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It can get pretty overwhelming to go to Sephora’s brush aisle, or the “beauty tools” section in an online store. With so many brushes, each serving a special purpose, one might start to wonder: do I need ALL of them? If you’re a newbie in makeup and you want to know more about what brushes are available, the uses, and which ones you need in your collection, you’ve come to the right place!

Why Brushes?

It’s perfectly alright for you to use your fingers to smooth on foundation, concealer – even your eyeshadow. However, using a brush can provide a better coverage for a foundation and it allows you to be more precise in your application. You can use your fingers to dab on some eyeshadow all over the lids as a wash of colour. But to do some crease work, using a brush would definitely be easier.

Common Brushes And Their Uses

Face Brushes

1. Flat top kabuki brush

brushes_ flat top kabuki

Brushes like these are great for blending in foundation. The brushes are dense to provide higher coverage. You can use this brush for both liquid and mineral powder foundation.

2. Powder Brush

brushes_real techniques powder brushbrushes_real techniques powder brush

This brush is really straight forward. You use it to set your foundation and concealer. If you have a travel size powder brush, you can use it for touch-ups on the go. Powder brushes are usually dense, but they’re not tightly-packed and they’re really fluffy!

3. Angled Blush Brush

brushes_angled blush

An angled blush brush is great as a contour brush. Its angular shape gives precision in blush and contour shade application. Just in case you only have the budget for ONE brush, this angled blush brush can be doubled up as a powder brush too. It’s fluffy and it can dust the right amount of powder to set your foundation.

Eye Brushes

1. Flat Shader Brush

brushes_flat shader


You need a flat shader brush that can pick up eyeshadow and pack it on the lid. This is especially helpful if you want to make the eyeshadow you’re using to pop. It’s also very useful for the times when you are using any eyeshadow that has fall-out, or if you’re using pigments. The brush is dense and flat that it picks up a lot of product at one go, and it allows you to dab on the shadow instead of swiping it- which can lead to eyeshadow fallout.

2. Blending Brush

brushes_mac 217

If there is one eye brush you need in your life, it is the blending brush. ANY eyeshadow look will benefit from a blending brush. Blending your eyeshadow gives it a very seamless look and it gets rid of harsh lines that can make your eyeshadow look unnatural.

You can use this brush for anything from dusting an all over lid colour, applying a crease colour and to blending out your eyeshadow. Our favourite is the cult favourite- MAC 217. Makeup artist Wayne Goss and Tanya Burr even use the brush to blend out their concealer sometimes!

3. Pencil Brush



A pencil brush is a small tapered brush that allows you to do more detailed and intricate eyeshadow work. You can use this brush to apply a shimmery shadow to the inner corners of the eyes to make you look more awake, or even to smoke out the bottom lash line. You can also use it to apply a crease colour to create a cut crease look, and to blend out eyeliner on the top or bottom lash line to make it look more subtle.

I’m New. What Brushes Do I Need?

Face Brushes

We’d say go for all the brushes we stated above! However, if you are on a budget, you can make do with an angled blush brush and a foundation brush (in this case, a flat top kabuki). Let the blush brush double up as a powder brush. Or, you can skip the foundation brush, as you can get away with putting on your foundation with your fingers. Just make sure you wash them before application!

Eye brushes

The blending brush. That’s the most important thing you need in the world of eyeshadow. Wipe the brush thoroughly with a tissue before going in with another shade. Alternatively, you can get the makeup brush cleanser from Sephora at SGD 13 where you can just spritz it on the brush, wipe it off, and use it immediately.

Must I wash my brushes?

Yes, yes and YES! Brushes breed bacteria- especially when you’re not adamant about washing them. It’s recommended that you wash your brushes once a week, if you use them every single day. But of course, we understand that it takes awhile for us to wash the brushes, and for it to dry! Try your best to wash them as often as you can. You wouldn’t want to spread all the bacteria on your face now, would you?

Here’s a video on how you can wash your brushes effectively, and on a budget too!

Where Can I Get Good Brushes?

1. Elf

Elf carries really affordable (I mean, SERIOUSLY affordable) brushes that are great for beginners! Their brushes run from SGD 4 to SGD 10. Their eye brushes are worth the money, but not so much the face brushes. You can get them online at http://shopping-district.net.

2. 13rushes

13rushes is a Singapore-based company that manufactures amazing brushes at an affordable price. You’ll be happy to know that they’re cruelty-free! The brushes are incredibly soft and do a wonderful job at creating a flawless face.

3. Zoeva

This Danish brand produces really affordable and good quality brushes. The price for their brush set is quite affordable as well.

4. Sigma

Alternatively, you can try Sigma brushes that you can get online. It’s more expensive, but it is a very well-known brand in the beauty community.

5. MAC

You can get your hands on the coveted MAC 217 brush at all MAC counters at SGD41. It’s really pricey for a brush, but it is worth it if you take care of it properly!