Having the right makeup is essential, but without the proper tools to apply it, it’s never going to look as insanely gorgeous as the final look you just saw on Instagram. Obviously, practice makes perfect, but the right brushes will take you a long way to getting a flawless finish. I’ve been a fan of Real Techniques ever since I tried their Miracle Complexion sponge, and I was super excited to see how this new brush collection would perform, especially as it’s specifically designed to work with powders. They look sophisticated, luxurious, and plush, and OMG, they are SO soft!
The Real Techniques PowderBleu Collection is designed to emulate real blue squirrel hairs, and I have to say I’m impressed. When it comes to using powder products, natural makeup brushes always come out on top, as their unique texture works faultlessly for picking up powders and then beautifully distributing them. So, it goes without saying that this new faux hair design is pretty revolutionary.
What it is: The first ever collection of synthetic brushes designed exclusively for use with powders. The brushes mimic rare blue squirrel hairs, which are renowned for their super fine, soft hairs, which are usually sought after by luxury brush brands.
The collection includes five brushes and one powder puff (below, left to right): B01 Soft Powder Brush for all over powder application, B02 Soft Finishing Brush for small and hard-to-reach areas, B03 Soft Complexion Brush for powder foundation or bronzer, B04 Soft Shadow Brush for eyes, B05 Soft Kabuki Brush for the face and body.
What it does: The unique design of the bristles make them ideal for picking up powders and putting them down without disturbing any makeup underneath. They’re ideal for layering powders and blending for a completely seamless finish.
What I liked: The first thing I consider with a product is the way it looks, and I really loved this collection for its aesthetic design. The brushes are displayed in really chic, round containers and the handle of the brushes are really long and diamond shaped – at first, I thought this was a bit weird, but it actually works really well for hold and usability. The bristles of the brushes are ahhhhmazing – they’re super soft and feel SO natural, and I think it’s great to find brands that don’t use real squirrel hair, especially when it’s clear that there are so many great synthetic alternatives.
The collection has a really good range. The B01 Brush gives a gorgeous subtle finish, so if you like more natural-looking makeup, this will sweep on a light layer to set your makeup. I personally like something with a little more push, and the shorter denser bristles (almost kabuki style) of the B03 brush worked incredibly for me; this was my fav brush, and it really gave me the most amazing application and coverage – it’s perfect for bronzer and powder. The B02 brush is great for highlighting and applying powders around the chin, eyes, and nose, and I love the Bo4 eyeshadow brush – it worked really well, especially for getting into the socket of your eye and blending, or simply just sweeping color over your lid. Finally, the B05 Kabuki brush works really well for the décolleté and buffing bronzer or highlighter onto your body. Even though the bristles are shorter, you get so much movement that it feels like natural hair, so it’s not hard to blend out.
What I didn’t like: I’m really impressed with these brushes. If I had to say one thing, it would be that because the bristles are very soft, if you’re using the brushes with longer hairs, they pack on less product. That said, I can’t fault the way they picked and put down product. I personally wouldn’t reach for the powder puff, as this isn’t a necessary makeup tool for me.
The verdict: I feel like you don’t need the entire collection: The B03 is a must-have brush, I’m obsessed with it, and the B02 is also a necessity. These are without a doubt the best brushes I’ve ever used from a drugstore brand, and I also love that you get so much more than just a brush: the beauty blogging background of Real Techniques’ mammas are Pixiwoo, so with each brush you get all their blogging experience and they create a video tutorial for each brush.
Price: B03, B02, B01, $20. B04 $13, B05, $25, Powder Puff $9