A Basic Brush Set-Face Brushes: Foundation Brush

I feel like I should start my first post in a while with some witty banter where you chuckle when you read my startlingly dry and sarcastic hello. Alas, I am without such an ingenious opening. I didn't want to start with yet another "I thought I'd post about . . . " I digress. One of the many questions in this universe that I feel needs tending to is what are the minimum must-have brushes a girl needs. I am going to do a series of posts on must-have make-up brushes and this is my first step.

Here is my mind-blinding or mind-numbing (your choice of which) insight into the foundation brush, which I feel is an absolute essential to a brush collection. I can almost hear you say "well, duh!" I did need to start off with the most obvious one. Foundation brushes are shaped thinly so that the foundation is concentrated within the bristles and are not dispersed in the application. In contrast, a large powder brush disperses powder over a large surface whereas the synthetic fibres of a foundation brush hold emollient products densely packed within a tight area. I personally prefer a traditionally shaped foundation brush versus ones with a squared-head because the domed shape helps me apply foundation in the nooks and crannies of the face easier.

Foundation brushes are also a really good applicator for cream blushes. True, the brush is a bit bigger than a brush meant for cream blushes but the following tutorial explains how to accomplish multi-tasking the foundation brush. It is a very simple, straightforward process and refer back to my diagram on blush placement if necessary.

What I used:

  • MAC 190
  • Bobbi Brown Pot Rouge in Milk Chocolate
Step 1:
Dip the dip into the cream blush and pat onto the blush to pick up pigment. I find that tapping it onto the brush picks up the right amount rather than "scooping" the blush onto the brush. Remember, you can always intensify your blush later.

Step 2:
Smile and find the apple of your cheek. Place the brush on the middle of the apple of the cheek. I try not place the blush any closer to my nose than the inner corner of the iris. You're going to get a splotch of colour here.

Step 3:
With short, feathering strokes, spread the blush with your foundation brush.

Step 4:
Keep blending out the blush with light, short strokes towards the temple.

Step 5:
Blend out any streaks you might have. Voila, we're done.

Washing and Drying
Cleaning your foundation brushes is very important and I really recommend washing them as often as possible. I have a few general guidelines on washing brushes that might be of use:
  • Don't use overly harsh soaps or any conditioners on your brushes. Baby shampoo is my brush cleanser of choice as it is very gentle, effective, and inexpensive. I get one that promises no baby tears and costs roughly $2. Also, this doesn't strip your brushes and you won't be tempted to use conditioner either. Your hair might love the ingredients in your conditioner, but your skin might be sensitive to them. Rubbing conditioner from your foundation brush to all over your face can clog your pores.
  • Don't allow water to seep into the braiding of your brushes. Try not to let water get past the indicated level on your brushes. It might not make a difference now, but with continued use it might end up loosening the glue and your brushes won't last as long as you'd like.
  • Squeeze the water from your brushes after washing them. This way, they will dry faster.
  • Lie your brushes flat after washing them and place a tissue under them so that the water gets absorbed and your brushes don't wallow in the water.


Kohl Girl said...

Anu - What lipstick color are you wearing in the photos? Is it also the pot rouge? Its very flattering.

12:12 PM
Anonymous said...

Thanks for the brush tutorial. It is so timely for me!

I had bought the MAC foundation brush last week. Best investment I ever made. The makeup artist at the MAC counter was so fun ( a dead ringer for RuPaul) that I cannot resist going back for more makeup just to watch him and his antics! He gave me a good tutorial on putting on my foundation. He told me to paint foundation in Indian Stripes (one on each cheek, nose and forehead),then to hold the brush at the very end and make little flicking motions towards the edges of my face to spread the foundation. Then go back and fill in the nooks and crannies of my nose and eyes. The foundation spread so evenly with no dragging on the skin.

Now to wash the brush out. Do you wash it out everytime you use it?

6:34 AM
Anu said...

Hey Kohl Girl:
I'm wearing mac del rio lipstick and to me it's a classic. it flatters such a great variety of desi skintones. also, definately give mac's road to del rio a try. it's a luster formula so it's sheerer and softer and soooo gorgeous.

Hey anonymous:
I'm glad the search for a foundation brush went well. The make-up artist seems very nice. I try to wash my brush as often as possible, like say once a day. If I can't I make sure I clean it with brush cleaner so while I haven't washed it, it's still relatively clean.

12:14 AM

ranjani said...

This blush and lipstick combo is yummy:)
You look fabulous as always!

5:13 PM
Lalitha said...

So useful, thanks! A set of eye/shadow brushes next please! I looked at the MAC site and my goodness, they have like 30 on there, no idea where to start!!

Now for the questions... :-)

Do you use the brush damp? I've heard both versions...

also, not exactly to do with this last post but a lot of 'caramel' women (myself included) have dark discoloration around their lips... and you suspiciously don't - concealer or just good luck?

Thank you!

10:58 AM
Anu said...

Hey ranjani,
thank hon! del rio is a classic for me. I only wish it weren't so drying :(.

Hey lalitha,
I'm working on the eyeshadow brushes as we speak.

I sometimes make the bristles of my brushes wet if I really want intense colour/metallic finish. Depends on my mood really.

I have fairly good genes skintone wise since it's even and don't wear foundation. the BANE of my existence is my %#zR#%#^*&@*(@() undereye circles. I have such a hard time with them.

11:12 PM

Gretchen's Beauty Blog said...

Oooohhh, thank you for the tips! Liquid or cream blush is one of my favorite types of makeup. It looks so natural, and I really your application here. I have a foundation brush that I rarely use (b/c I'm more of a powder foundation person), so I will have to check this out. You've also made me covet BB's cream blush.

8:05 AM
Anu said...

hey gretcen's beauty blog,

bobbi's pot rouges are so gorgoues :). i am glad the post helped.

10:06 AM

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