Just Nice Things

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The London Brush Company

A few months ago, I mentioned The London Brush Company after stumbling across them at this year’s IMATS.  Actually Helen takes full credit for spying these brushes and trusting her excellent judgement or I wouldn’t be writing this post.

The London Brush Company is a boutique collection of hand made make-up brushes individually made  in the UK.  Designed by movie make-up artist, Siân Richards, each brush shape has been nurtured and tested, to ensure it works exactly as Siân wants and you can’t get any better than a testimonial from the lady herself when we both met her at IMATS.

Of all the application tools needed in make-up, brushes for applying eye shadows are imperative in my opinion.   It’s like baking a cake – the ingredients (eye shadows), equipment (brushes) and preparation will create the perfect result if the instructions are followed accurately.

I find the same rule applies to using eye shadows.  You must prep with a primer or a base of some kind, use quality products (not necessarily expensive) and have the right tools.

For a while I’ve been content with the brushes I own.  I have some MAC brushes as well as Sonia Kashuk (which are excellent) but I suspect they may become redundant as these London Make-Up Brushes have blown me away.  Their message is simple:  “Designed by a Brit. Made By Hand. Loved By All.”

I bought three brushes – No. 14, No. 15 and No. 16 – all made from super soft squirrel hair.  If, like me, you still harbour bitter feelings towards those pesky gits running off with the bird feeder, then you’ll feel some satisfaction.

On first glance, I thought the hairs on the brushes were distinctively firm compared to my other brushes, which I was a little apprehensive about so when I used them, I certainly did not expect the result I got.

Firstly the powder stays firmly on the hairs and it glides on effortlessly and quickly over the lids.  The feeling is like silk but what I found amazing was how little fallout there was.  How annoying is it to sweep away loose powder under the eyes and touch up with foundation?   I discovered I got very little and in some cases, none.   I’ve tried these brushes on eye shadows from Accessorize through to NARS, and by no means do the results differ.

Blending is incredibly quick and easy too, not the mundanity of relentlessly shading other brushes require, which is another bonus.   You really get the job done a lot quicker with these brushes, and they work well with matte and shimmery eye shadows.  The brushes come with long wooden handles too.

A lot of cosmetic brushes are manufactured outside of the UK and US (usually in Far East countries to keep production costs low) but these brushes have specifically been made in the UK for at least two good reasons: craftmanship in this country has long been recognised for its high quality and these days it’s rare to come across products made in England so you know you are guaranteed an exceptional product.  I’ve got to say, there is something nice about seeing ‘Made In England’ stamped on the brush handle too.  Also the London Brush Company are creating employment and keeping the industry alive in the UK.

I am now curious to try their blusher and foundation brushes.  Have you bought brushes from the London Brush Company?  If so, what do you think of them?

To explore their entire range, visit www.londonbrushcompany.com.  It would appear you can purchase these brushes directly from their website (prices in dollars, starting from $12) but I also came across www.cocktailcosmetics.co.uk, who sell London Brush Company brushes too.   No. 16 and No. 14 cost £27.95 and No. 15 is £25.95 from Cocktail Cosmetics.  A worthwhile investment and a chance to champion home-made products too.

5 Discussions on
“The London Brush Company”
  • The brushes look and sound great. I have to admit, when I saw the handles, I thought these were brushes that had been made by someone like Crown and re-branded. I’m actually still not sure if that’s the case? However, looking at their website, I’m taken by quite a few of the brushes particularly the pointy pencil style.

    I seem to think I read ages ago that Crown brushes are manufactured in the UK. I can’t find anything about where they’re produced, despite googling. I wonder if I have imagined it!

  • Ooh I don’t know about where Crown brushes are manufactured. To be honest, I never got near their stall at IMATS as it was always heaving so can’t comment on any similarities. Compared to my Mac eye brushes, these are so much nicer to use. I am intrigued to try more from this range.

  • I’m definitely interested because the shapes look like they could be better for me than MAC. The “grippyness” of the hairs sounds good too. Price wise they don’t look as punishing as the Hakuhodo I was looking at either!

  • Hi Guys

    My brushes are NOT made by Crown, they do not make the quality I seek and strive to maintain.

    My brushes are currently being used by Halle Berry’s makeup artist, Gwynneth Paltrow’s makeup artist, Brad Pitt’s makeup artist and many more top Hollywood makeup folk.

    Recently at New York IMATS, the squirrel range nearly sold out again and the big seller was the Luxe Blush Blender and the Queen Contour. Mac make their brushes in China and the difference apart from where I get my brushes made is that Premium European hair, be it squirrel or sable is a far superior quality hair. It is softer and more flexible. I ship globally to anyone anywhere, but you can buy the brushes in the UK online at Cocktails and Cosmetics and also at P.A.M in London, if you want to go into a shop and feel them.

    Regarding Hakuhodo.. In New York recently, a makeup artist told me I was charging too little for the brushes because their quality was so good and Hakuhodo charge so much. My goal is to enable people to afford premium quality without completely emptying their purses in the process. In this economy, I can not justify over charging any one – especially as I want to build a community of makeup artists through the brushes. I support makeup artists and give discounts for large orders. I do not know that Hakuhodo will do that. Discounts only come directly from my website if you email me. I would rather charge less and have someone refer and come back to me again and again, than charge too much and take what I can at that moment. It’s a two way exchange after all.

    For more reviews, you can check out my Facebook fan page. The London Brush Company.

    Enjoy the brushes.
    Sheenie, lovely to meet you in London and thanks for reviewing.

    Best Wishes

    Sian Richards
    Owner and Creator of The London Brush Company

  • I would like to correct Sian the owner of London Brush Company about the MAC brushes. MAC brushes in their main collection, are made in France and Japan, not China. The short handled brush sets that come out a couple of times a year are made in China.
    The statement you made above is full of boasting about who buys your brushes and you sound very pushy and sharp, quickly dismissing MAC and Hakuhodo.
    I am not impressed with this attitude.

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