These are the only 5 makeup brushes you really need

There seems to be a makeup brush for every little thing we apply on our faces – one to highlight, one to smudge, one with an angle and one that fans.

I admit I have a lot of brushes but find myself only using a few of them.

I have narrowed it down and here are the 5 makeup brushes I think are essential in your makeup bag and how to use them.


Foundation brush

Get yourself a flat foundation brush to apply liquid and cream foundations. I recommend a flat one because you can also use it to apply your concealer, removing the need for a concealer brush.

When applying foundation, start in the centre of your face and sweep outwards, keeping it streak free and flawless.

Angled bronzer/blush brush

The angle helps the product go on seamlessly and easily, whether it’s bronzer or blush.

For bronzer, start just under the cheekbone and brush all the way up to the hairline, below the temple for an even, natural look. If you want a pop of colour, just apply it to the cheek. When you smile and where you see that little circle form in your cheeks just under the eyes (called the apple of your cheeks) this is where you apply your blush.

Eyeshadow brush

Use this to apply powder and cream eyeshadows evenly over the eyelid. Eyeshadows often come with applicators but I find a brush gives a more seamless look when it comes to getting close to the inner corner of the eye.

Blending brush

I love a little extra colour on the lids sometimes and to make it subtle but noticeable, add a different, darker or more pigmented colour to your soft, fluffy blending brush, then brush it back and forward along the crease of the eyelid.

Eyebrow brush

I definitely recommend a spoolie. It kind of looks like a mascara wand and brushes your brows into place before applying your product of choice. Brows really do define and frame your face so you want to make sure there are no hairs out of place.

You can also read this post about the 3 brow products I can’t live without.

Now I could go on and on about makeup brushes because as I said before, there are so many out there but this is your starting point. These are your makeup bag essentials.

You will need to wash your brushes regularly though. Foundation brushes should be washed once a fortnight because product will build up, affecting application. The same can be said for your bronzer and blush brush but you can probably get away with washing it once a month.

If you change up your eyeshadow colours regularly, you’ll want to wash your brush more frequently so you don’t end up with a weird colour combination. Otherwise, once every couple of months should do it.

The other way to minimise brush numbers is to use your fingers. With foundation and concealer, the warmth of your fingers helps the product melt into the skin, giving an evenly blended look. Use your ring finger to apply concealer under the eye and be gentle around this delicate area.

Use your fingers to dot on a cream blush and then blend by pressing the product in. With a cream eyeshadow, you can gently sweep it across the lid, but be careful of it getting stuck in the crease.