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In the following pictures you will notice that except for 2 brushes I had already similar options in my collection so I didn’t need the full set really. When I saw that CDJapan released it and I wasn’t sure if I had to splurge. I was tempted of course but with my Japan trip arriving and the problems with our dog, my car, etc I was going to skip it. Lucky me, CDJapan appreciates that I contributed in a way to their international renown so they sometimes give me a discount or a free sample. I didn’t get this set for free, but I got a big discount, how could I say no ??
It’s a huge amount of money for a make up brush set, even though it’s an ultimate one, you still have to be very motivated and really love brushes to get it. The great news is that they give their customers the possibility to get the brushes individually.
I picked it up at the PO this morning, opened the parcel while my BF was driving, I was patting them during 40mn until I finally arrived at work, he kept giving the look “More brushes???” and I kept giving him my innocent happy look back. Every time he asked me “When will you have enough brushes?” He always got the same reply in return “How could I know…?! ” but today he finally understood that this day is far, far away…
In order to be able to take the pictures with their after-wash shape, I washed them during my break at work, then let them dry in a corner… Today my close colleagues know what my secret passion is, they kept on asking me why I was going to Japan so at the end I confessed. However, they do not suspect the magnitude of my obsession so pssschhhhhht!!!!…
This set contains 8 brushes, they come with a pouch and in a wooden box. If you hop to this link, you will see the description of the contents and the details of the brushes, material, price and size. They are all made with grey squirrel hair except for the lip brush (Siberian weasel), and the eyebrow (water badger). I will show you what I received in the set but just remember they mention the pouch can change.
Sizes in cm :
|Brushes||Full length||Hair length||Base of ferrule||Ferrule (sideways)||Widest point||Widest point (sideways)|
I won’t go into much details, these are basically just first impressions since I just got them but I think you may currently be a little bit excited by this release and some pics may already help you decide if that could be something you may desire. You may need to wait to get them, they are hand made and they have a small production site.
The handles are exactly the same red as the Koyudo red squirrel brush, but when paired with a different ferrule, the color is misleading, it looks darker in this set but it’s just exactly the same. In my opinion the shiny black ferrules paired with the shiny red handles make them look more sexy and vampirish. I have to say I really love this combination, right up my alley and beyond.
The handles seem solid and I cannot find any flaws. The face brushes shed 1 or 2 hairs depending on the brush but I just couldn’t stop patting them and abusing them 🙁 A great way to torture me would me to show me beautiful brushes and tight my arms in my back 😀 pure evil agony !!!
Some red handle brushes to compare :
The finishing brush
These Koyudo set face brushes are actually all extremely soft and often less dense than any other similar brush.
The Hakuhodo B501 (blue squirrel/goat) is extremely dense in comparison, less soft but still very very soft.
The Hakuhodo K002 is softer than the B501 but compared to the Koyudo from this set it just doesn’t feel as soft, the K002 has more precision (firmness) and a tiny little bit more density.
The Z-9 is my go-to bronzer brush, again more density than the Koyudo finishing but the shape is different too, it’s flatter at the top and that’s why I love it so much for bronzer, it’s quite dense and the application is natural and even.
Of these 4, the Koyudo finishing is the softest and more delicate, if that’s what you are looking for, you will be delighted. It feels like a breeze on the skin. Still picks a fair amount of product but you won’t be able to push it as much as with other denser options.
Even on it’s own it’s an investment, it’s an expensive brush. It’s floppy, not dense and not very directional. I will not use it for bronzer because for bronzer I need something a bit more dense and more firm with better blending capabilities but I use it with pressed powder to set my make up or with pressed highlighter powder. It works like a breeze on the skin. I pat the product and do very small sideways motions (a bit like applying a mascara if that has some more sense).
It has shed a few hairs this morning, nothing alarming so far, my brushes always shed a few hairs since I can stop abusing them. Now I need to wash it again and see how it endures the process.
Since I have very dry skin I have to apply a lot of moisturizer, depending on the days the brushes will absorb more or less moisture on the bristles. There is nothing I can do about that, if I don’t have that slightly greasy looking skin before and after I apply foundation, my skin will be suffering all day. Therefore I need to wash my squirrel brushes more often than any other person I believe, after 2 or 3 days even nice squirrel brushes start to look “oily” that’s also why I love to use soft goat brushes (the will absorb less moisture). That problem happens with any squirrel brush, I have to wash them quite regularly at this moment. In summer I won’t need that much cream so I won’t experience the same issue. The powder I need to set my makeup is minimum, that brush helps me achieve the result I want, remove the slightly greasy aspect without removing the glow that my skin loves to keep.
The one I use the most (so far) is the Tanseido YSC 17, for the application of blush. I wanted to get its big Tanseido sister but I decided to wait until I am in Japan. The Koyudo powder is the same idea as this Tanseido but much bigger. It’s difficult to confirm 100% but it feels softer than the MK-2 and the Tanseido. We will see how it evolves with washes. The MK-2 has a bit more density and is more directional. The Koyudo is more spread out and honestly you can barely feel it on the skin, it’s just fantastic. Just keep in mind it’s not a precise brush and it’s very flexible – 2 strokes and you covered half of your face !
All the face brushes in this set aren’t dense but this one picks the meteorites powder quite nicely, one dip -very little swirl- and it got enough product on, I don’t know, I thought that maybe since it’s not as dense as some other brushes, the balls go in between the bristles and the bristles can touch the top and the bottom ones (OMG is that sentence creepy or is it just me???)
My go-to is the Z-9 for bronzer, this will also be great with bronzer but delivers a softer wash of color. Recently I have been loving big flat brushes a lot, this and my Z-9 are my daily brushes for the Tom Ford Terra bronzer, I just wish this one was slightly more dense for the application of bronzer.
It’s a shape I was ignoring for many years but after having tried the Tanseido in the pic for blush, now it’s one of my favorites shapes, at least at this moment 🙂 Probably because the sensation is heaven and provides some kind of calming therapy in the process …
Below are brushes that I love, all of them are absolutely divine. I still think there is nothing like the Koyudo Red Squirrel, not only because it’s soft but the density is greater than the Koyudo cheek and it’s more directional, more firm.
If the Koyudo cheek is not as soft as the red squirrel, it can’t be far … I don’t feel a big difference. Where it differs the most it’s in the density. The density of the Koyudo Cheek is between the Tanseido YSQ 17 and the Koyudo Red Squirrel.
The Kyureido, the Suqqu and the Chikuhodo Z-4 are more dense and more directional too, the Koyudo cheek will be fantastic with very pigmented products and for those of us who have a very heavy hand.
It’s just a very soft brush to apply very pigmented blushes, I have tried it with Tom Ford Wicked and with RBR Florita thinking that I had to pack it on the bristles but you don’t need to, it picks enough product without having to insist. I prefer the Koyudo red squirrel because it combines density, precision and the most insane softness, this one is just a bit less dense. They are very similar in size and the handle is the same except for the black ferrule.
If I really have to say how they differ, I’d say that the Red Squirrel has more firmness and more blending capabilities but the layers of hair start at the same point in the two brushes, I have recently started to use my brushes at different angles, I think I was using these flat brushes without enough angle actually, now I use them more close to 45° than to a flat-ish and the application i’s easier and faster. I like to place the product at 45° on the high point of the cheek then very softly wiggle and bring upwards, if you have a technique that you love to use, please share !
It’s a very forgiving brush, unless you pack too much product because that is possible with bold colors 😀 then, to blend the excess, better pick a different brush or the foundation brush to cover the mess 😀
Eye shadow L
This brush is the most similar to the Chikuhodo Z-5 but it’s a bit thinner, it has many layers so it picks a nice quantity of product, no worries to apply a nice wash of color all over the eye area, base or blend the whole application. It feels as soft as the Z-5, but the Z-5 is shorter and thicker so the blending capabilities will be higher.
It’s just a very nice base brush, it applies a soft wash of color, no problems at all picking up any kind of powder product. It’s thinner and a bit longer than the Z-5 from Chikuhodo but the result is similar, I cannot see a difference. The Z-5 will do a better blending but for the price, this brush is a fantastic deal in my opinion, specially today with the low JPY.
Since I am THE craziest person with the blending, I don’t have enough eye brushes in the set for my needs : missing a big strong blending brush and a precision pencil brush.
Eye Shadow M
My Koyudo BP033 is always in my handbag (hence the damage on the ferrule…) it’s the kind of brushes that allow you to place, blend and do general touch ups if necessary. If I need to grab some eyeshadow brushes in the morning I will grab one like this and a little pencil brush.
The Koyudo eye shadow M from this set is just amazing, I like how precise it is, but still not too pointy at the top in order to blend and apply a defined layer of color. Some, like the Hakuhodo G5523, are just a tiny bit too pointy for that purpose and the J5523, although it’s fantastic, it’s too large for precise layering of color.
As I suspected, this is a versatile option for the base application, the crease and some blending. A bit too large for just the mobile lid but I can still use it, definitely too large for the lower lash-line. If I have to grab “one-for-all”, this will be useful – providing I also pick a precision little pencil brush. It has just enough density at the top with enough firmness to push product at a 90° angle, it’s slightly softer than the Koyudo BP033.
Eye shadow S
That’s not an usual brush, a tiny crease/precision, I feel like this one is going to replace my Nars 12… same idea : precision crease application but this time SOFT, it’s firm enough to work with the Mac eyeshadows I tested (mattes) so I feel like this is going to be big love.
It is tiny and directional, not firm enough to apply color on the bottom lash line, the application on the lash line will be too wide and for the most of us it will not deliver enough precision for that part. For small precision crease application it is nice, the small precision crease brush that I dream of is still not existing out there but I will definitely use this little thing in the meantime. Much softer than the Nars 12 but the Nars is a bit more easy to use for me.
For the inner tear duct again it may be too wide but if what you apply goes a bit further around the tear duct it will be fine. Honestly for the price -if you can- and if you are tempted, I will take it. For me it’s cute and useful, either to highlight under the eyebrows or to accentuate the crease. I just hope that one day I will find my perfect little crease brush 🙁 I certainly enjoy this one but it’s missing a bit of material at the top and it’s a bit too long to be exactly the one I am looking for.
It’s softer than the Hakuhodo, other than that… nothing to add, approx the same size as well, fantastic.
Same as the other Koyudo lip brushes in other sets, I find them fluffy enough but work with precision, they grab a great amount of product. Again nothing else to add, for me it’s the kind of lip brushes I love because they work with any texture (from gloss to matte).
The exterior feels cheap and I have a problem with some materials, I am not in love with the exterior of this pouch but I love every thing else. I love that it doesn’t have magnets! Safe to carry!
You can place your eight brushes and on the right you have some room for more.
Were they thinking of me ? 🙂 I can’t live without the Rae Morris Radiance and, it started recently, but I can’t live without the Koyudo fan, for bronzer or blush or powder, I LOVE IT. It combines cuteness with efficiency, this will probably be an extension of my arm from now on 😀
If you push the Radiance and the fan, you can fit them nicely inside and you can slide something at the back of the brushes.
I will report back to you once I have use them for a few days but in the meantime, if you have any questions and I can help you, don’t hesitate 🙂