Real Techniques recently added to their makeup brush line with the launch of premium collection, Bold Metals. The creation of Pixiwoo makeup artists and sisters, I’m forever raving about and recommending the originals - which I use daily - so couldn’t wait to try out the new releases and see how they compare.
Designed for use by professional makeup artists or serious makeup aficionados, these come in at a higher price point than the regular Real Techniques line. This has received some criticism, which I don’t really understand as there are sp many premium brushes out there at equal and much higher price points. Made from super soft, high quality synthetic bristles, Bold Metals have long, tapered handles and are colour coded in silver, gold and rose gold. Weighted for control, they sit well in the hand during use (I don’t find them overly heavy) and the angled handles mean better balance - both during use and on the table (no more rolling off!).
I was sent four to try out: Pointed Crease, Oval Shadow, Tapered Blush and Arched Powder, all of which are completely different from the originals - or any brushes I’ve tried before. The eye brushes are bigger than average and the face brushes are wide and slightly flattened as you can see above, rather than the more round or oval shapes I’m familiar with.
I’m a recent convert to the Real Techniques Blush Brush, which I use the tip of to add product and then blend in circular movements. When using the Bold Metals Tapered Blush Brush, I add product to one side of the brush, then pat it on, before blending out. It’s smaller with quite compact, dense bristles, so it picks up quite a lot of product. Personally, I find the original easier for powder blush, but find the Bold Metals one gives me more precision and control for cream blush. I also like to use it for adding a small amount of powder to my T-zone.
The Arched Powder Brush is huge, luxuriously soft and the bristles have a lot of ‘give’. Again, the process of using this one is different from what I’m used to… I’d normally swirl powder lightly over my face, whereas with this, I tend to sweep or stroke on the product. I prefer using it with loose powder or bronzer, while my Eco Tools powder brush remains my long term, budget-friendly fave for pressed powder.
With both of these brushes, application feels like it involves more precision than I’m used to, though I do think there’s a getting to know you phase involved with new brushes. I’d be really interested to know how professional makeup artists (besides the Pixiwoos of course!) find using these.
The two eye brushes are definitely my favourite of these four and I’ve been using both pretty much daily over the past few weeks. The Oval Shadow brush is perfect for placing a quick sweep of shadow over the whole lid - I’ve been using this with MAC Patina for an every day look and it literally takes seconds. It’s quite a bit bigger than my other eye brushes, almost the same size as my eyelid, which might not be for everyone, though personally I’m a fan.
As the name suggests, the Pointed Crease brush is designed to place shadow in the crease of your eye socket - again it’s quite large and does work for this, though my preferred use is for blending shadow sticks or eye liner along my lash line. It’s finally helped me to master By Terry Ombre Blackstar (in Brown Perfection), which I love, but find so intensely pigmented that I struggled to create that perfect smoky eyed look with it - and this really does all the work for me. Again, some may prefer a smaller brush for this kind of thing (if so, Zoeva do a great version).
If I was only buying one brush from the Bold Metals Collection, I’d definitely go for the Pointed Crease.
I took this pic to try and show how much ‘give’ each brush has. As you can hopefully see, the first and third powder and eye shadow brushes have the most, while the second and fourth (blush and pointed crease) are more firm.
All in all, I’ve really enjoyed trying these out and will continue to use them all… the eye shadow brushes definitely come out top for me and have become part of my daily routine (alongside a gazillion original Real Techniques brushes). I honestly think Bold Metals are best for someone who is competent and confident in applying makeup, so my final verdict from the brushes I’ve tried is: Pros & makeup aficionados - go Bold Metals; beginners and average makeup users - stick to the original line (though everybody needs a Pointed Crease in their life!).