Review of Hakuhodo Brushes by cytaormina
I purchased a large number of brushes from Hakuhodo and my only regret is that I did not do this sooner. Most of my brushes are from the G series which have the shorter handles. For the quality of product I I don't think these brushes are exorbitantly priced. If you find the S, Basic or G series more than you want to spend you can go with the 200 series which are more economical but still very good quality. This is a review for some of the brushes and I will do a review for the remainder at another time.
G504 Angled blush brush/blue squirrel & horse/$72.00 - I did not like this brush at first until I learned how to put it to use. This brush has a narrower and somewhat tighter head than the MAC 168 angled blush brush. I have never been able to learn to use an angled blush brush and obtain the desired results. However this is the perfect brush for contouring below the cheek bones, sides of the nose, temples and forehead hairline. It is perfectly angled and with a slight flick of the wrist you can either use the entire brush head for a wider color swatch application or just use the tip of the brush for color application in smaller areas like the sides of the nose. Can also be used for blush if you like angled blush brushes. A very versatile brush. I contour every time I wear blush so this is indispensable for me. Not to firm or not to soft.
G528/HIghlight brush/BlueSquirrel & Synthetic/$54.00 - While this is labeled a highlight brush I just can't see this being used for that purpose as it is a small sized incredibly soft flat top kabuki brush. I am using this brush to buff in mineral foundation around the eye area. I use just a bit of corrector, small amount of BB concealer and a fine layer of mineral powder and this brush blends that powder in flawlessly. Feels wonderful around the eye area even though it has synthetic fibers mixed in with the blue squirrel. Very soft.
G5519BkSL/Blush brush/Blue Squirrel/132.00 - This is the worlds softest brush, uncut blue squirrel hair! Because this hair is so soft it doesn't pick up too much pigment. So it is spectacular for heavy pigmented blush as well as for applying all over powder face illuminator. Applies the pigment just as evenly as the Nars Yahciyo but ten times softer. It does not deposit concentrated color in one spot which makes for very evenly dispersed color and blends out well. Of note is that since it is all blue squirrel hair it does not place concentrated color in one spot (unless there is a concerted effort to pick up lots of pigment) and thus there is no need for extensive blending out which is something I don't see this uber soft hair brush being able to do as well as goat hair. Glad I purchased two so that I don't have to wash as frequently.
G5518/HIghlight round brush/Kazan squirrel/$90.00 - This brush like a mini MAC 138 brush but of course many many times softer. This brush is tapered thus rendering it very versatile. Some of the uses I have found are for contouring, blush (for those with smaller faces) and my favorite dedicated use is it to apply & buff mineral foundation powder around the eye on top of concealer for an airbrushed look. Again uber soft.
G515/Angled Eye shadow brush/Canada Squirrel/$36.00 - Awesome awesome brush. Versatility and softness. The tip of the brush creates the perfect cut of color in the crease just by holding the brush with the slant side facing up and using the tip only. Turn the brush over and it can be used to apply shadow all over the eye, lid or in just the crease. However of note is that it does not blend out darker crease colors very well since the brush is so soft, the brush head is not firm at all. I have not checked if hakuhodo makes a MAC 226 version but the 226, similar Mercier or McEvoy blend out perfectly.
G5524BkSL/Pointed eye shadow/Kazan Squirrel/$57.00. Great brush for crease color although not a sharp cut crease color but a softer more dispersed color. It also does the outer V quite well. It is the perfect size for applying a shimmer/highlighter wash in the inner corner of the as well as the sides of the upper bridge of the nose if you do this type of application. Yes, uber soft!
G5527BkSl/Pointed Eye shadow brush/Kazan Squirrel/$57.00 - This brush is just a somewhat thicker/wider version of the G5524. Great for all over eye or lid color and with just a slight upward flick of the fingers when holding the brush you can do the lid and go into the crease perfectly. Again due to its softness you can either pick up lots of dark pigmented color for heavy application as well as applying a softer wash of dark color, but not the ideal brush for blending out heavy/dark pigment.
G531/Angled Powder brush/Sokoho Goat/$48.00 - The perfect sized brush for either finishing powder and or bronzer. Its shape allows for versatility in that you can turn the brush over and use it to powder the temple area with the narrow edge without going into the hairline.
G527/Powder brush/Ototsuho Goat/$54.00 - This is a flat top kabuki type brush and I don't know that I would use it as a finishing powder brush because it might apply just a little too much finishing powder. I have used this brush to apply mineral powder foundation as well as buffing it out and it did the job to perfection. This brush has a slightly larger brush head the the McEvoy flat top kabuki brush which I don't believe is made anymore.
Not a single one of these brushes bled, shed a hair or had unpleasant odors. The basic series are the same as the G series but just have longer handles. All Hakuhodo brushes have uncut hair tips which make even the goat hair brushes feel like squirrel hair. On days that I will be wearing makeup I look forward to sitting at my vanity and treating my skin by using these super soft brushes. BTW, Hakuhodo offers superb customer service and lightning fast shipping.