Do Makeup Brushes Really Make A Difference?

For all the articles on "The 8 Makeup Brushes Everyone Should Own," I still really never saw the point. My hands were doin' just fine to smear on my foundation! For her wedding this summer, my sister bought makeup brushes because she swore they were better to apply makeup. I didn't believe her; I was scared I would lose all control of my makeup application process if I used brushes. But my sister continued recommending the tools to me.

Finally, for Christmas, she apparently grew sick of recommending and gave me my own set of makeup brushes. I would be lying if I said I wasn't a little bit excited. When I opened them, there were so many brushes. Some, I thought I knew which product to use them for, and then there were some brushes (the chisel brush?) I had no idea what their purpose could possibly be.

After a bit of research, and OK, a month of them sitting unused in my bathroom, I finally took the time to try them out on my face. And it was glorious. I had the same (if not more) control over my makeup application. I finally felt like I was applying my makeup the correct way. I noticed I was using less of my foundation, lipstick, etc., but getting the same result. And, after just a few weeks of using the brushes instead of my hands, my skin cleared up! To prove that makeup brushes are worth considering, I compared the process. The selfies on the left show my makeup applied with brushes and the selfies on the right show my makeup applied with my hands.


You may not see much of a difference, but my foundation blended much better with my skin than if applied with my hands. I also used less foundation than when I used my hands to dot the foundation all over my face, then rub. The dry spots on my chin and nose were much more prominent when I rubbed with my hands, as well.

Loose Powder

I like to layer loose powder over my foundation to help with shine. On the right, you'll see that when I used the sponge that came with the loose powder, there's still a bit of shine on my cheek. But on the left, which shows it applied with a big fluffy brush, my skin looks much more matte and clear.


I used two different brushes here. On the right, I used my original blush brush which is just square and flat on top. On the left, I used the mystery chisel brush to contour (that's right, I contour now) to apply my bronzer/blush.


The new makeup brushes came with a new eyeliner tool. I was really nervous about the new tool, because we all know the perfect cat eye takes much precision. I felt like I had the same amount of control, however, and was able to reach the corners and wing up a lot easier than with my old eyeliner application wand.

I don't normally wear eyeshadow because my (annoyingly) sensitive eyes tend to dry out by the end of the day, leaving me dry lids for the rest of the week. For the purpose of the experiment, I took one for the team. It was my first attempt to apply shadow with the brushes instead of the tool that typically comes with eyeshadow, and it was a bit tougher for me to blend the colors well. I am not sure if this was due to unfamiliarity or if I actually prefer using the eyeshadow brush. Because of the new brushes, however, I found it a lot easier to apply shadow to my bottom line to create a smokey eye.

Also, if you'll look closely, you'll see that my shine started to return on the right side, which is the side I applied with my hands.


On the right, I applied the lipstick straight from the tube to lips. On the left, I used a new brush in my kit to apply the color. On the right, I couldn't quite rub my lips in well enough to spread the color in evenly and I most definitely had to blot with a tissue. On the left, however, I had felt like I had more control to spread the color evenly.


I was completely incorrect in thinking I would have less control applying my makeup with brushes instead of my hands. Although I'm not used to all of the brushes yet, I am sure practice makes perfect. And if the improvement in my skin is not enough proof for me to keep using my brushes, the fact that I can literally see shine return to my face should keep me away from my hands.

Images: Lauren Dahlhauser (1); Hayli Goode (5)