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Finest make-up sponges of 2021

(CNN) —  

Make-up sponges present a fast, simple approach to apply many sorts of base make-up. We examined make-up sponges by Beautyblender, NYX, Actual Methods, Milk Make-up, Fenty, e.l.f. Cosmetics, L’Oréal Paris and Juno & Co. to search out the precise sponge that may work throughout purposes.

After testing many basis purposes with a number of make-up sponges, used each moist and dry, we discovered these to be our final prime two:

Heralded by magnificence editors and make-up artists alike because the GOAT, the Beautyblender Unique Make-up Sponge has, in our opinion, lived as much as its hype. Whereas it’s dearer than others we examined, its high quality (it didn’t disintegrate like others did over time) and effectiveness (it led to the cleanest utility of the bunch) make it well worth the cash.

The NYX Teardrop Mixing Sponge was our favourite price range sponge. Lots of the different price range sponges are overly stiff, however this sponge is as versatile as some status manufacturers, and its distinctive form permits you to manipulate it simply and mix your basis in any crevice of your face.

Katie McBroom

We see these two as complementary merchandise and assume every one is worthy of a spot in your make-up vainness. We utilized cream and liquid merchandise by dabbing with the Beautyblender after which set them with powders utilized with the flat NYX sponge utilizing a urgent movement. It is a helpful method should you favor to not combine totally different shades and formulation on the identical sponge, slicing down on the period of time you spend cleansing your make-up instruments.

Katie McBroom

The Beautyblender claimed our prime spot, because of its versatility, effectiveness and general snug really feel. It’s a rounded sponge with a teardrop form, designed for use whereas moist. The model claims on this video that it ought to “bounce” in your make-up, should you use a springy dabbing movement versus dragging in your basis. And bounce it does. Due to its versatile kind and high quality materials, it will increase 30% in measurement when moist; it actually does really feel like you possibly can effortlessly pop in your base make-up swiftly versus utilizing a number of the firmer sponges that don’t really feel as smooth or versatile (sorry, L’Oréal). It additionally utilized our basis the quickest and best of all of the make-up sponges we examined.

When used moist as directed, the Beautyblender swells up, making it simpler to shortly cowl a big space with basis. You may even use a moist Beautyblender to go over your base make-up after you’ve utilized all the pieces (together with powder) to set it and get that coveted flawless end. Due to its versatile kind, the Beautyblender labored higher with this system than the opposite, stiffer sponges, which smeared our make-up. (The Actual Methods sponge, which is a bit firmer than the Beautyblender, pressed strains into the end of our base make-up once we used the slanted facet.) We additionally like that the Beautyblender stayed moist throughout the utility course of, in contrast to Juno & Co.’s velvet sponge, which dried out just a little too shortly.

Katie McBroom

The Beautyblender can also be probably the most versatile sponge we examined; it allow us to apply a number of types of make-up with ease. It’s generally used to use basis, however if you wish to cowl a big space with powder, concealer and even highlighter, this software can simply be used to take action. (It’s additionally a very good software to make use of for “baking” your powder should you select to.) You can too use the pointed tip of the sponge to use powder eye shadows (moist for a extra intense look or dry for extra of the normal powder end).

Cleansing the Beautyblender may need been our least favourite facet of it, because it’s not terribly simple to wash to the place it seems to be like new. However it’s doable, particularly should you use the specialised cleansing options the model gives.

Katie McBroom

We love when a product is each efficient and inexpensive. The NYX Teardrop Mixing Sponge is teardrop-shaped however flat, so we advocate this yet another for powder merchandise, however it might additionally mix lotions and foundations successfully. Whereas we discovered it simpler and quicker to do a fast full-face basis utility by dabbing with the Beautyblender (as a result of its rounded kind), should you’re extra snug utilizing urgent or dragging methods on your make-up (such as you is likely to be accustomed to from utilizing old-school flat-wedge sponges you stole out of your mother’s make-up stash), you then may favor the flat form. This sponge can also be latex-free, making it an important possibility for individuals who may need allergy symptoms (or who simply favor the feel of a latex-free sponge).

Katie McBroom

The form additionally works properly to achieve smaller, hard-to-blend locations (like proper below the eyes). You may bend or roll it, and even use the very tip to dot on tiny particulars (like shimmer powder within the inside corners of your eyes).

In comparison with the Beautyblender, it did go away us wanting in sure areas. For instance, the form and type of the NYX sponge, whereas efficient for sure features of extra detailed make-up utility, didn’t lend as properly to a fast allover utility. In the end, we most well-liked the thicker, rounded teardrop form of the Beautyblender, particularly for cream and liquid merchandise; the bigger circumference made for faster, simpler utility.

Whereas not fairly as versatile and efficient because the Beautyblender when it comes to utility, at $7 for a two-pack, it is usually extraordinarily inexpensive. It’s additionally simple to wash, perhaps even barely simpler than the Beautyblender, particularly because it isn’t as thick as that one and most others we examined. If we had to decide on one sponge, it’d be the Beautyblender. But when that’s not in your price range (otherwise you simply favor an old-school flat sponge), then the NYX sponge is a strong selection.

Katie McBroom

There are lots of components that go into creating a high quality make-up sponge. We targeted on the next classes and subcategories to analyze the most effective make-up sponges:


  • Effectiveness: In the beginning, a make-up sponge ought to be capable to dab, stipple or “bounce” onto the pores and skin to use your basis. It also needs to enable you mix totally different make-up merchandise (like blush or contour merchandise, for instance) successfully.
  • Versatility: Can it successfully deal with making use of and mixing all varieties of basis formulation, together with lotions, liquids and powders?
  • Ensuing end: Does the end look flawless and streak-free, or are you left with blotchy pores and skin?
  • Efficiency when moist/dry: Many sponges are literally designed for use moist (or damp). Does the sponge work each moist and dry? Is one far more efficient?


  • Texture: Does it really feel smooth towards the pores and skin?
  • Cleanability: How simple is it to wash?
  • Type: Was it too stiff? Did the construction lend properly to general utility?
  • Form: Is the form conducive to each finer utility makes use of (below eye, for example) and bigger utility areas just like the cheeks?

Katie McBroom

Actual Methods Miracle Complexion Sponge ($6.98; or $5.99;

The inexpensive, efficient Actual Methods Miracle Complexion Sponge got here in shut behind the NYX sponge in our testing. It has an analogous form to the Beautyblender, however with a slanted slide, making it a multifunctional software that each blends and dabs simply. This one is finest for liquid basis, however you too can use it to use lotions and powders. We most well-liked the feel and flexibility of the NYX sponge, however the Actual Methods sponge continues to be an important possibility.

Milk Make-up Dab + Mix Applicator ($22;

Gen Z (and TikTok aficionados of all ages), hear up. This isn’t your mom’s make-up sponge. A flat, nonporous silicone pad relatively than a typical sponge, the Milk Make-up Dab + Mix Applicator is exclusive among the many merchandise we examined. It doesn’t soak up the product as a lot as different sponges, so it’s much less wasteful and simpler to wash. It may be a little bit of a shock within the texture division should you’re accustomed to the “spongy” really feel of conventional make-up sponges, however should you’re right down to strive one thing new, it is a nice selection, because it applies basis equally to the sponges you’ve tried earlier than. Apart from the totally different texture, the one slight draw back right here is much like the one factor we didn’t completely love concerning the NYX applicator, which is the flatter form. (We discovered that the bigger rounded teardrop form of the Bleautyblender allowed for a faster utility.) It additionally has glitter embedded inside, which does nothing for its effectiveness however all the pieces for aesthetic functions (and appears tremendous cute sitting on our vainness).

Fenty Magnificence Precision Make-up Sponge ($16;

The Fenty Magnificence Precision Make-up Sponge is one other nice product from Rihanna’s line. It’s related in measurement and texture to the Beautyblender, although it incorporates a flat edge on one facet. This makes it particularly nice for dabbing on a concealer or highlighter within the under-eye space so as to add dimension to your face. It’s additionally comparatively simple to wash. One disadvantage is that the sides can enhance the chance of streakiness if utilized by much less skilled magnificence fanatics, so it’s necessary to mix correctly and verify your end with this one.

e.l.f. Cosmetics Complete Face Sponge ($6;

The cheap e.l.f. Cosmetics Complete Face Sponge could be very related in form to the Beautyblender, although one facet incorporates a flat edge. We love the flexibility of this one and the low value. It’s barely stiffer than our favorites, but when that isn’t an issue for you, then it is a nice possibility. It’s additionally comparatively simple to wash, much like most others in the identical value level.

L’Oréal Paris Make-up Infallible Mix Artist Make-up Sponge ($5.29, initially $7.99;

L’Oréal Paris persistently creates high quality merchandise at a low value. This make-up sponge incorporates a distinctive hourglass form, with a pointed tip to use the product and a spherical base to bounce and mix. It’s simple to wash, and due to this fact similar to different conventional sponges when it comes to how simple it’s to wash. It was a bit extra inflexible than the others we examined, however general, that is nonetheless a strong selection that may get the job executed.

Juno & Co. Microfiber Velvet Sponge ($5.99;

The feel of the Juno & Co. sponge is exclusive. It actually seems like smooth velvet towards your pores and skin, which might be good for some, however may not be everybody’s choice. The form is nice, because it gives a pointed tip with a flat edge on one facet. The flat edge is comparatively small, which is nice as a result of it doesn’t get in the best way should you favor the opposite rounded facet. The Juno & Co. sponge dried out in a short time when used moist (in comparison with the opposite sponges), which might be a problem until you like a dry sponge. It’s additionally not tremendous simple to wash, because the product we utilized actually permeated this sponge.

Learn extra from CNN Underscored’s hands-on testing:

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