I purchased a 2-pack from Sephora, so that my friend and I could find out what the fuss was about. I have been very satisfied with my foundation routine, using various liquid foundations and applying it with a Real Techniques buffing brush (from the Core Collection). However, after hearing so much hype about the beautyblender, I decided to try it.
After reading some reviews here on MUA, I was worried about the sponge absorbing too much of my expensive foundation. I have a bottle of Revlon Colorstay that I got last year and no longer use, because it oxidizes on my skin. I decided to try using that, so I wouldn't waste my good makeup.
I dampened the beautyblender by squeezing it under cold running water. I squeezed out the excess and then dried it further in a towel. I placed two pumps of Colorstay on the back of my hand, tapped the big end of the sponge into it and started applying it to my skin in a rapid stippling motion. The foundation, which is slightly too dark for my skintone, disappeared, leaving my skin looking clean and even. I admit that I was very surprised by the effect.
I had planned on only testing it on my t-zone, where I have some redness, but I didn't want to stop using the sponge. I pumped out two more squirts of foundation and covered my whole face, using the smaller end under my eyes and next to my nose. To really get into the folds next to my nose, I had to push my nose to the side with my finger, which I don't have to do when I use a brush.
I was skeptical, I don't enjoy using sponges for applying cosmetics, but the effect was undeniable. The beautyblender had created an airbrushed effect on my face, effortlessly. It was even better than my beloved buffing brush, which I have described as "life-changing" in the past. So there you go, the hype is not unfounded, the beautyblender does what it says it does.
It is not perfect, though. Cleaning it proved a difficult task. I spent a long time and used several products to try and remove the foundation stains, to no avail. I don't particularly want to spend more time cleaning my tools than I spent using them, so I gave up and will just live with a stained sponge. I massage some baby shampoo into it, then rinse it until the water runs clear and that's enough for me. The pink dye did come out during washing, but I saw no trace of it on my face, so I am not concerned.
More points off for how expensive it is and for the plastic "pedestal" container, which I think can easily damage the sponge. I store mine loosely on top, so I don't have to push it through each time I remove it. I'm also worried about longevity, I inspected the sponge closely after washing it and I can see how little tears could start forming in the material. I know the company states that the sponge should last about 3 months, so I will see how accurate that is.
Although I think that the beautyblender gives a better finish than any other method I've used, it does use a bit more foundation than my brushes would. It also took me longer to apply a full face than usual, but that might be due to my inexperience with using a sponge.
I will not be using the beautyblender for all my foundation applications, simply to save product and extend the life of the sponge, but I will introduce it into my routine when I want the most flawless appearance. It somehow manages to apply a sheer, invisible layer of foundation that simultaneously provides ample coverage. It is very impressive and despite the price, I will repurchase this when mine becomes too tattered to use.
I'm a sucker for a good gimmick so I really couldn't resist this. I do not have the brand name, I have one I got on eBay for $2. But since I'm reviewing it well, I figured it's OK.
It took me a long time to try it out, but recently started on a foundation kick again so I pulled this baby out for a test run. I ran it under water and squeezed it a few times WITH the water running. The water did not soak in unless I squeezed it with the water running (or in a bowl or water) so for those who are having issues with it soaking up the foundation, make sure to try that! If I just held it under the water it stayed dry dry dry.
I squeezed the water out so it felt damp and gave it a go. I use AeroMinerale foundation. I put on E.LF. primer first. I first put the foundation on my hand, then dabbed it over my face with my fingers. Then I used the beauty blender to "bounce" around my face, just kind of sponging rather than rubbing. It took a little while to get the hang of it, but once I did I was amazed. The coverage was second to none and I looked perfectly smooth. I went to show my friend and she went, "wow your foundation is actually incredibly smooth!"
I used to hate foundation, but this little sponge has actually made me start using it again! It gives the most flawless finish I've ever had. Better than a really good foundation brush and WAY better than my fingers. I highly recommend you give this a shot. If you don't want to commit to something so expensive, the ebay one I got works great.
Love this little sponge, its really worth the hype. My foundation is perfectly blended and never streaky. I love how it grows when you wet it. Just remember its really delicate so never scrub it hard to wash it. I have found that its easier to clean when its slightly damp to dry, rather than when its wet. I like this far more than a brush.
Also, to people that are freaked out by pink dye: they make a white one with no dye at all called Beautyblender Pure (my personal favorite).
And to those who get bugged by the staining, they make a black one called Beautyblender Pro.
I can see why some people are underwhelmed by this. It is expensive for a sponge. However, in my book it does do what it claims to do. I've found that it makes application of makeup easier, faster, and better looking with less work. I have used this sponge with a few different foundations and it gave great results with every one except NARS Sheer Matte (which is a junk foundation, no fault to the sponge.) I got a 2-pack with no cleanser for about $25 from Sephora, so I think I got a pretty good deal. If I had spent $20 on just one sponge I might be singing a different song, but overall I do like the product. I like that it makes layering products much easier, and faster. My only real problem is that I've almost thrown it away like five times. Otherwise, solid product if you use liquid or cream foundations and want to customize your coverage.
Wow..I heard about this and thought I would give it a try...it has been weeks and the amount of pink dye coming out is alarming...I don't know why it is pink to begin with..I enjoy organic products for the most part, this seems pretty toxic to use on my skin
WOWWW! It's really all I can say. Yes it's hyped up and expensive but it really works! I was completely surprised at what this little thing can do. I used it with Revlon age defying, Revlon color stay and Lancome teint idole so far. It really gives that luminous, airbrushed look. I did a double take every time I saw myself in the mirror. When my husband saw me the first time I used this, he said wow, your make up looks glowing. He never comments on my makeup and I wasn't wearing anything new/different.
I think how much you like this might depend on the products you are using with the BB. This works very well with my L'oreal True Match foundation. True Match is a thin formula, and doesn't work very well with a brush. The tapping and rolling actions used with the BB and the True Match created a beautiful finish.
When it comes to using my MUFE HD, I prefer using a brush. I found the HD difficult to blend when out when using the BB. It looked a bit cakey.
edit: do yourself a favor and watch a few youtube videos on application. I watched a few tutorials and realized I wasn't reallly using this correctly. When I did use it the right way, I really liked it and the finish it gave me. I'm upping this to 4 lippies.
To apply foundation i would rate this low but for finishing and blending makeup i would rate this highly, great for dry skin!!
I like this product but not for applying foundation to the whole face as i feel the sponge absorbs to much product even when damp. If you wanted to use double the amount of foundation then it could give the same finish as a brush but why bother?. I apply my foundation with a foundation brush and bounce the BB over to give a dewy finish, i do the same with my concealer too and the finish is great! i would repurchase for this purpose only.
LOVE, LOVE, LOVE! Seriously, I have combination, flaky, sensitive, dry, patchy, oily T-zone, old-acne scarred skin. Lovely, no? It's a HG product for me. I use it apply my foundation (of course), blush, bronzer, concealer AND powder. Seamless. Great coverage.
Works great for liquid, cream, gel foundations. However, in order not to waste it, apply it directly on your face then bounce around the BB.
I clean mine by soaking it in Cetaphil for a few minutes or baby shampoo if it needs deeper cleansing.
The great thing with the BB is, after you're done with your face, remember to get your eyelids, ears and jawline and neck.
Secret: Use a damp (almost dry) BB to apply your MSF Natural. It sets your makeup for hours. I live in Singapore and I have sweaty face and an oily T-Zone and my make up still holds up after hours of dancing.
This review is going to do double duty as I am not only reviewing the BB, but also comparing/reviewing it to the SoHo Beauty dupe that a lot of folks have been talking about.
I finally bit the dust and purchased 3 BeautyBlenders. I also went ahead and purchased the London SoHo dupe at Walgreens for under $6 (on sale as it's d/c) In my pic, the SoHo is on the left and has been used about 4 times. In the middle is my BB that I've been using for about a month. On the right is my brand new/never used BB.
The SoHo is denser and while soft, is not as soft as the BB (altho it is softer than Sonia Kashuk's sponge). It performs about the same as the BB - takes a few more stipples to get my liquid foundation blended in as nicely as the BB. I actually did the left side of my face w/ the SoHo and the right w/ the BB = 10 more bounces w/ the SoHo to get that side of my face to look like the BB side, which you know from other glowing reviews is an airbrushed look. :)
The SoHo is already showing a few tiny tears after 4 uses. The BB started showing the same little tears after my 4th use too - WHAT IS UP W/ THAT??? For the amount of $ BB is charging, these sponges SHOULD NOT be showing such signs of wear/tear after only 4 uses (and yes, I wash gently w/ my DIY cleanser and I do not have long nails) I deducted 1 lippie for the crappy construction.
Of interest is that I have found once I have used the BB, it never goes back to its original size. Its hard to tell from my pic, the the used BB is definitely fatter and taller than the BN BB.
I got pink coloring discharge thru the first 5 washings of the BB. (I have not yet washed the Soho). The BB is permanently discolored by my foundation no matter how much washing I do = kinda annoying.
Both sponges give my skin an almost flawless, kinda dewy finish. If too dewy = lightly dust w/ powder. I use the BB and the SoHo for both my powder and liquid foundations = love that versatility. I have temporarily retired my foundation brushes as my becoming-slightly-drier-skin seems to like this application method more currently.
Bottom line - I was all set to recommend getting the SoHo over the BB, but since the SoHo is d/c...I guess until someone else comes up w/ another decent dupe, I will stick to my BB in spite of the aforementioned drawbacks because, frankly the pros definitely outweigh the cons. :)
BTW - SoHo made a 2nd version of the sponge - it was the exact softness/denseness of the BB, but shaped like a football = kinda useless shape IMO. It too is d/c.
UPDATE 05-29-12 - so, I was recently watching the House series finale in which the 1st hour was a tribute/backstage access to the cast/crew and the 2nd hour was actually the final episode. During the 1st hour, whilest interviewing one of the show's make-up artists, (and I can't recall which actor she was working on during the short interview), I did note that she was using a BB sponge to apply the foundation - SWEET!
For a bigger pic of the 3 sponges side by side, please see my review for the SOHO sponge - for some reason, I can't get that bigger pic to work for my BB review...sorry.