Brush Basics

Friday, December 30, 2011

Those pink pearls are actually real!
They were a gift to me from Ben's Grandma. Isn't that sweet?
Hello again friends! 

I am so stoked to be here with you. I can't wait for you to read this post. Learning to use makeup brushes changed my entire makeup appearance and helped 'immensely' in makeup application and blending. Do you ever look through a magazine and wonder "WHY does my makeup NEVER turn out like that?" Well, today I'm going to give you the tools to get it beauty queen.

Since we've already taken care of the introductions (See 'About the Busy Bee' if you haven't) let's get down to BUSINESS! :) Woohoo....

Now some of you may find these first few blogs basic, but to others this will be the makeup game changer- so bear with me. To all of you seasoned brush users- maybe you will even learn something you didn't know.

*Just a quick note about buying brushes: You can find brushes in the makeup section of almost any store that carries beauty supplies. Sephora has amazing brushes. You can also find them at Walmart, Walgreens, Rite Aid, CVS and even the Dollar General! Serious! If you're on a budget- do what you must. The point is, you don't have to spend a fortune to look AMAZING girls! Just buy within your budget and collect over time as you have the ability.

To keep this simple, I am just going to explain each brush and what it does, ok? Here we go...

Concealer/Foundation Brush: 
This brush is used to apply your foundation. Seem odd to paint on your foundation? Well trust me, it's worth it. You will be amazed at how 'little' foundation you need when using it. I use 'maybe' a pea-sized amount (or less) for each cheek. You can thank me later. ;)

Eye Primer Brush: (or at least that's what I call it):
This brush is used to apply your eye primer. I know some of you just freaked out like "What's eye primer?" Chill, I'm covering ALL the details and benefits of eye primer in my next post. All you need to know is that you need it! It's a miracle worker. I seriously only use a 'teeny-tiny' dot for each eye. Just put a little on your brush and 'paint' it evenly over your whole eye brow - lash to brow bone. DONE! *This is just one example of a primer brush, but you will be able to find one similar at most stores.

After I 'prime' my eyes, I use a light or neutral color and go all over my eyebrow with it- from brow bone to lash. This will 'set' your primer in place, so to speak, and gets the palate all ready for more color. Just as an example, if I'm wearing purples on my eyes, I might start with a super light purple all over. *Notice these brushes are fluffy and big- hence the name 'fluff'. They are excellent for getting the light color evenly distributed all over the eye.

Definition Brushes: 
Now that you've got your color all over, you can start playing with darker colors in the 'crease' of your eye and on the 'lid'. For your lid, you would generally use a brush that looks something like the brush shown in the middle of this picture. For the crease, the top and bottom brush are both excellent. You will get good color definition by sweeping the brush back and forth in the crease. The same back and forth motion applies to the lid.

Eyeliner/Eyebrow Brush: 
Now that you've got some color on your eyes, you need a liner. I will often use the darkest color in an eyeshadow palate for my eyeliner. The narrow tip on this brush is made for that very purpose. Simply dab the brush in the color and line away!- top & bottom. It's amazing how simple and how pretty this can look. The other end of this brush is ideal for eyebrows. **Eyebrow tip: To tame unruly brows, put a 'little' gel or hair putty on each brow and brush it through with this brush. Just like magic, your eyebrows will stay put all day!

Powder/Bronzing Fan Brushes: 
Very simple: The large round brush (top) will evenly distribute powder all over your face. It is very important to 'set' your foundation with a powder so that you get a beautiful matte finish every time.

The fan-shaped brush (bottom) will 'dust' bronzer evenly over your face. It's perfect because it doesn't get too much bronzer on any one place on your skin, it just sort of 'fans' it on nicely. *Sometimes I will mix it up and use a large powder brush for my bronzer instead. Bottom line, you don't have to have a bronzing fan, but they do help.

Blush Brush:  
The last thing you need to complete your brushed look is a blush brush. These angled brushes are perfect for blending the blush flawlessly on top of your powder and bronzer. Start on the apples of your cheeks and work your way up near your temples being careful not to get any in your hairline.

Whew... Are you still with me? :) That was a lot of typing.

I am purposefully starting out with this post on makeup brushes so that we can build on the basics of makeup artistry. In the future we will learn all the exciting ways to create the ever-so-famous 'smokey eye' and so on, but it's best to start with the tools needed to get there!

Love you all!... and have fun seeking out some brushes!


  1. Melissa,
    I just found your blog via Birchbox! So excited to see your interview w/ the Juice Beauty CEO soon! .....I'm new to makeup (again, We've been on a six year hiatus ,makeup and I , during my college and now years.....For the blush application, when you say "temples" do you mean cheekbone or literally temple? Thanks so much for this blog! I think this will be an invaluable tool for me (your blog) as I relearn all I've forgotten and much more about makeup, before I get up my nerve to start using it again for important things like graduation and real job interviews

  2. Hi Rachelle!!

    What I actually meant to say there was 'top of the cheek bone'. :) Thanks for bringing it to my attention. I will correct it. And thank you so much for checking out The Bee's Knees!


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