Top 7 Types Of Makeup Brushes To Own

If you’re wondering if you really need 7 makeup brushes, my answer is…maybe. Are you similar to me? A person who needs each and every cosmetic brush to be available in five different colors and sizes? Or do you like to use a few crusty ol’ utensils (ahem, clean your brushes quickly) and your fingers to do your makeup? I’ve come here to provide you this very extensive, very useful guide to the 7 primary sorts of makeup brushes you’ll come across, regardless of where you lie on the spectrum.

7 Types Of Makeup Brushes

Mascara wand

What it is?

Disposable tester applicators don’t just belong on the makeup store’s display shelves. These mascara wands, aka spoolie brushes, belong in your makeup bag, too. The tips have 360-degree synthetic bristles (kinda like a pipe cleaner) and often have bendable heads so you can shape them how you want. You might think you don’t need extra spoolie wands when your mascara comes with a built-in one, but once you realize how multipurpose these little guys are, you’ll understand why they’re first on this list.

Disposable tester applicators don’t belong just on the display shelves of a cosmetics shop. These mascara wands, often known as spoolie brushes, should also be in your beauty bag. The tips contain 360-degree synthetic bristles (similar to a pipe cleaner) and are often malleable so you may shape them whatever you like. When your mascara comes with a built-in spoolie wand, you may assume you don’t need more, but after you see how versatile these tiny men are, you’ll see why they’re top on our list.

mascara wand

How to use it?

Let’s start with a no-brainer: Mascara. Apply mascara with this brush, or gently wipe the bristles to remove any mascara smudges without disturbing the makeup below, or use it to separate and declump your lashes if you’ve applied too much product. Use it to attempt soap brows or comb it through your brows to help level out eyebrow makeup. Use one to apply eyelash and brow serums, tame flyaways, and so on—basically, it’s the one tool that can do it all.

Angled eyeshadow brush

What it is?

Some eyeshadow brushes are spherical, flat, or tapered, but the brush we’re discussing right now is angled. These makeup brushes are fluffier than an angled eyeliner brush, which is thin and flat, but they have a similar slanted design with firm bristles that are shorter on one end and gradually become longer and fuller on the other. Some eyeshadow brushes are spherical, flat, or tapered, but the brush we’re discussing right now is angled. These brushes are fluffier than an angled eyeliner brush, which is thin and flat, but they have a similar slanted design with firm bristles that are shorter on one end and gradually become longer and fuller on the other.

How to use it?

When placing shadow in the crease of your eye, the angled curve of these bristles hugs the contour of your brow bone (think of it as a contour brush for your eyes). This style of makeup brush is especially great for diffusing eyeshadow in an outer “V” shape for blended winged shadow since the bristles are both thick and fluffy.

Lip liner brush

What is it?

It’s called a lip liner brush or a precision liner brush, depending on who you ask. In any case, due of its distinguishing little, pointed design, you easily know this sort of cosmetics brush when you see it. You’d think the bristles on the tip of this brush would be fine enough to count, yet it’s filled with synthetic hairs to keep its form so you can draw exact lines in even the smallest spaces.

lip liner brush

How to use it?

What exactly are we talking about when we say “small places”? Use this brush to line your lips with lip liner or to tighten your lashline to brighten your eyes. If you don’t have any colored eyeliner pencils, you may use it to create creative, graphic eyeliner à la Euphoria makeup. When drawing, hold it at an angle (rather than straight up and down) to make the line smoother, straighter, and less wobbly.

Duo-fibre brush

What it is?

A duo-fibre brush is merely a fancy way of explaining that it has two types of bristles with two distinct lengths. The brush becomes more compact at the base and finer at the top when it is packed with two kinds of bristles. Duo-fibre brushes are typically used to apply liquid foundation, but they’re also available in smaller sizes for blending cream blushes and liquid highlighters, as well as powders and loose pigments, as illustrated below.

How to use it?

When using a duo-fibre brush, consider about blending the makeup carefully rather than bending the bristles. To rub the product into the skin, apply light pressure in a circular motion. If you press too hard, the longer bristles can spread and create streak lines in your makeup, so use light pressure in a circular motion.

Stippling brush

What is it?

A stippling brush, not to be mistaken with a duo-fibre brush…well…you see…okay, alright. Stippling brushes and dual-fibre brushes are often misunderstood since a stippling brush is recognized for its duo fibers, therefore they’re virtually the same thing.

Stick with the stipple when you want a softer foundation application or a more airbrushed finish. These brushes are also great for applying tinted moisturizer or sheering out liquids and creams without messing up the substance below (have you ever tried to mix those on with your fingers and ended up with patchiness? Exactly).

stippling brush

How to use it?

Lightly swirl the bristles into your skin after dipping them into liquid makeup or swiping them into a cream stick or powder. Just a reminder: these are just suggestions. If you have a heavy hand or a habit of jabbing your brushes into your skin (why do we do this?! ), hold the brush until the very end, giving you almost no control.

Kabuki brush

What is it?

The kabuki brush is the polar opposite of the stippling brush in many aspects. Its name may not strike a bell, but if you’ve ever dabbled with cosmetics, you’ll recognize this iconic beauty brush. This brush is most readily recognized by its short, pudgy handle and exceptionally thick, firm, flat or dome-shaped bristles, which are made famous by Kabuki Japanese drama theater.

A synthetic kabuki brush may be used to apply medium-to-full coverage liquid foundation or body makeup, but the brush’s density makes it ideal for packing on superfine powders or mineral foundation for a fuller-coverage finish.

How to use it?

Because these bristles are so thick and hard, you’ll probably need to apply a little pressure to get the product to operate. Pick up the product with the tips of the bristles, then swirl and rub it over your face.

Foundation brush

What it is?

While applying liquid makeup with a brush is optional (you may use a sponge or your clean fingers instead), applying mineral makeup or powder foundation requires the use of an application brush. The foundation brush comes into play.

Brushes of this kind are usually thick and squeezed flat (like a paintbrush) or full, rounded, and dome-shaped. While some individuals prefer synthetic bristles for liquid formulations (which are simpler to clean) or even natural bristles for powders (which are inherently more porous), I prefer synthetic bristles. Yes, the quality has dramatically increased over time and can easily be utilized for both.

foundation brush

How to use it?

To avoid harsh makeup lines at the borders of your jawline and hairline, start in the centre of your face (cheeks and T-zone) and apply your foundation outward in smooth, equal strokes. If you’re using a mineral or powder foundation, use the bristles to swirl and rub the substance into your skin.


Use this guide as a shopping list, to find out what all those strange bristles are for, or to learn how to apply makeup with the suggestions I’ve provided with these makeup brushes. See? Helpful. If you want the short version, click here to purchase my desert-island picks, or keep reading for all the details.

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