Hakuhodo Brush Review

Hakuhodo brush reviewIf you have been into make up as long as I have, you’d know what the Hakuhodo brushes are.  If not, no worries!!  That is why I’m here. Think of Hakuhodo as the Porsche of the make up brush world.  There are make up brushes you can find cheaply (and that works well too!), wholesale places that sells cosmetic brushes such as Coastal scents for very reasonable prices as well, and then there is Hakuhodo.  In this post, I will show you the ones I currently own and also tell you a little bit more about Hakuhodo and why they hold such a prestigious place in the cosmetic brush industry.  So let’s get started~ (⊙ꇴ⊙)

Who are Hakuhodo?
Hakuhodo is  a Japanese company located in Kumano, 20 km east of Hiroshima.  They are a company that specializes in hand made cosmetic brushes and also brushes for Japanese calligraphy.  This company has been producing brushes for about 200 years.

Where can you buy Hakuhodo brushes?
They, sadly, only have physical stores in Japan (here is the full list if you ever hit up Japan) but they do attend worldwide IMATS (International Make up Artistry Show) which I’m sure you have heard of.  IMATS is an event where many big, small, indie cosmetic companies come together for two days and sell their products for a big discount.  Brands such as Make up forever offers 40% off their products, NARS, MAC, Too faced just to name a few.  Hakuhodo attends IMATS and also offers a very slight discount (about 3-5% off each brush).  If you do buy them at IMATS, you do save yourself shipping if you are going so keep an eye out for their booth!

At the end of last year, Hakuhodo also collaborated with Sephora to products a couple of very unique shaped brushes.  They caught my eye  and when I checked them out in stores, I was throughly disappointed.  I would highly not recommend you get those garbage of brushes.  I can’t even fathom why they would print their prestigious name on those crappy brushes.  I believe they were all synthetic brushes and the handles just felt cheap.  Hakuhodo specializes in natural bristle brushes so I can’t understand why they would go with synthetic bristles.  Such a shame!  Of course, those brushes didn’t really sell well and even went on a bogo sale at the end of 2015.  Hakuhodo, if you are reading this by chance, please never EVER taint your name with crappy brushes.  Stick to your guns, you’re already killing it with the brushes you product now.

Why are these so expensive!!!! (╬ Ò ‸ Ó)
What sets these apart you ask?  First off, these are made all in Japan, handmade and the brush tips are not cut. So how are they shaped then if they aren’t cut?  They use a method called “Saraiedori” (I hope I spelled it right haha) which is a traditional combing method to get the natural tips all into place and to shape it.  If you watch the video down below, it briefly shows you that method (skip to 2:35).  By keeping the natural tips of the hairs, it optimizes the gentleness and softness that naturally comes with the animal hairs.

Why buy Hakuhodo?
I am definitely not going to sit here and tell you to spend as much money as I did buying cosmetic brushes.  The way I justified it was that brushes are one cosmetic products that do not expire and if you take good care of them, they will take care of you for a lifetime (I say hopefully).  That and this is also a skincare investment.  Because these brushes are so soft, there is very little to no tugging and definitely no scratching when I swipe my brush back and forth.  So yes, these are expensive depending on what brushes you buy but these will last a long time.

What bristles do they offer?:
The price of each brush depends on what animal bristles they use to make the brush.  I won’t bore you with the details so here is the link for all the different bristles they offer.  Also depending on the material they use, they are categorized by different series.  Click here to get the overview for all of the different series to see which one is right for you.

Hakuhodo make up brushesThree or four years ago, I attended the IMATS in my city.  Honestly the one in Vancouver is absolute crap, espically compared to the one in LA where they have 40% off MAC and everything! I saved up extra money just to go on a shopping spree when I went and I surprisingly didn’t even spend half the amount I saved.  So I was like, hmm I could just blow it at the Hakuhodo stand.  I planned on only getting the Yachiyo brush and two other eye brushes but I started talking myself into it, saying “Well they don’t sell these anywhere else other then Japan or online but with a $20 shipping fee, and they are here and I can feel them for myself.  Might as well get a couple more…” and this is what happened.  Honestly it wasn’t that bad since I stuck to mostly the eye brushes which are surprisingly quite reasonably priced compared to let’s say MAC brushes.  The only brush I own from MAC is the 109 brush and I don’t everrrrr use that brush.  I used to own the MAC pencil brush but I found it SOOOOO scratchy and the hairs were super harsh on the eyes, I ended up returning it.

The only two face brushes I own are these two which is the Japanese traditions Yachiyo large tapered pointed brush and the J series highlight round brush.  I knew I was already dead set on the Yachiyo brush but I didn’t plan to get the other one.  I actually wanted to get the Hakhudo Gidayu bake, but I backed out in the end from the $150 price tag.  I’m happy that I did because I love the highlight brush!  Of course there are no rules to no make up, so you can definitely use these brushes for anything, not just highlighting.

NARS also has a brush that is very popular and also called Yachiyo and also retailing for $50. I have tested it out in stores and the quality is definitely not the same.  The handle from Hakuhodo is a lot more high quality and of course the bristles are a lot softer then NARS.  NARS one is scratchy, the bristles look coarse and dry.  I’d definitely suggest you guys buy the Hakuhodo one and not the NARS one.Hakuhdo yachiyoLeft to right
Yachiyo: made with Goat hairs
Highlight brush round: made with Goat hairs

I love using the Yachiyo brush for things like highlighting, bronzing and blushing.  This works very well for bronzing in my opinion because it makes my have a lighter hand using this brush.  The bristles are just fluffy enough to blend away nicely, but also dense enough to be able to pick up the right amount of product.

The highlighting round brush is a very dense but soft brush, great for buffing in products like highlighters (of course), concealers and even good for shading the face.  Think of this brush like your fingers but in a bristled form.HakuhodoLeft to right
J series eyeshadow brush round & flat: Horse hair
Basic series eyeshadow brush round flat: Horse hair
J series eyeshadow brush round & flat: Goat hair
G series eyeshadow brush tapered: Blue squirrel + Goat hair

Hakuhodo brushesThese are the eye brushes I picked up.  I wish I picked up more, but I had most of the shapes they offered so I just picked the more unique ones or ones I know I use every single day.

The J series and the basic series eye shadow brush looks really similar, but the J series one is fluffier then the basic one and slightly more fluffy while the basic one is slightly more dense and flat.  I love to use these to pack on eyeshadow, slightly blend eyeshadows into the crease and do detail shading in the nose area.

The J series eye shadow round & flat brush (the white one) is one of my FAVOURITTEEE brushes.  I have one from Crown brushes and I do really enjoy the cut since you can pack on eyeshadow, blend and define your eyes all in one brush, so I knew I had to get an upgrade.  The crown brush one was really scratchy, so I’m really happy to own the exact same style but one that does not scratch my eyes at all.

Another essential for any kit is the G series eyeshadow tapered brush that is just your standard fluffy brush.  However because the bristles are so soft, I barely have to tug my eye area when I’m blending out eyeshadow.  I LOVEEEE this brush.  (●♡∀♡)

HakuhodoLeft to right:
Basic series eyeshadow pointed brush: Horse
G series eyeshadow round brush:  Blue squirrel
J series eyeshadow tapered brush: Goat

Here are the precision eye brushes I picked up.  Gotta get yourself some pointed brushes as well!!

hakuhodoAgain, the two brushes to the left look like they are the same thing but I promise they aren’t.  The basic series (black one) is skinnier and a lot more pointy while the G series one is slightly fatter, pointed and covers more surface area.  I love to use these for placing dark shades to contour my eyes.  Think of these brushes as the pencils of the brush world.

Another very unique shaped brush is the J series eyeshadow tapered brush which is a skinny, round bristled brush that reminds me of the brushes I used to use when I did water colouring.  I’ve never seen this shape before and again, this is great for contouring your eyes as well.

Hakuhodo Left to right:
Pro series 3/0 P: Polyester
Tentsuke botan: Weasel hairs

HakuhdoI honestly don’t know why I bought these two brushes.  I think I got caught up in the moment.  The one on the left is great for lining the eyes, especially with liquid or cream eyeliner.  The tentsuke botan is actually suppose to be used for painting and not for the eyes, but I bought it thinking it was also for eye lining.  I mean I’m sure I can use it for lining as well but I think I’ll just never use it and keep it looking pretty haha.
I hope this post helped you a little in deciding if you want to upgrade your brushes.  I promise you these are the softest things that will ever touch your face.  I own a lot of other brushes as well, and a drugstore favourite definitely have to be Sonia Kashuk brushes but I won’t get into it here.   If you want to see more make up brush reviews, comment down below and tell me you want to see more brushes!!

What are your thoughts on these brushes?  Are they super expensive?  Would you consider getting these for yourself?  Let me know in the comments down below and let a sista know~ ( ゚▽゚)/

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This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. fnn_w

    They look so purtyyyyyy!!!!! :3

    1. Christina

      They are! I want one of the orange handle ones but not willing to spend $150 LOL

  2. Adria

    Great blog post and very informative. Thanks!

    1. Christina

      Glad you are enjoying my content

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