Make-up masterclass: Five tips for buying the best brushes
Paddy McGurgan is one of NI's best-known beauty experts and each week he tells us all we need to know about the latest make-up techniques and trends
One of the most important parts of any beauty routine, which can be often overlooked, is your brushes. These will help you not only achieve a flawless look, but will give you an easy and quick application.
Here are my must-have brush sets that will give you the perfect finish for any look.
Ciara Daly Chaos Collection, £99
This exclusive new gift set includes 20 make-up brushes and a leather make-up bag. It's a perfect gift for any time of year.
Powder 'n' Pout The Flawless 5 Brush Collection, £42.69
All you'll need to do your full make-up when you're on the go. This set comprises five versatile brushes with each having a multitude of uses. The brushes are made using the highest quality materials with each assortment of fibres chosen specifically for their intended use in each brush.
Paddy McGurgan 15-piece Brush Set, £135
My Deluxe Set 15-piece brush set was designed to assist make-up artists and make-up lovers alike to create the perfect face. The set includes brushers for foundation, powder, blusher, blending, brows, lashes and lips.
Spectrum 10-piece Essential Set, £39.99
This is Spectrum's bestselling set and comprises 10 brushes which are the perfect starting point to create flawless make-up. The set includes essential tools which are also excellent if you want to create make-up masterpieces.
Zoeva Complete Brush Set, £95
This is the ultimate brush collection for any beauty junkie and contains brushes which are loved by professional makeup artists. The set had brushes in a great variety of shapes and sizes, from the fluffiest powder and cheek brushes to luxurious foundation brushes and eye brushes designed for highly detailed work. You can create everything from subtle daily looks to striking evening glamour with this set, and it comes in a chic black clutch bag.
Real Techniques Ultimate Bundle, £29.99
This set contains four brushes for your base, five for your eyes and a complexion sponge. The variety of brushes means that you can create striking looks for any occasion. Each brush is made of Taklon bristles, which are luxurious, smooth and cruelty-free. The versatile sponge has been designed using advanced foam technology to enable you to evenly blend make-up for a smooth, flawless finish.
Five top tips for buying the best brushes
1. Always use a brush soap to maintain and clean your brushes. My favourite is Barbara Hoffman Soap, £10, makeupprostore.co.uk
2. Ensure you are using at least one brush for each aspect of your make-up - from foundation to powder and bronzer, to eyebrows and eyeshadow. This will mean you achieve a cleaner, sleeker finish to your make-up.
3. When buying brushes, always try out the tester. Watch for hair fall-out, bristle strength and the softness of the brush as well. This will be a great indicator of how well they will last if you choose to purchase.
4. Check online reviews of brushes you are thinking of purchasing to give an unbiased account.
5. Pick good quality, synthetic brushes as they will help to lift the product and place it on the face without fall-out. Poor quality synthetic brushes will look plastic and 'fake' whereas good quality ones really do look similar to natural hair. If you find yourself wondering if it is real or synthetic then this is a good sign.