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Monday, 25 February 2013

AYU Dublin - New Irish Makeup Brushes!

Hi Guys!

I wanted to share an exciting new Irish brand - AYU today with you. As a lot of you know, I love my brushes. I'm constantly on the hunt for new brushes to add to my collection. Some girls reckon you can never have too many shoes, I maintain a girl can never have too many Makeup Brushes ;)

AYU Dublin is the brainchild of Suzie O'Neill a professional makeup artist. Since working in the beauty industry since 2001 and then working in some salons before setting up her own, Suzie realized that there was a gap in the market for high quality makeup brushes and tools at affordable prices. After a lot of research she finally found a company who allow her full creative control and to design and develop a range of professional brushes at an affordable price for all and so AYU Dublin was born.

AYU Dublin currently offer a range of 10, well thought out brushes, however 3 brushes are currently in the process of being redesigned so I have 7 brushes from the current range to show you guys today.

First up is the AYU Powder 302

The 302 is a large, fluffy powder brush. It's classically styled with a matte black handle silver metal ferrule. The brush itself is made with natural bristles and is densely packed. The bristles are some of the softest I've ever come across from natural bristles and it's well cut and shaped.

This is a gorgeous domed Powder brush, I've been using this for applying a setting powder all over foundation and also as a bronzing and highlighting brush. As the brush is so soft with densely packed it's a dream to apply powder products with. 

Next is the Blush 301 brush.

The 301 Blush is another natural hair powder brush. It has a slightly longer and slimmer handle than the 302 Powder Brush. The hairs are also extremely soft on this as with the 302. It's not quite as densely packed as the 302, however this means that the brush provides more flexibility when applying powder blush products.

This brush does a great job at blending out powder blush products. Due to it's smaller size and rounded head, it's also great for blending out contouring and highlighting products.

Next up is AYU's answer to the MAC 187 - the 102 Foundation Brush

This is a long handled, duo fibre / stippling brush for applying foundation.

It has two layers of bristles - the natural black bristles underneath, with the longer synthetic white tips on top. The two layers of bristles work together to provide that stippling effect when applying your base.

I personally love duo fibre brushes, I find that they use far less product than traditional foundation brushes and they help to create a flawless base given that you can buff in the product with these bristles.

I've found with previous experience that it can be hard to find just the right duo fibre brush - some brushes tend to have too loosely packed bristles which are too floppy for adequately stippling on your foundation and buffing it in. Others can be too rigid and firm which doesn't help matters either - yes, I know I'm beginning to sound a lot like Goldilocks now!

I think that AYU have gauged the density and firmness of this brush just right however and I've been really enjoying using this to apply my primer and foundation with.

Next in the set is the 201 Eyeshadow Brush

The 201 is a long and slim handled, natural bristles eyeshadow brush. Natural bristles are the best choice when using powder products as the bristles grip onto the powder particles much better than a synthetic bristles do.

The brush itself is medium sized and nicely tapered at the end. It's quite a flat brush, so this makes it perfect for packing on colour onto the eyelid and patting it down.

Next in the eye brush is the Liner 204 brush.

Now the 204 is a slightly different brush to the others in that it has a shiny black handle and shiny black ferrule. I'm not sure, but this brush may possibly be another brush that will be redesigned as at present it doesn't match the other brushes, but this is only me surmising

This is a synthetic bristle brush and it's very dense and rigid. It states it's a liner brush, but personally I found it a little too thick for liner, so I've actually been using this to fill in my brows. I think another reason why I haven't been primarily using this as a liner brush is that I personally prefer angled liners. It is a very well made brush however and I'm sure I will be using it more in the future for detailing work.

Next up is a Lip brush - 401

The lip brush has an elongated, slim handle and like the other brushes (Liner 204 aside) is matte black with a metal ferrule.

The lip brush is very small, which makes it great for getting sharp, precise lines when applying your lipstick. It's small size also means it's great for getting into the outer corners of your lips and for creating a perfect cupids bow.

This is actually one of the better lip brushes I've come across in a long time.

Lastly is the double ended Liner & Spoolie 202

Now I'm normally not too keen on spoolies in brush kits. A lot of the time I feel as though they're just thrown in as an extra brush to bump up the brush count in brush sets.

Not so with this brush however - it's a double sided spoolie and angled liner brush and I've been reaching for this brush daily since I got it. The spoolie side is nice and sturdy and is at a slight angle, so it's great for brushing your brows and taming then.

The angled liner side is a synthetic brush and it's got a nice, sharp and precise edge. It's very thin and the sharp angle makes it brilliant for using with gel liners. I much prefer this liner brush to the 204 and I love the fact that you're getting two brushes in one with this.

Overall, I'm very pleased with this brush set from AYU Dublin. The brushes are well thought out and well designed. I have 7 brushes out of the full collection which contains 10 - as I said earlier, 3 are currently being redesigned but will be for sale soon.

One major bugbear with brushes for me is fall out and shedding. I'm delighted to say that during rigorous testing I haven't noticed any shedding whatsoever which gives AYU Dublin brushes and HUGE thumbs up in my book!

The brushes are well made and sturdy, they feel like professional quality brushes and the brush heads are firmly attached to the ferrule. There's nothing worse than buying a cheap brush that suffers from shedding and brush heads not being glued securely to the ferrule which results in them constantly breaking off. No such issues with AYU.

Price is a huge plus with these brushes also. Prices range from €7 for the flat liner and lip brushes to €25 for the Duo Fibre Stippling Brush (Fantastic value when you consider that the MAC 187 is €48!) right up to €30 for the Powder Brush 302 - which incidentally happens to be my favourite pick of the bunch!

I think it's great to see such good quality brushes on the market at affordable price points and not alone that, but they're Irish!

You can contact AYU Dublin on Facebook here;

Or say hello on Twitter here;

At present, they're retailing via their Facebook page - send them a message with your order details and you can pay via PayPal to

A brand new website is coming shortly!

AYU Dublin currently offer 10 brushes which can be sold in sets or indivually. More brushes are in the pipeline so watch this space for more info as and when they become available :)

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