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Love for Brushes

I'm developing a love for brushes of all kinds.  I bought a few higher end brushes and they are amazing.  They are incredibly soft and my makeup glides on like a dream.  There are so many interesting shapes. I am really interested in creating a beautiful brush collection.  Show your brushes and share any cleaning and storage tips and let us know which ones are your favorites.


Tom Ford Brushes.jpeg




Re: Love for Brushes

If they are not available in the US, I buy mine from CD Japan or use a buying service for the brushes they don't carry.  Hakuhodo has a US website. Beautylish carries many Chikuhodo brushes and Wayne Goss brushes, which are made in Kumano. 


I like Japanese brushes because as I get older, I feel the hairs (depending on what you buy) don't move my skin around as much as other brushes and I love the craftsmanship and artistry that goes into them.  I have hooded eyelids, and many Japanese eye brushes are small enough so that I can do a precision application.


Having said this, I still use MAC, RT, Elf. etc., brushes as well. I'm not a collector, I use my brushes so I will use what I feel will do the best job at the moment. 

Re: Love for Brushes

To answer some of both of your posts...


you can get lots of Japanese brush brands from CD Japan, Visage USA carries chikuhodo and beautylish carries a few different brands.  Some of us also use personal shopper services in Japan to buy brushes, as well.


in terms of are they game changers; not exactly.  Will a better quality brush make someone who isn't good at application a MUA?  No.  I don't think it improves the end result, so much as the ease of application (and I say that as someone who owns a lot of Japanese brushes)  I find they feel nicer, because they are softer and usually more densely packed, but I wouldn't say they make my application skills better.


if you want to get a sense for the quality, try to get to a TF counter or Sephora or Barneys that has Suratt.  Both brands have brushes made in Japan (TF by hakuhodo and Surratt by chikuhodo) so it can help get a sense of them in person.


however, if you have a friend in Japan, I'd probably recommend going that route once you know what you want 


ETA: @newandaddicted I should probably clarify that because the main makeup products I use are blush and powder, 99% of my Japanese brushes are for blush or powder.  I feel within those categories there's only so much better you can get, so eventually it's just about paying for something softer/prettier/higher quality than about a quantifiable increase in performance.  Perhaps there is more difference in shadow or foundation brushes, but since I don't really use either, I can't comment.

Re: Love for Brushes

Hey @Mochapj - your point about using brushes mostly for blush and powder caught my eye. I'm the same, and I've been looking for a brush that is similar to Wayne Goss #14 - it is very airy and works really well for pigmented blushes. It has been sold out for a while (I use mine mostly with the ambient lighting powders for now). I've heard that Suqqu's cheek brush has a similar airy feel - do you know of any other brushes that are similar? I haven't tried Chikuhodu yet, do they have a similar brush? 

Re: Love for Brushes

@PavYellow I don't own any WG brushes, but I just googled to see the shape and I can say that I don't have any Japanese brushes that have such a long and tapered shape for blush, either.  It's a pretty interesting looking brush.


I'll take a look in my collection.  I definitely have a few squirrel brushes that work better for highly pigmented blushes, so I'll make some notes and report back.

Re: Love for Brushes

Thank you so much @Mochapj, that is so nice of you!


Re: Love for Brushes

@PavYellow I looked through my collection and the closest thing I could find to that type of shape was the Pat McGrath brush that came with her recent highlighter kit.  That brush would work well for diffusing pigmented blush (if you happened to own it already) but overall it isn't my favorite brush.


that said, even though the shape is not the same, I really like the Koyudo red squirrel cheek brush I picked up recently when using highly pigmented blushes.  The hair is very soft, so it doesn't pick up too much.  


It is a giant leap up in cost compared to WG though, iirc.


chikuhodo does make nice blush brushes in the Z and takumi lines, but neither are that same shape as WG

Re: Love for Brushes

thanks @Mochapj! I've been doing some serious perusing of this thread over the last couple of days Smiley Very Happy


I ordered the Chikuhodu Z-4 and a Koyudu Fu-Pa from CD Japan.Good to know you recommend the Z-series as well! I've added the Koyudu red squirrel to my wishlist Smiley Happy 

Re: Love for Brushes

Adding on to what @Mochapj wrote


I highly recommend Cdjapan, especially if you live in the US. I have placed many orders with them and so far I have not had to pay any customs.

*knocks on wood*

They have had a free shipping promotion going on for a few months. It recently went up to 12,000 yen minimum (Approx. $116 USD) The shipping is very fast considering it is coming from Japan. (About 3 business days for FedEx, 4 for EMS (goes through USPS once in the US)) They have a points program where each point is equal to 1 yen. For most brushes you get 3% back in points and once your brush has shipped, after 3 business days, you'll get back an extra 500 points or more depending on your order total. You can redeem these points in any amount, but I like to save them and use them on a bigger order to soften the blow. Also, for every brush I have cross checked, Cdjapan has always had the lowest price. Visage sells only Chikuhodo brushes at a slightly higher price, however you can negate this if you buy during one of the promotions they run (10-15% off). They offer engraving for a small fee so if that is something you would like you should subscribe to their emails and wait out for a discount. Beautylish has the highest markup on Chikuhodo brushes and they do not offer the variety CDJapan or Visage has so unless you have to order from them, I would otherwise advise against it. Selfridges sells Suqqu and RMK (they rarely have free shipping so if you see it, run. The prices for the suqqu brushes are the lowest I have seen (versus through a personal shopper) If you wish to ask your friends assistance be sure to compare prices. Money saved is money towards another brush Smiley Very Happy


Re: Love for Brushes

Do you know if CdJapan (or Visage) declares the full cost on their packages? Those customs charges can really hit you hard.

Re: Love for Brushes

@iris67 I have ordered from CDJapan several times and recently from Visage for the first time.


Visage declared the full value, but I didn't get dinged with charges.


CDJapan marks their packages as gifts if you specify and my most recent package I got charged because they marked it gift but left full value, but the 5 or 6 orders I've made previously never did.  

Re: Love for Brushes

Ooh okay thank you! I wonder if customs charges are just random then? It makes me a little nervous to order :/

Re: Love for Brushes

I made one order with CDJapan recently and had no customs charges (hope I'm not jinxing it). I used Fedex (didn't select the gift option either).

Re: Love for Brushes

Ok ladies and gents, I have a newbie question...I have LOTS o' brushes.  From ELF on up to IT/MAC cosmetics, I think that's the most I've currently paid for brushes. 


I'm a novice when it comes to applying makeup, even though I discovered makeup 10yrs ago (I was in my 30s!).  


NOW on to my question...LOL


Since I've only applied makeup with lower end brushes does the quality of a brush change the game with application?


I understand quality (I'm a purse "street walker" as well a a makeup junkie) and I know a Longchamp or Chloe bag is worth the price.  Is it the same with brushes?


Thank you for your patience with my rambling.

Re: Love for Brushes



Using a higher end brush versus using a lower end brush can have a great difference in makeup application but all the same, the application can end up very similar. With many lower end brushes I find that the quality can be hit or miss. If you have one of the brushes that fall into the "hit" category then you won't notice much of an upgrade if/when you get your first high end brush. If you have a brush that falls into the "miss" category then the opposite would occur where you might notice a drastic change. Generally, it's all a matter of which brushes are currently being used. Some brushes are not shaped correctly or packed correctly to adequately perform their dictated function. In short, the "right" lower priced brushes can give you a similar or equal final application. For me the advantage to higher end brushes is the comfort. Once you get into the realm of grey squirrel or high quality goat the hair is very soft. Whereas I have often run into an issue of a lower quality brush being good/but very scratchy or soft/but does not apply product as I would want it to, many higher end brushes have both qualities I want (not to say all lower priced brushes do not have this at all, it's just a bigger yes/no/maybe game). Higher end brushes (referring solely to Japanese made brushes and not brands such as Chanel, or others) generally come with assured quality, much more so compared to other brushes. For me it has turned applying my makeup into a pampering experience. Also, after using most of my higher end brushes my skin generally does not feel irritated. Higher end brushes are a great treat to the makeup lover, but are not necessary for everyone unless perhaps you have very sensitive skin. All brushes should be taken good care of but I have to say I didn't do such a great job aside from regular washes until I bought my first high end brush. I'm much happier collecting brushes than I was collecting makeup. Everyone will be different and find different things worth the extra money. Personally brushes are very therapeutic to me so I am more than happy to hoard them away. All in all, you may or may not see a dramatic increase in how your makeup applies but more than likely your appreciation of brushes, your treatment towards them, and how often you pet them will change. 



Re: Love for Brushes

IMO - I have replaced all my brushes with High Quality, I started out with Wayne Goss and then moved to Japanese brushes. I think you also have to consider your makeup game. essentially I only use liquid foundation and concealer everything else is powder so I have one foundation and concealer brush that is synthetic. All my other brushes that are animal hair work with powder. I feel like using high end brushes

A. gives a very small quality difference (vs. very low end brushes/you can get the same effect with similar mid end brushes)

B. Inspires me to use makeup/better my technique

C. Makes me happy (I take very good care of my expensive brushes, brush guard, conditioner, the whole shebang)

I feel like it was a worthwhile investment for myself however many people could not imagine spending $100 on a powder brush. To each its own.

If you do decide to splurge I hope you post your new babies here =D

Re: Love for Brushes

I was so excited to see they re-listed the Hakuho-do concealer brush online and can't wait until it gets here. Of course, that has to be the package that got sent to the wrong place so I was watching the tracking periodically and was thrilled when it was supposed to be here yesterday...until it showed "scanned in at ___ time in Eureka" when I expected to see "out for delivery." Trying to be patient, and I know it will have to get here eventually but still...grrr.

Re: Love for Brushes

@AMK721 - What brush is that with the purple handle in the photo you put in the original post? I can never seem to find the brush I need to replace and in the color I want at any given time (and the color I want could vary depending on my mood, lol) but purple always seems to be the most elusive.

Re: Love for Brushes

@WaterlilyKari  @Mochapj is right.  That is the brush from my UD Vice 2 palette.  Purple is a hard color to find in a brush.  I think Real Techniques have brushes in different colors.  They are color coded to the type of brush they are and I think their eye brushes are purple so you might want to check them out Smiley Happy

Re: Love for Brushes

Thanks! I can see that now that I am looking again from my computer but on my phone previously it wouldn't let me zoom in enough to tell.


I will try to check out the Real Techniques brushes the next time I am in a store that carries them. Thanks!

Re: Love for Brushes

The purple brush says UD vice 2 on it Smiley Wink

Re: Love for Brushes

Posting for @Cahlee - some of my more recent acquisitions.


still no P8, but at least there are some other fluffies to play with 😉


Top left - travel brushes; chikuhodo K5 shadow, MK12 cheek, MK15 lip (the numbers could be wrong, can't recall)


top right - Koyudo; dekafupa, Canadian red squirrel, fuwafuwa


bottom - misc; TF concealer, blending x2, chikuhodo contour and blush/highlight, takumi large shadow and foundation



1,106 Replies