Saturday, December 10, 2011

To Hakuhodo or Not to Hakuhodo, That is the Question.

I have been contemplating entering the fold of Hakuhodo brushes for a while. Gaia from The Non-Blonde has extensively reviewed these brushes and has consistently raved about them. Then today Modesty Brown  posted that Hakuhodo sent her an email announcing a price increase (effective January 1, 2012) due to the "rapidly rising costs for raw materials." If you are like me and have been trying to decide whether you want to take the leap into the world of Hakuhodo, which is arguably one of the best makeup brush manufacturers today, then this might just be the time.

One of the brushes that has really caught my eye is the G503 Blush Brush L Angled which bears a striking resemblance to Chanel's now discontinued European Pinceau Contours No. 5. I have wanted to get my hands on the Chanel brush for so long, but tracking one down has proven to be futile- as Amy from Café Makeup can attest. Perhaps the G503 is just the right brush to fill the Pinceau Contours No. 5 void. Any thoughts?


  1. Most of my brushes are Hakuhodo (and I have many), because I love them soooo much. I placed another order this morning to avoid the upcoming price increase and one of the brushes was the G503. Thx for pointing me in that direction as I don't have anything like it currently among my stash (probably 100 + brushes)

  2. Hi Den! Thanks for your helpful comment about Hakuhodo brushes- you are certainly confirming what everyone says about them being amazing. I'm so thrilled to hear that you ordered the G503. Please let me know what you think of it when it arrives. Which are your favorite Hakuhodo brushes? Which ones would you suggest for someone just starting out with the brand?

  3. Oh, I love so many of them (especially the Vermillion S100 series and their Kokutan series), that is why I kept ordering. I started out with the 8 pc Vermillion set which is a great basic set to get started. I also bought the mini Kokutan set for travel as I have been spoilt after experiencing Hakuhodo brushes (LOL!!). Their face brushes are amazing, but I also love their eye brushes. Must haves for me are the following:

    S103-contour, powder, blush
    G527M-for pressed powder (gives a very smooth finish)
    210 -supposed to be for blush, but I use it to apply liquid foundation and it gives an airbrushed finish
    B214BkSL-concealer (HG status for me)
    S142 or G5522BkSL- blending eyeshadow
    K005-tightlining, gel liner
    S121G or Kokutan MLL-for applying sheer wash of shadow or base
    S127 or Kokutan ML-basic shadow placement or packing

    If you ask me to narrow it down to a handful, I would say S103, B214BkSL, K005 and S127. I could go on and on, but if you email the company they are very responsive to any questions you have; also they will take pics to compare different brush sizes etc. Finally, RUN, don't walk, to their website as I am sure they will be sold out of many brushes before this price hike.

    Good luck and I am happy to answer any questions you have as well.

  4. WOW, thank you for such great recommendations, DEN!I can only imagine what the rest of your brush collection looks like!! I placed an order for G503, B214BkSL, G5514BkSL, G527, 212, 210. However, the S103 is calling me, but sadly is also sold out. Also the S127 or Kokutan ML look AMAZING! I might have to order a few more of your recommended brushes before the end of the year (or before they sell out)!

    Thank you again!

  5. Congrats on jumping on the Hakuhodo bandwagon! Your choices are stellar and you will NOT regret ordering them. Since using these brushes, applying makeup has become a joyful ritual and a gift to oneself everyday. Too bad about the S103 being sold out- however, I checked the website and B103BksL is still available. It is the exact same brush, but in the basic series with the black handle and silver ferrule.

  6. Thanks! I am really excited! You really helped me take that leap- so thank you very much! It is too bad about the S103, but I am definitely thinking about the B103BkSL while it's still available and before the prices skyrocket! I was also thinking about adding either the Kokutan MLL or the K021 (which looks similar). I can see that this could turn into an expensive indulgence! I'm glad that you think that I made some good choices. I am so happy to hear that these have made makeup application a joyful ritual-- that kind of gift to oneself is so important!! I can't wait!! Enjoy your new brushes as well!

  7. Hello
    I have really wanting to but some Hakuhodu brushes-After reading all your lovely reviews I think I have settled on a good Start! Please could you look through and comment- I would love your input. Since shipping is $$$ trying to do a comprehensive order that covers a bit of everything- I am in your hands o' master!
    I did recently get the tom Ford blush brush- so sorted in that dept - for now!

    1. Hi Makeup Remastered!

      Yes, because of shipping costs it definitely makes sense to get what you want rather than placing numerous small orders! Believe it or not, I don't have a single one of the brushes that you have listed! I can hardly believe that given ho many Hakuhodos that I have!!!!! I don't have a single brush from the J Series, and the two Gs and one K on your list aren't in my stash. However, I went to the website and looked at the brushes on your list and they look wonderful! I love every Hakuhodo that I own, and even own doubles of a few!

      I don't have that Tom Ford Blush Brush, but it is gorgeous, and I believe that Hakuhodo made it for TF!

      I wish that I could offer specific advice or help about the brushes on your list, but since I neither have them, nor have seen them in person I can't offer anything substantive. That said, Hakuhodo customer service is extraordinary and legendary. If you have questions email them. Marty is very helpful and can even email you pictures and answer any questions that you may have! I love that company for the quality of the products, the amazing craftsmanship, and the unparalleled customer service!! I hope that helps a little! :-)

    2. Hello!
      I did leave of the G5557! for foundation- worth it?
      Thanks for checking the others out for me tho'- My hand is hovering over the place order button!-

    3. Hi!!

      Well to me it was totally worth it- I have the G5557-2mm which is such a lovely brush for foundation-I love the bristle length (being shorter)- because you have wonderful control over application. That said, if you are going to have to starve for a month in order to pay for your makeup brushes, and if you have a foundation brush that you love- then maybe wait. It's a lovely brush-- particularly once you get used to using it. There are a few tricks to it-- read my review for a more in depth discussion. I fell very hard for Hakuhodo and would spend way too much time stalking their website and filling my basket with an unreasonable number of brushes. My best advice is to take a realistic assessment of your current brush stash, and be realistic about what you actually "need" and what you are just dying to own. Like the Barneys Bag Event, it is all too easy to go way overboard. Give yourself a little space to evaluate your needs before you hit the order button! As I have said before, I love all of my Hakuhodos- but there are some that I seldom use. So prioritize by those that will get the most daily use. The nice thing about the J Series is that they are so much more affordable- and truthfully the only reason that i haven't purchased a pile of them is because I really don't need a single brush! However- if I spend too much time on their website I start wanting so many things that i don't have!!!! :-)

  8. Thank you for your practical advice! I own a few synthetic Real technique foundation brushes and feel its time for a luxury one- the the RT are really good. I own the usual MAC stash of 217, 239.224's- time for an upgrade, so either buy more MAC or an upgrade to Hakuhodo. I think ones's I've chosen are daily use ones:)
    Keep well

    1. You are welcome- it is too easy to talk yourself into spending "just a little more" until you have spent way more than you intended! The Japanese made MAC brushes are actually made by Hakuhodo!!! I think that you will be happy with your purchases, and Hakuhodos are a whole different level above the MAC brushes. It is just a really fantastic line that deserves a lot of love!!!!!!!!!!!! :-)

      Thanks- I feel a little better, but not ready to do much of anything! <3


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