I've been watching the Pixiwoo channel on YouTube religiously for the past two years. I think that this was the first of their tutorials that I watched because I love both Illamasqua & Courtney Love. I feel like I've become better at applying makeup just from watching the ways that Sam & Nic apply theirs. Like many people I look forward to their next video more than I do for anyone else I'm subscribed to. So of course when Sam announced that she would be releasing a new range of makeup brushes I was really excited to try them out. I have waited a long time before buying these because as much as I love the girls, I wasn't sure if they were just cashing in on their 'guru' status or had actually produced a good range of brushes. It seemed a bit odd that in their videos they had suddenly switched from mainly using MAC or Louise Young brushes to the Real Techniques ones but their makeup looked brilliant all the same. So after watching tons of videos I finally bit the bullet and purchased the brushes that they use the most. I went for the Starter Set, Core Collection & Stippling Brush.
This is the Starter Set and it contains five eye brushes. I probably wouldn't have bought this set if it weren't for the inclusion of the Deluxe Crease Brush as I already have enough eyeshadow brushes. In their videos this brush is almost always used for blending in concealer. This is also what I use the brush for. The brush head is well rounded so it fits into all the crevices under my eyes & around my nose. Its works just as well on other areas around the face. One of the things I love about all the Real Techniques brushes is how dense the hairs are, yet they are also very flexible and soft. The Base Shadow Brush is a pretty generic fluffy eyeshadow brush but because its made of synthetic hair it works really well with creamier products such as primer or MAC Paint Pots. I use this to apply my MAC Painterly Paint Pot all over my lids before applying eyeshadow. The Accent Brush is perfect for doing detailed eye work. I use it to add highlighter to the inner corners of my eyes. None of my other eyeshadow brushes were small enough for that task so I really like that brush. I don't think much of the Pixel-Point Eyeliner Brush or the Brow Brush. The eyeliner brush is just a bit too thick for applying gel eyeliner. Considering the Pixiwoo sisters often opt for that super fine Louise Young eyeliner brush I was hoping they would've put out something similar. I think the brow brush is also too thick for filling in your brows so I prefer this one as a way of applying smoky eyeliner using dark eyeshadows.
One of the best brushes in the whole range has to be this Stippling Brush. It is just so brilliant at applying foundation. I wasn't sure if I needed this brush as I really love my Sigma F80 but the reviews were too good to ignore and I'm so glad I got it! The size of the brush head is similar to a MAC 130 meaning its big enough to buff foundation into the skin fairly quickly yet also small enough to fit into all the contours of my face. Again the bristles are dense and soft so it feels really nice against my skin. One of the things I like best about this brush and all the Real Techniques brushes is that not a single hair has been shed from any of them. Its worked really well with all the foundations I've tried it with and dries pretty quickly after I wash it. I'm still not really sure if its better than the Sigma F80 as they both give my foundation a flawless finish but I definitely enjoy using this brush a lot more & its a hell of a lot easier to clean.
The Core Collection is a set of four face brushes. The Contour Brush is a really great size & shape. It contours my face well but I think I still prefer to use my MAC 109 for that because it is a little bit smaller. The Taklon bristles means that it works really nicely with cream contour products such as Illamasqua's Hollow Cream Pigment & Soleil Tan De Chanel. I love to use this brush for cream blusher as you can apply the product exactly where you want to before buffing it out with another brush. It also works well with cream highlighters like MAC CCB in Pearl & it makes me want to get one of the Jemma Kidd Dewy Glow highlighters even more than I already did! I've not really tried the Pointed Foundation Brush much as I don't get on with flat foundation brushes. This one is absolutely tiny and it makes me think it would take a longer time to apply my makeup with it. I have used this to apply highlighter with precision and I think the size is really nice for that. I use the Detailer Brush as a lip brush and it does apply lipstick really evenly. Its brilliant for applying Sleek Pout Paints or OCC Lip Tars. I was in dire need of a new lip brush as the hairs on my old MAC one are all splayed out. This one keeps its shape very nicely even after washing. The Buffing Brush is another one thats great for applying foundation. I use this to buff in my foundation after using the stippling brush, blend my blusher into my cheeks better & to powder my skin. It works with all different kinds of foundation from tinted moisturisers to mineral powders. All the of the Real Techniques brushes are multi-purpose so you can use them for whatever you want. This is the set I would probably buy a double of because all of these brushes can be used for so many different things.
To be honest I don't think much of the black cases that come with the sets. I've just chucked mine in a drawer and thats where they'll probably stay. I also don't really see the need for the black bases that allow the brushes to stand unsupported as my brushes tend to stay in pots or in my brush roll. Otherwise I do like the brush handle design, they fit nicely in my hand and I think the colour coding for brush type is a really good idea. I like the outer packaging too and despite the fact that they're tucked away in the bottom corner of the brush stand in my local Boots, they were easy to spot from the packaging.
I ordered my brushes from Love Makeup as the prices were a bit cheaper than RRP, similar to what they were recently selling for at IMATS. I paid £50 including delivery for these 10 brushes, thats £5 per brush! I think thats an incredible bargain considering how good these brushes are and that I've paid £30 for just one MAC brush in the past. There are some real gems in this collection and I look forward to applying my makeup with them each day. Real Techniques are launching soon in many Boots stores across the UK. They've been in the Huddersfield branch for the past two weeks so I've been really tempted to buy the blush brush too. I do already have quite a few MAC & Sigma brushes though so I only wanted to get brushes that were unique. But if you're looking for some quality makeup brushes that won't break the bank, you need these in your life.