Tuesday, 15 January 2013

DIY: Painted Make Up Brushes

This post on A Beautiful Mess inspired me to make these fun, cute custom make up brushes. This was a reeally quick'n'easy project but it makes my bathroom cabinet look so much more put together and stylish! I love that my brushes are a matching set now, instead of the mishmash of collected colours and brands I had before.

You'll need:

A handful of make up brushes you want to perk up

Masking tape


Base colour paint

Top colour paint - or do like I did and use a Sharpie

A paintbrush 

Step 1: Use the masking tape to protect any areas of the brush you don't want to paint. I sealed off the heads of the brushes where they changed colour, leaving the metal necks unpainted. 

Step 2: Lightly sand off the handles of your brushes until the wood acquires a rougher, unfinished texture which will help the paint stick on better.

Step 3: Begin to paint! Cover your brush handles in a thin layer of your base colour paint. I found that holding the make up brush horizontally and rapidly flicking the paint brush up and down across it not only covered large areas quickly, but also helped to minimise brush strokes. When each brush is covered, leave it to dry; I used shallow sided glass ramekins to prop up the brushes while the paint was wet, leaning the unpainted necks against the glass. It was... mostly successful, and where I did get paint on the glass, it just scratched off once it was dry. 

Leave the brushes until they are touch dry. If your paint layers are thin this won't take long. You will probably need to put at least two or three coats of your base colour on to achieve max coverage.

Step 4: Once your brushes are fully dry, you can start the fun bit - decorating them! I copied ABM's simple black and white patterns because I thought they were the most beautiful (and really easy), and incidentally they also look quite a lot like the branding for the Topshop make up range. I used a black Sharpie instead of paint and a fine brush because it was WAY easier with much less potential for me to smear the nice black lines all over everything. It worked really well. Protip: aiming for a messy, handmade look made my inevitable mistakes look like a charming design feature instead of... well, mistakes.

I was really proud of these when I was done. Disproportionately proud, probably, considering how little effort they really were, but I think they look pretty great in a jar in my bathroom. Achievement!

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