Product Type: MAC makeup
Newest Review: ... as to whether I would recommend this brush, though I would recommend going to a MAC or Debenhams store if you decided upon purchasing ... more
A must have brush!
MAC Blending Brush
Member Name: jimmychoogirl
MAC Blending Brush
Advantages: makes blending eye shadow quick and easy, able to get a soft grip on handle, comfortable to use++
Disadvantages: lots of fakes around
==~~What is it?~~==
MAC have a few blending brushes available and a choice of synthetic or non synthetic on offer. I decided to purchase the 217 brush which is mainly designed for blending eye shadow due to the fact it has very soft, yet tapered bristles with a slightly tapered edge. Despite mainly being used for blending eye shadow, it can also be used to apply eye shadow alone and on occasions I have even used it to conceal areas so it is very much a multi use brush.
==~~Price and Availability~~==
This is definitely not a cheap brush, though from MAC I wasn't really expecting anything different. It costs £17 and although this seems a lot, I do thoroughly believe it is worth this price and believe it will be a staple in my make up brush kit for a few years to come.
Due to this being a MAC product, it is only available in certain stores. This can be the freestanding MAC and MAC Pro stores, or Debenhams and MAC also has their online website in which you can purchase their items from.
The design of this brush makes it primarily very easy to use. It has a very long handle, which means that it sits comfortably in the hand and due to the smooth texture of the handle I do not feel the need to grip it, meaning a lighter hand when applying the makeup. When using this to blend eye shadow I was very pleased with the results. The soft bristles means that it is very easy to use both in backward and forward strokes, along with circular ones along the edge of the eye shadow to ensure that there are no harsh lines. The brush is fairly small, so when blending the edge of the eye shadow it does not affect the eye shadow over the lid of the eyeliner, meaning that you are left with a very neat, yet blended and soft eye shadow look. The bristles also all seem to stay in a much uniformed shape when using this brush, meaning that you can really focus on blending one section, rather than the bristles sticking out and ending up with a slightly rougher blended look.
It also works just as well when blending out cream or gel based eye shadows. I do find that it takes a little more work to blend out the cream based products, opposed to powder based, nonetheless it is still a very quick and easy process when using this brush. It enables the edge of these eye shadows to look softer and slightly 'fluffier', yet at the same time it does not look like the eye shadow had bled or feathered at all due to it being a cream based product.
When using this brush to apply base eye shadow this brush works just as well due its fairly dense bristles, this means that the eye shadow transfers well from the palette to the brush meaning that you end up with a decent amount to apply to the eyelid. I find that the 217 brush picks up enough eyes shadow to have an opaque layer across the eyelid, meaning that there is very little need to go back over it. Due to the bristles being very soft it is very delicate when applying the eye shadow to the lid of the eye and in no way does it pull on the eye.
On some occasions I have also used this to apply concealer and although this is not necessarily what this brush is used for it works just as well. Due to it being a very light brush to use I found it very easy to dab the concealer onto any imperfections without obstructing any make up previously applied underneath and neither does is remove this make up.
When using this brush as a blending brush I was very pleased with the results. It made the eye shadow look very soft on the eye, meaning that there were no harsh lines and in turn made the whole smokey eye look, look a lot softer. Despite the fact it blends outs the eye shadow well, it does in a way not to remove any of the eye make up applied and neither does it completely remove the pigmentation of the eye shadow, meaning that you are left with a very soft graduated look. I was really thoroughly impressed with the results and would rate this brush way higher than my previous blending brush which tended to remove the eye shadow rather than actually blending it out.
When using it as a base eye shadow brush I was also equally pleased with the results, it left a soft dusting of the eye shadow all over the lid and due to it being a blending brush it was as if it had blended out the edge of the eye shadow on its own due to their being no harsh lines when applying an eye shadow alone with this brush.
As a conceal brush this brush also works well, although the results do not equally match those of above it still does well to cover any imperfections and does not draw attention to them. I think this is due to the fact the brush is very light to use, meaning that you end up only using the bare minimum in order to conceal something, rather than over using product which can often draw more attention to it. Although I liked the results when using it as a conceal brush, I think this is more so when I cannot find another brush to use as it definitely works better as a base eye shadow/ blending brush, nonetheless it is still a very versatile brush.
==~~Cleaning the brush~~==
The slightly downside I find to this brush is that it does need cleaning almost every day, due to the fact it can get dirty quickly. Also due to the fact it is a cream/ white coloured brush any eye shadows used previously show up on this brush meaning that if you use it two days in a row you run the risk of blending in the previous days eye shadows into the new look, meaning the look will not be as professional and the colours may not suit. Despite this, I find the brush is very easy to clean and washes very well when either using an anti-bacterial soap and water, or with an actual brush cleaner and with either of these the brush comes up as good as new. I have been washing mine everyday / every other day for around 2/3 months now and the bristles have remained very soft (as if they were new) and neither have the bristles began to shed.
Overall, I am very pleased with this brush and would not hesitate in buying another one should I lose or damage this one in anyway. The quality of it is far superior to any brushes I have used previously and this means that I can use it with ease to make lovely, soft eye looks. Due to the fact it is still in as new condition I can see this lasting for many years in my collection and it being a 'basic' brush that I will continue to use on a daily basis. There is no doubt as to whether I would recommend this brush, though I would recommend going to a MAC or Debenhams store if you decided upon purchasing them as there are many fakes around.
Summary: A must have brush!