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Category Archives: Cosmetic Care

To prolong the life of your stuff and maybe save you money.

BH Cosmetics Pro Artist Brush Belt Review

Preface
Nothing makes my happier than organization, except food, sleep, my teddy bear, and my bunny blankie, but that’s irrelevant. Well actually, the last two are kind of relevant becuase they are fuzzy and soft like makeup brushes.

I have a … let’s say… “unhealthy” number of brushes for a non-pro makeup person (in gaming terms I’d be a “filthy casual”) and nothing drives me battier than when my brushes are scattered everywhere. (ie: purse, sink counter, desktop, cabinet, etc.).  I need a home base for everything. I don’t like storing them in cups (that’s just a personal preference because they are open to dust) or drawers (because I’m too cheap & short on space to get drawers). Thus i decided to get a brush belt and assign each brush to a home slot/pocket. Now, if there’s a hole or a space anywhere then that means something is missing and i can figure it out based on where the hole is.

Specifiications
I think it’s safe to assume that the material is polyurethane. The seams are well stitched. Everything feels secure and the over all brush belt is well built. It’s been half a year and I don’t see any signs of wear. However i don’t actively move around with mine like a MUA on the job would. Mine is just for storing brushes. I drag it across surfaces and counter tops but that’s about it. That being said, my brush belt – when loaded – is actually pretty heavy.  The fact that it’s back doesn’t have scuff marks earns it a few brownie points. The carrying capacity is pretty huge. Unless i counted incorrectly when i emptied it to snap the pictures, there are 51 brushes roomed in the picture below. The sad part is that’s not even my brush storage’s final form. I have a few more fistfuls worth of brushes chilling in makeshift containers… I know. I have a problem.

belt open close

There are 4 rows, two “wings” and one central area with slots. Rows 1 and 3 are open pockets where the brushes can move around freely while rows 2 and 4  consist of individual pockets. There are 5 pockets in Row 2 and 4 pockets in Row 4. Each pocket loop can fit a single larger barrel brush (face/powder/cheek) or 2-3 thinner handled brushes (eye/liner/lip/brow). With Rows 1 and 3 it’s open season, You can put anything in there as long as long as you can fish it out, including but not limited to short handled brushes, a small palette, packets of blotting papers, or an ita brush.

Top view of all 4 Rows - See how the brushes in Rows 1 and 3 can be skewed?

Top view of all 4 Rows – See how the brushes in Rows 1 and 3 can be skewed?

The central area slots are tighter than i would like them to be. It makes it harder to stick brushes in on every tier and limits what can be put there. For example, i can’t put two brushes with handles thicker than my pinkie in the central area unless i want to risk bursting the seams.. I usually put my fine paint brushes there but ocasionally switch them out for spoolies/mascara wands. If im traveling, i forgo sticking brushes there completely and just fold the brush belt in half along that area.

There’s also a flap that is, get this, ACTUALLY LONG ENOUGH TO COVER THE MIDGET BRUSHES AND NOT DESTROY THE ARRANGEMENT OF THE BRISTLES! If you’ve messed around with other brush belts before you’ll know what i mean and be just as excited. If you don’t the following pictures are for you. please ignore the swatches on the back of my hand.

Looking at the bristles being splayed just makes me cringe.

Looking at the bristles being splayed just makes me cringe.

The whole thing can be secured to your hips with a 3 prong clip. It’s plastic and pretty standard. Not much else to say aside from the fact that it works and that’s all that matters, right? If you pack it like i do, it gets pretty heavy but the strap is pretty wide. It doesn’t cut into skin and distributes the load nicely.

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Posted by on July 2, 2015 in Cosmetic Care, On the Fence

 

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Overlooked: Cheap Brush Drying with Hanging Dryer Racks

This contraption is nothing new. Hanging dryer racks like these are commonly used to dry socks, underwear and lingerie. The Benjabelle brush drying tree is expensive as fuck at almost $35 before tax.. I can buy a nice face brush or two eye brushes with that money. In essence, being a cheapskate about brush accessories led me to set up this… thing that i’ll call a brush “vine” where my brushes hang pretty and i can pick them off like fruit.

Empty rack - Rack w/ brushes - Close up of clip

Empty rack – Rack w/ brushes – Close up of clip

Hanging up most of my eye brushes is straight forward. I just clip them in, sometimes two to a clip if they have the same diameter. The jaws of my clips are lined with a silicone-y, grippy layer. For thicker handled brushes like my face and powders tools, I slide them through the oval gap instead of clamping with the jaws directly. I have not had an problems with paint chipping because my clips are plastic.

For thicker handled brushes, I slide them through the oval gap instead of clamping with the jaws directly.

I’m seriously surprised that i haven’t seen this touted as a inexpensive way to dry brushes, yet. Oh wait actually it has, just not with makeup brushes. This person is using a drying rack + some wider-jaw clips for woodblock print brushes. Ha! I’m not the only one that comes up with idiotic ideas, but now i wont be able to proudly claim it as my own crazy creation. Oh well. It’s cheap and it works:

  1. there’s no clutter on the counter
  2. my brushes dry upside down
  3. i can dry a whole bunch at the same time
  4. I can use it to dry other stuff on off days
  5. it collapses flat for easy storage

Limitations
Unsuitable for brushes with really hick handles. Wrong. Adapt the good ol’ rubber band/hair-tie lopped around a bar trick. Bingo. And by using the bars+bands you’ve just doubled or tripled the capacity.

dryer4

You might be asking: why not just rubber-band them up towel bar just like everyone else?

Because towel bars are in the bathroom and it gets humid in there. I used to band-dry my brushes to a clothes hanger in my closet, but i have a special talent for losing hair-ties/rubber-bands, so i need all the spares i can get. Using a drying rack allows me to get away with only using a few hair ties each time as opposed to a whole pack full.

Kabukis/Kinokos are screwed. Wrong again. Well, it’s not a problem for me anyways. I always have some Uhu-tac on hand. Love that stuff to death. I could decorate and hold my whole room together with it, but that’s another review. If you have Uhu tac or some similar re-usable adhesive putty, you can stick some to the bottom of your brush them press it firmly to the underside of the rack. It stays, i swear, and comes cleanly off when you want it to. Just make sure that both surfaces are absolutely dry or the putty will not stick.

Yellow stuff is the putty.

Yellow stuff is the putty.

The one real limitation is that the whole thing needs to be balanced or it drives me nuts. If I put a brush on one side, i need to balance it out on the other side with another brush or two.

And That’s It
If you’re sold on this ghetto brush drying idea, here are several cheap-ish hanging dryer racks but chances are you can find them for less. If you’re asian you can probably score one for free by raiding your parent’s laundry room. If you have grandparents, they will *most definitely* usually have several… hanging around. Sorry, I have a one-pun-per-post minimum to meet.

20 clip from Amazon
16 clip from Ikea

 
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Posted by on May 21, 2015 in Cosmetic Care

 

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