No matter how skilled or talented you are at applying makeup, you'll never be able to create the perfect face unless you're using the right tools.
And we're not just talking about the right colors and formulas for your skin. We're talking about the actual tools: the makeup brushes that you use to apply all of those products.
There's the brush blush. The concealer brush. The bronzer brush. The eyeliner brush. The eyeshadow brush. The blending brush. We could go on and on...
The point is this:
If you want your cosmetics to look like a professional makeup artist applied them, you'll need the right tools to get the job done.
Want to take your beauty routine up a notch but don't have hundreds of dollars on expensive brushes? Here are the 16 best inexpensive makeup brush sets for beauty addicts on a budget.
What Brushes Do You Need?
Different brushes do different things. Some are used to blend foundation, concealer and bronzer, while others are used to brush away loose powder. Some are used for smudging eyeliners, defining brows, or enhancing the creases of the eyelid.
No one brush does it all. If you want to apply makeup like a pro, you'll need an arsenal of products and an assortment of tools to apply those products.
Let's be clear; makeup brushes can be super expensive. This loose powder brush from La Prairie will set you back $130 alone.
But expensive doesn't always mean better. There are plenty of inexpensive makeup brush sets out there that are perfectly capable of getting the job done. In fact, there are some pretty great options available that'll run you less than $10!
Here are 15 of our favorite inexpensive makeup brush sets, all of which retail for under $40.
This EcoTools 5 piece brush set features five different brushes that are simply perfect for blending. Whether you're contouring your cheeks and nose or creating the perfect smokey eye, this set includes the tools to do it. The soft bristle brushes are made from synthetic materials with bamboo handles for natural appeal.
At under $10, this brush collection includes all of the essentials. You'll find a blush brush, angled foundation brush, concealer brush, eyeshadow brush and an angled liner brush.
Available at Amazon, $9.99
With 20 brushes included, the BESTOPE Makeup Brush 20 Pc Set is one of the best makeup brush sets you can buy for under $20.
Conical handles make each brush easy to hold. They're perfect for doing your eye makeup, face makeup, contouring, blending and every other part of your makeup routine. And at less than $1 per brush, it's pretty hard to pass up!
Available at Amazon, $16.99
IT Cosmetics is known for its incredible selection of foundations and concealers, but they also make some fantastic brushes. The IT Brushes for ULTA Travel Set includes five mini brushes curated for the eyes and the face.
It includes a small domed complexion brush, a softly rounded shadow brush, and a narrow brush for getting into the eyes' creases. It also comes with a smudger to blend out color and an angled brush for eyeliners and brows.
Available at ULTA, $30
Walk into any Macy's store and you can be sure to find makeup to suit your skin tone, color preference, budget and style. So it only makes sense that Macy's would have a Created for Macy's 8 Pc Artistry Brush Set to go along with their massive cosmetics offering.
This set of synthetic brushes includes all of the essentials to create the perfect eyes, cheeks, brows and face. Whether you're into a natural look or prefer a glam vibe, this brush set makes it easy to create a beautiful face for day or night.
Available at Macy's, $39
Pretty rose gold accents give the BH Signature 13 Piece Brush Set a stylish, professional look. This brush set is the complete collection of just about every brush you need to do your eyes, brows and face to perfection.
It includes a flat shader brush, an angled brow brush, a fine liner brush, a lash brush, and a small contour brush. It also has a variety of blending brushes that make it easy to create a gorgeous look!
Available at ULTA, $26
When you need to cover up large areas of the face, the kabuki brush is how to do it. But having one usually isn't enough. The Luxie Kabuki Set includes five different kabuki brushes. Each one has a different shape to target different areas and use with different types of products.
This kabuki brush set includes a flat top brush to buff in creams and liquids and a round blender brush to blend them in and contains an angled buffer brush that's great for contouring.
Need a concealer brush for those smaller areas around the nose and under the eyes? A flat angled blender brush and a pointed top brush are perfect for exactly that.
Available at Luxie Beauty, $37.50
With six versatile brushes on pretty pink handles, the ULTA Beauty Pro Brush Kit makes cosmetic application more effortless than ever. It includes a large powder brush, an angled blush brush, a tapered brush for highlighting and a fluffy shadow brush to get in the creases of your eyes.
An eyeshadow buffing brush along with a precision shadow brush make it a must-have if you love to create a smokey eye!
Available at ULTA, $20
The Zodaca 24Pc Pink Professional Makeup Brush Set pretty much has it all! Featuring pink handles and pink bristles, this set is loaded with blending brushes, fan brushes and eye and brow brushes.
From your lashes to your concealer, this set includes a brush for everything. It's an excellent option for any beauty addict, even a professional artist who goes through tools quickly.
A pink leather carrying pouch is included. That way, you'll have a safe place to stash your brushes and an easy way to carry them when you take your beauty routine on the road.
Available at Overstock, $15.69
With a zip-top carrying case and teal accents, the BH Cosmetics Poolside Chic Brush Set will help you create your perfect look every time! This set includes 12 individual brushes with white handles and super soft synthetic bristles.
In this set, you'll find brushes for powder, foundation, contouring, shading and blending. The little blue carrying bag makes it easy to toss inside any beach bag, tote bag or overnight bag.
Available at Amazon, $26
Your local drugstore is one of the best places to find an inexpensive makeup brush set. The GSQ Glamsquad 5 Piece Brush Set is a great drugstore find that includes five of the most essential cosmetic brushes for less than $15.
This set includes a foundation brush, an angled brush for eyeliner, a powder brush, an eye shadow brush and a pouch to keep them all dust-free.
Available at CVS, $14.99
The next time you run into CVS for toothpaste and shampoo, be sure to take a stroll through their massive beauty selection. In addition to lots of affordable cosmetics, you can also find a vast selection of beauty tools and brush sets, such as the Beauty 360 Superlux Wood-Look Brush Set.
This brush set includes a powder/blush brush, a foundation brush, an angled eyeliner plus brow brush and an eye shadow brush. It also comes with a brow/lash comb to get those eyebrows looking magnifique!
Beauty 360 is an exclusive CVS brand, and they make some great products at super affordable prices. It's definitely worth checking out!
Available at CVS, $12.99
A 14 piece brush set for under $12? Yes, it does exist! The BS-MALL 14 Piece Makeup Brush Set is a complete collection of rose gold brushes to apply every type of cosmetic product you can imagine.
This set comes with five big brushes and nine small brushes such as a detail brush, eyeliner brush, angled eyeshadow brush, and concealer brush. Each one features soft, synthetic bristles and, despite the price, these bristles stay intact better than you would expect.
Will a few bristles fall out here and there? Of course. But all brushes have that problem – even expensive ones.
Available at Amazon, $11.99
Prefer to keep your beauty routine simple and streamlined? The Real Techniques Everyday Essentials Brush Set includes four everyday tools that you'll definitely use and none that you won't.
Different color handles make it easy to grab the right brush every time (and makes this set super pretty to boot). It includes a blush brush, a crease brush to blend eyeshadows, a setting brush for highlighters and powders and a face brush for foundation.
It also comes with a bonus: a foam blending sponge that makes it easy to create a fresh, dewy glow.
Available at Urban Outfitters, $20
Teo Costea — an associate for Alleyoop — shared with us, “This 4-in-1 Alleyoop Makeup Brush combines your four most essential makeup applicators into one easy tool. Including a sponge for concealer, plus a blush, brow and eyeshadow brush, this compact game-changer is all you need for a full face on-the-go or at home.”
Available at Alleyoop, $26
With a fan brush, brow brush, and flat top brush included, the Beauty Brush Up 10 piece Makeup Brush Gift Set is the perfect gift for any beauty addict. This set features 10 brushes in total, all of which make it easy to apply your must-have beauty products and create a professional look.
Available at Target, $10
Don't want to overcomplicate your beauty routine with too many brushes you don't know how to use? The Beauty Secrets 6 Piece Cosmetic Brush Set includes all of the essentials you need to know how to use.
This set features a powder brush, an angled blush brush, a foundation brush, a concealer brush, an eyeshadow blend and crease brushes. The handles of each brush are slim and sleek, so you can toss your most-used brushes into your cosmetic bag and take them with you when you're on the go.
Available at Sally Beauty, $24.99
Are Inexpensive Makeup Brush Sets Worth Buying?
If you take your beauty routine seriously, you need a makeup brush set that includes all the necessary tools to apply your various beauty products.
If you're looking to splurge, we highly recommend the Chantecaille Ultimate Brush Set. It includes all of the essential brushes -- all of which are cruelty-free and made with vegan materials. But at $185, you'll probably want to spend the time and effort to keep those pricey brushes clean.
On the other hand, buying an inexpensive set can make your life a whole lot easier. All makeup brushes get gross with time, and the less you spend on them, the less guilt you'll feel when it's time to toss them away and replace them with new ones.
Whether you're learning to apply makeup or working on becoming a professional makeup artist, having the right tools is essential. And with as little as $10 to spend, a decent set of makeup brushes is just a click away.
You Might Also Like: The Top 15 Products for Glowing Skin
16 Best Inexpensive Makeup Brush Sets:
- EcoTools Start the Day Beautifully Brush Kit
- BESTOPE Makeup Brush Set
- IT Brushes for ULTA Travel Set
- Created for Macy's 8 Piece Artistry Brush Set
- BH Signature Rose Gold 13 Piece Brush Set
- Luxie Kabuki Set
- ULTA Beauty Pro Brush Kit
- Zodaca 24 Piece Pink Professional Makeup Brush Set
- BH Cosmetics Poolside Chic Brush Set
- GSQ by Glamsquad 5 Piece Brush Set
- Beauty 360 Superlux Wood-Look Brush Set
- BS-Mall 14 Piece Makeup Brush Set
- Real Techniques Everyday Essentials Brush Set
- Alleyoop Multi-Tasker 4-in-1 Makeup Brush
- Beauty Brush Up Makeup Brush Gift Set
- Beauty Secrets 6 Piece Cosmetic Brush Set