Ok, so if you’ve ever fallen into the black hole that is internet makeup tutorials (aka all of us), then you’ve probably been exposed to the endless makeup brushes that those 15-year-old YouTube stars use. But which makeup brushes do you actually need? I mean, we love contouring as much as the next betch, and we also enjoy a perfect smoky eye, but do you really need a different brush for your crease, brow bone, and smudging? Not so much. Read on to find out which makeup brushes your vanity can do without, and which ones ACTUALLY need (and where to use them), courtesy of Jane Iredale’s new (and chicly designed) brush collection.
1. Eyeshadow Brush
Jane Iredale’s Chisel Shader Brush is perfect for both powder and cream eyeshadows, and can be used to lay down the eyeshadow from the lash line to the brow bone so you won’t need another brush. The densely packed, short bristles make it easy to build layers of shadow without smudging.
2. Crease Brush
A brush with long, soft bristles helps to blend a multicolored eye look so you don’t end up with streaky raccoon eyes. If you’ve ever seen someone walking around with unblended eyeshadow, you know why a crease brush is necessary.
3. Powder Foundation Brush
If you’re into powder foundations or bronzers, then a long-bristled, flat-topped brush like The Handi Brush can be used to dab on the powder, then buff out after applying. Since the bristles are so dense, you won’t lose or waste makeup in the application process.
4. Liquid Foundation Brush
If you’re a liquid foundation kinda betch, you need a large, rounded, densely packed brush like a Kabuki Brush for an application that you can buff on evenly for the best coverage. Yes, you really do need a different brush for each type of foundation. Sorry, I don’t make the rules.
5. Contour Brush
If you want to properly achieve a transformation as dominant as Kim K’s, then you’re going to need a contour brush (and a lot of other work—but most importantly, a contour brush). The brush also doubles as a blush brush and is really used to enhance any/all features. Contour brushes should be of medium density and have an angled top. Those of you who still haven’t figured out how to contour can save a little money by not bothering with this type of brush.
6. Fan Brush
Ok, so you really only need this brush if you’re obsessed with highlighters. Which, if you’ve read this far into the story, odds are you take angled selfies just to get a glimpse of your glowing highlighter. There’s just something about having shimmering cheeks that makes us feel better about ourselves. A soft, long-bristled, fan-shaped brush should be dabbed into a highlighter and then spread above your cheekbones. If you’re one of those people who doesn’t believe in highlighter and thinks it’s all a scam to get us to buy repackaged eyeshadow, you can skip the fan brush.
7. Angle Liner/Brow Brush
Short, thin, angled brushes like Jane Iredale’s Angle Liner/Brow Brush will help to apply eyeliner and fill in your brows without making you look like Oscar The Grouch. So yeah, you need one of these in your stash.
8. Concealer Brush
A rounded, flat, dense brush with medium to short bristles allows you to apply and blend liquid or cream concealer evenly, and with control so you don’t end up having white rings around your eyes when someone uses the camera’s flash.