A set of makeup brushes makes a great gift (even if it’s for yourself), but not all are created equal. Too often buyers fall into the trap of picking the first on the shelf and end up with shoddy tools that quickly fall apart or worse, a bunch of brushes they never use. This is why it is important to brush on the options available so that you can get the best value for your money. And luckily for you, we brought in professional makeup artists for expert advice.

How to buy a makeup brush set

“A brush set is important for anyone who does makeup, regardless of skill level,” says celebrity makeup artist Alexis Oakley. “You don’t need too many brushes, even three to five will do.” Here are some other tips to keep in mind when selecting a kit:

✔️ Think about the quality. “Pay attention to what they feel on the skin. The brushes should be soft and smooth, not rough, ”says Oakley. “The better the quality, the longer they will last. ”

✔️ Check the hairs. Most of the brushes on the market are made from synthetic bristles, which a lot of people love. But famous makeup artist Jay Alarcon prefers brushes with natural bristles, often goat hair. “Everyone these days wants to be vegan and cruelty-free,” he says. “They are very difficult to find.”

✔️ Function is the key. “Think about your daily makeup routine. You don’t need 25 brushes if you only have a few steps. I say find a really good foundation, a blush, a bronzer, an eyebrow and maybe a couple of eye shadow brushes, ”says Oakley.

✔️ Budget accordingly. While some inexpensive sets will let you down, you don’t have to spend a fortune to get good brushes. Oakley’s must-have brands, Morphe and Bdellium, offer reasonable prices. However, she says if you want to splurge on makeup, the brushes are worth the investment. “Some of the brushes in my kit that I have had for 10 years,” she adds.

✔️ Think about how to clean them. “Taking care of your brushes will also increase longevity,” says Oakley. “It is essential to clean them regularly to prevent the proliferation of bacteria and to make them last longer.

Now that you know what to look for, explore our list of makeup brush sets that will satisfy beauty novices, experts and everyone in between this holiday season.

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