Foundation Application- HELP


I recently purchased my first-ever 'foundation brush'. I like it, but for some reason using my fingers just seems to be a lot quicker and gets the same job done. Using the brush seems like a lot more work... so I am wondering if I am doing it wrong or something..?

What do you guys use for the application of foundation? Do you use a sponge, brush, fingers...?
Jan 10, 2011 @ 03:45 pm

12 Replies


I'm not an expert

I usually use my fingers to apply my foundation because its faster, plus the product doesn't get wasted in a sponge.

However, I have read (and seen firsthand) that using a brush gives a much smoother and more blended look (especially when you are using it to apply concealer over a blemish).

My best advice is to check out what Beauty Editor has to say about foundation application.

Good Luck!
Jan 11, 2011 @ 11:41 am

depends on your level of experience maybe?

I have never used a brush to apply liquid foundation and prefer to use my fingers, but I'd love to try it! I think there is probably a bit of a learning curve, but once you have the technique down you'll probably be very pleased with using a brush.

And I hate HATE sponges. Yech, I do not use them ever.
Jan 11, 2011 @ 11:54 am

depends ...

There are different types of foundation brush, which one did you get?

The most common foundation brush is the Mac 190 style foundation brush. A lot of girls love this brush, but I personally don't. I find it puts too much product on the face. In my opinion the design of this brush is to blame. The bristles are soft yet
thick, and the way they're shaped, you put the product on the side of
the bristles (instead of on top) and stroke it onto your face. So it's
a stroking patting motion. stroke stroke... get into the crevices....get too much on and your face looks dirty! lol. I tried both Mac Studio Sculpt and Mac Studio Fix Fluid liquid foundations with this brush. Both go on very thick when applied with this brush. I've even had Mac professionals use this brush on me and ...same thing; the foundation is applied too thick. The Mac artists think it looks fine, but I feel their own foundation / makeup looks unnatural and thick too so perhaps that's the look they're going for.

I already bought this brush so I had to use it, so I use it for my Stila cream blush... and it works beautifully when applying that!! :-) I can pat the cream blush exactly where I want the colour, and the quality of the brush bristles ensures that a lot of product doesn't get on the brush, so I'm not wasting product.

My utmost favourite foundation brush is the Stippling brush, such as the Mac 130 or 187. You put a little bit of the liquid foundation on the top side if your right hand (if you're left handed like me), you make quick dab motions with the brush on the product, dab a bit more on the side of your hand that's free of product (to make sure you don't pick up too much on the brush), and then apply it on your face. You use brisk stippling circular motions to blend the product across your skin. I find this brush more easily applies and blends the foundation into the skin, and using this brush ensures better coverage but uses much less product. I highly recommend this brush, especially for beginners!

I only wear makeup on special occasions (although my new years resolution was to wear it everyday!). So for when I do wear it: I'm currently a huge fan of the DIOR Forever Skin foundation. I apply this using my fingers. I use about half of a dime size (yup that little!) and put it into my skin. I'm not saying 'blend' because this foundation doesn't really need to be blended in (for me). I just sort of spread it across the surface area and it sort of disappears and makes my face look fresh and lovely :) 'Cuz I use so little of it and I don't "blend", I don't use a foundation brush when using this foundation. A foundation brush would waste more product, and honestly with this particular foundation it is NOT necessary at all!

I hope my (long) 2 cents helps you! :) Have is sooooooo much fun!! One of the awesome perks of being a girl :D
Jan 12, 2011 @ 12:17 pm


I've tried using brushes and sponges but I always go back to using my fingers because it's faster
Jan 12, 2011 @ 12:27 pm

it's all in the wrist..

i used to use nothing but sponges when i first began applying makeup, until i took a close look at how icky it was making my skin & not to mention all of the wonderful product going to waste!

now i use my fingers simply because most foundation brushes bother my nose & eye areas, then i smooth out my application with a MAC 187 brush [or a similar dupe] just so my face won't look too streaky or caked on.
Jan 12, 2011 @ 03:18 pm

brushes are tricky....practice makes perfect....

I like what becky had to say this may seem repetitive.

I am not a huge fan of MAC brushes (don't hate please) but I do use brushes to apply my foundation (liquid). Stippling is really tricky-I would definitely have a lesson with a MUA before trying that on your own.

When I use foundation, I start with a clean face, and apply some primer. I give that a couple of minutes to set, then put some foundation on the back of my hand and dip my brush into that. I start in the middle of my forehead and brush out to the left and blend, then to the right and blend. I go down my nose and under my eyes using short strokes and not pressing too hard. Then to the cheeks, circling outward towards the hairline. Finally the chin and under the nose.

After I apply the foundation, I take a clean kabuki brush and 'buff' the foundation into the skin using small circles. I find this gives a more 'airbrushed' look. I apply my eye makeup and mascara, then finish up with a setting/finishing powder!

Foundation application is NOT easy and I am constantly on the lookout for new techniques and tricks....just keep at it and keep trying. You will find something that works for you!
Jan 12, 2011 @ 10:50 pm

oh Dior....

p.s. I agree with Becky....DIOR is WONDERFUL! Highly recommended.

Speaking of that, foundations I like:

HD foundations (more 'dewy'):

Make up forever (MUFE) HD foundation
Smashbox HD
Cargo Blue Ray

Matte foundations

Vasanti Liquid Cover Up-> great coverage and a CANADIAN company!
MAC Studio FX
MUFE Mat Velvet
Jan 12, 2011 @ 10:52 pm

it depends on the foundation too..

I have dry skin and my fingers work the best. I like the stipple effect, but the regular foundation brush is not my fave because I feel like I put more onto my skin than I need. I get the best finish just applying it over my moisturizer. Everybody is different though. Just try different things and do what's best for you!
May 16, 2011 @ 05:28 pm

Sponges - yuck!

Sponges can harbor a lot of bacteria that you then put all over your face. Even if you wash them every time you use them it is difficult to keep bacteria from growing.

May 19, 2011 @ 03:33 pm

It depends...

This totally depends on how much time I have I use my M.A.C 190 brush when I have time to get ready If I am in a hurry then fingers are best I do agree with LaurenBlair brush gives a smoother application And If you ever want to use a sponge then make sure you make it wet first (for liquid foundation) it doesnt pick up a lot of the foundation...Using fingers is nothing wrong just that sometimes it doesnt blend well........
Feb 06, 2012 @ 06:50 am

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