Monday, October 14, 2013

Random eBay Brush vs Real Techniques

The other day I was trawling around eBay, as I am wont to do, and I happened across some makeup brushes that looked very familiar. I was interested to see if they were much different, so I bought one. It was $3.18AU with free postage and I got mine from this seller, but there are multiple sellers who have them.

None of the brushes I could find on eBay were exactly the same as any of the Real Techniques ones, but I wanted to do a reasonable comparison so I got one that was as close as possible to one of the RT ones I already had. In this case, the comparison is with the Real Techniques Buffing Brush.

  • The eBay brush is slightly lighter, it feels cheaper. 
  • The eBay brush looks slightly less dense than the Real Techniques one (note: may not actually be). 
  • They both have the flat bottom so the brush can stand upright, the eBay one is slightly wider at the bottom. 
  • I washed both a couple of days ago before testing them. I washed them both again after testing them with liquid foundation. There was no shedding with either of them and they took about the same amount of time to dry. 
  • I applied a liquid foundation (Rimmel Wake Me Up), using the eBay brush on one half of my face and the Real Techniques brush on the other. 
  • I found the eBay brush actually applied the product more quickly, more smoothly, and felt more dense with less floppiness than the Real Techniques brush. 
  • The Real Techniques brush applied the product well also, but seemed to have more 'give' and less density. 
  • Although the eBay brush looks and feels slightly flimsier than the Real Techniques brush (though not a great deal), I found it performed slightly better. 
  • Am I recommending you rush out and buy up all the brushes on eBay? No. But I do recommend that if you're a fan of the Real Technique brushes and you're not fussed about throwing a couple of dollars at something you may or may not like, buy one and see for yourself. 
  • I'm not giving a cast iron recommendation of the brush itself - it performed well for me, but for all I know it might fall apart in a month. 
  • Speaking for myself, though I'm not in the market for more face brushes right now - and I couldn't find any dupes of the RT eye brushes on eBay - if I were I'd look there first. For a small price I got a brush that I personally find comparable to - if not better than - a similar Real Techniques brush.


  1. What an awesome find, Dee! The whole brush thing is very interesting I guess you could say, since there are only a few manufacturers companies can purchase from. I only have a handful of brushes, even though I need more... But I refuse to buy from SIGMA (for quite a few reasons), I don't know enough about Real Techniques except that I think it's by the pixiewoo sisters, MAC brushes cost a lot, I've heard mixed feedback on Crown brushes, and the brushes I've gotten at my local drugstores are hit or miss. Too bad there don't seem to be many honest companies that don't jack up wholesale prices by a million percent and/or have good quality control.

    1. I dislike Sigma - highly over-rated, and I hate their market saturation techniques. Interestingly, I found a bunch of sets on eBay for about $15 that look an awful lot like the sets they charge $100+ for. I can't do a comparison as I don't have any of the Sigma sets, but I'm curious about how close they are. They all come out of the same factories but I don't know whether the eBay ones are seconds or what.

      I'm not loyal to any brush brand - I have a bit of everything and I just like what I like. MAC brushes are great but ridiculously priced here, so I only have a couple. Real Techniques are good, though I did have one eye brush fall apart on me. No problems with any of the others, though. Everyone rates ELF brushes highly but I'm not impressed with them. I guess it's trial and error finding a bunch you're happy with!

    2. Ugh, just thinking about SIGMA makes me want to puke all over the place. Getting popular by selling dupes for MAC brushes, but blatantly copying MAC's brush number system, the sickening affiliate system, the $50 brush cleaner that was nothing but an oven mitt (that the owner called "revolutionary"), and the terrible quality control for really overpriced brushes that real people (not affiliates) have a lot of issues with. Fuck them. They will never get one cent from me. I wouldn't be surprised if the eBay brush sets that SIGMA charges $100 are either the exact same or even better.

      I think that's the best way to have a makeup and makeup brush collection- having a bit of everything and just liking what you like :) That's what I do too. I am not impressed with ELF brushes either! My favorite brushes are actually a set of tokidoki brushes I bought because they were cute, and they ended up working great!

  2. This is a really great and comprehensive comparison! I may just check out eBay brushes now :) I'm always worried that the hairs are really rough or god forbid I fall in love with one, the seller won't sell it anymore (or change the price).

    1. I think for the price I was happy to take the risk - I tried a few other dupes as well. There was a MAC #239 and #217 dupe I bought for about a dollar each. I had no expectations of them being anywhere near as good as MAC but I was curious to see if they were just good enough brushes on their own. They both fell apart when I washed them before use, lol. Oh well!