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Our beginners guide to makeup

Can you remember when you first started wearing makeup?

Much as you’d perhaps rather forget (electric blue shadow and coral lips anyone? Oh, by the way these are pretty much making a return this Spring/Summer but still not together, just saying…) we’re pretty sure, like us, you’ve improved over the years picking up tips and tricks along the way.

At risk of showing our age here, this improvement process took much longer, and a lot more experimentation, than it does today with the boom of YouTube makeup tutorials at the click of a button!

But it seems a shame not to share some of this hard earned knowledge with those beauties that are just starting to discover the fun of makeup – btw that’s our first big tip – makeup should be all about having fun!

When it comes to a good makeup application, the secret really is having the right tools. You’ll never get a flawless finish applying foundation with your fingers, so start out by choosing makeup brushes designed to make a difference.

Believe it or not, investing in the right brush will save you time and money in the long run. How you ask? As well as giving that flawless finish we mentioned, you’ll actually use less product by eliminating any wastage you would get using your fingers.

With so many makeup brushes on the market; where to start and which brushes to buy is a sensible question. Here’s a run-down of our favourite brushes to get that flawless base, eyes that pop and the perfect finish.
Tip: Start with a brush set and gradually add to it.

It’s time to get real
Real Techniques are a great starting point as they use a colour coded system to identify what each brush is used for (base, eyes, finish) and labelled so you remember which is which.

Orange = it’s all about the base.
The Real Techniques Core Collection brush set includes four brushes to create the perfect base. And is a great starting point with:

  1. Detailer Brush: to conceal problem areas (think under eyes and around the nose) plus it can double up as a lip brush to apply lipstick for long-lasting shape and definition – bonus.
  2. Pointed Foundation Brush: use with liquid foundations to build coverage and give a smooth skin finish.
  3. Buffing Brush: is a favourite of ours for full coverage application of powder and mineral foundation by gently sweeping or dabbing over the face. Air-brushed :)
  4. Contour Brush: specifically shaped to apply highlighter to contour and create definition (contouring can be a bit tricky – check out a contouring tutorial at 

Purple = perfect eyes and brows
Once you’ve perfected your base, we recommend having a few basic brushes for the eyes and brows.

The Real Techniques Starter Set includes these everyday eye essentials in one set. These five brushes will have your eyes popping in no time:

  1. Base Shadow Brush: the go-to of all eye brushes, use this to apply a smooth, flawless foundation of colour to the entire lid.
  2. Deluxe Crease Brush: the soft, oversized design is made for contouring and blending shadow into the crease of the eyelid (use what we refer to as a windscreen wiper motion back and forth until blended)
  3. Accent Brush: perfect for precise detailing, spotlighting, highlighting, and smudging.
  4. Fine Liner Brush: master eyeliner with this tool which can be used with both liquid and cream liners. Note: liner does take time to master – if you don’t get it first go either start again or use your accent brush to create a smudged effect ;)
  5. Brow Brush: brows really are ‘the thing’ so use this brush to groom and also define eyebrows with brow gel, cream or powder application.

Natural beauty at your fingertips
From bright and fashion forward, to natural and sustainable with Ecotools makeup brushes, which are beautiful to use and a beautiful way to look after the planet too. With each brush featuring the softest bristles combined with eco-friendly bamboo and recycled aluminium handles.

Once again, starting out with sets is an efficient and value-for-money way to build your makeup brush collection.

Our favourite must-have in the Ecotools range is the take everywhere

Mini Essentials Brush Set – it’s a small set of three brushes that fit into any make up bag:

  1. Powder brush: the one brush you really can’t live without because good makeup application starts with a flawless base.
  2. Eye Shading Brush: use this brush to apply shadow across the eyelid and use the tip (with a windscreen wiper back and forth motion) along the crease to contour.
  3. Angled Liner Brush: add final definition to the eyes by using the ultra-flat angled tip to line your eye with cream liner or shadow.

Another favourite in this range is the Angled Kabuki. This large headed, soft bristled brush is a great multi-tasker. Use if for all-over powder application or to sweep powder bronzers/highlighters wherever the sun would naturally kiss skin.

Before we sign-off just a quick note to mention that both ranges feature a brush cleanser which must be on your shopping list! As you can imagine, brushes build up product over time so it’s important to cleanse them regularly to keep them clean and performing at their best.


Have fun discovering makeup brushes and the new looks they can help you achieve. And, stay tuned for some more makeup brush tips and tricks coming soon.