner. Once everyone confirms, then I post the first names :)

          Thank you!

  12. Tiffani

    They look pretty, but I’ve never been a fan of MAC’s brushes. Too expensive for me and I’ve found drugstore/Ulta brushes that work just as well as the MAC’s I used to use. I just can’t justify $20-$50 for a single brush ><

  13. I’ll buy them all for sure!!!!! From Semi precious I’m only interested in them (I also like geo pink)

  14. Danika

    great pictures Christine! I can’t wait for your review and thoughts of these, they look interesting but unless they are actually something special, I’ll be saving my money for school :p

  15. Cherokee

    I am really interested in these brushes. Thanks Christine, you are the bomb :))

  16. Susan

    Was it just me, but I was a bit confused by looking at these! Call me old fashion, but I want a regular brush! lol

  17. malia

    234 looks great, its been a looong time since I bought any brushes, they last forevs!!

  18. Keen Janine

    I want the 128, 234,and maybe the 179. I’m looking forward to using the 128 for foundation/blush.

  19. Dana

    These look so strange, I hope that means they are good brushes :) Looking forward to your review, as always :)

  20. Sarah

    i want all except not the 235. not a fan of eye brushes of its size.

  21. Gillian (AKA Munchy)

    I played around with these at nordstrom’s for about 45 minutes, and talked to one of the reps and I think I am going to pass. Their “construction” isn’t the best.

    • Really? What made you feel like quality was lacking?

    • Roo

      I played with them too and also had some concerns with construction. I know that they’re calling them split fibre but I don’t think that the two sides are actually supposed to split apart and form a gap and that’s what I saw happening with the buffer. I also found the bristles to be packed with uneven density and more stray or crooked bristles than I like to see. The handles and ferrules are the same quality as usual but I’m a bit wary about how the bristles are packed in aside from the usefulness of the split fibre style. I liked the cheek and blending brush best because I could actually use each side separately and get some benefit from having both sides.

  22. agreen2

    I’m going to buy the cheek and eye brushes for sure. I am a brush addict.

  23. Ali

    These look very interesting! I don’t know if I need them but I’d love to try them and they look so unusual I think I’m going to find it hard to resist buying at least one of them. Christine do you know what date they are going on sale in the UK?

  24. Crystal S.

    Did MAC of a blurb about what the point of split fibre was….except as a novelty?

    • Press release didn’t really say anything about them or how they’re to be used unfortunately! I presume as a “multi-tasking” brush. I can see it possibly working in some capacities – like the eyeshadow brush, you could use one side to apply, flip and use the other to blend. I just don’t see using liquid on one side and then powder on the other.

      • Chantal

        I was speaking to a nice MAC SA last week who had worked with them a bit. Her favorites were the eye blending brush and the 179 split “kabuki” brush. With the former, she liked it for doing eyeshadow lay-down on one side, then flipping it over for blending out the edges. For the latter, you could use the same principle for blush or bronzer, or even use it to contour/highlight in one step (by putting each product on one side of the brush, and then applying both simultaneously). I’m excited to try these out, myself!

        • So far, I can see more utility with one of the eye brushes. I’m not yet sold on the overall utility of these, though! We shall see.

  25. Fitrah

    I understand what they are supposed to do, but it seems like a gimmick to me. I don’t think they will work that well.

  26. This is such a cool concept. It makes the uses for a brush with different types of product limitless! Super smart of MAC, almost like getting two brushes in one. I’m intrigued by the 234, because I usually apply cream products with a fluffy brush anyways – the synthetic bristles makes it even better :)

  27. verybecca

    the all over eye looks so interesting but these seem too gimmicky in general.

  28. Rosanna

    hmm…then the “natural” side you use to pack on eyeshadow, the “synthetic” with the natural hair helps blend it in. That’s how I see it for the eye brushes anyway.

  29. Nic

    Wow, what an odd concept. Before I saw the pictures, I thought that by “split fibre” they meant it would be natural and synthetic blended together – I didn’t think they meant split down the middle! They seem gimmicky to me, though I am looking forward to seeing reviews on them. The only one that makes any sort of sense to me is the 235. I probably won’t be getting one, but I could see it possibly working well.

    • Diana

      My husband and myself had a conversation with our local MAC MUA last weekend about these brushes. I was intrigued by the concept. His point of view, of course, was “Why would you get duplicate brushes? So what if they are in the same brush handle. Don’t you have brushes like this with a single handle?” We didn’t get to touch or see the brushes. I am a little hesitant about the construction, too. After all of this information and really thinking about it, the only one I might get is the 235. I hate to admit it, but I do have brushes that do the same thing both synthetic and natural. I was all fired up to get all 4 of them, so much so that I called the Dallas Pro Store to see when I could order them. Unless Christine has something marvelous to say about them, I don’t think so. I love it that this forum can be a “think tank” for stuff and make you see things a different way. I get tunnel vision where MAC is concerned.

  30. Katie

    These seem very cool! I am crossing my fingers for a good review from you, Christine!

  31. Gretchen

    How did you get a hold of these? Were you able to get the remaining makeup products as well?

  32. Joanna

    I want all but the 179. I don’t like stubby brushes that don’t fit in my brush holder!

  33. Whitney

    I’ve seen enough MAC collections to have lost my, “ASDFLKOMG MUST HAVE IT ALL”-mentality… That being said, I’m always excited for new tools especially. These do actually leave me a little bit miffed!
    I find myself more of a ‘tip of the brush’ type of artist, so I don’t know how well these split-fiber brushes would work for me. I’m curious to see your review, since this is a very unconventional style of brush!

    Who knows, maybe they’ll be a new must-have? I’ll have to see them in person to decide!

  34. Madison

    i reeeeaaalllllyyy want the 179 :)

  35. Iqra

    Hey !
    How does the 128 compare to 129?

    Thanks !

  36. Jasmine

    they look so pretty!and will be getting all of em but it doesnt make sense to me to make a full sized Mac brush limited edition thats just my opinion

  37. Sabrina

    Christine do you know if the brushes are made in France, canada or Japan?

  38. edelmc

    I am really looking forward to these but not necessarily for the duo use (although I am curious about that)
    I think the cheek brush is slightly smaller than anything I have and would be ideal of highlighting (one side for powder and the other for cream/liquid)
    the smaller shadow brush looks slightly slimmer and longer than anything i own so it would be great for detailing and I love applying foundation with my 182 so maybe using the kabuki brush in this collection would give me a different finish/coverage….cant wait to see what yo think of them christine…..

  39. Not sure I’m buying into this. But I will definitely be interested in going to my local pro store and having the people there show me what they’re good for before I make any final judgment calls.

  40. Harleigh

    I’m a bit skeptical about this. I can understand that they want to simplify things, but I can’t help but imagine that it would make the whole process a bit more clumsy.

  41. Natalie

    It’s funny – I’m SO over the whole OMG LE! MUST BUY! thing as others have stated, but when it comes to brushes I’m not! I can always find a use for a brush! I even really like the holiday/Nordie’s brush bags, although I don’t ever buy them for myself (though I’ll be picking up the Cine-Matics ones). I’m really excited to get these!

  42. Ericka

    I think that I want the 128, 234, and 235. I was going to buy the 190 and 116 but I think that the 128 would be a better match since it is like a 2 for 1. I was considering the 227 but I think that the 235 would be a good match as well. I tend to like the LE brushes from MAC. I am still loving the 131, 226, 214, and 180. I can’t wait for your reviews on these brushes.

  43. Szlamizita

    Hi Christine!
    Did you get the remaining eyeshadows?Here the collection comes out tomorrow and I always like to check your reviews before making a decision about what to get from a collection.
    By the way there is no way I’m gonna buy the brushes…its frustrating that prices are at least 1,5x here…I always have to think it through more carefully what to get.

  44. Nadia

    These seem like pure gimmick to me. When I first saw photos of these, I thought they were duo-fibre brushes similar to 187 or 188. That would have been better in a way. Personally I don’t use the belly of the brush to apply things (apart from when I pack shadow on the lid using 239). Otherwise I always use the tips of brushes especially for blending! These brushes are made like they’re supposed to be used flat. I’ll pass.

    • Allison

      My understanding with these brushes is that you use the synthetic side alone for liquids, the flip over to use the natural hair side. You don’t really use it head on together, its a brush that has the benefits of both synthetic and natural hair, but w/out having two separate brushes. I will def be grabbing the kabuki, it looks awesome and is so soft!

      • I would skin the kabuki actually I lever like MAC take on it and honestly the pure synthetic kabuki’s that are out work wonderfully with powder/creams and liquids.

        I can maybe see the draw in these, but I honestly switched over to almost all synthetic brush that get the job done just as well if not better in some cases to there natural hair counterparts.

  45. Krista

    This looks like an really interesting set of brushes. Really excited to know how they do the job since I’ve long been debating whether or not to choose synthetic over natural.

  46. Sam

    I feel like I would forget about the different sides, use the whole brush like I normally do, and get all kinds of liquid/gel crap in the natural fibres. No thanks. Maybe it’s supposed to bring simplicity but these seem more complex. But they are beautiful 😀

  47. I am obsessing over the 179… I will definitely pick up that one to add to my collection!

  48. sarah

    I am so excited for these! I’ve already ordered the 128, 234 and 235 and cannot wait till they arrive!! (They are already available online if you have a Pro Card.) I have seen the display at my local Mac store and they look amazing. I really think they should be permanent.

  49. seems very gimmicky !

  50. Coco

    I’m so excited for these! The brushes look like a really cool concept and hopefully they work just as well (cross my fingers) :]]!!

  51. mona

    plz grade and review these.. AS TO WHICH ONES ARE A MUST HAVE AND HOW THEY WOULD BE CHRISTINE!!! I WOULD LOVE TO BUY THEM AND ADD THEM TO MY COLLECITON.. just not sure if they would be necessary!

  52. Sara

    I was speaking with a sales associate at my local Mac counter today and talking about these brushes and she was explaining to me that the point in having the split dual fibre is supposed to beneficial for this collection because they are mineralized products. Mineralized products can be used wet or dry, the split dual fibre brush has one side that is better used dry and one side that can be used wet. When she explained it to me that way it made a lot more sense as to why these brushes are made the way they are and why they came out with this collection. It actually seems like a pretty good idea. Whether it works out or not is another question, but I personally may just be sucked into buying a couple.

  53. romina

    234 for sure or I just may wait when they go on sale at the CCO

  54. I am not a makeup artist. I dont need something fancy like this…and if I was a makeup artist, I probably would be skilled enough to apply makeup so well with the existing tools for all sorts of events that I wouldnt need this. Better spend my money on something other than makeup.

  55. jennina

    Christine, does your MAC 179 brush has wording “China” underneath the handle? My mom bought me this. I thought it was made in Japan like other brushes. Didn’t expect it to be made in China.

  56. rowan

    the 128 is AMAZING at buffing in foundation.

  57. Mel

    Did you ever review these brushes Christine? I can seem to find a review.