Good news, I have finally tried Chikuhodo brushes and they are really good.
Bad news, they are very difficult to get unless you live in Japan or have a friend or colleague traveling or working in Japan.
This is copied from their website :
CHIKUHODO Co., Ltd. is a makeup brush manufacturer, which adopts traditional Japanese brush making style and is located in Kumano, Hiroshima prefecture. Receiving orders from many domestic and overseas client companies, CHIKUHODO has been engaging in manufacturing of all types of high-quality makeup brushes. Today CHIKUHODO has grown into the No.1 companyin original equipment manufacturing (OEM) of makeup brushes in Japan.We feel so grateful to many top-ranking makeup artists both inside and outside of Japan for giving us precious opinions and knowledge, which we feel has lead us to come so far as a high-quality makeup brush manufacturer.
The reason why I quoted their site Company description is because there is something I don’t understand…
Why can they “receive order from overseas client companies” and not ship worldwide to clients like us ?
I am not aware of their company regulations but Hakuhodo for example do ship worldwide to anyone.
Chikuhodo say in their site that they are the manufacturers of Suqqu and RMK brushes, just to say a few.
First I will talk about the Chikuhodo brushes I received, then, if you are interested in the order experience I had to go through, you can have a look at the bottom of this post for some details.
They have the Chikuhodo Z series, the SV, the GS, the G, the BP, the K, the Artist … and many others, this page will help you understand their range : Chikuhodo Cosmetic Brush Series
I found this page really useful to navigate and check out their type of brushes : Choose from the type of brush If you check out the brushes via this page, you will have the description of the brushes, size and hair. If you install Google Chrome as a web navigator, it will translate you the brush descriptions in english !
What I was trying to do when I selected these brushes, is order some brushes that would allow me to do my full face make up, and achieve it only with Chikuhodo brushes.
Most of the brushes are goat and grey squirrel. I am still trying to translate what they are made of and will update this review with the detailed hair description. I still did not manage to get a correct translation… sorry.
This picture has been taken before I washed the new brushes :
And this is a picture after I washed them :
Unlike Hakuhodo, the names of the brushes are written on the handles. The Z series are only written “Eyeshadow brush” without the number engraved on them but they aren’t many in these series so it’s not really bothering me.
BL10-1 Eye Shadow brush
I use the Hakuhodo G5520 every single day, it’s a HG brush for me, I thought this BL10-1 from Chikuhodo was very similar but it’s not. The BL10-1 is much bigger and not that pointy, more like a Mac 219 or the Suqqu M. I was just hoping it would be smaller so that I could have two similar brushes like the G5520. I use this BL10-1 for an application of eyeshadow on the lid or the crease, it’s really fantastic and picks more product than the Suqqu.
Hair length : 9mm
Price : Y 1’890
Y-10 Eye Liner brush
I apply a Bobby Brown, a Mac or another similar gel eyeliner nearly every day. I need a few eye liner brushes so that I don’t need to wash them every single day. This brush delivers exactly the application I want but it’s “just” an eye liner brush, a good one though. I can easily draw a thin line, precise, it does not slide where I don’t want to, it does not hurt and I can hold it easily… I had never asked myself these questions but since I have tried the Rae Morris bent eye liner, that I don’t find easy to hold (too short, too light, too thin), now it’s something I also like to mention.
Price : Y 945
BL20-6 Brush finish
This brush looks denser in the pictures but it’s more like a fan brush to me. Not dense at all, actually it looks like a paint brush for walls and when you wash it, it feels exactly like that.
It’s a fun “fan” brush to me, but not one I would have purchased if I had seen it in person, unless you are looking for a brush exactly like that, I don’t really see a necessity in having this in your collection.
You can use it for finishing or for highlighting but it’s sparse and not firm at all, you will not get precise application.
Hair : goat
Brush length : 180mm
Hair length : 50mm
Price : Y 3’675
G-10 Liquid brush
It looks like the Shu Uemura, very similar. I have tried an application of a foundation base and it was perfectly nice. I have tried it with the application of foundation and I had to buff with another brush afterwards. The foundation application was streaky. You certainly could apply a very thin and precise concealer-foundation type of application on some zones but for the full face, it’s too time consuming for me.
I don’t regret buying it because I use the Shu for the Tom Ford countouring cream every day and this one will come handy, I won’t need to wash the Shu all the time.
Hair : goat
Brush length : 115mm
Hair length : 22mm
Price : Y 2’625
BL12-6 Eye Shadow Brush (L)
It’s a very nice brush for applying a base color on your eye, or a crease color but the application is light, I prefer a more dense and firm for a more “deep” wash of color but I still can see myself using this brush very often. It’s a bit like the Suqqu L but firmer and thinner.
Brush length: 178mm
Hair lenght : 19mm
Price : Y 2’940
The Hakuhodo G5523 is her little sister, same shape, just smaller.
Special GS-9 Highlight / cheek brush
Perfection. I have nothing like this one in my collection, it’s a fantastic brush, completely multi-purpose. It was really soft and fluffly when it arrived, I washed it and now it’s even looking better. It’s going to be in my HG for sure !
Brush lenght : 190mm
Hair length : 50mm
Price : Y 5’775
It’s something in between the Bobbi Brown and the Hakuhodo.
Z-5 Eye Shadow Brush
A little bit similar to the Suqqu L, much firmer, denser and wider. The quality of the Z series is stunning. Great little gems.
Brush length: 135mm
Hair length : 19mm
Price : Y 3’990
Z-10 Eye Shadow brush
This one is what I hoped the Rae Morris would be. The Rae Morris is nice but I thought it was more pointy and firm. The Z-10 is extremely pointy and very firm, exactly what I was looking for.
Brush length: 125mm
Hair lenght : 11mm
Price : Y 3’150
Z-8 Cheek brush
HG alert. Gasp. I read this one was amazing, it truly is.
The best ever cheek brush. Perfect size, perfect density, so soft, so luxurious. I don’t own the Suqqu cheek brush, yet, so I cannot compare the two, but this Z-8 is quite a masterpiece.
I believe that owning this one could make you stop haunting for the perfect cheek brush. It doesn’t do that to me because I am definitely crazy but I admit I will have problems reaching for the other brushes and sharing the love… I will hold on to it like a Gollum 😛
It’s grey squirrel, the hair are very dense, when I washed it late in the evening, it wasn’t dry in the morning… normal. Most of my blushes are very pigmented and I have a very heavy hand, with this brush the application couldn’t be more appropriate, it totally helps me to control my heavy hand. Re-gasp… I am in love with a brush !
Brush length: 160mm
Hair lenght : 40mm
Price : Y 9’450
The order experience
I don’t recommend you going via a forwarding company, it worked, but when you have the language barrier, plus Chikuhodo cancelled the order when they realized it was a forwarding company, then I don’t know why but they did not cancel it anymore… then my credit card was debited twice, then they did not send me all the brushes… it was a pain.
I have installed Google Chrome web navigator, it translates the pages automatically from Japanese to English when necessary but not all the text is translated, the text entered in image boxes can not be read by the system, therefore it’s kept in Japanese.
You will have to play with it… and guess.
You have to know what to enter and where… and even for the payment, you have to enter the credit card information a bit differently with other options, that I did not really understand 100%.
At the end it worked, but it was a mess. The shipping (forwarding) costed me USD 40. Which is not much when you think what you could be paying for them if you are buying them from somewhere else. Still, you really have to be stubborn and crazy to do that for brushes… 😉
The brushes are great, they did not shed, only the big white Artist 20-6 shed tiny hairs but totally normal shedding.
It’s so difficult to get your hands on them but if you have the possibility to try them, go ahead.
I cannot say that Chikuhodo is better than Hakuhodo, I love Hakuhodo for all the amazing brushes they make, for the amazing customer service and for how easy it is to place an order with them or to get advice and information, Hakuhodo have a big place in my heart.
Have you tried any other Japanese brush brand ? What do you think of them ?
I have not covered everything in my review, if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me 🙂
I will also be updating some more info about the brushes as soon as I will be able to have it translated from Japanese !