Beauty Tip: Brushes, Sponges or Fingers?

For most of us, putting on makeup is almost a second nature. We have our routines, we have our makeup gems and we can pretty much step away from the mirror within five minutes. Now before my daughter started nursery there would be days where I would go without makeup and would love nothing more than a make up free day, however I never like to leave the house without make up! In some ways it makes me feel so confident and I am able hide all those impurities. The wonders of makeup. But even so, there are people who are not as confident in their makeup routines and may even have questions when it comes to the many ways you can apply your face for the day. And so, I thought that we could look into the whole brushes, sponges or fingers debate. What is the best way? And which products call for what tools? For years I have been applying primer with my fingers, my foundation with a brush, and blending concealer with sponge. So I don't really have a one only method, and so to speak I have ways that work for me. 

Before we get into this who debate, I think that I should say that I am in no way professional in the slightest. I just wanted to tell you what works for me. Obviously there are pros and cons to each way of applying makeup and normally it comes down to personal preference. When I first started putting on makeup I would use my fingers for pretty much everything, but I would leave so many foundation marks everywhere which is when I began to use both sponges and brushes. Now, I use a combination for all three. I guess it's all about trial and error when it comes to applying make up, so in order to help you to feel the most comfortable when it comes to the tools, I have broken down each way and all the benefits they have. So let's get to it. 


A good brush will give you excellent coverage. This will prevent you from getting excessive makeup in the wrong areas – it helps you focus on particular areas. Nobody wants to have makeup that looks uneven to people who look at you. A good makeup brush will help you solve this issue and help you achieve a flawless appearance. Not forgetting that they can also keep the oils and bacteria from your fingers clogging up your pores. By using make up brushes can help prevent breakouts on your face, but always ensure that you frequently wash your brush to eliminate dirt and prevent build up in the bristles. I tend to use brushes for foundation, blush, setting powders and eye shadow. 


There are many benefits of using a sponges versus using makeup brushes or your fingers to apply foundation. When using a sponge, you are getting an even application that results in a flawless complexion. Sponges have the benefit of sheering out foundation, which is always a plus if you are more subtle with your makeup looks. Additionally bristles that are too course can cause an uneven looking skin tone, and if too much product is used, can leave streaks. Fingers may also provide an uneven or streaky appearance. For me, I feel as if I go over my foundation with a sponge help to create a more flawless and even look, especially great for going around the nose, lips and eyes. The sponge is great with blending, highlighting and contouring because of its flexibility to get into small spaces, hard to reach areas and even fine lines. I tend to use sponge to help give me that flawless finish with my foundation. 


I love makeup brushes and beauty blenders as much as the next woman, but they're not something I want rolling around the bottom of my bag for a variety of reasons. So I find myself using my good ol' fashioned finger tips. I tend to use my finger tips for moisturiser, primer, extra concealer and eye lids. If fingers must be used for application, it’s important to cleanse your hands before so that bacteria is not exposed to the skin. Just as makeup brushes should be cleansed, it’s important to wash your sponges after each use! Using the fingers can create an illusion even coverage, but up close the pores tend to look larger and covered, rather than smaller and sealed by the foundation. I tend to use my finger tips for extra concealer, lips and hard to reach places for my foundation. 

What do you prefer? I would love to know in the comments below. 


  1. I think they all have their merits but I like to apply my base with a sponge & then do the rest with brushes. I only really use my fingers for skincare xx

  2. Brushes are my fave, I even use a small brush to do contouring and concealer x

  3. I am very much a finger person, mainly because I dont like how makeup goes on with the other items, i feel like it goes on to thick where as if i use my fingers i can judge how thick everything feels

  4. I love flat top foundation brushes to apply my foundation. And I usually apply concealer with my fingers.

  5. I’m actually a bit of both! NARS recommend you always use your hands so the product melts/warms in all the right areas but I do love a good beauty blender too! Amazing post!

  6. These tips are brilliant thank you!

  7. I prefer make up brushes, but cleaning them is a BORE! I only ever really use my fingers for primer and sometimes foundation if my make up brush is dirty! x