How do you apply your makeup? Are you looking for a way to up your makeup game? A great way to do that is to try new techniques for application. We all get stuck in our ways and that’s not doing any of us any favors. The key to always looking your best with makeup is to go for new looks and try out new tools.
We’d be nowhere if we stuck to our old ways. Sure, some tried and true things will always be great. But let’s look at something like dentistry? Could you imagine going to your dentist today and dealing with the agony that it was like 10 years ago even? Not hardly.
Makeup too has come a long way. Some of you might be old enough to remember your first makeup stints in the 90s, maybe some of you in the 80s too. Decades don’t matter here. No matter your age, you’ve likely noticed a huge shift in makeup. Not just the products which keep getting better, but the methods for applying them.
Not that long ago, the internet virtually broke when the egg-shaped Beauty Blender hit the scene. Lots of people were skeptical. It costs $20 and it’s a sponge, hello! But those big bags of latex makeup sponges you buy at the drugstore just aren’t the same. Initially, you’d think so, but when you try the BB, you’ll be a believer. It’s like eating frozen seafood all the time and then trying it fresh for the first time. Game-changer.
And then there are makeup brushes. Call up a makeup artist to do your makeup for a special occasion and they’ll come with an army of makeup brushes. You likely have a stash of your own, one that pales in comparison but still you have one.
But what’s better for applying makeup, Beauty Blender or brush?
Much of it really depends on what your needs are for the look you’re trying to achieve as well as your preferences. With a brush, you might find the BB helps you smooth things out. But the brush is a tried and true makeup maven staple.
Let’s break it down.
- They’re classic
- It came first
- There are tons of styles and shapes
- You can choose between real or faux bristles
- It’s newer
- It’s got a more contoured shape
- It’s made of a hydrophilic material to absorb water
- It comes in many sizes, shapes, and super-fun colors
Ok, perhaps you don’t care about the color so much though we know some of you are like, “YES! HOT PINK! GIMME!” They make them in black though too so for all you pink haters, there you go.
So, they both have their advantages. But which one do you choose? There is so much more to know so read onward and discover how these beauty tools compare!
The difference between a Beauty Blender and a brush
It doesn’t matter if you’re reading this as a new-to-beauty tween or teen, or you tell your kids that the clothing that’s trendy now is EXACTLY what was cool when you were there age. We all have the same desire here and that’s to look like our most flawless and beautiful versions of ourselves. It’s a bonding thing.
So, gather around and we’ll tackle the burning question on the table…makeup brush or Beauty Blender?
Heck, some traditionalists say to use your fingers. This will definitely give you a more concentrated application, and in some cases, like when a zit pops up at the totally wrong time, you will want that, but only do so with squeaky clean fingers or you’ll risk making that pimple into a mountain. Brushes can do the very same for you. Think of it like painting in art class.
Sponges like the BB, however, will give that flawless, perfectly blended finish.
To understand how each of these can impact your technique and why you might want to consider using them, let’s dive right into the pros and cons of each. After all, no one way is perfect for each of us all the time. And everyone will always have their favorite that feels most comfortable and connected to them.
The pros and cons of both the Beauty Blender and the brush
When it comes to beauty tools and makeup products, knowing how they work and can benefit you is one of the most important things. You don’t just go buy a type of makeup because the celebrity du jour is using it. You want it to work with your skin type and your tone. For example, if you’re young, you want a matte formula. As you start moving through your 30s and upward, you want something more hydrating and dewy to give you that youthful radiance.
Thus, these tools can help at all ages, and for many different occasions, but one might be better than the other for your needs. Or you may find having both is critical for creating your look. You be the judge!
The Beauty Blender
For those of you that still are like, “What is this Beauty Blender business?” it’s the modern version of the makeup sponge. It’s made from a different material that absorbs water to help you get a flawless look. Unlike ordinary makeup sponges, which repel water.
- It doesn’t pull or tug on your skin, which is ideal around the eyes when you’re trying to get your concealer on just right.
- It cuts down on the clutter which is ideal when you’re traveling. You can use it to apply your primer, concealer, and foundation with ease.
- It’s very easy to use when you’re just getting into makeup. Practically foolproof!
- It creates a flawless look fast without a fuss.
- It doesn’t waste product because you wet it first and it minimally absorbs whatever you apply it to.
- It’s great for both cream and powder products.
- You can get great medium or sheer coverage with it.
- Even contouring is easier with it.
- The mini version of it is fantastic for getting into tight contours.
- It’s great with dry skin.
- You won’t get the cakey look when you use this.
- They can come apart very quickly if you aren’t gentle when you clean them.
- It only gives you good results when you wet it.
- You have to follow very specific care instructions to prolong the life of your BB.
- You also have to store it in a well-ventilated and dry place after you wash it or it could develop mold.
- If you have very textured skin, it might not be the best tool for you.
- It can be time-consuming to get that perfect blend.
- The BB doesn’t last as long as a makeup brush. You have to replace it every 3 months.
- When traveling with it, you can’t let it stay wet and pack it in your bags or you can kiss it goodbye.
- You have to get the stippling technique right rather than smoothing it on your face to achieve makeup perfection.
- You must wash it promptly after every single use.
And now, let’s move onto the makeup artist staple, the makeup brush. How does it compare to the new kid on the block, the Beauty Blender?
- Makeup brushes are more sanitary. Yes, you need to wash them, but not immediately after every single use. They won’t get moldy unless you put them in a dark drawer while they’re still wet and who does that?
- They’re more sanitary than the BB because you won’t find mold growing in the center of it.
- No need to add water to make it work like a charm!
- It’s so much easier to clean makeup brushes than the BB.
- Makeup brushes are for all skin types.
- If you’re using a full coverage foundation, makeup brushes win.
- They last longer. You can invest in a set of makeup brushes and have them for a long time, especially if you take care of them.
- You get more even distribution of makeup with brushes.
- You also have more control and precision when it comes to concealers.
- Once you learn how to work with makeup brushes, you can get the job done fast.
- It’s so much easier to apply your eye makeup with makeup brushes to achieve the perfect look.
- Brushes don’t pull on the skin so much so they’re great even if your skin is a bit flaky.
- They’re the original multi-taskers. You can use them for any type of foundation from liquid to cream to powder.
- They come in a variety of styles, shapes, sizes, and quality, not to mention prices while the BB is $20 a pop.
- It gives coverage that lasts.
- It’s easier to build coverage with brushes.
- With the Beauty Blender, the options are limited. With brushes, the choices can be overwhelming when starting out. Do you use the flat foundation brush? That one for stippling? The oval one? That densely rounded buffing thingie?
- The initial investment is more expensive.
- Some brushes can leave you with streaks.
- Not all of them are vegan so you’ll have to shop around.
- You’ll have to clean them to make them last though not after every single use like the BB.
- Good quality brushes cost money.
- You’ll have to decide between natural or synthetic. When you’re starting out, you may not realize that natural brush hairs are your best choice for powder while synthetic brushes are best for your liquid products.
- Unless you buy good quality, it’s a waste. Buying the cheapest makeup brushes you find will always leave you regrets in the form of a streaky application.
Do you have to pick a side?
As you can see from the pros and cons of each camp above, there are plenty of good and bad things about the Beauty Blender as well as makeup brushes. So you might be wondering, must you choose?
Not at all. In fact, you may find that each of them can be your makeup hero for specific applications. Most makeup artists use them both. The sponge helps you blend for flawlessness, but you can alternate between it and your brush depending on the coverage you’re trying to achieve. If your skin looks amazing today, you might just want to stick with the BB to give a full-on flawless and dewy look. If not or you need the look to last, you can choose your brush to give you the coverage you need.
Everyone has their own preferences though. Your bestie might swear by the BB and use it for EVERYTHING while you might only rely on it as needed and favor your brushes. Really, it all lies in the techniques of your application as well as the products you use. It also has to do with what you’re most comfortable with.
But don’t get too comfy there. It’s important to play around with makeup and experiment every now and then. We’ve ALL met an older person that has makeup techniques that are totally stuck in the 1950s and you never ever want that to be you!
Customizing your routine is always encouraged for that very reason. Plus, who doesn’t love taking a little time to play around and see what works and what doesn’t? We certainly don’t advise that when you have to hurry out the door for work or a big date, but when you have downtime, pause your Netflix and play around. You might just be pleasantly surprised with what you come up with.
You won’t be the only one. Ask any of your friends and you’ll probably discover that they too alternate their application methods. There is no right or wrong way, unless you’re getting streaks everywhere or you look all caked up. But some people will swear by only using brushes while others will swear by the Beauty Blender or even one of its recent competitors that seek to improve upon the original design of bulk-bag makeup sponges.
Not only do we all have different skin types and tones, but we all have different contours. We’re not carbon copies of each other, and finding what works for your particular face is all that really matters. You may find you like the way the BB leaves your skin, but you might not be a fan of all that stippling. You may prefer not having to clean your makeup tools immediately after using them because you’re always running late. We get it.
You may hate spending $20 to replace your Beauty Blender every few months. Even with excellent care, it’s an expense you’ll have to factor in but many women find it’s worth it. Besides, there are ways to prolong its life, though it will not last forever.
Makeup brushes won’t last forever either. You’ll have to take care of them too and eventually, you’ll need to replace them. But they will last much longer.
If you ask us, we’re all for using both. It just makes sense. You wouldn’t use one makeup brush to apply all your makeup from foundation to powder to concealer to your smoky eye, would you? Of course not! That’s just crazy.
So, to break it down:
- Beauty blender or sponges are best for a flawless and dewy, lightweight look
- Brushes give a more covered look that can really conceal
Everything after that really is your preference on how you like to apply your makeup and you very well could be using both of them on the regular to craft your perfect look.
The best way to decide whether the Beauty Blender or brushes are right for you is to try them out. You may follow every technique you see on YouTube and hate how the BB works for you, or totally love it. The same goes for brushes.
And hey, you’ve got these things called fingers too which some women prefer for certain makeup application tasks. Makeup is exploratory and fun. If you haven’t played around with your makeup in a while, it’s time you shook things up and did so.
Make a night of it with your bestie, or hide at home with your cat giving you the side-eye while you have your hair up in rollers. There’s no one way to do it right. You’ve just got to go for what makes you look and feel your most confident and roll with it from there.