Today, our super special Total Beauty Guest Blogger is Christine Mielke, founder and editor-in-chief of Temptalia -- a go-to destination for the latest news, reviews, and how-tos on all your favorite beauty products. Here, she gives us advice on makeup brushes -- which are a magical mystery to many!
Every beauty buff needs to have their fair share of quality brushes designed especially for the face; from blush to bronzer. Make sure you know your beauty brush basics and MAC Makeup basics before you head off on a spending spree -- it'll add up before you know it!
129 Powder/Blush Brush ($34.00) is your best bet for general blush application. Seriously, I'm constantly reaching for this brush whenever I go to apply colored blush. If you can only afford one face brush, this is the one I recommend getting first, because it can apply blush, highlighters, and do a little bit of buffing in a pinch. It's thick, dense, and deliciously soft on the skin. (And don't be fooled by the 129 in the brush sets -- it is not at all the same in regards to quality.)
138 Tapered Face Brush ($52.00) is a domed-shaped brush, much more tapered than many powder brushes. It's excellent for both highlighting, shaping, and contouring the face -- whatever tickles your fancy!
165 Tapered Cheek/Highlight Brush ($34.00) is like a thinner, smaller version of the 138, and it's $18 less -- so if you're on a tight budget, you might think about picking up this one instead. I love, love, LOVE this one for highlighting. The tapered end really makes placement of highlighting powders ridiculously easy.
168 Large Angled Contour Brush ($32.00) is THE brush to have handy if you ever want to sculpt and shape your face. The angled, slightly-fluffy-and-not-overly-dense brush is perfect for making cheekbones pop, jaw lines thin instantaneously, and for polishing the face.
182 Buffer Brush ($45.00) is an essential face brush to have. I love it so much that I have two, because it is so phenomenal and perfect for a variety of jobs. Ultimately, buffer brushes are designed to finish your face, whether it's blending contouring and brushing colors together, applying loose powder, or just blending all your face products together. You can buff out harsh blushes by moving this brush in small circles, so you can wear Frankly Scarlet blush without fear. I love it to apply foundation personally, as it gives a polished, streak-free result. Worth every single penny.
187 Duo Fibre Brush ($42.00) is a must-have brush if you love mineralize skinfinishes. Yes, it is indeed a fabulous brush for applying those delicious baked goodies brands put out from time to time. The way the brush is designed uses a blend of goat and synthetic fibers and it allows for softer, lighter application of product. It's also known as a stippling brush (for those trying to find a dupe), and it works well with highlighting (if you don't need so much precision).
188 Small Duo Fibre Face Brush ($34.00) is a smaller version of the 187 Duo Fibre Brush, and it works in similar ways. However, I do find that this brush is not a substitute for the 187, but more like a complement. This brush works best with creamy products, like MAC blushcremes and cream colour bases. In the summer, I love wearing blushcremes layered with a powder blush for more long-wearing color in the hotter months!
195 Concealer Brush ($22.00) recently debuted, and it is superior to the 194 Concealer Brush. It's a thin, firm bristled brush that holds its shape and easily applies concealing products, but it is also great for dabbing liquid foundations onto the skin (to then be smoothed and spread out using a face brush like the 182, 187, or 190). I find using a concealer brush to apply liquids onto the face helps waste less product than directly applying liquid to a fluffier face brush or sponge.