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Review - Real Techniques Brushes II

Crack, baby crack: Review - Real Techniques Brushes II

Monday, 16 January 2012

Review - Real Techniques Brushes II

When I was younger, I never used proper make-up brushes. I always used to use the fiddly little sponges and brushes that came with the eyeshadows and blushers. Of course, this being the tail-end of the 80's, the results were less than spectacular. Pink and blue eyeshadow applied with the finesse of a drunk Edward Scissorhands. More Pat Butcher than Princess Diana. Eventually, I wised up and discovered proper brushes but even then (and now in my capacity as a make-up artist), finding good quality brushes was hit and miss. The ferrules would come away from the handle, hairs would fall out and inevitably end up being chucked out.

What I have learned over the years is that good quality does not necessarily mean prohibitively expensive. No7 brushes, for instance are amazingly good quality and the prices are reasonable. GOSH brushes are the same.

In that light, I'm looking today at a brand of brushes that claim to be affordable and fantastic quality - Real Techniques by Samantha Chapman. There are three sets; the Starter Set, the Core Collection and the Travel Set. There are also other brushes available separately - powder, foundation, shader, brow, stippling, blush and kabuki brushes. This post is about the Starter Set.
I admit that I bought these brushes because I've watched so many of Pixiwoo's vids on Youtube and was impressed at how well their make-up went on with them. Of course, that might have a lot to do with their skills.

Let's see what the packaging says;

"My online tutorials share the real techniques behind makeup artistry. With simple tips and high-tech tools, every woman can be an expert."

All well and good.

Now for the brushes themselves. I tested them on my partner's face first. He agreed that they were very soft and not at all scratchy like other brushes we've tested. They're made of Taklon so therefore no squirrels were harmed during the making of these brushes.

Base Shadow Brush - very soft and performs well with both cream and powder shadow. It's great at applying a base and for blending. Feels very light to hold and grip is fine too. Also ideal for concealer.

Deluxe Crease Brush - I have no idea why the makers decided to call it 'deluxe'. I'm just being picky there, mind. That said, it is of very good quality. The domed shape is ideal for getting right into the socket if you are after a soft smokey look, or to apply a soft contour in the socket. Again, it is excellent at under-eye concealer, it blends it in effortlessly without leaving any streaks. Sam tends to use this brush a lot in her vids when applying concealer.

Accent Brush - I used this to apply concealer to a few spots and tiny scars I have on my face with a stippling motion. It covered them easily and is the right size for hiding tiny blemishes. I cleaned it and used it on my lips and it gave a good crisp line and filled them in beautifully.

Pixel-Point Eyeliner Brush - This was used to line upper and lower waterlines as well as around the eye with a gel eyeliner. Again, it performed well during application and held the product well. I think it could be used as a concealer and lipliner brush as well.

Brow Brush - velvety soft yet firm. Holds powder brow product well, gives a neat edge and turns well in the hand when going over the arch.

The only quibble I have is the case that they came in -it is a little flimsy. However, that is not important because what you have in the case is a set of eye brushes that are of pro quality and very, very affordable. It costs £20.99 for the set of five brushes so that's just over a fiver per brush making this a good investment for your kit whether you're a pro artist or a make-up lover.

On the strength of this set, I will be buying the other set and the separate brushes. I know they'll be going straight in my kit.

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