beautyblender Size Comparisons

A quickie post comparing the different sizes of the beautyblender sponges! There’s a US quarter for scale, as well as a £1 coin for my UK readers. ;) The Sharpie is for anyone/everyone else. :P

beautyblenders dry

My old beautyblender is almost a year old now. The neon pink pigment bled a little each time I washed it, and now it looks like the new “bubble” shade they’ve just released.  It’s worth noting that I didn’t wash it after every use as suggested. In my defense, I use a brush to apply my foundation, then I go over it all with a beautyblender to make it all melt into my skin.

When dry, the new beautyblenders felt bouncier and softer than the old one. This makes sense, as the same hardening happens to regular cleaning sponges.

beautyblenders wet

Here you can see how they’ve expanded when wet/dampened. I’ve been using the blusher and the micro mini with cream/liquid blush and concealer, respectively. I like the blusher size, but I don’t think it applies and blends cream blush any better than my fingers do.

The micro mini, while awfully cute and weeny, is quite fiddly to hold and manipulate. I don’t really understand the reason for creating such a small sponge, especially when the original’s pointed tip works just fine for getting into the corners of the face.

beautyblender all.about.face Kit

Right now, Sephora has this all.about.face set that includes these three sponges, plus a mini beautyblender soap solid. I think it’s a great way to try out their different sizes and see which one works for you. Incidentally, I bought mine from Beauty Bridge and had no problems whatsoever. But, Sephora should be having their April 15% off sale soon, so… ;)

Don’t buy this: Makeup Academy Stippling Brush

Generally, beauty blogs will egg you on to buy the latest and greatest. Limited edition? Girl, you need it, like, yesterday. Fresh-faced brand on the market? Immediate new HG (Holy Grail, I hate this term) products.

However, today I’m going to warn you about and deter you from a product I hated: Makeup Academy Stippling Brush.

Makeup Academy is a well-known and well-loved brand in the UK. In late 2014, buzz began that it was expanding to the US, to be sold exclusively at CVS. I saw a display of brushes at my local Longs/CVS around the same time, and since I’d heard such good things about the line in the UK, I picked up a stippling brush to try.

makeup academy stippling brush

It was about $16-$17, which is pretty spendy for a drugstore brush. Although I did use a 20% off coupon, I still had high(er) expectations because I could get a similar brush from Sephora for just a few dollars more.

makeup academy stippling brush 2

First impression: this thing is huge.

makeup academy stippling brush real techniques sigmaTop to bottom: Makeup Academy Stippling Brush, Real Techniques Stippling Brush, Sigma F50 Duo Fibre brush (travel sized)

Compared to the other stippling brushes I own, it was gigantic. The handle was thicker than most of the face brushes I have, and it was extra long as well. It took up a lot of room in my brush holder, and it felt a bit awkward to use, especially if I had to put on foundation without my glasses.*

*I am as blind as Mr. Magoo without my contacts or glasses, and putting on makeup takes twice as long because I have to be literally inches away from the mirror to see anything.

Additionally, this brush shed. A lot. It also bled black dye every single time I washed it. Overall, it was not my favorite brush to use. I regretted the decision to throw away the box and receipt, because otherwise I would have returned it.

Then, just months later, this happened:

makeup academy stippling brush broken

For a brush I didn’t use often, and therefore didn’t wash often, this is completely unacceptable. I’ve owned brushes that I’ve washed consistently for YEARS, and they’re still intact and happily applying and blending with aplomb.

I checked the time stamp of my pictures, and I bought the brush around September 2014. It fell apart around January 2015. Four months. I had probably used it less than a dozen times at that point.

It’s worth noting that the Makeup Academy line in the US is “created exclusively for CVS,” and therefore the product line-up is not the same as the UK’s. I personally do not have any experience with the UK line. There are scores of rave reviews, especially the Undressed palettes as being dupes for the Urban Decay Naked palettes.

However, as far as the CVS version goes, I skip over the brush display every single time I’m in a store. I have zero interest in trying any of their other brushes. I have yet to see any  actual makeup displays, but Hawaii is lame and often we do not get a full line up of any brand, high or low. I wouldn’t be very enthusiastic if I did stumble across it, though.

Have you tried any Makeup Academy products, UK or US? Based on MakeupAlley reviews, the BB/CC cream brush was just as craptacular, so at least I don’t feel like I got a dud.