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A lipstick brush is the one beauty tool you may not think you need -- until you try it, and wonder how you ever put on lip color without one. Using a lipstick brush can shave a few seconds off your makeup routine, while preventing "crooked color" mishaps. Many brands sell lipstick brushes, so choose one recommended by experts. Soon you'll have perfectly defined lips -- and you'll feel a little more glamorous applying your lip color with a brush.
Clinique's Antibacterial Features
Experts advise cleaning your makeup brushes after each use, which can be a pain. Clinique's Lip Brush is treated with an antimicrobial solution to kill bacteria, which means that when you skip cleaning it for a few days you don't have to worry so much about germs. Clinique's Lip Brush comes in a sleek silver metal retractable package, and "Allure" magazine says the soft bristles deposit color quickly and evenly. This brush is sold separately, or as part of Clinique's Brush Set, which "Allure" magazine chose as its "Beauty Breakthrough" winner in 2005 when the brand's newly developed antibacterial technology first launched.
Two-in-one products are always convenient, like Lancome's Le Lipstique -- a lip-liner pencil on one end and lip brush on the other. This brush has a pointed tip, to help blend color more precisely. The waterproof lip liner is smudge-proof and formulated to stay put -- even through a meal.Lancome's Le Lipstique was featured in "Marie Claire" magazine as one of its "Ten Best Beauty Buys" of 2007. In 2010, it was featured in "Elle" magazine as one of makeup artist Genevieve Herr's "5 Favorite Products." And Herr often applies color to the prettiest lips -- Julia Roberts is one of her clients.
M.A.C.'s Reputation Among Pros
The M.A.C. 316 Lip Brush -- or 318 Retractable Style -- has a reputation for being among the best lip brushes. Its bristles are made from short rounded firm fibers, which are designed to apply lip color more precisely to create well-defined lips. Celebrity makeup artist James Kaliardos counts Madonna and Julianne Moore among his clients. He told the U.K.'s "Daily Mail" newspaper about a makeup tip he received from the Material Girl -- to use a short-haired rounded lip brush to apply lip color better -- not unlike the style of M.A.C.'s 316 Lip Brush.
Hakuhodo - A Luxe Brush
In-the-know beauty addicts are fans of Hakuhodo makeup brushes, known as the "Rolls Royce" of beauty tools. Both its classic flat lip brush and portable retractable style have bristles made from weasel hair, for better elasticity and durability. Hollywood makeup artist Vivian Baker told "Elle" magazine she used a Hakuhodo lip brush to apply Drew Barrymore's deep red lipstick during the filming of the movie "Grey Gardens." Baker says applying lipstick with the lip brush helped her create a very defined shape and clean line, without the need for lip liner. Some well-known beauty brands may have their lip brushes made by Hakuhodo, since the company is a private-label manufacturer. The company uses traditional Japanese brush-making techniques, which includes hand-sorting, so the high-quality bristles are shaped to deliver the best makeup application. Hakuhodo's expertise in makeup brushes stems from its history -- the company has been making calligraphy brushes for 200 years.