I bought a bunch of brushes off AliExpress on January 30th and have been patiently waiting for them to be delivered for the past couple of months. Finally, the packages started trickling in mid-March and I received my final parcel last week. Here is the Real Techniques Bold Metals set:
And here are the “dupes” next to the real thing:
Overall? I’m REALLY impressed with what I received! 😀 Today I’ll review and compare the MAC Oval 6 brush dupe.
I bought this for $1.56 CAD with free shipping! 😮 On the import declaration form, it claimed only $0.27 😆 I’m sure Customs raised their eyebrows but it got through no problem. In total, it took exactly 2 months and 15 days for this item to arrive from date of order. Not great, but not terrible either – considering there was Chinese New Year holidays I had to factor in.
In the AliExpress listing, the product description is: High Quality Pro Oval Women Face Powder Foundation Eye Shadow Blusher Soft Shape Curve Brushes Foundation Cosmetic Makeup Tools. I think they covered all the bases. 😉
The product listing also did all the work for me with specs and explanation on how to care for this brush!
Wool length: 3.5cm
Wool width: 2cm
Can withstand 90 degree bend
Give you a flawless foundation application every single time
No streaks and no areas with too much makeup or too little
With a concave design, which is perfect for you to apply liquid foundation on your face.
If used daily, we recommend washing your brush once a week with a mild cleanser
Clean 2 weeks 1 time, baby shampoo or any low sudsing soap will work. Rinse well and air dry.
The above all checks out – NO idea why they call bristles “wool” though. I also didn’t try to bend the brush 90 degrees either – why? 😕
First thing: this is absolutely not a copy of the MAC Oval 6 brush that I reviewed last week (nor does it claim to be – it’s not stamped with a MAC logo – it’s entirely unbranded).
Side by side, it is apparent that the AliExpress brush is smaller and the handle and bristles are different. As a standalone brush, it is excellent! But, having experienced the MAC Oval 6 brush, I can’t help but to compare this one against the MAC. So here’s what I will say:
• Bristles are not as fine or as dense (but still very soft and silky)
• Smaller brush head size – but on the flip side, it’s perfect for blending concealer – literally 2 sweeps of this under each eye and my concealer is blended. I’m not exaggerating!
(I have to apologize, my MAC brush is actually dirty here so it looks a bit ratty)
• Doesn’t glide over the skin as smoothly – there’s a bit of drag on the skin, resulting in a sheerer coverage. I find myself using patting motion at times with this brush to get more coverage when blending.
• Absorbs liquids more, so requires a bit more product
• No fancy box! (I’m just kidding with this one!) 😛
These are very picky minor differences – the fact this thing cost me less than $2 offsets a lot of the “cons”. 😉 But just like the MAC brush, this is very easy to use, doesn’t shed, and cleans up like new with just dish detergent.
Bottom line: if you’re interested in this brush style, go buy the cheaper version before committing to the higher price tag. This brush is 97% cheaper than the MAC one! 😛
There are actually a number of less expensive brushes available in this style. I’ve seen ones offered by Missha (€15.00) and Etude House ($16.80 USD) – both of which costs less than MAC’s (check out Realitydeity’s review post comparing those two brushes). I want to get the Missha one next – it has a pointed shape like what I wanted MAC’s to be. There’s also a lot of unbranded ones available on Amazon – most of which are less than $5! 🙂
• Cheaper than a Starbucks coffee
• No shedding
• Blends out foundation quickly
• Cleans up easily
• Absorbs liquids requiring more product
• Smaller brush head size
Stash Worthiness: 8/10
Don’t get me wrong, I still love the MAC one – I use it for all over face blending and now this AliExpress one is perfect for concealer blending. Would you consider getting a cheaper alternative in this style of brush?
Also, which review would you like to see first – the Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge dupe, the Nars Kabuki Ita dupe, or the Real Techniques Bold Metals brush set?