Saturday, 23 May 2015

Zoeva #221 Luxe Soft Crease and #224 Luxe Defined Crease brushes review and possible dupes

I'm a faithful fan of Zoeva brushes and will take every opportunity to expand my collection. Today I'd like to review two crease brushes and compare them to other crease brushes inn my collection to help you make a conscious choice.

#221 Luxe Soft Crease is a medium-size, rounded, fluffy crease brush made of natural bleached bristles which are soft, yet sturdy enough to do the blending job easily. 
# 224 Luxe Defined Crease didn't look like something that would tickle my fancy at first. It looked feeble and frayed and didn't really promise much. I bought it because I have hooded eyes and relatively little eye space, so I thought a small crease brush would be handy. It turned out to be wider at the tip than I'd expected, but still it works amazingly. Through some kind of magic its sparse and fanned out bristles do the blending job so well. It's not the best brush to apply eyeshadow as it doesn't pick much product and produces fall out, but it helps me achieve a great, diffused shadow in the crease without much effort. 

Now on to the comparison of the two:

#221 is fuller, more dense, and more rounded. It's better for applying a sheerer wash of colour all over the lid and in the crease.
#224 is smaller and flatter at the top. It is a great blending brush for small crease.
Both are soft, but not feathery soft. 
Which one I would choose? No idea. They kind of serve a different purpose. For me #224 was a better pick as it was more unique in my collection, but I think #221 is more universally useful.

Now on to potential dupes. I've gathered all my crease/blending brushes to give you some idea of  how they relate to other more and less popular brushes.

Left to right:
Inglot 10S is a narrow round brush with long, rather sturdy bristles. It's a great brush for precise application of eyeshadow in the crease, but not a perfect one for blending.
Zoeva #224 is softer and more fanned out. Great for blending and diffused application.
Zoeva #221 is fuller and fluffier, great for blending.
Zoeva #228 Crease is a tapered brush with a fine tip. Made of much softer bristles than #221 and #224, there's no info about the kind of bristles, but my experience tells me that this could be squirrel while #221 and #224 are most probably bleached goat. This one os great for blending, applying transition colour, packing on eyeshadow. This is my favourite brush out of the whole bunch.
Sigma E35 is similar to #221 but it's a bit larger and considerably more expensive. I would recommend this one to those of us with more lid space.
Hakuro H74 is another round brush, but its bristles are shorter and thus less fluffy and bendable. This is the sturdiest brush of them all, but it blends really well, it's just not as pleasant to use.
ELF Blending Eye Brush from their bamboo line is the worst quality of them all. This is the only synthetic brush in this selection, but the consequence of this is that powder products slide off its bristles and it's not the most successful at blending or application of powder eyeshadows, but it's irreplaceable for application and blending of my cream eyeshadow bases. I reach for this brush whenever I don't feel like dipping my fingers in my paint pots or remove the dried out crust from the surface of my cream eyeshadows.

None of these brushes are exact dupes, but Zoeva #221 and Sigma E35 are fairly close.

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