Five Essential Make Up Brushes for Beginners

Five Essential Make Up Brushes for Beginners


Are you just beginning to familiarize yourself with make up? Are you confused about which brushes you should buy? Here are five basic make up brushes which I feel are good enough for a beginner’s make up kit.

But before I go on to describe the brushes, their types, dupes and prices to you, here are a few things that you need to know about your brushes.

make up brush

  1. Invest in good quality make up brushes.

Good quality does not always mean expensive. You don’t have to buy only M.A.C or Bobbi Brown brushes. Some of my oldest brushes from Kryolan are about five years old and are still as good as new. They are extremely durable, affordable and pocket friendly.

  1. Always store your make up brushes in a closed container.

I agree that make up brushes in a brush stand look very stylish sitting on your make up table but over time dust and germs will accumulate on them and the next time you use them, the germs will transfer on to your skin and cause acne, break outs and rashes. They will also contaminate your make up once you dip them in your product. So Store them a box or closed jar.

  1. Keep your brushes clean.

It is very important to wash and clean your brushes regularly. Baby soap and baby shampoo are the mildest and most affordable brush cleansers around. The less amount of harsh chemicals does not damage the bristles and helps increase the longevity of your brush. I usually clean my brushes by rubbing the wet brush head on a bar of baby soap and rinsing it on my palm under cold running water. Then I lay them out to dry overnight. Always remember to never hold your brush upright when its wet, otherwise the water from the bristles could trickle downwards and damage the glue which holds the bristles in place which would then lead to shedding.


Now lets talk about the brushes.

  1. Foundation brush.
Real Techniques Foundation Brush
Real Techniques Foundation Brush
Real Techniques Foundation Brush
Real Techniques Foundation Brush

Just as the name suggests, the foundation brush is ideal for applying liquid or cream foundation as well as padding concealor under your eyes and reaching the sides of your nose. Its flat structure with a curved head really helps your liquid foundation to apply evenly throughout your face. This brush is from the Real Techniques Core Collection Set of four which cost me about INR 1300. You can also buy foundation brushes like this one from QVS which makes very good quality brushes. The QVS foundation brush is dual ended with a foundation brush on one end and a smaller concealor brush on the another. Its is priced at about INR 550 (find them online or at any of the NEW U stores in Forum, Mani Square, Avani Mall or Diamond Plaza). But this alone is not enough for a finished look. For that you will need :

  1. Stippling Brush
Real Techniques Stippling Brush
Real Techniques Stippling Brush

The foundation brush will tend to leave behind some brush streaks on your skin. In order to get rid of those and achieve a flawless and nearly airbrushed look, a stippling brush is absolutely necessary.

Stippling basically means to create a pattern using small dots. A stippling brush does more or less the same thing.

Real Techniques Stippling Brush
Real Techniques Stippling Brush

Stippling brushes are usually duo fiber brushes, meaning they have two kinds of fibers, the dark, thick fibers at the base and the super fine thinner fibers at the end. Both these fibers help smoothen out any lines and strokes left behind and completely buff out your foundation to give it that flawless finish. All you have to do is run the brush on your face in circular motion after you have applied your foundation. As you get better and more familiar, you can use just the stippling brush to apply your foundation. You can even apply your blush with a stippling brush and it will look nice and dewy. The Real techniques stippling brush cost me around INR 850 (sale price) and the Kryolan brush (which had a detachable handle and its now long lost) is over 4 years old and it cost me around INR 700 back then. I am not sure how much its costs now.

Real Techniques (Left) and Kryolan (Right)Stippling Brushes
Real Techniques (Left) and Kryolan (Right) Stippling Brushes

If you want something even less expensive then Vega also make a stippling brush and its priced at about INR 550.


  1. Eyeshadow brush
basic eyeshadow brush
Basic Eyeshadow Brush From Kryolan

A basic eyesahdow brush will help you apply and pad your eyeshadow on your eye lid. You can also use the sponge applicators you get along with your eye shadows as long as your are comfortable. This brilliant eye shadow brush is from Kryolan and it cost me only about INR 150. Its actually a thick brush and not only do I apply eye shadow on my lids with this, I also use it to smoke out my lower lash line because of it’s pencil brush like density.

basic eyeshadow brush up close
Basic Eyeshadow Brush number 3811 From Kryolan

The only authorized Kryolan store in Calcutta is Perfect 10 at Lord Sinha Road, bang opposite Shri Shikshayatan College. Some shops in New Market also sell Kryolan products but I am not sure how original they are.


  1. Buffing Brush

Eye shadow looks great when blended well. For blending out the eyeshadow from your lids to the crease or for using an accent color in between, a buffing brush is perfect.

buffing brush
Fluffy Buffing Brushes

A buffing brush should have a softer, wider, fluffier feel and it’s a very important tool to achieve a smoked out look. The orange brush in the center is from Colorbar. I am not fond of ColorBar colored make up brushes. They are of a very inferior quality and tend to fall out and loose their shape very soon. But this one turned out to be an under dog! Its very fluffy and soft and blends my eyeshadow very well.It will cost you around INR 250. The one on the the left is from Real Techniques while the one on the right is a part of ten brush set I got for the price of peanuts online.


  1. Angular Brush

The angular Brushes are my best friends, because they are great multitaskers.

angular brush
Angular Brushes

I fill in my eyebrows with them, I highlight my brown bone and eye corners with them using a cream or shimmery white shade and I also use them to smudge out my liner on the lower and upper eye lids. They are extremely useful.

angular brushes up close
Angular Brushes (L to R) from Kryolan, Real Techniques and QVS

They are all priced no more than INR 300 and are totally indispensable to me.


These were the five basic brushes that I feel are very helpful for a beginner. But there are two more products that I want to talk about. They are not necessary, but having them near you while you do your make up will save you a lot of time and make your life much easier.

  1. The Slanted Kabuki Brush from the Body Shop.
body shop kabuki brush size
Slanted Kabuki Brush from The Body Shop


This has been one of my best buys ever. The Slanted Kabuki Brush is an extremely soft and dense brush with a huge surface area. I use it to apply translucent powder on my face after everything else and it takes me barely five seconds to do it. Also, during the course of the day, when my T zone tends to get oily and shines, I dab this brush across my face and it instantly removes all the excess oil.

Notice the density and large surface area of this brush!
Notice the density and large surface area of this brush!

It costs INR 1450,  but according to me completely worth it.


  1. The Beauty Blender
The Original Beauty Blender
The Original Beauty Blender

The Beauty blender is an edge less, tear drop shaped make up sponge. It is meant to be used damp, and it becomes double its size when wet. You can use it to apply foundation on your face, concealor under your eyes, blush on your cheeks, highlighter on your cheekbones, nose bridge and cupid’s bow and you can even contour with it!

The Beauty Blender Doubles in Size when damp. It fits in this box when dry.
The Beauty Blender Doubles in Size when damp. It fits in this box when dry.


This is one product that has taken the make up industry by a storm. Make up artists swear by it, YouTubers are obsessed with it, and then there are foolish people like me who will spend a bomb just to own it. The original Beauty Blender cost me INR 2000 including shipping. (It costs about $20 in the States)

But is it actually worth so much money? It is definitely a remarkable  product. My face looks flawless when I do my make up with it and does not become patchy or creased out even after almost six hours! But it is also highly over priced. A lot of other brands make this wet sponge of different shape and size and I happened to lay my hands on a dupe which belonged to a make up artist friend of mine. He told me that he had picked a pack of five sponges, all shaped differently for less than $5 from Hong Kong. I used one of his sponges and believe me if you can, I got the exact same finish my beauty blender gives me!

Beauty Blender Dupes. Same results for less than half the price.
Beauty Blender Dupes. Same results for less than half the price.

These wet sponges are sadly not available in any stores in Calcutta. You will have to buy them online. You don’t have to buy the Original Beauty Blender only, firstly because a cheaper dupe will give you the same result and save you a lot of money, and secondly the ones you get on Flipkart or Amazon branded as the Original Beauty blender will probably be fake but for the same sky high price.


So these were my recommendation of five essential basic make up brushes for a beginner. If you have any questions, leave a comment below!



4 thoughts on “Five Essential Make Up Brushes for Beginners

  1. Could you please suggest where can i buy real techniques brushes in kolkata or jamshedpur

    1. Hi Ajita, you can buy real techniques brushes only online in india. They might be available in mumbai but I am not sure about that. There are also plenty of duplicates online so shop carefully. You can buy original real techniques brushes fron this website called

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