The 13 Best Foundation Brushes Beloved By the Pros

Perfect finish, promise.

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Marie Claire

Whether you’re a liquid, cream, or powder gal, finding a great foundation isn’t the end of the equation. You need something to apply it with, and fingers aren’t always your best option. From kabuki brushes to stippling brushes to buffing bristles, the kind of foundation brush you use completely changes the finish you get—and can even make your makeup look like a completely different kind of product. We made it a bit simpler by streamlining the only brushes you need for every application desire.

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1
The Densest Bristles
Full-Bodied Foundation Brush 110
Fenty Beauty sephora.com
$45.00

Fenty’s foundation brush is shaped like a paw so that you can apply liquid foundation with the full coverage of a paddle brush and with the blending abilities of an airbrush. The 140,000 bristles are dense enough that foundation goes on your face–not caked up inside the brush.

2
For an Airbrushed Look
The Buffer Airbrush Finish Bamboo Foundation Brush
Tarte Cosmetics sephora.com
$34.00

The thick, bamboo handle of this brush provides a comfortable grip as the dense bristles buff and blur your foundation. The result? An even, non-flaky base for the rest of your makeup. 

3
Best for Precision
Hasu Fude Foundation Brush
Shiseido sephora.com
$32.00

This brush’s unique shape sets it apart from the plethora of options out there. A flat surface provides even coverage on your cheeks and forehead, but it's angled enough to offer precision for those hard-to-reach spots (like the grooves of your nose). Plus, you can use it to contour afterwards. Win-win.

4
For Liquid Foundation
Bholder Brush
PÜR ulta.com
$28.00

Though powder and cream both work with this new brush, there’s a silicon center nestled within the outer bristles designed specifically for liquid foundation. The silicon pad helps to keep product in place, while the soft hairs blend for a natural finish. 

5
For Double Duty
Heavenly Luxe Complexion Perfection Brush #7
It Cosmetics ulta.com
$48.00

I stand behind the dream team of plastic surgeons and makeup experts that developed this brush. The larger end provides a flawless finish on your powder or liquid foundation, while the smaller end can be used to touch up nooks and crannies with concealer.

6
Most Versatile
Triangular Buffing Foundation Brush
e.l.f. Cosmetics ulta.com
$6.00

Dubbed the ol’ reliable, there’s a reason this foundation brush is the first one makeup experts reach for. Tapered, synthetic bristles ensure a streak-free application every time.

7
Best for Control
Foundation Blender
Real Techniques ulta.com
$12.99

If you prefer more control over your blending, opt for the handle-less bristles of this little buffer–perfect for liquid, powder, or cream foundations.

8
When You're On-the-Go
Retractable Foundation Brush
Beautycounter beautycounter.com
$35.00

For those midday touch-ups, this brush is as travel-friendly as it gets. The dome-shaped taklon fibers fit neatly inside the sleek cap and is practically begging to be dropped inside your purse.  

9
Best Two-In-One
Fresh Nude Foundation Brush
The Body Shop amazon.com
$15.13

It might look a little confusing at first, but the Body Shop’s new foundation brush is color-coded for good reason. Use the black bristles to sweep liquid foundation on your cheeks, and then buff using the beige bristles in the center.

10
Most Effortless
Elite Mirror Oval 10 Brush
Artis sephora.com
$80.00

This brush is way more than just Instagram hype. The round tip is designed to fit the contours of your face so that you don’t have to break a sweat when buffing. 

11
Most Hygienic
Seamless Buffing Brush With Antibacterial Charcoal
bareMinerals sephora.com
$28.00

The bristles of this dome-shaped brush are infused with activated charcoal and silver ions that repel acne-causing bacteria upon contact. Plus, the antibacterial fibers won’t wash off as you clean your brush, so you can have peace of mind even after a thorough cleaning. 

12
For Uneven Skin
F50 Duo Fibre Brush
Sigma Beauty nordstrom.com
$22.00

If you don't know exactly what a stippling brush does, it does just that—it stipples, which is defined as dotting. It's great for people with acne because dotting on your foundation creates a more diffused, pixelated finish. To use it, tap only the very tips of the brush into your foundation and with the same light tapping motion, distribute the makeup evenly onto your face.

13
The Cult Classic
beautyblender® pro
beautyblender sephora.com
$20.00

Okay, this isn't a brush per se, but we couldn't do a foundation brush roundup without mentioning the iconic beauty blender. These cute egg-shaped sponges blend foundation like no other. The pro version comes in black so you don't see those icky foundation stains as easily. 

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