Japanese brushes, part 2

Well, feck. It’s been over two months since I last updated. And yet, I still managed to gain a follower on Bloglovin’, and more likes on my Facebook page. I don’t even know.

To be honest, continuing this brush post series feels a bit pointless and incomplete. In typical fashion, I’ve waited far too long to get my thoughts together on brushes and in the meantime I’ve bought more brushes. However, I no longer have all of my brushes here with me in order to present a more comprehensive comparison. So now I’m letting the sunk cost (effort) fallacy guilt-trip me into plowing on with what I already started.


Teardrop-shaped brushes

I mainly use these shapes for highlighter. This picture is more for size and shape comparison, though.

Thoughts on the Chikuhodo Z-2 in my previous post.

The Wayne Goss 02 is a daily workhorse. I love the small, precise shape. The soft squirrel bristles apply even the most intense, metallic highlighters, with subtlety and finesse. I’m toying with the idea of buying a second one. It’s only $35 USD, which is incredibly value for the quality.

The hakuhodo + Sephora PRO Kotsubu brush is okay. I really don’t have any strong feelings toward it, one way or another. I thought about selling it off, but couldn’t bring myself to do it. It goes in and out of stock on sephora.com (currently not listed), so keep checking if you’re interested in getting one.

The Zoeva 105 is a decent brush. It’s a synthetic/natural (goat?) blend. As it’s a budget-friendly brush, it’s a good one to get to try out the shape, if you’ve never tried a teardrop shaped brush for highlighter before.

I don’t use the Real Techniques Contour brush for highlighter, at all. I use it for liquid foundation, and sometimes a gentle contour.  To be honest, I’ve left it in Hawaii and I don’t miss it one bit.

I like some Real Techniques brushes and I enjoying watching the Pixiwoo sisters on YouTube. However, I do think as their business grows, the quality of their brushes are suffering. I also feel that they are pumping out too many new products at once, and I find it annoying that many brushes are only available in sets, instead of individually.

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What’s in my travel makeup bag? September 2016


I’m back!!

Well, I’ve been home for almost three weeks now, but as I am practically incapable of behaving like a functioning adult, I am only getting around to reviving my poor blog now-ish. Heh.

I was away from my makeup stash for most of the month of September. First, I went on a trip to Asia with my dad. I came back to Hawaii for a few days and stayed at my uncle’s place while waiting for our bathroom renovation to wrap up. Then, I spent a weekend in Las Vegas for my cousin’s wedding. When we finally moved back in, it took awhile to sort our lives back in order. It’s still not 100% sorted out, but whose life really is, amirite?

Anyway! This post is on what was in my travel makeup bag that I used for the past month. Let’s see what made the cut.

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Inventory, London 2015/2016 – Makeup Brushes

I debated whether or not to include brushes as part of my inventory. But it feels like cheating if I don’t, like brushes get a free pass. I quite like brushes, and I like to collect them. I’ve also bought a few more in the time I’ve been here, so I need to hold myself accountable.

inventory london 2015 face brushes

Face brushes

Crown Brush – blush brush (I use this for foundation)
Crown Brush – ??? I think it’s technically called a contour brush, but I use it to buff out concealer.
Both of these were part of a HD set I bought on Hautelook.

Real Techniques Core Collection – buffing brush, contour brush, small foundation brush
Real Techniques blush brush
Real Techniques setting brush

e.l.f. Studio small stipple brush

inventory london 2015 eye brushes

Eye brushes

Crown Brush – eyeshadow brush, crease brush (same HD set)
Crown Brush – smudge brush (part of a different, larger set that actually kind of sucked overall)

Smashbox #3 blending brush – I love this thing so, so much.
Smashbox #31 precision concealer brush

e.l.f. concealer brush – Another favorite. Dirt cheap and super useful.
e.l.f. blending eye brush

e.l.f. Studio angled eye liner brush – The bristles are starting to splay on this one. I wanted to try the Real Techniques silicone liner brush for gel liner instead, but the price kept going up on Amazon when I made my last order, so I’m holding off for now.
e.l.f. Studio small smudge brush

Sigma E30 pencil brush, travel size – The only brush to survive from a really nice travel kit my friend Krystal bought me one year. :( I left the set with my boyfriend in London and when I came back several months later, he had had bugs in his room. They ate holes through his clothes, and chewed on some of the bristles of my brushes.

ecoTools smudge brush

MAC 266 – My one and only MAC brush. I was using it for brow pomade, and before that, gel/cream eyeliners. But I think it’s best suited for powder products, due to its natural bristles.

Sephora Professionnel medium shadow brush – This line has since been discontinued. In fact, I got it on sale as they were phasing this line out. It’s still one of my favorite brushes today.

Sonia Kashuk ??? crease brush – This line has also been revamped. To be honest, I don’t love this brush. It’s okay, but it’s just slightly off in size and density to be of much use to me.

Sephora Professionnel brow comb – If you don’t already use a metal comb for your lashes, you need to start doing so, right now. You will never go back to crappy plastic combs.

Sonia Kashuk spoolie

Real Techniques detailer brush

inventory london 2015 travel brushes

Travel brushes

ecoTools mini eye makeover set

The Body Shop face puff

Nordstrom retractable lip brush

ecoTools retractable kabuki brush

Side note: I’ve recently gotten addicted to checking MakeupAlley’s makeup boards (late to the game, much?). Someone mentioned using a microfiber cloth to wipe off brushes as a spot clean in-between washes. I gave it a try, and I was STUNNED at how well it worked! So much pigment came out! This is a game changer, especially for my blush brushes. I would only do this for powder products, though.