Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Review: Crown Brush Italian Badger Travel Set

I did a "First Impression" video on the Crown Brush Italian Badger Travel Set not too long ago, which you can see HERE. I spent a week afterwards using these brushes exclusively to give them a fair chance so that I could give you my honest opinion on how they performed. I'm going to use a rating system of 1-5 with 5 being the best and 1 being the worst to make it easier. Here's what I think of each brush...

Powder Dome Brush


Performance
This brush is moderately soft, but a tad denser than my favorite powder brushes. It worked fairly well with pressed powders, but was a bit too stiff and dense for loose powders in my opinion.

Shedding
As I mentioned in my video, these brushes all shed from the moment I took them out of their protective sleeves. This was definitely one of the heavier shedders in the bunch, though it seems to have slowed after a week of use.

Rating
I give this a 3 out of 5 overall. Had it worked better with loose powders and not shed as much I probably would have given it a 5, but those 2 things were pretty major to me.

Tapered Blush Brush


Performance
Keep in mind, this brush isn't angled, but tapered. The ferrule is actually pinched making the brush head a bit more flat in shape and the bristles are definitely a bit tapered. This is the softest of the brushes and while it's fairly dense, it is less dense than the Powder Dome brush. I thought this worked pretty well and this is actually my overall favorite in the bunch.

Shedding
Unfortunately, this was the heaviest shedding brush in the set. It began shedding as soon as I removed the protective sleeve and it is still shedding over a week later--not as heavily now, but definitely still shedding.

Rating 
Because this brush is still shedding I am giving it a 4 out of 5. Had it stopped shedding shortly after I pulled it out I probably would have given it a 4.5, but since it works very well for me I still gave it a high rating.

Eye Shadow Brush


Performance
This brush is definitely not as soft as the larger face brushes and unfortunately I didn't like it much because I am very particular about my lids. Also, because the bristles are a bit stiff, this wouldn't be my pick for picking up loose shadows. It applied pressed shadows moderately well, but again, it is not a soft brush on your lids. Also, not all over the bristles are uniform, there are a few that are a bit longer than the rest.

Shedding
Like the other eye brushes, this did not shed much in comparison to the face brushes, but it did initially shed. It stopped within the first couple uses.

Rating
I am giving this brush a 1 out of 5 simply because I don't feel that eye brushes should ever be scratchy on the delicate skin of your lids! I would never use a brush this scratch on my own eyes.

Round Contour Brush


Performance
Initially this was my favorite brush, but as I used it throughout the week I found it a bit scratchier than I'd prefer. The bristles, like the shadow brush, are dense, fairly stiff, and definitely scratchy. Because of its shape it applied shadow fairly precisely, but it was unpleasant to blend with because of its scratchiness.

Shedding
This didn't shed much after I first took it out of the protective sleeve.

Rating 
I give this brush a 2 out of 5. If it were softer it would be a fabulous brush, but who wants to blending with a brush that feels like fine grit sandpaper on your lids?

Angled Liner Brush


Performance
This is a decent travel-sized angled liner. Angled liners tend to be my favorite types of liners and I have no major complaints about this brush. It is stiff, but that's exactly what I would expect from a liner brush that applies liner precisely.

Shedding
This initially shed a hair or two, but stopped after that and hasn't shed since.

Rating 
I give this brush 4 out of 5. The brush itself works well, but for some reason the handle on this was shorter than the rest, which made it slightly awkward, though not too bad.

Oval Lip Brush

Apparently this brush rolled slightly while I was taking its picture and I didn't notice until editing--sorry for the side view of the brush head! If you'd like to see what it looks like you can see it in my First Impression video--link above.

Performance
This is tied for my least-favorite brush in this set. It is super stiff and has barely any flex. It is also not as silky-soft as my favorite lip brushes. I also want to mention in case you're new to my blog that I prefer lip brushes over applying from the tube 100%, so I use a lip brush regularly. This did not evenly apply lipstick and only applied gel lipstick/lip gloss evenly if I used it as a paddle.

Shedding
This shed 1 or 2 hairs when I first took the protective sleeve off, but didn't shed after.

Rating 
I give this brush a 1 out of 5 because I think it's an awful lip brush. If you like super stiff lip brushes, this is for you.

Spoolie


Performance
I am extremely particular about my mascara and the spoolie on the mascara wand certainly plays a part in that. I mentioned that I was a bit skeptical in my First Impression video, so I wasn't surprised to find that this spoolie simply didn't work for me. I have extremely thin, short lashes (so pathetically sad) and this spoolie was just too large for me to use. This may work well for someone with lashes like one of my younger sisters--sky-high lashes I'm so envious of!

Shedding
There was no shedding with this spoolie. ;)

Rating 
I honestly can't rate this, simply because it didn't work for me. For someone with short lashes this is a 1 out of 5 because it's too large, but for someone with larger lashes this may work well. The shape is pretty standard, so there's nothing particularly special about it, but that isn't to say it wouldn't work well for someone else.

Price
This travel set sells for $23.99 on Crown Brush's site.

Where to Buy
You can purchase this directly from Crown Brush at www.crownbrush.com

Final Thoughts
I had heard such positive things about the Italian Badger brushes being the crown jewels of the Crown Brush brushes, so I was definitely a bit disappointed to find how little I liked this particular set. Keep in mind, I am incredibly picky when it comes to makeup brushes--I invest in my brushes and only purchase what I feel are the best--and I tend to prefer natural hair brushes. Perhaps the full-size brushes are different, though they would have to have entirely different bristles for me to like them. Overall, I found that these shed too much and were too scratchy. The Tapered Blush brush and Angled Liner brush were definitely the standouts in this group, the rest I would not recommend. Overall, I wouldn't recommend this travel set. Perhaps the Syntho travel set version is softer and better, but I've never tried it so I can't say.

Have you given Crown Brush a try? What did you think?

2 comments:

  1. Very thorough, thank you for your thoughts.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're welcome! I wish I had liked it more, but unfortunately not so much. :/

      Delete

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