I am very lucky and extremely honoured to be regularly in contact with professionals and brush lovers, it’s exciting to share this passion with you all and read about your experiences and your discoveries.
I am also often contacted by people who would love to start a more serious relationship with make-up, but some find make-up quite intimidating. They tell me: “I don’t like to feel the make-up on my face” or even “I am scared of shimmers and bright colors” but we can have fun, play with textures, sparkles, shimmers, colors, techniques, whatever our age! We can adapt the coverage or the intensity to what we feel appropriate and actually, it’s great to adventure beyond our comfort zone too.
I love playing with make-up, the whole process is a precious moment, it’s uplifting, it makes me feel a bit more confident and it shows! People around me think I am less tired, happy and relaxed, and somehow this has also an indirect and positive effect on them.
I love all kinds of looks: basic, extra, editorial, I also took special effect make-up classes and drag because the whole process is fascinating and so is the people I meet, and I will continue those special classes as soon as I can travel to London again.
I think these mini Keyaki brushes are appropriate for any skill level, for natural or more elaborated looks, the idea was to create brushes with multitasking abilities, tools that provide a fun experience and that inspire you to use different products, maybe different techniques. The results are extremely important but the whole experience is just as important to me.
This post is to explain how I use the new brushes from the Keyaki V2 set in my daily routine, how I assign them to different tasks depending on the products I use. I am 51 and while my make-up routine has quite a few steps and products, it remains comfortable and soft. Due to my extremely dry skin I don’t go for full coverage unless it’s for special occasions.
This post features the 5 brushes in the mini Keyaki set V2:
Below is how I use these little Keyaki brushes for my everyday make-up routine, what type of products I use with them, for a look that I take anywhere. The products mentioned below are just an example, I have a room full of make-up and brushes and my make-up products are rotating constantly.
Under each section, I’ll mention the brushes that I use or that I would reach for depending on the product, these pics will also show you the size of the brushes.
BARE SKIN – PREP
My skin is extremely dry and sensitive, with sun damage and imperfections. I don’t do skin treatments, I am trying to change this and find treatments that suit my needs. In the meantime, I need a good serum and an extremely emolient cream before my make-up. The very emolient cream is why you don’t see the dry patches here but they are actually everywhere. This means that my make-up application needs to remain dewy, and I cannot go for full coverage for a full day wear. I don’t regulargly use foundation primers but I do use an eyeshadow base everyday.
BASE APPLICATION [Jumbo Base – Jumbo Worker – Detail]
I apply one layer of Natasha Denona Face Glow, shade 40, with the Jumbo Base, patting it and then blending the application softly, from the center outwards, working with the tips on the slanted side of the brush.
Then, I use the Detail brush to place the IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Undereye (shade Neutral-Medium). This brush is precise enough to target just the darker areas around the eyes, sometimes it’s a dark line.. sometimes it’s a huge circle… but I can just paint it and since the brush still has layers and some body, I can use this same brush to diffuse and blend it and keep it just along that area where it’s needed.
If I need more brightness or coverage around the eyes or in specific areas, I will apply more concealer (a pen type of fluid concealer) or just more foundation and I will use the Jumbo Worker to blend it.
If I need to touch-up my foundation during the day, this is the brush I will use as my foundation tends to disappear under the eye area, specially when wearing a mask.
Since I cannot wear a lot of foundation, I love to use the Danessa Myricks Waterproof Cream palette (The Essentials) to add more structure or a bit more coverage just locally where I need to. These creams are wonderful and they do not emphasize pores or wrinkles.
I need to mix the two lightest shades in her palette to find the right color to use, I use the Jumbo Base to stamp the shades and to blend. I will use the Jumbo Worker if the placement needs to be more precise. Sometimes I place with the Jumbo Worker and blend out with the Jumbo Base.
SETTING [Soft Face – Jumbo Worker – Jumbo Base]
I usually don’t need to set my foundation with powder since my skin is so dry. Sometimes I use powder bronzer to set as it delivers structure while setting at the same time.
I will apply it with this Soft Face brush, this brush can move with enough precision around the face and stay away from the cheek area for example.
You can also use the Soft Face for buffing and finishing powders but it’s going to be a gentle buffing, it’s an airy brush with movement and moderate firmness.
If I need to set my foundation on a smaller perimeter I will use the Jumbo Worker, I love this brush paired with lightweight pressed setting powders like the Surratt Perfectionniste.
My foundation application is usually very dewy due to the emolient skincare that I need to use, but depending on the humidity outside or if it’s a special occasion, I will set my foundation or I will add a little bit more coverage with powder or even a powder foundation and using the Jumbo Base brush, here I used the Dolce & Gabbana Foundation Powder (shade Warm 100).
The lipstick combo in this pic is Tara Lynn’s collection with C. Audette. On the eyes I used the latest Wayne Goss Smoky Quartz palette.
COLOUR AND STRUCTURE [Soft Face – Jumbo Worker – Jumbo Base]
The Jumbo Base is also a brush I love to use with cream blushes, or even hybrid formulas, here I used it with the Nars Exposed Cheek palette, the shades in that palette have a gel-powder type of formula. I love the dewy and subtle result of the bright shades in that palette paired with this brush, it gives a very natural flush of color.
I stamp the product gently and the brisles diffuse the application as they bounce on the skin.
If I go for a powder blush, I’ll use the Soft Face brush. This brush can be used with blush, contour or finishing powders.
It’s quite small in size but it splays out and moves softly, it can also be used with bronzer as I mentioned before but for a more structured application of bronzer.
I often use the Jumbo Worker with highlighter, specially with hybrid formulas, with creams and liquids. I pick up the product with the surface of the brush, press it or tap it gently and blend out.
For the application of powder highlighters, it may work but the result will depend on the texture and the intensity of the product that you use. If you want to use an eyeshadow as highlighter, this brush will probably fit the smaller pans and allow you to do so easily.
EYESHADOW [Detail – Crease]
The Detail brush is a versatile workhorse. Here I am applying the Mac paintpot in Constructivist all over the mobile lid, and extending on the outer V, depending on the angle we can work with the tip, the edge or the side of the brush. I used it for the bottom lashline too with the same paintpot.
This brush is really easy to use, with powders, creams or toppers, it allows to build up the application effortlessly. Here I worked with a cream but if you use only powder shadows, it works too.
I applied a neutral shade on the crease area with the Crease brush. The size, density and shape are ideal, it’s not a floppy brush so the tip of the brush is easy to manoeuvre, it can be used on the entire eye area, on the crease or on the mobile lid.
I use the Detail brush to work with the glittery shades or toppers, here I am working with the Hourglass Scattered Light in Aura that I placed on the mobile lid on top of the Mac paintpot.
LIPS – [Detail]
I love to apply bright lip colors with this Detail brush. I don’t love to wear super bright colors as they don’t usually suit me but when applied as a soft wash of colour, without liner, I do absolutely love them!
This brush is not going to deliver a precise placement at all but it’s what I love about it, just a soft veil of a bright beautiful color is perfect for me!
This lipstick is Mel’s Puffin, the one she did in collaboration with Christian Audette. It’s now my most loved and used lipstick, for so many reasons.
My favorite technique to apply it is with this Detail brush. The soft hue achieved with this brush is perfect for me, although you could use pretty much any brush to achieve this application.
Mel, I am always and forever thinking of you.
I will use the same brush for several tasks so a microfiber towel is really useful to clean them in between products.
There is a separate post with details about each brush here, please kindly keep in mind that these brushes have short handles and that these handles are truly special, manufactured following traditional Japanese woodworking techniques, hence the cost.
The brushes are washed and sanitized before shipment but if you wash the brushes before use, this will allow the bristles to splay out and reach their intented shape.
Thank you for reading this post with my examples, I hope this helps you imagine ways you could use these brushes, as part of your daily routine or maybe at the office or on the go!
I would be happy to read your comments so please do not hesitate to leave me your messages, questions or comments below.
The set is Limited Edition and will retail for 160 USD, it will be available on Beautylish, starting on the 20th of July at 10am PT.
Sonia! Your finished face of makeup and curled hair is so lovely! The colours compliment you fabulously. Oh thank you for showing how you use your brushes. Now if you make it into a video… that’d be terrific !!! Sending love to you. Denise
Hi Denise!! Thank you!!!
oh I hope I will be able to do it on a video in the future… trying to get the camera and will make some tests see if it could work.. it may take a while …let’s see!! Love you!!
Hi Denise!! Thank you!!!
oh I hope I will be able to do it on a video in the future… trying to get the camera and will make some tests see if it could work.. it may take a while …let’s see!! Love you!!
I absolutely loved this post – so helpful to see how you do a full face with a set of brushes. Thank you for taking the time to do it, not to mention to bring these beautiful brushes into the world. 🙂
Hi Lisa, so so happy it helps! I am trying to do this on a more regular basis! I hope in the future it makes more sense as it’s a bit all over the place 😛
Thank you for your kind comment and taking the time to leave it, I really appreciate it! <3
Hi Sonia. So delighted and thrilled about this new set! Especially I wanted to get the hpJumbo Face, but now that it is part of the Keyaki set 2 I’ll get the set! I love the set 1. These mini brushes come with me everywhere. Now I am just hoping you will bring the double decker case back so that I can pack both Keyaki sets. Do you have any plans to offer it again.
Yeah!! how cool is that!! it’s a good reason to buy this V2 then!!
For the double decker at this stage I don’t know unfortunately but I take note of your request!
I hope you are well and thank you again for leaving me this awesome comment here!! hugs!!
First of all congratulations on this great V2 Keyaki set!
Secondly, but not least important – Yes, please bring back the double decker and his brother back! I’ve seen there were similar comments on Instagram, so there is a demand on them. Thank you in advance for listening to us!
thank you so so much!!! <3
I take note of your request, it's very nice of you to show interest in these two items and contact me! It's true that I saw many were asking for them to come back, I will do my very best!!!
Thanks a lot Sonia! After having waited and read outstanding reviews (didn’t expect any less) about the V2 set, I just ordered mine! This is was the best purchase to spend my Beautylish credit on. Spending summer in my home country – France – I’m super excited as I will have plenty of time to use it together with the V1 set I took along :-))))
So happy to be able to share with and hear from you Sonia and all on your blog. Sorry I will say it again… now waiting for the double decker to come back 😉 Have a great summer! <3
yeah!! how wonderful!!! thank you so much for getting the set!
how are you enjoying them??
And where are you in France? awww French croissants… :P´´´
I took note.. I am checking if it’s feasible and how! We will stay in touch!! take care and have a wonderful relaxing time in your home country!!! <3
I loved reading this post, thank you so much. And yes, I did cry when you mentioned Mel. She will forever be in my heart as well. Thank you, Sonia.
Thank you Mary, for reading and for leaving me your kind message. We all miss Mel tremendously, it hurts and this will never ever change.
Sending you lots of love <3
I love the first Keyaki set, and will definitely get this one as well! I really like the short handles, and use them often for every day. They are so beautiful, and the feel of the wooden handles is lovely. It’s also great that most of the brushes are suitable for cream products, which I mostly use.
It was fun and interesting to see how you use the Keyaki brushes in your routine!
Concerning skincare – have you tried Korean skincare? I recently switched to a Korean skincare routine, and it’s a total game changer for me at least. That and your brushes has really soothed my sensitive combination skin!
Hi Anette! Wonderful news! Many use creams on the go so I think it’s a plus too! I hope you will love this V2 and please keep me posted if you can!
I tried yes, many Korean different products. Some are included in my daily routine repeatidly but one of the korean products I use has just been discontinued. So today, my main and only moisturizer that works for me perfectly (non Korean) and serum (Korean) have both been discontinued!
If you have any recommendations I am very happy to try! I am actually desperate to find a replacement for both!
Thank you again for your kind comment! hugs!! <3
Thank you for your kind answer!
Oh, no – it’s awful when your favorite products are discontinued! Hopefully you’ll find some new favorites before long!
These are my own favorites, if at all helpful:
Calming Low pH Foaming Cleanser, from Pyunkang Yul
(This is super mild, and doesn’t strip the oils off the skin at all!)
Licorice pH Balancing Cleansing toner, from Acwell
(It’s moisturizing, and reduces hyperpimentation)
Real Ferment Micro Essence, from Neogen
(contains probiotics that helps strengthen the natural skin barrier)
Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence, from Cosrx
Glow Serum, from Beauty of Joseon
(soothing as well as reducing hyperpigmentation)
And in general, I like the moisturizers from Pyunkang Yul, as they do their job without irritating my skin. Their beautiful packaging doesn’t hurt, either!
As a total skincare junkie, I also recommend two books about K Beauty: Skincare For Your Soul, by Jude Chao. And The Little Book of Skincare, by Charlotte Cho.
Sorry about the length of this post!
Good luck finding new favorites!! <3
Sorry for my delay in replying, I wanted to first check your recommendations so that I could confirm that I found them.
I already ordered all except for one that I did not find, this shows you that I am desperately trying to find suitable skincare. So far all that I tried was not working but these in particular I didn’t try yet! 😀 So let’s see what happens! I will contact you one way or the other, and if something works, trust me that I will send a great gift your way 😀
Thank you for taking the time to write to me and list these products, luckily I was able to find them (except for that Acwell) but it also allowed me to find a website that is amazing.. so excited about this!
I also have some books about K beauty, not those that you recommended so I keep these in my radar!
Thank you again for your precious time and help!!
Please stay safe and I wish you a wonderful weekend! talk to you soon!
Thank you for your overwhelmingly kind answer!
I truly hope these products work as well for you as for me! I think they are a joy to use as well, due to all the different textures and how comforting they feel on the skin. I can send you the Acwell if you want it!
The Keyaki-brushes came yesterday, so after washing and drying them I could finally test them this morning! And I absolutely love them <3
The new Jumbo Base is so soft, and very quickly and easily blended the foundation seamlessly into the skin. Love the slanted surface! I used the new set together with the first one, which made me use the old brushes in a new way. And I must say, they are extremely versatile! Which makes them very fun to use, because I can switch up my routines! The Keyaki brushes work equally well with both liquids and powders (except the ones designed for powders only, of course). They pick up powders really well, and blends it out without scratching. In general I think the brushes are super soft on the skin – no irritation or redness on my sensitive skin 🙂 They also pick up creamy textures – I used the Mini Base to blend out lipstick as rouge, and it worked perfectly! But it's also great for foundation (which I use mainly in the center of my face). The Flat Definer is great for both creamy eye shadows and for tightlining! The new Detail brush is perfect both for placing highlights in the corner of my eyes etc. and as a lip brush! The new Crease brush is such a great eye shadow brush!
All this inspired me to try a new kind of eye makeup – so going out shopping for shadows later today. I have never quite managed smokey eyes – but will give it a try now, with the new Keyaki brushes and Lisa Eldridge's tutorial on "no makeup makeup cat eye".
Good job on both the Keyaki sets! <3 <3
Well, I really need all the help I can get.. I am using them since a few days now, still too soon to see how these are working for me but I will let you know and we will keep in touch! thank you so much for your advice and your offer to help with the Acwell!
Ah great!! you received it! thank you so much!! I love how these little brushes make us sometimes feel more creative, it feels like you are having fun with them, I love it!!! The Detail can handle so many different textures and products so it’s wonderful to see that you are putting it to the test!! I am really glad!
Let me know what you got and thank you so so much for taking time out of your day and leave me your feedback, it’s really highly highly appreciated!!! Sending you lots of love!
My current moisturizer from Pyunkang Yul is ATO Cream Blue Label. It’s safe even for babies, and contains ceramides, peptides, hyaluronic acid, shea butter ++. It’s really moisturizing without being sticky or making my makeup slide. It is a bit too much for my t-zone on warm summer days, though.
And I also like the Pyunkang Yul Moisture Serum – it feels very moisturizing and luxurious. I use this serum on days when my skin feels dry or irritated.
For days when my skin is more balanced, I go for the Beauty of Jose Glow serum, which is 60% propolis plus niacinamide, for evening out my skin tone ++.
Thanks for the post. I received my Keyaki V2 set today. I just ordered it on Wednesday, gotta love Beautylish. I was hesitant at first to order because I wasn’t sure if it was going to be much different than my beloved Keyaki V1 set. Now that I’ve read your post and have seen the brushes in person, I couldn’t be more pleased. The brushes are a work of art and I can’t wait to test them out.
Hello Carmen! that’s fantastic news, I hope you were able to test them and use them in many ways already!
It’s fun to have both sets as they really complement each other, while still managing a whole look separately.
Thank you for your message and taking the time to leave me your thoughts! big hugs!!!
Hi Sonia, thanks for your … everything, lol. I’ve learned so much about makeup application from you. Question: I have both Keyaki sets and the Lotus set. If I can’t get whole sets that are back, what brush might I be missing? I know you don’t know my needs but generally would you say the face pro, or buffer pro, or Niji?? Thanks again and in advance.
I am new to makeup and the use of brushes (late bloomer as I am 45 years old) and I am so glad I came across your brand and posts. Like yourself I also love Japan and really appreciate the craftsmanship of their artisans. I have been searching for shorter handled brushes as I prefer the ease of storage and also it will minimise knocking the mirror when I get up and close to see what I am doing. I will order the set soon and look forward to trying them out.
Please bring back the first set of the Mini Keyaki brushes.