Amateur Beauty Blogging: Anyone Else Confused About Makeup & It’s Brushes?

Am I the only one, who cant seem to figure out the Rules & Regulations, of makeup – beyond quality & cleanliness?

Yes, I am fully aware of Youtube and its infinite DIY wisdom, of Makeup Artists delivering snippets of wisdom on Instagram, and beauty bloggers snapping flat lays all over the net.

…but I still feel dumb about everything!

I enter makeup stores like Bobbi Brown, Sephora, or NYX, and am overwhelmed by having to figure out what shade combination I am, and therefore what products and colour zone I should stick to.

A sales consultant once told me my skin has yellow undertones, and I still don’t know what to do with that, truthfully…

There are creams for this, powders for that, probably 18 types of lashes, and: Did you know your lips deserve their own beauty regime?

Switch Beauty #PrimeTimeKit > lip exfoliating gel + lip priming balm > R75 | $5.5

It’s a little overwhelming to take stock of just how much skill, tools, and makeup, is required in beauty.

I’m an amateur even among fellow novices – quickly painting my face up with reasonably priced (but quality) pastes, for the look I prefer…somewhere between dewy fresh & ‘no makeup’ makeup.

I have heard the conversations had, about makeup brands lack of diversity in shades – offering people of colour only a few (greyscale) shades, and their poor accompanying products.

FENTY Beauty has revolutionised the beauty industry, and been celebrated globally, for its inclusive strategy.

South Africa has yet to get a FENTY Beauty store, but I have been fortunate enough to give myself up to the helpful MAC Cosmetics makeup pros at my nearest mall, and successfully find products for my skin shade, in stock.

Along my (barely a decade-long) makeup journey, I was guided into the fact that:

  • There are various foundations one can use (liquid and powder) – who’d have thunk?!
  • That eyebrows can be shaped & drawn using eyeshadow,
  • That black eyebrow pencils may not actually be the go-to colour
  • It’s okay to use bold, sometimes adventurous colours, with your big features
  • Quality makeup isn’t just for industry professionals.

The one thing I never quite got a handle of, was the actual designations of Makeup Brushes.

See, I’ve been playing around with one of those entry-level makeup brush packs you score at an event, or pick-up at your neighbourhood drugstore store (Clicks).

Most of these makeup brushes don’t come labelled, and I’m a lazybum so learning the names online, seemed like work.

As a result of pure laziness, I tend to wing which brush is used for what.

My mother spoiled me with a new set of gold, oval makeup brushes over the festive season, and now I’m genuinely curious what the brush size, bristles & shape means, for what its used for in makeup application.

“Good make-up brushes are the difference between a slapdash finish and something truly exceptional” – Daniela Morosini,

I rarely use the fashion bible, Vogue, for beauty knowledge.

Today, however, they had a bundle of wisdom I was ready to receive, so here are

5 Q&A’s About Makeup Brush Sets:

1. The biggest one is for foundation right?

Actually, the biggie could be used in 3 different ways:

Foundation – that’s what I’m using it for now.

Setting Powder – that exists? Is it like hair spray?

Bronzing / Effects Powder – I’m gonna assume we can highlight with it.

2. I have a Set of 5. What can the smallest, circular brush be used for?

Beauty Bloggers recommend using that one for lipstick application.

It totally feels wasteful, and an extra step in my process, to not just smear the lippie right on my face first, but the brush is there to give you an incredible finish.

Now your lipstick wont look caked on, and may last longer with its even application technique.

3. The straight’ish thin brush, has to be for Eyebrows, right?!


Apparently, that baby is for Eyeliner, Eyeshadow, and even Concealer.

I don’t think I’m capable of the kind of finesse, using that linear brush requires for eye shadow.

I’m gonna make that one my eyebrow brush!

4. I need a brush for my highlighter – tell me that’s the medium-to-small oval brush?

According to the pros, the brush for highlighting, would be the 2nd biggest one in your brush pack of 5 – which can also double up as:

A Foundation Brush

Concealer Brush

Contour Brush

5. So then what’s that 3rd biggest one there for?

…that’d be for a Lip Color Finish, Contouring, or use it as a Cheek Brush (for something like blush).

There is a world of things I’ve probably already gotten wrong, so I’m gonna keep reading and learning.

If you have any makeup, and makeup brush tips, please drop me a comment – or just tell me about your experience with beauty.

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