Makeup Brushes 101: Specific Uses & Care

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A few weeks ago during fashion week, I had some time to kill between shows and having enough time to run back to my apartment and out again just wasn’t happening, so what to do? I wandered into my nearest Sephora, of course! I mean–it’s beyond easy to kill time there–I get lost in all the products! (Plus, I was able to do a little make-up touch up!)

Anyways, I quickly found myself behind the makeup brush counter, staring blankly at all of the brushes–many of which I don’t own. This raised many questions: What makeup brushes do I actually need? What are they all used for? So, today we are going to go through brush by brush and conquer them all!

Makeup Brushes 101


Uses and care for your makeup brushes. (Click on image to visit Saving Face.)

During my quest for makeup brush clarity, I was introduced to am amazing, local company Saving Face–a makeup brush cleaning service! They offer pickups, drop offs, and mail in service for people located outside of NYC. They are very reasonably priced, ranging from $15-$30 for 5-15 brushes and only use Eco-conscious soaps for the best clean! I had the opportunity to speak with their owner, Nichole Dossous, and gain answers to my burning makeup brush questions.

Are there any brushes that through experience you just don’t use, or use for different purposes than they are supposed to be for?

In my experience, I try to stay away from Bare Mineral brushes–they’ve proven to shed the most! Try to go with brushes that have natural hairs sans dyes for added color and effect. These dyes are not natural, and considering I’m all about staying as green as possible, I would keep those dyed tip brushes reserved for last minute makeup emergencies!

A brush can be used for many things. One of my favorite ways to use a brush outside of its original design: a basic eyeshadow brush for lipstick application. Gives a smooth, finished, tailored look all the time! LOVE IT!

How often should your brushes be cleaned?

Brushes should be cleaned at least once a week / four times a month. This is the bare minimum for an average makeup user who wears makeup every day (think a work week, with weekends off.)

What can be done on a daily basis to keep your brushes in good condition?

To keep your brushes in good condition, store them properly. Store brushes used for liquid makeup applications in an open canister. Other brushes, ones for eyeshadow, contouring, powder applications, can be stored in a makeup bag. Speaking of makeup bag, wash those too! They must be cleaned the same day you wash your brushes. What good is putting clean brushes in a dirty bag?

At what price point do you purchase your brushes? Are there any cheap ones that do the same job as their more expensive counterparts?

I actually pay anything starting from 3 dollars and up to 20. The reason why  is because I shop at craft stores for some of my makeup brushes. There you can find soft bristle natural hair brushes that look JUST like and feel just like MAC brushes, and they do the job just as well, for less!

What is your must-have brush and why?

I have this one long handled brush that was in a very inexpensive makeup kit. This brush is a simple eyeshadow brush, but a little fuller. This amazing brush does it all I’ve learned. It blends like a fluffy brush, it contours like a contouring brush, and one time it even applied blush in a pinch! I LOVE this brush and treasure it like gold. Find that one brush that does it all for you, and you’ll fall head over heels with makeup!


The uses of all the makeup brushes!

  1.  Foundation Brush  //  2.  Powder Brush //  3.  Blush Brush //  4. Eye Shadow //  5. Concealer Brush //  6. Angle Brush // 7. Mascara Brush //  8. Lip Brush

Fashionably Yours,




  1. I have never used there make up brushes because I have no idea how to clean them. It is easy with the sponges because I clean them with simple dish soap but I am not sure whether it is a good idea with the brushes. Thanks for the advices! Burnt Oak Carpet Cleaners Ltd.

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