5 Makeup Brushes Every Beginner Needs

Beginner Makeup Brushes

Kids these days have it so easy.

I started wearing makeup before the dawn of the YouTube beauty guru. When I started wearing makeup, Michelle Phan was just a girl in art school. Back in my day, makeup advice was passed down from mother to daughter, friend to friend, and if you had good connections maybe your cousin knew a cosmetologist who could do your makeup for you for homecoming.

But these days things are very different (and that’s a great thing)! I love that I have a platform that I can use to share makeup advice with hundreds or thousands of people. If you’re new to makeup and curious about the basics, you’re in the right place.

One thing you’ll quickly learn is that brushes have a huge impact on the appearance of your makeup. The right brush is crucial, the wrong brush is dreadful. This is why it’s not a bad idea to splurge on expensive, good quality brushes that will last for years, once your budget allows you to afford it.

Here are five makeup brushes every beginner needs to own before setting foot on that path to makeup righteousness. I’ve found that these are the five I use almost everyday, without fail, and couldn’t be happier with.

  1. Round Foundation Brush: Because you need something to apply your foundation with. I prefer round brushes because I find that they blend out foundation the most naturally whereas paddle brushes can leave foundation streaks on your face. What I Use: IT Cosmetics Dual Airbrush Foundation Concealer Brush.
  2. Powder Brush: Setting your foundation with a powder prevents it from budging, smudging, and running throughout the day. Powder is particularly important if you’re an oil slick like me. Choose a fluffy brush that will diffuse the powder evenly and won’t pack it all in one place. What I Use: Sephora Large Powder Brush.
  3. Blush Brush: Contouring and highlighting is optional, but blush really brings life back to your face. I can’t tell you how much better my makeup looks now that I’ve started using a better brush to apply my blush. Some people prefer fluffy blush brushes, but the one I use is quite dense. It’s really a matter of choice, but always use a light hand when applying blush. Less is more. What I Use: ELF Ultimate Blending Brush.
  4. Blending Brush: Speaking of blush, once you apply your blush, contour, highlight, or anything else that you put on top of your foundation, it’s important to blend out harsh lines to make sure it looks more natural. When in doubt, blend it out. What I Use: Sephora Angled Blush Brush.
  5. Crease Brush: A fluffy crease brush that perfectly blends together your eyeshadows is everything. You can apply eyeshadow with any dense brush, or even your fingers, but nothing will perfectly diffuse that dark crease color like a good crease brush. What I Use: Sonia Kashuk Crease Brush (Note: I bought the $11 Sonia Kashuk 5-Brush Essential Eye Kit years ago and still use it every day!)


  1. November 13, 2015 / 10:56 pm

    I knew how to glue down lashes before YouTube existed. Lolz! Because I was a boy, fashion magazines and daily beauty tips in the newspapers taught me everything I knew back then. That being said, YouTube helped me perfect the nitty gritty that I may have overlooked in terms of application. I remember my first brush which was a retractable blusher brush (which I still have; it’s 10 years old) and going, wow, that is freaking fantastic at applying blush compared to that tiny little brush that comes with the blusher!

    • November 16, 2015 / 9:20 pm

      Haha! I STILL have trouble applying false lashes, but I think I’m starting to get the hang of it! YT taught me so much though. I don’t know where I would be without it. Speaking of blush, I think the first product I ever bought after watching a YT video was the Milani baked blush. It was my first blush ever and I still have it and love it to this day 🙂

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