Proceed with caution, people! Once you fall down the Hakuhodo Rabbit Hole (yes, in caps, because it is a very real place) there really is no turning back. While Hakuhodo makes the MAC brushes that hail from Japan- you may find it hard to pick up anything but a Hakuhodo brush once you enter the realm of Hakuhodo.
G5557-2mm Duo Fiber Powder & Liquid Brush. This Duo Fiber brush is made up of shorter Goat hair and slightly longer Synthetic hair (polyester).
According to Hakuhodo the G5557-2mm features:
Goat hair, combined with polyester makes for a pliable application of liquid or powder foundation, spreading the product into skin quickly and easily, giving it an illuminating appearance. 2mm & 4mm = length from top of goat hair to top of polyester hair. 2mm: Shorter length has more resilience and provides more coverage. Good at coloration. 4mm: Spreads product evenly.
I chose the G5557-2mm version of this brush style because I wanted a larger head and shorter fibers for the flawless application of liquid and cream formula foundations and tinted moisturizers. This brush delivers every single time once you crack the code on how to use it properly. If you are accustomed to traditional duo fiber brushes (MAKE UP FOR EVER 55N, MAC 187, MAC 188) then this is a different animal altogether. Think more in terms of the MAC 130 Short Duo Fiber in terms of how short the fibers are, but the Hakuhodo head is MUCH bigger and fuller.
Cracking the code: If you load up the brush with a generous amount of product the end result will be a streaky finish which will require much more work and a few extra tools to get that air-brushed second skin application because the G5557-2mm has a dense head that will grab way too much product if allowed to.
Here's the trick: I pump or scoop my foundation or tinted moisturizer onto a stainless steel makeup mixing palette (like the ones pictured below- which can be purchased through most beauty supply stores).
What you end up with is an amazingly flawless streak-free finish, AND you use far less product this way. So not only do you maximize the potential of this brush, but you won't need to replace your favorite foundation nearly as often.
This brush is luxuriously soft on the skin, and since the fibers are white you won't experience any bleeding of the dye. The handle is chunky and thick and feels substantial and comfortable when held. I haven't experienced any shedding whatsoever- not even after washing! Hakuhodo brushes are handmade by artisans in Japan, and exacting standards are applied to every brush that they make. Because the head is so densely packed it takes a while to dry after washing- when I wash it in the evening it is still damp the following morning- so expect a full day dry time.
Overall assessment: Still in Awe of this brush after months and months of use! The only downside is the price, but the money that you will save in wasted foundation more than makes up for it in the long run. Additionally, the superior quality of Hakuhodo brushes in general makes this one of my all time favorite Holy Grail foundation brushes.
$69.00 from Hakuhodo