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Makeup Brushes - MAC - #231 Small Shader Brush



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rated 4.8(62 reviews)

  • Average Rating: 4.8
  • 93% would buy again
  • Package Quality: 4.3
  • Price: $$$

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rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 11/17/2009 12:53:00 AM More reviews by bloodyroses

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Warm Hair: Black, Straight, Medium Eyes: Brown

Probably one of MAC's most overlooked brushes. I love it for powder and cream eyeshadow--packs on colour really well. It has a very small bundle of synthetic fibres and is very flat and has a great tip--great for precision.

4 out of 5 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 11/16/2009 9:57:00 AM More reviews by Hothead

Age: 44-55 Skin: Normal, Fair, Warm Hair: Brown, Straight, Medium Eyes: Hazel

I have heard this brush is expensive for the size.

Like good perfumes, you do not judge a brush quality for it's size or cost, but for it's function. Does it transform you? Does it make you feel like you can leap over buildings? .. lol.

This little one is perfect for using that paint pot and winging out eyeshadow,for the tear duct application of highliter, for applying the lower lid liner, for applying concealer in hard to reach areas or even for applying lipstick. It is a multi tasker brush.. the hairs are tapered and actually have a stippling action when used properly.

love my 131 and already own two!

3 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 10/30/2009 6:22:00 AM More reviews by aguadora

Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Tan, Not Sure Hair: Black, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

I have semi-Asian (?) / droopy eyes, with a small space between the lid and brows, and the size of this is just *perfect*. Best multi-tasking eye brush for me! Wiping with tissue paper between colors, I can do:

1) Brows: With a light hand, I can use this with black (!) eyeshadow as a brow filler, and it looks very natural. I've been on the hunt for a good brow color, and have tried so many grays and taupes and they all looked unnatural. But with this brush I can just use plain black.
2) Eyeliner: Dipped in black eyeshadow again, I use this to tightline my upper lashes. Gives a slightly thinner line than the 212. Then with a black-brown eyeshadow, I define the outer 1/3 of my lower lash line. I squiggle and smudge it right over the hairs of my lower lashes, so it's a millimeter or so below the actual waterline, and seems to make my eyes look rounder and bigger. I usually use (and still like using) my Sephora 14 smudge brush or MAC 219 for this purpose, but the 231 also works, though with a cleaner line. I just smudge out with my pinky.
4) With a shimmery light pigment, I highlight from the tear ducts to a little less than 1/3 of the inner corners of the eyes.
5) Lid color: pack on a light champagne color all over the lid. Slightly darker color on the outer thirds (almost half) of the lid.
6) Crease: I can very lightly draw/dab on a soft brown or taupe crease color on, and blend it out.
7) Outer V: I usually only do the lower part of the V, like a thick winged liner. Then w/o redipping, I just take the color slightly up into the crease.
8) Brow highlight: perfect size. I use a matte ivory color.


Sorry that was long, but yeah, I used to think the 239 (or 217 for others) was multi-purpose enough, but it can't tightline or fill in brows, and that's what puts the 231 a step above it. =) I still love my other brushes, like the 272 and 208, but in a pinch, I can leave the house with only this brush, one dark shadow, one light shadow, and survive.

16 out of 16 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 9/23/2009 4:37:00 PM More reviews by lgooding

Age: 25-29 Skin: Combination, Dark, Warm Hair: Black, Kinky, Medium Eyes: Brown

Amazing little tool here!! I purchased this brush at the CCO and got it for around 13 bucks...to be honest, I didn't intend on buying this brush, I just wanted to buy something and I'm glad that I did!! When I say that this applies fluidline like a dream..it does!! I didn't even like my fluidline until I started using this brush to apply it!! It makes a difference...I've also used this to apply primer/base to my eyes, lip color (gloss and lipstick),winging my gel liner, etc etc etc!! Very multi-purpose and well worth the money!! Good things come in small packages...

7 out of 8 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 7/13/2009 6:37:00 AM More reviews by SonyaAdams

Age: 30-35 Skin: Combination, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Red, Other, Other Eyes: Green

Great for small areas (lower lashline) or for making very defined crease-cuts. I also use to assist in smudging liner and a clean one to work feathering out concealer on small blemishes.

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 6/24/2009 11:23:00 PM More reviews by LPomona

Age: 44-55 Skin: Normal, Fair-Medium, Warm Hair: Silver, Other, Other Eyes: Hazel

Oh why oh why didn't I find out about this brush sooner? Like before I'd already invested in a dozen different eye-lining brushes that can't hold a candle to this gem?

The reviews do not lie. If you want the absolute best brush for lining - especially with gel liners - this is the baby for you. The way the bristles are cut is the secret to its success. First of all, they are layered in a wedge shape so that you end up with a paper-thin edge, for ultra-fine lining. AND, the shape of the whole brush-head is key because it is rounded on the 2 sides, which means you can drag the brush in either direction for smooth, perfect lines. It is a stroke of genius & I am kicking myself for only having purchased one.

5 out of 5 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 5 of 5 on 6/11/2009 4:57:00 AM More reviews by hannah1981

Age: 25-29 Skin: Oily, Fair, Cool Hair: Blond, Straight, Fine Eyes: Blue

I use this brush solely for concealer application and so far so good! It allows really precise application (i use this for small areas - its not good for larger areas such as undereye). Its stiff enough to allow precision but not too stiff it is scratchy. I also use a larger concealer brush (194) for blending and larger areas (like undereye). Woul recommend both of them!

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rated 4 of 5 top reviewer on 5/13/2009 6:08:00 PM More reviews by abrad1967

Age: 36-43 Skin: Acne-prone, Tan, Warm Hair: Black, Curly, Medium Eyes: Black

This is a great brush. I used to use this to apply fluidline until I discovered brush 266. The 266 brush is great for applying fluidline. I now use the 231 brush to smear eyeliner or to apply eyeshadow below my lower eyelashes.

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rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 5/8/2009 12:25:00 PM More reviews by lalaland

Age: 25-29 Skin: Combination, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Black, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

I purchased this brush when it first came out a few years ago. I wanted it because I thought it would be good for applying color on the lower lash line. I asked the MA what it was for and she said concealer...wrong. I know you can use it for concealer but it is a eye brush. I got it anyways and it is still in great shape. Some hairs have gone a bit haywire but no big deal. I use it for "eye detailing", such as reaching small areas or for "cutting the crease", which is difficult on my eyes, but it helps. It is tiny, small and oh so unique. I do not see a lot of people use it, but I love it. It picks up quite a bit of color but it does not load it up on your eyes, so do not expect it to be a mini 239.

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

rated 5 of 5 on 5/6/2009 11:07:00 PM More reviews by prham

Age: 25-29 Skin: Combination, Medium, Not Sure Hair: Black, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

My HG liner for gel liners and winging the eye.

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