Editor's Picks: The eight most abused brushes in my collection

I've collected several brush sets and singles through the years. I am delighted by each one - a bright, shiny set of unused tools always give me a high - but it's often just that, a high. Soon enough I pick out only a few that will stay within arm's reach whenever I do makeup on myself! I do use a couple of sets regularly for work though, like the Riot Brush Set for public demos and the Charm Suzie Set if I need a travel-friendly version. Otherwise these eight brushes are ALL I need. They've proven themselves after all this time and over so many other options!

SOFFIA Opulence All Over Face Brush. I've had this for over two years and it's still as soft and whole as the day I got it. This is what I use for applying powder foundation and setting powder! It's the best for achieving that ultra smooth, buffed-out finish without requiring a lot of product.

Bobbi Brown Angled Face Brush. I didn't like this at first, because the shape fanned out weirdly and it always has these stray hairs just dangling from the head. For a brush worth almost P3,000, you'd think it'd look better! But I haven't found a brush yet that applies blush and contour as flawlessly as this. It delivers the perfect amount of pigment and doesn't create streaky patches that need extra blending. The angle allows me to stamp my contour/blush on and I'm done in like 10 seconds!

Suesh Large Eyeshadow Brush. I got this particular brush as part of a set, but I've been using an older single (which I lost) years before. This is the brush that made me realize that eyeshadow is really best applied with a flat tapered brush versus a fluffy round brush. At least, for my flat, not-so-contoured lids! I also use it as an overall brush for blending shadow on my lash line, crease, lower lids, and brow bone. It's a great do-it-all tool.

Morphe E14 Eyeshadow Brush. When I want really solid color on my eyes though, I go for the E14. This has dense, synthetic bristles that can pack on both powder and liquid eyeshadows to bring out their potential. It can also work with concealers and smudge out creases and edges.

Zoeva 231 Luxe Petit Crease. This bullet brush is the perfect size and shape for dropping crease makeup. It's not too dense that the color looks too solid, but it's not so fluffy that it diffuses the color overmuch. 

Zoeva 230 Luxe Pencil. This tiny pencil brush is what I use to achieve a clean smoky eye. Yes, it's possible with a smaller brush vs going in with a bigger head! I "draw" my outer v and line/smudge my lower lids with this to get dark colors in those areas without the mess.

MAC 217. This blending blush is a legend for a reason. It works with cream, liquid, and powder formulas and is not just limited to eyeshadow; it can work with concealer, blush/contour, and foundations well, too! Makeup artists stock up at least two MAC 217s in their kits, one to drop product and the other for blending. I've had this for FOUR YEARS and it still performs as well as the day I got it at the store. 

Tarte Eyebrow Brush. This just came "free" with a pot of eyebrow gel but have gone on to become my most abused brow brush. It's also almost four years old! I'm sure Tarte sells one similar or exactly like it, and you can be sure I'll buy that once this brush dies on me. Doesn't seem like it will anytime soon though!

And that is that. Most of these brushes are old already but you can see that they still look great, with proper care. I just wash them with Joy dishwashing fluid or clear shampoo (whatever I have on hand) and let them dry lying down on a towel. ^_^ What are your most abused brushes? How do you care for them?