There is something about this set that made me want it, actually a few reasons:
- The little black handles with the golden logo, elegant and sleek with their matte ferrule
- The lip brush was specially tempting and had a little James Bond look to it, well not really but my imagination is playing tricks on me and apparently I see Daniel Craig everywhere 😀
This set comes in red handles or black handles, I just wanted the more “spy looking” one in black and gold.
- At this moment I am in the hunt for smaller cheek brushes, a nice comb brush and a Mac 239 dupe (travel size).
This set contains 5 brushes, is delivered in a pink box (cardboard) and also comes with a pouch, you can see the full description here.
The pouch measures approx 18cm x 11cm x 2cm. It’s bigger than the Koyudo Christmas set pouch which was only appropriate for Fu-pa size brushes. In this set, you cannot really store full size brushes but you have more flexibility and can fit other smaller brushes.
The brushes and the set
There are two compartments, with 3 separations for brushes on each side. There are two large elastic bands and another tiny elastic band in the middle for example for the lip brush.
The lip brush fits perfectly in there but since I have just noticed it now, I did not take the picture with the lip brush in there.
To have a better idea of what kind of brushes could fit in this pouch, here I have a Hakuhodo J series, the Chikuhodo Z-4, the Fu-Pa01, a Tanseido short handle and the Rae Morris Radiance. It’s not very wide but still contains a reasonable amount of brushes for a small trip.
The set comes with 5 brushes. The two face brushes are made of goat hair, unfortunately I can’t confirm if it’s dyed hair. I will try to find out but I can assure you that when I was washing them they did not release any dye at all.
The eyeshadow brush is also goat hair, white and extremely soft.
On the CDJapan website the description (translation) of the material used for the other brushes is not very clear, I will contact them and make sure I understand what they mean.
The powder brush
I have been using the Mac 134 for several years until my skin became too sensitive and I could not stand it anymore. Then I stopped using it and started using mostly squirrel brushes. Recently I tried some Koyudo goat brushes and I realized they were actually much softer than Mac goat brushes. Today if the goat hair is of good enough quality, even if it’s not soft like squirrel hair, I can definitely use them.
Compared to the Mac 134, this Koyudo is much softer, more evenly bundled, more fluffy, denser, it’s just simply much better. It’s goat, not scratchy but of course it’s not as soft as squirrel. There are so many different quality goat hair, this is not soft like “baby goat chest hair” (=fu-pa01 quality if you have that one), or Saikoho goat hair, but it’s also neither Mac goat hair nor Nars Yachiyo hair. The Nars Yachiyo is just a lethal weapon for my skin, it hurts like hell. Some Mac brushes are ok to use for me, like the LE Mac 165 (just soft enough) but nearly all the others I had to stop using them completely.
It’s also a nice size for the application of powder or bronzer all over the face. It’s not heavy but it doesn’t feel cheap or fragile. It can also be used as a finishing brush, if I travel with it I can use it for all the 3 type of applications and benefit from its versatility.
The cheek brush
The hair : I have exactly the same comment as for the powder brush, it’s the same quality hair.
I will add : perfect size, perfect density, both in between the Hakuhodo K022 and the Hakuhodo 210. It’s the same softness as the K022.
I can apply blush and contour with it, work with many different powder products and level of pigmentation, it picks and blends powder without any flaws.
The eyeshadow brush
It reminded me of the Chikuhodo Z-5, both have short black shiny handles. The ferrule is matte on the Koyudo. The base of the ferrule is the same size but the head size and shape is different. The Chikuhodo is heavier, weights 7.5g and the Koyudo 5.5 g, you just slightly feel the weight difference when you hold them but since the handle has a nice width (approx 1cm diameter) they are easy to hold for me.
The great thing about this Koyudo is that it’s flatter at the top, soft and dense so I use it also to blend.
It will not be a dupe for the Mac 239, it’s much larger and thicker but I am not disappointed at all, it’s a great multipurpose brush to have and it is of better quality than the Mac 239, it will not replace it though because it’s much bigger and cannot deliver the precision you get with the Mac 239.
The Koyudo is softer and denser than the Mac 239 but has a similar flexibility/firmness.
Great quality, the handle looks elegant, it’s very light but sleek and of nice quality. What I like about it is that the layer of bristles is much thicker than other combs I saw before, it’s not a brush you necessarily want to have included in a set but since I needed one, that comes in handy.
I don’t know what material it is, on the website it’s mentioned “mustela sibirica” but it looks like water badger or horse, I will double check and update here when I know for sure.
The lip brush in my opinion it’s weasel or a mix of weasel/kolinsky (but need to ask them). I love square and thick lip brushes like the Lunasol or the pink one from Koyudo (from their 2012 Christmas set), this black Koyudo is very similar, same thickness and flexibility, I don’t think lip brushes can get any better than these.
The set is approx 125 Usd. These face brushes are of higher quality than Mac ones so if you are thinking about “upgrading” from Mac to much better goat brushes, this might be a great option, just remember these are travel brushes with shorter handles.
If you prefer Saikoho goat (softer) but more expensive, this hair is not as soft but if Mac brushes were as good as these I probably would have kept them and not even tried to search for other replacement brushes but today this whole quest for beautiful softer brushes has deviated into a passion of mine.
If you already own the Mac 217 and the Mac 239, the eyeshadow brush here will not be a replacement but a nice addition to your Mac eyeshadow brushes. Unlike Mac face brushes, I still use my Mac 239 on a daily basis.
The set is very interesting for travelling and the pouch is small but big enough since I can still fit other normal -but smaller- brushes.
The lip brush is not here just to justify a higher price for the full set but it’s actually a very good brush.
Today, I am very lucky to be able to benefit from time to time from CDjapan samples, sometimes they are kind enough to send me some of the brushes that I have selected and that I have planned to order in the future and they do it for free. I was interested in this set since I saw it a few months ago but wasn’t sure if I wanted to order it, now you know a bit better what to expect if you are interested and I hope the pics help you, if you have any questions or need more comparison pics, please don’t hesitate !
Hi! I’m a first time commenter but have been following your blog for a while now! Absolutely LOVE reading your posts and I used your fantastic and comprehensive brush posts to start expanding my brush collection! Let’s just say that a couple of Hakuhodo orders *may* have been placed 😉
This set looks great so I would like your opinion on one thing: the MAC 134 is one of my favorite bronzer brushes and one of the most used in my collection. Other than this Koyudo one do you know of/like any other 134-esque brushes? I’ve been trying to upgrade my brush collection by looking for better made versions of my favorite brushes so I’m on the look out. Also the Edward Bess luxury face brush is one of my favorites but the Hakuhodo Kinoko brushes seem more densely packed than that, any suggestions? Thanks in advance!
Oh I also wanted to mention, in my limited brush experience I have found the Sue Devitt sable eyeshadow brush (the largest one) makes a great multi-tasking brush: great for making shimmery/frosty shadows appear sophisticated and non-80s like and also great for blending just about everything. Have you tried that one?
Thanks once again!
thanks 🙂 really appreciate it !
After the Mac 134, I actually used the Louise Young LY07S, which is huge and dense but still great for diffused bronzer, I still use it by the way. Otherwise my favorite successors of the 134 are the Tom Ford bronzer 05, the RMK face powder brush, the Hakuhodo J531 or some Kabukis, the Koyudo White mushroom, or the H005 for example. The Kinoko are indeed much more densely packed.
I haven’t tried the Edward Bess at all. What kind of material are you looking for ?
I haven’t tried the Sue Devitt either, I wanted to and nearly bought it in Fenwick London… 🙂 thanks for your recommendation, I will have to stop by again next time.
Hi Sonia, I believe the Edward Bess luxury face brush is made form goat hair but it may be dyed and it’s also made in China. I really like it for bronzer, blush and all over blending and it has lasted well over the 3 years that I’ve had it, the brand name has worn off but the brush is still as good as when I bought it. If your skin is sensitive I would say you should try it first but the shape is a little bit like Chanel’s new powder brush, dense and in between a kabuki and a blush brush.
Thanks for your recommendations, I’m very tempted to get this set! 🙂
hmmm I think it may not be soft enough for my skin, I have the EB eyebrush and I use it sometimes because it’s efficient but it does hurt my eyes. Thank you for your honest opinion on it 🙂
The Tom Ford bronzer is probably the most stunning replacement you could think of, the density and resilience is absolutely perfect for the application of bronzer.
I also know that the Koyudo H005 is very loved here for the application of bronzer. The Koyudo white mushroom will be a bit too soft for most of you for bronzer but I do enjoy it a lot, it will not deliver a heavy application but it’s fantastic for me, so delicate on my skin. I am considering getting a second one, not only because I love it and cannot live without it but because I want to make sure the quality is consistent in all of them, the quality of the one I have is absolutely outstanding.
So, if you need only one “ultimate” bronzer brush, I recommend you to get the Tom Ford.
That said, what I really like with this Koyudo set is that the face brushes have the most universal size they could have done, both the powder and the blush brush are very well balanced in between size/density/spring, for those who are looking for a set with nice goat brushes this is an excellent option.
I have the Tom Ford Bronzer, cheek and cream foundation brushes and to be completely honest with you, I haven’t yet mastered using them. The cream foundation one is fine, exactly what I’m used to, a bigger version of the Shu 18 but the cheek brush threw me off by how much pigment it packed on, I guess I’m used to a “floppier” blush brush, it almost felt like using a kabuki brush to put blush on aka clown cheeks! The bronzer brush is definitely soft and great but I feel its almost too big and inflexible, I’m more used to directing the application and not used to the brush doing all the work, do you know what I mean? Anyway I’m learning 🙂 Right now my HG bronzer brushes are the Edward Bess and the MAC 134 and speaking of HGs what are your HG bronzers? Mine are Chantecaille Capri, St. Barth and MAC Harmony. I *highly* recommend the Chantecaille bronzers if you haven’t tried them!
Thanks once again for your lovely insightful posts and conversation!
Hi ! oh ok I understand, then the LY won’t be for you at all 🙂
I *think* I see what you mean, I had the same problem some time ago, we often dab the brush into the product, remove the excess by tapping against our other hand and then hop onto the cheeks …
with this kind of brushes, very dense and with a flat surface, they are great for less pigmented blushes (and there are many blushes like that out there), but what I do is I dab the brush then I tap (or swirl) the surface of the brush on the back of my hand, you may think it won’t leave enough product on the brush but it does, and since it’s dense and flat the application is very polished without being painful at all. It’s just my feeling (or preference).
Same for the bronzer brush, it’s dense so I softly remove the excess powder against my hand then I apply it, and blend, the result is even and not too heavy, since it’s dense I don’t need that many applications so less irritation at the end.
I don’t know if that can help or if you already do like that to apply the powder products…
It’s also a “psychological” reassuring feeling to use a denser brush, I don’t know why but it feels ‘cosy’… 😀
You won’t have that issue with this Koyudo set, it doesn’t pick too much product therefore it’s easier to use.
I love the Tom Ford Terra, I think I will soon touch pan by the look of it… but I love bronzers in general and I have a lot of them ! RBR, Chantecaille (I have Capri but I haven’t use it that much, now that you mention I should re-give it a try), Givenchy, Guerlain…
I really think you should get the set then, and by the way I am loving the lip brush !! so worth it !
you are welcome ! it’s a pleasure to help, not sure these comments helped but I wish they do…
Sonia, I wanted to thank you for the tips on how to use these luxurious TF brushes, I think removing the excess powder on your hands and then using it really works, I get a lovely application with that! Yay!! Hope you are well! xoxo
thank you Lakshmi for your feedback, glad it helps 🙂
yes I am fine and I hope you too <3
Love the black handles!! Now if I wasn’t set on acquiring the fupa14, I would seriously consider getting these. As always the review and pics are fab Sonia. 🙂 🙂 🙂
thank you Bea !
the handles is what really made me want it 😛
argh this Fu-pa14…. so tempting !!!
The handles are so beautiful. I love everything matte so that ferrule really speaks out to me. Then again I find myself getting more interested in the pouch rather than the brushes hence I think I will probably give this a miss. Thanks for your detailed post!
you are welcome CC 🙂
Like the eye brush very much and this seems a good travel/beginner set, though it lack a small precision eye brush or liner. do you think the eye brush is similar to the hakuhodo J532 ?
you are right ! I will still enjoy it though and since it’s not heavy I will use it for travelling on the bike 🙂
I actually have a picture for my next post and it has J532 and this eyeshadow brush in it :
If only they were squirrel, then I wouldn’t be able to resist. I love the look of the matte ferrule. I must have only the softest of brushes! My top 3 are: 1) Red Squirrel cheek 2) Chiku MK-2 and 3) White Mushroom Not anything to complain about here. I also have some Haku’s including the white baby goat hair ones with the blond wood handles. Are there any others that are the softest that you can recommend? Especially eye shadow brushes? I don’t have any by Shu. Thanks!
oh nice selection you have in there !!
you have the Maple kinoko from Hakuhodo ? are you looking for soft goat eyeshadow and face brushes ? I understand you want very soft goat hair and not squirrel, right ?
I like squirrel the best but I have those Kinoku brushes you recommended from Haku and they are wonderful. I need extremely soft eye brushes of either squirrel or goat. I think you listed some from Tanseido that you said were excellent. Do you get them from Rakuten or elsewhere? Thanks!
If you need the softest options then you should get Tanseido’s. I bought them on their website and I forwarded them to Tenso, the whole process takes about one week and 7 days after I placed my order I already have my brushes.
Otherwise you can use Tommmy services : http://bringblingjp.blogspot.ch/2008/01/you-will-get-access-to.html
Ooooh, these brushes are sublimely sexy and seek but like cc, the case is what’s really caught my eye! But I think will also give this a miss because I want to save up for some Kyureido and Takeda, especially their supposed dupes for the Shu kolinsky/sable eyeshadow brushes!
I missed this information, Bonnie. Could you point me in the right direction for those ‘dupes’, please?
I’m not sure if anyone’s compared them here (I’m a bit lost on posts now!), but I was exploring Rakuten and doesn’t this:
and the other Takeda eyeshadow brushes remind you of the Shu Kolinsky/Natural eyeshadow brushes? I read elsewhere that they’re very similar but at a lower price point. Figured I might as well try and see if they are!
Or if someone already has them and can provide a comparison?
Even the handle, ferrule and print remind me of Shu! I’m thinking of #8 and #11, and maybe a #10 for comparison. #14 seems a bit too big for my purpose. I saw that they’re made of red sable from a picture of the handles on another forum. Although the translation is showing on Rakuten as weasel…
If there’s a Shu 5R dupe will someone please tell me?! I dropped by Sephora last Friday and they just happened to have Shu Uemura’s international artistic director of all people doing a demo and he was using it on his model so now I am obsessed with acquiring that brush! 🙂
Thanks for a brilliant and thorough post, Sonia!
I have some points at CDJ to use and your post reminded me of how very much I like ordering from them. I may repeat the C011, which I like very much for cream eyeshadows.
Then there’s the possibility of putting the points toward that evil, evil new Koyuda brush…
In any case, as always, your posts are the nucleus for a lively and entertaining community.
thanks Sylvia 🙂
so sweet of you <3
It's really nice that they have that points system, it's always a good excuse to order 😀
More beautifully made brushes by Koyudo:)
For a spoiled brushaholic ( moi ) they just aren’t interesting / unique enough anymore to justify the purchase. Sad huh?!
No Buggsie, it’s not sad, it’s completely normal, we are brush collectors so more drawn towards unique/interesting brushes 🙂
I am just so sad that I did not had access to this kind of sets some time ago when I was looking for Mac alternatives, I can assure you that would have made my makeup application so much more pleasant !
Although I love unique and expensive brushes, I highly appreciate to have some nice sets like this one, not only because they will represent most of what people use to apply their makeup, therefore I can better “gauge” how blushes or powders will work with normal goat brushes for reviews, but also because they are efficient and they make me feel good, hard to explain.. need a doc… 😀
The quality of brushes has improved immensely over the past few years!!
Perhaps these excellent brushes were always out there, but simply unatainable for the Western world?
Although I regret having spent so much money on lesser quality brushes, I think that I probably appreciate my very special brushes even more after going through the proccess.
I really enjoy a good goat hair brush as much as a squirrel or weasel but I have powder/finishing brushes & blush brushes in every conceivable form & hair type !
There’s only room in my collection for super original brushes now.
I do find it a bit sad that this beautiful Koyudo set can’t excite me anymore 🙁
A few years ago I would have given my first born ( heck, take ALL of my kids! ) for it.
If the eye brush was sold separately I would definitely be interested ;)…..are you listening Koyudo???
joining bugsiebee for the shadow brush, seems the perfect balance between the mac one (too small for me) and the hakuhodo 532 (too big), koyudo lacks some goat eye brushes. BTW the angled pine squirrel brush is very soft, barely can tell the difference with my hakuhodo canada squirrel ones, just a tad more firm (thus better to pack shadow) but not at all scratchy, really a good brush (especially as I didn’t pay taxes on this one 🙂 )
yes, that’s right, just in between the 532 and the Mac 239.
can you please give me the link of your angled brush ? thanks !
here is the link, Sonia
I’ll try to send you some photos comparing it to the two angled I have from hakuhodo. I really enjoy it, even more than the hakuhodo ones as it is firmer, with a good flat surface, less pronounced angle. It could be a very nice alternative to the hakuhodo S122, I presume.
I am really curious in this particular brush for the longest time but somehow did not purchase it. Now that it earns rave reviews from you I must rectify that. I have the Haku S125 and I am looking for a similar brush with a flatter or bigger surface, if that makes any sense. Could you tell me how you usually use this brush, as in application? Thanks.
@cc, the koyudo angled brush is bigger than the S125 which I don’t own, I have the G513 and G513 and they have both a very pronounced angle. All these brushes are good for packing shadow with the flat surface but I also do a wash of colour as with a normal flat brush and of course the crease turning the brush upwords, I even manage to do a very soft diffused outer V. I find the koyudo is quite good as it is big but not floppy
@Nikoleta, thanks. I will give the BP030 a try since it is at a cheaper price point than the Haku G513.
@cc and Sylvia
Sonia uploaded two pictures of the slanted eye brush BP030 in my friend’s brushes post.
@Nikoleta, thanks so much!
Out of these 3, which one will you pick if you can choose only one?
Honestly I love them all three but would pick the koyudo to start as it is a good quility for a good price especially if you have some points on CDJ. That said I love the G513 equally, the angle helps a lot to do the crease. I was afraid it would be harsh and scratchy but mine is soft and stiffer (you see on the first picture though that it seems to keep the shape better).
G513 provides that ‘angled shape’ I was looking for. I am also looking at this:
http://www.tanseidoshop.com/?pid=27422064 and tempted to try.
Thanks for your advice. I think I am gonna order all 3! (Big time failure in trying to pick only one! :P)
I wanted to get that one, I probably will at some point, I am just not sure about the hair, not sure it’s soft, should be since it’s Tanseido.
If anyone has this type of hair in a Tanseido brush, I would be really happy to have a feedback 🙂
They have been out there, just not well known and accessible. Five years ago when I discovered these brushes, practically no one had heard of Hakuhodo, much less Chikuhodo, Tanseido, Takeda et al. Hakuhodo has cracked open that door by establishing an online store in North America with worldwide shipping and attending cosmetic trade shows like IMATS, thus gaining more exposure and providing accessibility in that manner. The brush companies have been doing OEM type business and sold to the public only within Japan. Slowly but surely, as long as the demand is there, the other Kumano brush manufacturers will follow suit and go international.
I hope so Bea !!! 🙂
hahaha 😀 yes they are certainly reading 😉
Hello Sonia. Can you please let me know how the hairs on the Z-8 compare with Suqqu? I have read your review that the Z-8 is denser. I love the hairs on Suqqu but found the powder brush to be a bit floppy. I would mainly use the Z-8 as a blush brush. A bit undecided if I should go for it or stick with Suqqu- I have some Suqqu eyeshadow brushes and love them. Love your blog- thanks so much for the work you put into it. Its really helpful.
The hairs on the Z-8 are firmer, more directional, they remain tightly packed together unlike my Suqqu cheek which is more flexible and sprayed out. To me they are not really comparable, my Suqqu and the Z-8 are a world apart. The Z-8 is also double the size. It’s probably my favorite of the Z- series so I have difficulties telling you to stick with the Suqqu 😉 you probably will enjoy the Z-8. I either apply blush very precisely (with a smaller blush brush) or more widely along the cheek area and across the nose, the Z-8 is just perfect for that.
thanks for your comment, I really hope you will get the Z-8, probably one of the most wonderful brushes to have 🙂
Just heard from Chikuhodo that they will put their Kiwami set on sale on the 15th, if anyone is interested. I plan on placing an order tomorrow with Malin at Kolindo.se.
This is such a great place to learn!
Thanks, Nikoleta, for the link
Now I know what I’m going to use my CDJ points on.
I really like the look of that brush and it looks just right for me!
CDJ, here I come!
Thanks alot for your reply Sonia. I’ve done a bit more looking and I think the Z-4 would be the best option for a cheek brush. I would like the Z-8 but I would use that more for bronzer I think. The main concern is the the softness of the brush hairs. The large Suqqu powder brush works out at about $280 in the UK!
I know, the large Suqqu powder is so expensive ! I do prefer the Z- series though, I’ll rather keep my Z-1 than the Suqqu powder. The Z-4 is a better option for blush only, the hairs are soft but you’ll get a heavier application than with the Suqqu, I think it’s a great risk to take but if you love it you may want more ;( … please do let me know if you get one how it worked for you !
You are brilliant,Sonia!
thank you Margareth 🙂 big hug !
Could you recommend me eye brushes for Asian monolid eyes for crease , blending , etc..I want to try Koyudo brushes they look lovely and cute :).
I also usually order some make up from Tommy :). Enjoy reading your blog very helpful.
I have a few that would be great, I’ll check the names tonight at home and I will tell you !
talk soon !
I don’t have much experience with monolid eyes although mine are getting kind of monolid due to the hooding effect getting stronger with time.
If I can recommend a few brushes for you, I am thinking of smaller brushes, more narrower and precise also flatter at the surface, like the Hakuhodo S122 (large crease/blending), then the J125R (for more creamy products), something like the J5529, small and flat at the surface. If you want to try Koyudo, you have to try this little pencil one that must certainly be HG on your lids : Koyudo C011, and the one Nikoleta recently mentioned : http://cooljapannow.jp/detail.html?KEY=NEOKUD-171 that is similar than the Hakuhodo S122. The BillyB eight is certainly amazing on your eyes too, and the Koyudo BP033 as well… so many options 🙂
Some links for reference :
I don’t know if that helps you, if you do try any of these, please give me some feedback 🙂
if anyone else can comment and help here with some recommendations that might also be really interesting for you !
Hi guys! CDJ is currently have a promo for 1000 bonus points if you spend over 10000 yen. The White Mushroom has been discounted 9% to exactly 10000 yen so if anyone is still looking to pick it up, or wants a backup, and needs an incentive… 😛
Thank you Bonnie !!
Thanks so much for your post. I’m thinking about getting the koyudo vivid set or the misty set from hakuhodo. Do you think the quality of the koyudo brush set is just as good as the hakudodo set (i.e. in terms of the weight of the handles, etc)? From your posts, it looks like you have the kumano brush set and the hakuhodo winter 2013 set (which I don’t think is available anymore). But I assume the quality of the portable brushes should be consistent.
I don’t think they are the same brushes (from the set I have), can you please send me the link of the one from Hakuhodo just to make sure ? thank you 🙂
was it this one ? http://www.hakuhodousa.com/shop/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=323
Yes that’s the one, the misty set from hakuhodo USA. They aren’t the same brushes as the winter set but I imagine the quality should be the same in terms of the weight of the handle, brush hair, etc. The koyudo vivd set seems to have baby goat hair, which I’m assuming is very soft, but the handles don’t look very substantial in the website picture. What do you think?
well.. it’s difficult to answer, both are different sets… You will not getter better quality than the Koyudo hair for the goat hair so I would go for the Koyudo but yes, the handles are very short ! so that may be a blocking point for some. They are solid and well made but short like a Fupa for example.
The Misty set is really interesting although I don’t use horse brushes anymore due to my sensitivity. So I would definitely go for the Koyudo hair and the Haku handles… sorry 🙁 I can’t be of much help…