I recently posted a picture on Instagram of this Beauuuutiful new set of purple brushes I bought from Bdellium Tools. Shortly after, someone asked me for some suggestions on reasonably priced, cruelty free makeup brushes. There was just way to much information to share in the comment section, so I was inspired to give my makeup buddy from Finland a more thorough response in a blog post. I have a comprehensive list on my “Shopping Guide” page that I will insert at the end of this post, but I wanted to give you a short list of my personal favorite budget friendly CF brands. Here are my tips and suggestions if you’re looking for reasonably priced, cruelty free makeup brushes…..
My Short List
I love this line, it’s affordable, the bristles are soft and the line is easily accessible at Ulta, Wal-Mart and/or other on-line retailers like Amazon. So no matter where you live, you can probably find these on-line. My favorites are:
- The Expert Face Brush I own 3 of these and use them to put on my liquid foundation. (3rd brush from left below)
- The Contour Brush comes in the core collection set ($17-20 for 4 brushes).I use to set my under eye concealer. (2nd brush from left below)
- The Base Shadow Brush comes in the Starter set ($13-17 for 5 brushes). I use this daily for blending concealer, but it’s intended use is an eye shadow blending brush, it’s similar in shape to the MAC #217. (5th brush from left below)
You can find “dupes of these brushes on eBay (more on that later) but they are a very affordable, around $15 for as set of 4, so I only mention eBay because they only sell certain brushes individually. So if there’s a brush you want to repurchase that isn’t sold as a single, eBay would be a great place to turn to. They are only a few dollars per brush. The first and second brushes from left are from eBay, bought them for 2 bucks)
Depending on who you ask I think these brushes are either over hyped or under rated. Bottom line, I love the Bamboo line, these brushes perform well, are affordable and they’re freakin’ pretty!!! The Bamboo brushes come in 4 colors Yellow, Green, Pink and the newly released Purple sets! The Purple is only sold in sets and are not sold individually like the Yellow, Green & Pink. I think these brushes are very reasonable for the quality you get, the individual brushes start at $7 (depending on where you buy them on-line, check Amazon or iHerb).
I have a few MAC and Sigma brushes that I purchased before I went cruelty free so I’ve compared them to both brands. I think if you try to compare them, you might be disappointed because they are not dupes, the brush shapes are somewhat different. Sigma and Mac are closer in shape so I think it’s fair to compare the two, but not the case here. If you judge these on their own I think you’ll be quite happy with these, I know I am. Bdellium Tools ships internationally. Oh, and by the way, the “B” is silent.🙂
These get a lot of love and I still think they’re under rated. If you’re just starting out or on a limited budget, these are a no brainer. The majority of these brushes are only $3, with a few exceptions being $6 and $10. You can also buy as set of 11 for $30. They’re sold at Eyeslipsface.com and Target, however they are starting to pop up in other retail and grocery stores in the US so keep an eye out. They Ship to US & Canada only so you may have to go through eBay or Amazon a pay a few bucks more a brush. My personal favorites are:
This is where I started. The first makeup brush I ever bought was from Coastal Scents so they hold a special place in my heart.🙂 I can’t even count how many brushes I’ve purchased from this company over the years…. So many that my husband becomes concerned when I pull them all out to wash them and they span the dining room table. In my best Steve Erckle voice I look at him and say “Did I do thaaaat?” (Hee hee). He always asks “Why do you need so many?” I’ll give you my answer in a minute. Let me just say that if you are looking for affordable brushes you can’t go wrong with Coastal Scents. Their brushes start at around $2-3 and they have synthetic sets in addition to their endless inventory of single brushes. They ship Internationally and when you receive a package you typically receive free samples and/or and “I LOVE MAKEUP” sticker along with your order. Yay! Oh and I have to mention their single eye shadows, they are great and only $1.99, I use them daily.
I love trolling eBay for deals on brushes, it’s something I do regularly when I’m lookin’ for a cheap thrill, AKA have put myself on a “no buy” and am ready to break! On eBay you can find dupes for a lot of the popular brush brands like Sigma, and Real Techniques starting at around a dollar with free shipping. Most of the major brush brands manufacture in China, so the manufacturers will produce ‘clones’ and distribute them for dirt cheap prices. Two of the brands I have bought and like off of eBay are Jesup and Six Plus, but there are many, many more. To find them, search “Synthetic makeup brushes” and you’ll have plenty to choose from. Most of the manufacturers ship worldwide, however be aware that if they ship from China they typically take 3 weeks or so to get to you (if you’re in the US). I’ve done a few blog posts on it I will list them below.
Beauty Bargains 9/12/14
Bargain Alert: Sigma Dupes on eBay
Brush Sets – If you’re starting out you may wan to consider purchasing a set of brushes. That way you’ll have a variety of brushes to work with and then you can decide which brushes you like using, which fit your eye shape and more importantly the ones you don’t use. It may save you money in the long run. Otherwise you might end up with a bunch of brushes you don’t use or need through trial and error. If I were honest, that’s what I would tell the Mister when he asks me why I have so many brushes. Instead I say “They get dirty, I need backups” Don’t be like me…get yourself a set and save yourself some money. Here are a few budget friendly sets (at different price ranges) that I recommend:
(1)eBay (2)Coastal Scents (3)BH Cosmetics (4)Nanshy (5&6)Makeup Geek (7)Bdellium Tools (8)Eco Tools
Learn about the shape of your eyes – like I said, if you purchase a set, it typically comes with 2 or more eye brushes which will allow you to determine which brushes fit your eye shape. When I was first starting out with eye shadow I didn’t realize that I had smaller, slightly hooded eyes, which means I should use smaller brushes for eye shadow application. For years I’d watch makeup tutorials, use the same tools the person in the video was using and couldn’t figure out why I was getting different results….long story short, figure out what works best for you. Try and find tutorials by people with similar eye shapes and find out what they use, that’s exactly how I learned. Thank you @ThatGirlShaeXO!!!!
Invest in a good blending brush if you like to wear eye shadow – This is the answer to all your problems. LOL. Finding the right fluffy blending brushes for your eye shape is key. There are plenty of suggestions on YouTube, but again, getting good results depends on finding the right size brush for your eye shape. Morphe, Elf, Coastal Scents, Real Techniques, Makeup Geek, Crown Brush, Sonia Kashuk (Target), Bdellium Tools and eBay all have budget friendly options.
Downsize – If your brush collection has gotten out of control, think about downsizing your collection and keeping only the brushes you enjoy using. It will make getting ready a lot more efficient, making it easier to find what you need. You can always donate the brushes you don’t use if they’re in good shape. I did this recently and I’m happy I did.
Get organized – I store my brushes in 3 containers on my vanity by category; Blending brushes, Face brushes and All other. Depending on how big your collection is, you may want to think about dividing up your stash. If it’s not that large, then invest in a pretty container for your vanity that you enjoy looking at.
Cleaning your brushes – Best tip I can give you is to SPOT CLEAN YOUR BRUSHES after using them! This keeps them clean and will save you trips to the sink, which means your brush will spend less time in water and probably last you longer. It will also saves you time because you won’t have to haul every single brush you own to the sink at one time, which can be a major production depending on how many you have. I love using Cinema Secrets Brush Cleaner which you can find on Amazon, it’s smells really good and it dries in seconds, I also like Beauty So Clean. I’m sure you can find an DIY recipe on-line as well. Check out this brush cleaning post I did recently (Dupe for Sigma Brush Cleaning Mat)
My Long List of Cruelty Free Brushes
(Suggestions for every budget)
100% Pure ($6-21)
Bdellium Tools ($7 & up)
Beauty Without Cruelty ($15-30)
BH Cosmetics Synthetic Sets ($8 & up)
BHUMI Brushes ($25-60)
Cate McNabb ($12-25)
City Color Synthetic Set $34
Coastal Scents Synthetic brushes ($3 & up)
Cozzette ($15 & up)
Crown Brush Synthetic brushes ($3.50 & up)
Eco Tools ($4 & up)
Elf Studio Brushes ($3 & up)
Emani ($32 set of 4)
Furless ($12 & up)
It Cosmetics ($24 & up)
Luxie Brushes ($10-18, sets start at $40)
Makeup Geek ($7 & up, Sets $43-49)
Medusa’s Makeup (Set pf 6 $35)
Modern Minerals ($17-56)
Monave ($9 and up)
Morphe Synthetic Brushes (Set of 10 $40)
Nanshy ($7.50 & up)
Nvey ($6 & up)
Real Techniques ($6 & up)
Rite Aid Brushes (In store only, $7 & up)
Sedona Lace Vegan Brushes ($14 & up)
Sigma Beauty (Vegan $19 & up, Sets start at $72-178)
Sonia Kashuk ($6 & up at Target)
Stript ($100 for set of 7 on Amazon)
Sugar Pill ($16-20)
Zoeva Vegan Sets ($60-75)
I hope you found this helpful. Thanks for stopping by!