Category Archives: Tools

Overview + Review | E.L.F. Studio Brushes


Eyes Lips Face (ELF) was the first makeup brand that I really got into because they’re so affordable compared to other brands out on the market (even in the drugstore). They pretty much always have sales and coupon codes floating around. Over the past few years, I’ve amassed a collection of their Studio brushes. These brushes are great for the price (starting at $3 a pop). ELF has an Essential line of brushes as well, which are cheaper (starting at $1), but I find the quality of the Studio line brushes to be much better, in my experience.

All of these brushes have synthetic Taklon hairs. They’re very soft, and I have not had any issue with shedding or bleeding during washes. I find that I do have to be careful in maintaining the bristle shapes. They don’t quite “bounce back” after cleaning and drying. The handles are made of wood with a matte plastic coating. They were $3.00 each, with the exception of the Kabuki Face Brush (unfortunately discontinued), which was $8.00.

elf_sb_smallbrusheself_sb_smallbrushes_closeTOP TO BOTTOM: Small Smudge Brush, Small Angled Brush, Contour Brush, Angled Contour Brush, Flawless Concealer Brush.

Small Smudge Brush
I like to use this brush to smudge out gel and pencil liners. The bristles are soft, but dense, so it’s a very nice brush for detailed work.

Small Angled Brush
This is very nice for applying brow powder, as well as easily creating winged eyeliner looks. I like to use this brush to “drag out” gel and pencil eyeliners to create that softly-defined wing.

Contour Brush
It’s nice for creating sharper creases and blended/smoky cat eyes in the outer corners, but I prefer a bit of a bigger brush for blending larger areas.

Angled Contour Brush
I like this brush for packing on color as well as blending. It’s a round brush with flat angled bristles, so it’s nice for applying color as well as blending it out, especially in the crease area.

Flawless Concealer Brush
I don’t typically use brushes for blending concealer, so I’ve been using this brush to blend eyeshadows. I love it for easily creating “washes” of color. It’s my must-have for smoky eyes and “single-shadow” looks.

elf_sb_largebrusheself_sb_largebrushes_close1elf_sb_largebrushes_close2TOP TO BOTTOM: Mineral Powder Brush, Blush Brush, Powder Brush, Complexion Brush, Kabuki Body Brush.

Mineral Powder Brush
This is a good multi-tasking face brush for pressed and loose powders. It does a good job of applying mineral makeup, as well as blush, highlighters, and setting powders.

Blush Brush
Not my favorite brush for applying blush since it is quite small, but it gets the job done. The tapered end is nice for contouring the cheekbones.

Powder Brush
This is my favorite brush for applying setting powders. It’s very nice for patting on powder. The soft, flat bristles make it good for buffing in mineral makeup and liquid base makeup as well.

Complexion Brush
Another great multi-tasking brush. I can use this for blush, setting powder, bronzer, and highlighter. The rounded/flat edge is also great for contouring too.

Kabuki Body Brush
ELF no longer carries this brush, but this is basically the jumbo version of their Kabuki Face Brush. It’s nice for applying bronzers, highlighters, and setting powders to large body areas. The bristles are extremely soft. I’d recommend finding some sort of storage case to maintain its shape.


ELF has by far my favorite affordable makeup brushes. The Studio line is a great option for those just starting with makeup. There’s a nice variety of brushes to choose from, and a lot of them work well as multi-tasking brushes.

Have you tried any of ELF’s Studio Brushes? What did you think? What are some of your favorites?