Cover These are the best make-up brushes to add to your beauty kit (Photo: Courtesy of Charlotte Tilbury)

From foundation brushes to eye makeup and contouring tools, these are the best make-up brushes every woman should own in her kit

Make-up brushes are an essential part of any routine. While it might be tempting to take the easy way out and apply beauty products directly with your fingers, the reality is that the method will result in streaks or uneven patches. If you’ve been wanting to step up your makeup game and recreate all those stunning looks from your favourite celebrities for the holiday season and beyond, why not invest in some new quality brushes to have your makeup look precise and beautifully blended?

With so many types of make-up brushes on the market, it can be a difficult process to narrow down your choices and know what tool is best for what purpose, that’s why we’ve compiled a list of the best single brushes and sets for every beauty concern. Whether you’re looking for larger brushes to seamlessly blend foundation or angled brushes to sculpt the cheekbones, these are the essential tools you need to achieve that flawless finish.

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Best Foundation Brushes And Powder Brushes

YSL Foundation Y-Brush N°3 

Featuring a luxurious black-and-gold design with the brand’s iconic Cassandra logo, this foundation brush from YSL isn’t just pretty to look it—it does a great job at blending cream and liquid foundations beautifully into the skin, too. The brush is designed with a unique Y-shaped reservoir to deliver a full-coverage finish, which also boasts soft, synthetic bristles to make applying make-up a total joy. Pro tip: Pair the brush with YSL’s Touche Éclat Foundation to achieve a swoon-worthy complexion.  

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Make Up For Ever Buffing Foundation Brush 112 

If you're looking for a foundation brush that works well with liquid formulas, this one from Make Up For Ever is your best bet. Not only it features soft, densely-packed fibres to help build coverage and create a streak-free complexion, it also has an angled head that designed to intuitively follow the contours of your face for a precise, smooth foundation application.  

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Charlotte Tilbury Magic Complexion Brush 

As its name suggests, this foundation brush from cult beauty brand Charlotte Tilbury is pretty magical. The brush has a big, flat top that makes it quicker and easier to deliver precise coverage to all those hard-to-reach areas—think, around the nose and eyes. It’s also ideal for those with acne, visible pores, scarring and rosacea as it doesn’t force the foundation into the pores, but gently brushing over them for an air-brushed finish.  

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Westman Atelier Powder Brush

Tired of powder brushes that absorb excessive amounts of product? Give Westman Atelier’s brush a try. Handcrafted by skilled artisans in Kumano, Japan, this makeup tool features high quality, silky soft bristles that can pick up and deposit finishing powder evenly to create a beautiful, lightweight finish. The brush is also brilliant for bronzer or highlighter application.  

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Chantecaille Buff and Blur Brush

The soft, tightly-packed vegan bristles in this luxurious flat-top brush from Chantecaille is not just a winner for pressed powder. It also doubles up as a great tool for applying bronzer and highlighter, which is specifically designed to pick up just the right amount of powder to give you a more even, natural-looking finish.  

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By Terry Expert Face and Body Brush 

By Terry’s Expert Face and Body Brush is a firm favourite for among make-up artists and amateurs alike for a good reason. Perfect for face and body makeup, this versatile brush can be used to apply and blend everything from liquid to cream and powder products. The easy-grip handle makes it comfortable to wield for a smooth makeup application, while the soft, vegan bristles are great for sensitive skin. 

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Best Concealer Brushes

Burberry Beauty Concealer Brush 06

A good concealer brush goes a long way and can help you achieve flawless, blemish-free complexion with minimal time and effort. This one from Burberry Beauty is a great option for beginners, which is designed with luxurious bristles in a rounded, gently tapered shape that allows easy and precise application on all those hard-to-reach areas around the eyes and nose.  

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Tom Ford Beauty Concealer Brush

Whether you’re a make-up beginner or a professional artist who just wants to find another amazing concealer brush to upgrade your beauty kit, this tool from Tom Ford is a perfect choice. The brush is great for applying cream concealer to cover dark circles and breakouts, which can be also doubled as a tool for blending eye shadow. 

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Giorgio Armani Beauty Concealer Brush

A definite splurge, but a worthy one—especially for those who’re looking for a tool to get rid of imperfections easily and quickly. Crafted with flexible bristles and a tapered, flat head, this luxurious tool from Giorgio Armani allows you to pat concealer on top of breakouts and dark circles without any cakiness.  

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Chanel Retractable Dual-Tip Concealer Brush 

Chanel’s Retractable Dual-Tip Concealer Brush is your go-to for precise and effortless application in targeted areas, especially the spaces under the eyes. It's specially designed to create natural-looking coverage and a smooth finish with two tips: a flat one for applying concealer precisely, and a round one that blends the result for a flawless complexion. 

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Best Bronzer Brushes And Blush Brushes

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit Brush 

To achieve glowing skin, a wide, rounded bronzer brush with soft and supple bristles is a must. A good tool will help pick up just the right amount of product and diffuse the powder pigments evenly on the skin without leaving you a muddy mess.

For this, we recommend Hourglass’ double-headed brush, which features a round tip for applying bronzer and finishing powder, and a tapered side that is perfect for blush and highlighter to ensure the products define your face without any blotchiness.  

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Charlotte Tilbury Air-Brush Bronzing Brush

Charlotte Tilbury’s kabuki-style retractable bronzing brush is a beautiful, practical face tool that deserves a spot in your beauty kit. Made with cruelty-free synthetic bristles and an ergonomic handle that provides optimum control during application, the brush will allow you to diffuse bronzer evenly without much work to achieve a seamless, natural-looking glow. 

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Marc Jacobs Beauty Blush Angled Blush Brush

A face brush with a precise angled tip that provides professional-grade applications of blush and bronzer, this tool from Marc Jacobs Beauty works a treat for cream and powder formulas. Simply dip the brush in your favourite products, tap off the excess and dust it onto your cheekbones to create facial definition.  

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Clarins Blush Brush 

Clarins’ angled blush brush is designed with a sustainably-sourced birch ergonomic handle to make sculpting facial contours a breeze. Featuring premium, amazingly soft synthetic fibres, this tool will perfectly shade, contour and illuminate the cheekbones for a beautiful chiselled makeup look. 

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Best Eye Make-up Brushes

Dior Large Eyeshadow Blending Brush °23

An everyday make-up bag wouldn’t be complete without a good, fluffy eyeshadow brush that allows you to apply colour all over the lids, as well as shading and blending for a stunning finish.  

Whether you want a sultry smokey eye makeup or a gentle splash of colour for daily wear, this blending brush from Dior is a great beauty tool to invest in. It features a round, firm brush completes with soft bristles, which can help to create an even blend of pigments and diffuse any harsh eyeshadow lines.  

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Fenty Beauty Precision Definition Brush 220 

This lovely pink brush from Fenty Beauty has a unique flattened, tapered tip that makes it easier-than-ever to softly blend out and diffuse eyeshadow colours, or to highlight the inner corners of the eyes with bright, shimmering shades. The magic of the brush doesn’t stop here—it can be also used to highlight your nose and cupid’s bow. 

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Bobbi Brown Ultra Precise Eyeliner Brush

Once you’ve mastered the basics of eyeshadow makeup, you can start adding a few more brushes with more complex uses to your beauty arsenal—like this eyeliner brush from Bobbi Brown—to achieve the perfect doll eye and cat-eye looks. This eyeliner brush from Bobbi Brown is carefully crafted with a slim, tapered brush head to draw precise lines for instant definition, which works well with powder shadow or gel liner. 

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Urban Decay Pro-Angled Eyeliner Brush

Eco-conscious beauty junkies will love this eyeliner brush from Urban Decay. Featuring a handle made from recycled aluminum, it has a versatile, slanted head that allows you to draw thin lines for a subtle makeup look, or thick lines to show off that precise winged cat-eye. Unlike other brushes with natural porous bristles, it has soft, easy-to-clean synthetic hairs that made from recycled plastic bottles to prevent bacterial build-up. A perfect option for the low maintenance girl.  

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Best Lip Brushes

Laura Mercier Lip Colour Brush

Impeccable lips can really give your overall makeup a polished feel in seconds, so don’t be lazy about lipstick application. Laura Mercier’s Lip Colour Brush is the right tool to ensure a perfect pout, which has a finely rounded tip and tapered sides for you to create a defined line around the edge of your lips, making sure your favourite shade last longer and reducing the risk of smudging.  

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MAC 316 Lip Brush

Apply your lipstick with expert precision using MAC’s lip brush. With a tapered tip and flat, firm synthetic bristles, the tool will ensure just the right texture and durability for both shimmer and matte shades. Another plus: It is hand-sculpted with a wooden handle that gives you better control and extra comfort during use.  

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Estée Lauder Lip Brush

As well as being one of the prettiest, most luxurious brushes on the market, Estée Lauder’s lipstick applicator is a great make-up tool that offers precise application for plump touts. Whether it’s lipstick, lip balm or lip gloss, this brush will help you to get the desired result. 

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Best Make-up Brushes Sets

Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Mini Brush Set

It’s always a good idea to build up a personalised make-up kit step by step with the right brushes selected based on the area of your face you’re keen to polish. But if you want to invest in premium tools that can save you money in the long-term, consider buying your brushes in a set.  

Charlotte Tilbury has launched a new mini brush set just in time for the holiday season, which contains everything you need to achieve every beauty look you desire—including a powder brush, eye blender brush, eye smudger brush and eye/lip precision brush that housed in a limited-edition luxurious, emerald-green velvet clutch.  

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Hourglass Vegan Brush Collection 

Another Instagram-worthy set for beauty gurus who are serious about their make-up tools, this collection from Hourglass offers 17 brushes made of ultra-soft vegan bristles for you to blend foundation, apply eyeshadows and sculpt the cheeks effortlessly.  

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Lilah B. Let’s Face It Brush Set

Lilah’s B Let’s Face It Brush Set is ideal for on-the-go application. It comes with five hypo-allergenic, cruelty-free brushes—foundation brush, bronzer brush, liner brush, eyeshadow brush, crease brush that organised in a deluxe faux textured-leather case for you to create a full face.  

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