I do find brushes quite a difficult thing to buy on my student budget. For the price of a good quality brush or applicator, I would much rather spend the money on a palette or foundation. However, after hearing endless praise for the Real Techniques brushes, and their 'Core Collection' in particular, I took the plunge and honestly, I cannot remember my make up routine without them.
(Real Techniques Core Collection Brushes, available here for £17.85)
I have been using these brushes for a few weeks now and I love them. First of all, I was so surprised at how affordable they are. After all the hype built up around them, I was so pleased to purchase four of these high quality beauties for under £20. I love that they are made from synthetic fibre, so as opposed to natural hair brushes, they dry super quick once I've washed them. This also means that they don't soak up as much product when you use them and they really are, so soft! I think they'd be a great choice of brushes if you've got more sensitive skin, as they are not at all scratchy or unpleasant to use.
Real Techniques Buffing Brush
This brush achieves wonders and certainly the most flawless foundation look I have ever managed. I use it to buff my liquid foundation (I imagine it works just as well with mousse) onto the face and I end up with such an even coverage and smooth finish. I also use it to neaten up any contouring that I do as it seems a really good size for this. This is probably the brush I use the most and it has become a staple in my daily make up.
Real Techniques Contour Brush
This little beauty is the best contouring brush I have come across. It is the perfect size for applying bronzer to the hollows of your cheeks and I tend to use it frequently for highlight as well. I also think the egg shape and super tapered cut works well with blush. Ultimately, it is super effective at creating definition and a soft focus finish. If you are a beginner to contouring, this really will become your best friend very quickly, as it is so versatile.
I personally find this brush quite small to apply my foundation with and I think its size suits it more to liquid highlight. However, I also tend to use this with liquid concealer under the eyes, or for small foundation touch ups around the nose, chin or eye area. Even though it seems too tiny to apply full cover foundation with, you can really use this brush to your advantage.
Real Techniques Detailer Brush
I probably use this brush the most with my MAC Studio Finish Concealer, so primarily for concealer touch up on pimples or unwanted redness. The size of the brush is perfect for this function, however I also use it for detail if I'm working with eyeshadow, as it is great for applying lighter shades to the inner corners of the eyes, to highlight and accentuate.
Overall, these brushes are great and I now find myself using them more than some of my more expensive brushes from Estée Lauder and Bobbi Brown! At such an affordable price, you really can't go wrong with these and they will make such a positive difference to your daily make up routine.