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When beauty sponges were first introduced in 2007, makeup application was forever changed for the better! Blending tinted moisturizers, foundations and BB has never been easier. And regardless of your age and experience, rest assured that a single beauty sponge can even replace a full makeup bag of brushes.
Buffing makeup has never been easier than with beauty sponges, and their benefits extend far beyond blending. Not only does their smaller size make them travel friendly, but for those who still prefer a classic foundation brush, beauty sponges can be used towards the end of the makeup application process to further reduce harsh lines or streaks often caused by brushes. This is because, unlike brushes, they tend to completely avoid makeup streaks due to their sponge-like design – making for an airbrushed finish.
Whether you’re in your early 20s or late 50s, beauty sponge fans come from every generation. And with so many shapes, sizes and textures to choose from, it can be harder to figure out where to start with your search.
So, let’s get blending!
Best overall: The BeautyBlender Pink Beauty Sponge
Without any doubt, BeautyBlender was the pioneer behind the revolutionary launch of beauty sponges, and many manufacturers still use this brand as a hallmark of their innovation.
This medium-sized beauty sponge is the perfect shape to apply and blend your favorite liquid and cream products like a pro. For those concerned about absorption, this aqua-activated material absorbs water – not your makeup!
BeautyBlender champions as the game-changer when it comes to makeup application. Whether you’re a professional artist or an at-home makeup lover, the egg shape is ideal for blending smaller and larger areas of your face without caking or creasing. The pointy edge also comes in handy for blending concealer on the undereye area. Made from hand-finished foam that encourages a longer life span, it’s no wonder why BeautyBlender still reigns as a favorite for many.
- Absorbs minimal product
- Safe to use on the skin
- A bit expensive
Affordable choice: BEAKY 5-Pcs Makeup Sponges Set
If you are looking for a beauty sponge that can blend the products into those hard-to-reach areas of your face with perfect precision, this beauty sponge set will be your new favorite.
Available in a variety of colors, these sponges are multi-taskers and can handle BB cream, CC cream and even contouring. Since these sponges are made of a non-latex material, they feel soft to touch and bounce back to their original shape when soaked or squeezed. They have tiny uniform pores to soak up excess product to provide a natural yet airbrushed finish.
The size reflects the quality of these sponges because they grow twice in size when fully wet. Because of this, you won’t have to worry about buildup or blending with your fingers.
- Available in assorted colors
- Affordable price tag
- Absorbs excess makeup
- May lose shape due to frequent washing
Honorable mention: Real Techniques 4-Pcs Mini Makeup Sponges
Famous for its makeup brushes, it’s no surprise that Real Techniques has nailed the beauty sponge game and mastered its sponges for pristine makeup application.
These mini complexion sponges work well in both wet and dry form, so selection really boils down to your preferences. Their travel-friendly sizes make them ideal for freelance makeup artists, professionals and travelers.
Another plus? Real Techniques’ modern latex-free foam technology prevents bacteria build-up (though this shouldn’t excuse you from cleaning your makeup sponges twice a month to get rid of all that makeup residue).
Thoughtfully crafted to deliver an airbrushed finish, you can use the rounded sides to blend products on your cheeks or drag the foundation down your neck. The precision tip offers targeted application to hide blemishes and imperfections for an even smoother finish.
- Suitable for liquid and cream products
- Cruelty and latex-free
- Squishy texture
Edgeless design: Aesthetica Cosmetics Beauty Sponge
As soft as it is versatile, the Aesthetica beauty sponge expands almost double in size when dampened.
Absorbing less product, this sponge will give you an airbrushed finish. So, if you are someone who likes a full-coverage foundation, you can expect to spend time building up with the product.
The edgeless design provides a seamless finish with flawless blending, making it ideal for both amateurs and pros. It’s also cruelty-free and made of non-latex foam, so you can use this beauty sponge with and without water exposure.
Also, cleaning this sponge is a breeze!
- Vegan, cruelty-free material
- Soft and durable
- Can be used wet or dry
- Works for all products
- Absorbs too much product
Best for starter kit: Foonbe 3-Piece Beauty Sponge Set
Are you a newbie to makeup? If so, you may find pleasure in knowing these sponges are made of a non-latex material that’s both soft and bouncy.
The two oblique cut sponges are suitable for quick application and blending and the drop-shaped sponge is perfect for covering hard-to-reach places.
Although they can be used both wet and dry, you should know that these sponges don’t soak up as much product when wet. On the flipside, the fine, porous texture picks up just the right amount of product and the sponge doesn’t change shape after multiple uses.
Who can argue against a multi-purpose sponge that’s also a bargain? Even though these are a bit smaller than usual sponges, the pointed tip and slanted shape make them ideal for professional use.
- Dry and wet dual-use
- Easy to clean
- Great value for money
- Reusable and durable
- Feel a bit stiff
How to find a high-quality beauty sponge: A buying guide
Whether you wear full-face of makeup every day or are planning a girl’s day out, quality makeup means nothing if your tools are less than satisfactory. No modern makeup kit is complete without the right sponges to blend the base perfectly on your face and neck. With so many shapes and textures out there, you can even find beauty sponges made out of silicone and microfiber.
So how can you tell which sponge will work for you or if your sponge is quality material? Well, the answer is a bit complicated – which is why this buying guide is here to help your search!
What to consider when purchasing a beauty sponge
The denser the beauty blender, the less porous it is and the less product it will absorb. A high-density sponge is a great option to seamlessly apply foundation for maximum coverage. On the other hand, softer sponges are a good choice if you prefer the natural look and want a light-to-medium coverage.
Regardless of your final purchase, it’s always best to look into customer reviews before buying. If you’re buying from an online retailer like Amazon (Amazon Prime, anyone?), sometimes those five-star reviews really help in making the best final decision.
The ideal sponge should be soft and glide smoothly on your skin. The best way to check the texture is to squeeze the sponge and look at how it bounces back. The quicker it gets back to its normal shape, the better the sponge is.
Generally speaking, if your sponge is rough or has no bounce, you probably want to expand your search. Poorer quality beauty sponges will pose this issue and are usually on the cheaper side – so it may be worth it to just spend a little more money to avoid an unexpected return.
Since you use a sponge directly on your face, keeping it clean is important to maintain hygiene. Ignoring this step can result in unwanted acne and, as time goes on, you can find yourself dealing with excessive dark spots.
While there are cleaning kits online, you can go the natural route by soaking your sponges in vinegar and baking soda before rinsing them with hot water. Another trusted method is soaking your beauty sponge in a concentrated soap blend that will leave them fresh and clean.
The size of your beauty sponge can mean the difference between having to apply more product, repeatedly, or covering the desired area in one shot. Generally speaking, a sponge should grow twice in size after being soaked. A larger sponge can cover more surface area and offer flawless blending, but the downside is that it will soak up more product.
Shapes of beauty sponges
As the name suggests, these sponges look like chicken eggs. The perk of egg-shaped sponges is that you can use them from each side. For instance, you can apply foundation with one side and use the other side to blend contour or blush, and the pointed ends are perfect for the under-eye area.
Teardrop shape sponges
If you’ve binged watched beauty Youtubers like Michelle Phan, then you’re probably familiar with teardrop sponges. The benefit of its shape is that users can apply product to larger areas like the forehead, cheeks and nose.
Some sponges are designed at a slant for even quicker blending.
Apart from these common shapes, you may see some unique shaped sponges as well. To outsell their competition, some manufacturers mold their sponges in different shapes for unique hold and use.
As goes with any beauty sponge, what is considered a perfect beauty sponge will depend on your needs and areas of interest. Where some beauty sponges excel in applying makeup in both large and small areas (like the cheeks or forehead) others preform better as contour and blush applicators.
Knowing the strengths and weaknesses of the different beauty sponge types can prevent you from experiencing a less than satisfactory purchase.
Beauty sponge vs. makeup brushes
The argument between sponges and brushes is as ongoing as it is interesting. These two cosmetic tools are frequently used in comparable ways, which raises issues and debates over whether one is superior to the other.
For one, makeup brushes are excellent for applying makeup precisely. Because of its narrow tip, a brush allows you to apply powder or foundation with increased precision. For makeup newbies, brushes can immensely assist in this way.
As for sponges, you can expect to cover a larger area while providing some degree of precision. Sponges also have the benefit of being quite light, which may be handy if you’re someone who frequently deals with arm strain.
What’s the typical price range of beauty sponges?
Beauty sponges are reasonably priced. You can get them for less than $10, and some are even sold in sets. These sponge sets are normally available in a variety of colors, allowing you to color-code them based on your needs. This method may especially prove useful for those who want to divide which sponge is used for foundation, and which is used for powder or blush.
The cost of beauty sponges might vary based on a variety of parameters. For example, you can expect to pay much more for a beauty sponge from Ulta as opposed to your local beauty supply store.
People also ask
Q: How frequently can I wash beauty sponges?
It’s always good practice to wash your makeup sponges on a schedule (think every two weeks if you wear makeup daily). Not cleaning your sponges with a proper disinfectant, even if you don’t wear makeup every day, can lead to a buildup of bacteria – which can further result in unwanted acne.
Q: Are beauty blenders and beauty sponges the same?
They are! People use these terms interchangeably.
Q: Should I use sponges instead of brushes?
Whether you want to use a sponge or a brush is your personal choice. However, beauty sponges tend to work better for makeup application due to how the sponge’s surface applies foundation and powder to your skin as opposed to spreading it, as seen with brushes.
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