Do Silicone Brushes Actually Work? We Put Them to the Test

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At Beautycon, I saw a lot of new makeup trends and product applications, but silicone brushes really caught my eye (no pun intended). They seem to be cropping up more and more, especially when putting on eyeliner and eyeshadow, but do they actually work? And are silicone brushes actually better at applying your fave products than your basic bristle brushes? Let's break it down.

The Advantages

One of the reasons silicone brushes are becoming so popular is that the material can create a fine point that will allow for a thinner, crisper line. Take the Real Techniques Silicone Liner Brush for example ($5.99, Ulta); the tip tapers off into a fine point that bends easily without the risk of a hair getting out of place. Not only can this help you achieve a more precise line, but having an old brush beginning to fray no longer becomes an issue.

The Real Techniques Silicone brush has been around since 2014 but was recently joined by Pür Cosmetics' eye polish ($26, Pür), which comes with a silicone applicator. When speaking with one of Pür's reps at Beautycon, she told me the silicone applicator helps grab the product and makes it slide on more easily without any of the product getting caught on the brush, as it would with a regular hair/fiber brush.

So, naturally, I just had to test it.

The Pür Cosmetics Eye Polish
Let me be the first to say, that I love this product. It goes on smooth and shimmery, and the colors are gorgeous (the one above is the shade Satin). Will I be buying more of these? Absolutely. But I'll admit that I was skeptical when I saw it came with a silicone brush and almost ignored the brush altogether.
The product itself is almost like a mousse, a great combination of liquid and powder, but when I put it on the brush, it looked like it began to separate. I was almost sure at this point I'd have to dip into the pot more than I wanted to to apply the product fully. But...
This was the end result! I am not wearing anything else on my lids, aside from some primer, but you can see the product was applied smoothly and evenly. I was actually surprised by how much I liked using the silicone brush to put on my eyeshadow. I didn't dip in the pot more than I usually would, and it was definitely the best way to use this product. Also, clean up was so easy; all I need to do was wipe the brush off with a tissue!

Real Technique Silicone Liner Brush

To finish off my look, I decided to use the liner brush to apply some brown gel eyeliner right above my lash line. The product was super think and sleek, so I thought I'd get a smooth application.When I dipped it into the pot, I didn't notice that the product was separating like it was with Pür's brush. I did have to wipe off some excess though, but that might just be because my product is pretty thick. When applying it on my lids, I didn't notice that I was able to make a thinner line than if I were to use my angled bristle brush. In fact, I felt like I had a little less control over the application because the brush slid across my lids so smoothly.

That being said, it did come out very nice.
I was even able to do a slight wing at the end but less bold than I usually make it when using a liquid eyeliner pen. I also have to say, it looked pretty good on top of the eye polish, although I did notice the eyeliner was taking off some of the product (it may have been because the shadow wasn't fully dry yet.)
Just to give you a better look, the brush helped me make a pretty straight line! And once again, clean up took two seconds.

Overall, I would definitely recommend trying the silicone brush. It's a pretty good dupe for your favorite bristle brush and pretty simple to use. It takes a little getting used to at first, but once you get the hang of it, you can definitely get the sleek, polished look you want!


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