Hakuhodo J004G & J242G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat Reviews & Photos

Hakuhodo J004G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat
Hakuhodo J004G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat

Hakuhodo J004G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat ($20.00) is a small, dome-shaped, flat eyeshadow brush made out of goat hair. The brush head is 10mm in length, 9mm in width, and 3mm in thickness. It had a total length of 145mm with a pinched, metal ferrule. It’s incredibly soft and silky–it feels like the brush moves at once, so I never felt the individual bristles–and excellent for packing and patting on eyeshadow or blending two shades together. For me, this shape and style of brush is a workhorse, because it can be used to apply, blend, and diffuse eyeshadow all on its own, so it is a true multi-tasker.

It is the most similar brush I’ve found in terms of general shape and feel to MAC 239 ($25). The 239 has a flatter edge with a bit more firmness, while the J004G has a slightly fluffier, lighter feel and is a bit bigger overall. The J242G (reviewed in the next paragraph) is narrower and flatter in comparison to the 239. The 239 is more like a mix of the J004G and J242G, but both are worth considering as alternatives to MAC’s 239. Just for reference, the measures of the 239 are as follows: is 8.5mm in length, 9.5mm in width, and 3mm in thickness. It had a total length of 170mm with a pinched, metal ferrule. The 239 is also much longer in total, as Hakuhodo’s handles run shorter.

Hakuhodo J242G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat ($18.00) is a small, flat eyeshadow brush with a slightly tapered edge made with a mix of goat and synthetic bristles. The brush head is 9mm in length, 7mm in width, and 2mm in thickness. It had a total length of 144mm with a pinched, metal ferrule. It’s a narrower eyeshadow brush that’s great for packing or patting on eyeshadow on the inner portion of the lid or for more precise color application if you’re applying more than two shades on the eyelid and want them to be more distinct. The brush is soft and silky, never rough or scratchy, so I also like it for patting on color along the lower lash line using the edge.

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Hakuhodo J004G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat
Hakuhodo J004G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat

Hakuhodo J004G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat
Hakuhodo J004G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat

Hakuhodo J004G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat
Hakuhodo J004G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat

Hakuhodo J004G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat
Hakuhodo J004G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat

Hakuhodo J004G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat
Hakuhodo J004G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat

MAC 239 vs. Hakuhodo J004G
MAC 239 vs. Hakuhodo J004G

MAC 239 vs. Hakuhodo J004G
MAC 239 vs. Hakuhodo J004G

MAC 239 vs. Hakuhodo J004G
MAC 239 vs. Hakuhodo J004G

MAC 239 vs. Hakuhodo J004G
MAC 239 vs. Hakuhodo J004G

Hakuhodo J242G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat
Hakuhodo J242G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat

Hakuhodo J242G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat
Hakuhodo J242G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat

Hakuhodo J242G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat
Hakuhodo J242G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat

Hakuhodo J242G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat
Hakuhodo J242G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat

Hakuhodo J242G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat
Hakuhodo J242G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat

Hakuhodo J242G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat
Hakuhodo J242G Eyeshadow Brush Round & Flat

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About the Reviewer

Christine has normal-to-dry skin with areas of dryness (cheeks, nose, and under the eyes). She has a light-medium skintone with subtle, warmer yellow undertones. Her best foundation matches include: Tarte Rainforest of the Sea in Light-Medium Neutral (best match), Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup in Desert Beige 2N1, Giorgio Armani Maestro Glow in 4.0, Hourglass Warm Ivory Vanish Seamless Finish, Laura Mercier Candleglow Soft Luminous in Dusk, MAC NC20/NC25, Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Liquid in Y305 (140). (For more information, please check the FAQ.)

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38 Comments

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It’s funny you reviewed the 242 because I was about to purchase it. I wanted something similar to an Elizabeth Arden brush I have that is too scratchy for the eyes and this seemed perfect for the inner or outer corners. Placing my first Hakuhodo order in a couple of days.

Haha, yes! So am I. I’m always looking for a good deal on a brush.
I’m limiting myself to a hundred dollars and I need a blush brush, so I’m thinking these two and J5543. What do you think? I want a soft blush brush that’s good with frosty blushes and blends easily.

I really need to try a greater variety of brushes that are available here – these ones look awesome, but at some point I’ll have to investigate local, LOL! The only problem is that there’s only really one ‘affordable’ range that has samples out for you to feel, which is really important. I could just get that brand, but to be honest I wasn’t really impressed with how they felt! 😛 We have Real Techniques and Ecotools here, but no ‘testers’, and the sets are relatively expensive (~$50). Since I’m very picky with the softness on the skin, this is, uh, tricky. 😉

Since I am technically a n00b with brushes, however, investing in expensive (albeit awesome) ones from overseas seems like maybe getting ahead of myself. I know there are big sets online that you can get for very cheap, but like I said, I’m ridiculously picky about the feel.

Such problems to have in life, eh? 😉

Real Techniques is a great brand in general, though I’m not so familiar with their eye brushes (primarily their face ones). In general, good synthetics are usually quite soft–softer than so-so natural bristles. Hmm, I guess what I’m trying to say is on average, a synthetic is usually soft, but natural bristles can be a total hit or miss (as I’ve experienced poor brushes from MAC, NARS, Guerlain, etc.!).

If you’re really new to brushes and aren’t sure what shapes or sizes you’re going to like most, I usually advocate for a cheaper, larger set of synthetics. I have so many brushes that I don’t like and never use, even ones that feel lovely and have no issues with… I just don’t find the shape to be useful based on how I use my brushes, so it’s key to figure out what you like best – then if you want to invest in a higher quality or different material brush of similar shape and size, then you’ll be getting something you’ll use all the time.

I have a few Real Techniques eye brushes, I think they are soft, and quite nice. I might not be very sensitive, though. Pity you can’t squeeze them a bit before buying. It’s always tricky buying things untried.

How much shorter than the 239 are we talking? I love my 239 brushes and it’d be nice to have alternatives, but I also like fairly long handles since I’ve got longer fingers. Thanks 🙂

Hey Carrie!

The 239 has a total length of 170mm, and the J004G has a total length of 145mm. I don’t consider Hakuhodo to be short-handled, but they are shorter-handled on average (and Sephora Pro’s brushes are longer on average).

Hi Christine! Like you, I have a love affair with the 239, even when compared to “higher-end” brands like this… I guess my question is, do you still reach for the 239 over these?

I use the J004G, 239, and Chikuhodo GSN-09 all interchangeably these days, but I own like 7 239s, so I probably use it more often since I have so many!

I like the shape of these. They look perfect for lid work and they’re cheaper than MAC. I need to order one of these soon

Hakuhodo has expensive shipping imo! If they cut their shipping cost a bit, I’d be all for buying from them more often! It would help their accessibility too.

hey christine. I had heard so much abt Hakuhodo but was always under the impression that the brushes might cost over $30 or so each. In the 20s is something i can consider ha! I love the mac 217 shape as I can blend and apply everything using one. But it is incredible scratchy for me so i gave it away. Which Hakuhodo brush iyo shape wise is the most similar to 217?? something fluffier than the 04G i suppose. im not too concerned abt natural vs goat as I just started out w/ eye makeup

After all these years of Christine’s hard work and diligence, her recommendations are flawless and well-reasoned. Thank you Christine for the fact that you essentially can and do settle ambivalent disputes re product desires. If I am unsure, I check here now. That provides me my hands-down decision. XO Beth in Pgh

The J004G looks like a great brush. I wish they would post the shipping costs on their website without having to go through the checkout process. That is a big turnoff for me.

Do you think the current MAC 239 brush is as good quality as the older ones?

I can’t remember the last time I bought a 239, so it’s hard for me to say (and mine are obviously mixed together, so I don’t know which was bought when!). I still like all of mine, though!

I own both and use them interchangeably with the Mac 239. I love the J004G, it’s a smidgen narrower than the 239. It’s a great brush and I use it every week. I love my Hakuhodo brushes.

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