Silk Green Line Brushes Review:
This blog has been on a bit of an eco kick lately, and with that theme, I thought it would be prudent to review some new brushes I received at the Australian Beauty Bloggers Weekend.
Silk Green Line Brushes are manufactured by Royal & Langnickel. They are 100% synthetic brushes, the handles are bamboo, the ferrules are chrome plated nickel, and all twelve brushes come in a zip-up sustainable cork case.
Without further ado, here is the most comprehensive brush review I’ve ever done…
I used these brushes exclusively when I went to NZ in late October/early November. I was there for a week, and wanted to bring these with me to test how good they would be for travel. I’ve also used them since, to see how well the individual brushes fit in with my everyday routine.
L-4 Smudger Brush: The brush is 5mm wide, and tapers into a 1mm thickness at the tip. It’s also 12mm long. It’s a brush you can use along your lashline to smudge a dark shadow or an eyeliner. Depending on how you like to wear your makeup, you might be looking for a brush to apply shadow underneath your lower lashline.
Personally, I think the GL-4 is too thick to use underneath your eye. When I used it for that purpose, it left a too-thick line. When used to smudge eye shadows along my top lashline, it was slightly more effective but where I needed it to blend upwards, this wasn’t quite up to the task. It’s really only good for getting a defined, thick line with an eyeshadow as it’s difficult to blend using it.
GL-3 Eye Shadow Brush: This brush is 15mm wide and 5mm thick. It’s designed for packing on a powder or creme eyeshadow. It won’t work if you use windshield-wiper motions here – you just pat the shadow onto your lid.
If you have a lot of lid space to cover, this brush is perfect for that. If you don’t, obviously it doesn’t do the job as well. It’s also not great at blending, and it’s also not very good at getting the shadow very close to the lashline, but you can use different brushes to do that. I quite liked this brush just because I don’t have a lot of similar brushes like it and it does a really good job at packing shadow on – great if you’re trying to get the colour more intense.
GL-5 Liner Brush: This brush is 4mm wide at the base, 2mm wide at the tip, and 11mm long. I assume it’s for use with gel or liquid liner products, and eyeshadows used wet.
I think this is an absolutely useless brush unless you’re trying to get an Amy Winehouse winged liner look. Personally, I prefer a really thin, defined line, and this brush is far too thick. Not to mention the length of the brush is too long; it makes it too bendy to use as a brush to get right into the lashline with a powder product.
GL-1 Powder Brush: This brush is thicker than it looks in the photo. It’s 30mm wide at the base, and 50mm at it’s widest point. Held on its side, it’s about 20mm wide. It’s also 50mm long. It also fluffs up a lot bigger once you start to use it. It’s a brush designed for use with powder products, all over.
Because it’s a rectangular-like shape and not circular, it makes it a bit awkward to apply a loose powder using this brush. Compact powders are even more difficult. The texture of the brush over time felt too slippery and oily. For use with travel, it was an ok brush, but certainly not ideal and if given the option, I’d go with a different one.
GL-2 Blush Brush: This blush brush is about half the size of the powder brush. It’s 30mm at it’s widest point, 40mm long, and 15mm wide when held on it’s side. It’s also a rectangular-shaped brush when you look at it front-on, but with rounded edges (much like these pictures actually…)
As an every day blush brush this is about standard. I only used it with powder products and not creme ones even though it was synthetic, because I was sure it wouldn’t blend properly. Again, too bendy because it’s long and not that densely packed with bristles. Good for travel if you only need it for a week, but not good enough to earn a permanent place in my brush collection.
GL-12 Lip Brush: 5mm wide most of the way up & gets super tight and skinny when you get a lipstick on it, which is the idea.
For al ip brush, this is kind of weirdly shaped. Most of the lip brushes I have are longer, and usually come with a lid or are at least retractable. That said, I was impressed with this brush. It was wide enough to be able to cover a lot of lip, but it was also easy to get the right precision along the lip line when I needed to.
GL-8 Eyeliner/Brow Brush: Just over 4mm wide, 6mm long, the angle is 4mm wide and it’s 2mm wide when held on it’s side. For use with gel, liquid or powder products on the lashline, or for using powdered brow products.
I use an angled bush to fill in my eyebrows every day and I really hated this brush. Because it’s trying to be 2 things, it’s too wide (side-on) to be a good liner brush, and it’s too small to be the right size for my eyebrows. I kept having to load the brush up with eyebrow powder to get the look I wanted. I might throw this one out I hate it so much.
GL-6 Eye Fluff Brush: 10mm wide at the base, 15mm wide along the angle, and 5mm wide when held side-on. This brush is for blending any areas (along your crease presumably) that have harsh edges, or where you want a soft gradient of colour.
For this purpose, I’m used to using my MAC 217 brush which is a completely different shape. I tried to love the GL-6, I really did, but it was hard using what is basically a huge angled brush to blend out hard edges, and in my crease. Along the outer V was even more difficult. If I just wanted a light sweep of non-confrontational colour though, this was ok… But really, that just means I was disappointed.
GL-7 Foundation Brush: 30mm at it’s widest point, 30mm long, and tapers into a point on each side. Just like a normal foundation brush, which are usually synthetic anyway.
As far as foundation brushes go, this is a pretty standard but good brush. I used it once or twice to put on my liquid foundation but I generally use my fingers for that on a regular basis anyway because I like the finish better. This brush wasn’t anything special, but did the job quite well. I used it to apply creme blush as well – did a fine job.
GL-11 Concealer Brush: 10mm long, 8mm wide, tapers into a round point, and 3mm thick when held side-on.
I use my fingers to apply concealer usually, but I tried this brush for that purpose anyway. For getting right up into the nooks and crannies, this brush was great. For under-the-eye sweeping-motions concealer, this just doubled my application time and left it streaky. I think it’s personal preference though – if you like a concealer brush, this one is ok.
GL-9 Flat Liner Brush: 8mm wide, 8mm long, 2mm thickness when held side-on.
Seriously, why are there so many liner brushes in this set? This one is square. I don’t use square brushes to do any kind lining, and it’s about as effective as the other liner brushes in the set. Which is to say, average.
GL-10 Brow/Lash Brush: The dimensions are pretty pointless for this brush becuase you can see what it looks like. It’s the only double-ended brush in the set.
The brow parts of this brush do an average job. I used both to clean up my hair line and brush my brows. The metal eyelash brush I used to get more definition in my eye lashes when my mascara got a bit too clumpy.
They do an ok job for what they’re designed to do, but if your intention isn’t to keep them in the case they come in, having a dual-ended brush in with the rest of my brushes is really really annoying.
Eco Credentials. As I said, these are synthetic brushes, which if you’re a vegan is very important. They’re also eco-friendly, very light because they’re made from bamboo and nickel, and the case isn’t heavy to carry around – it makes them great for travel, in theory.
Very little fallout. I’ve washed these brushes a few times and even when I was using them, no little hairs came out. They’re packaged quite securely in the ferrules which is nice.
For me though (and it is personal preference) I prefer real-hair brushes because of the way they feel, and I have very high expectations when it comes to synthetic brushes.
I don’t love the way these brushes feel. They’re too-slippery, and on the bigger brushes, when you get a powder product on them, they feel even less nice. It’s that feeling you get when you haven’t washed your hair for a week. Just full of build up. If you don’t wash your brushes thoroughly after every use (and really, who does?) then these aren’t great.
The case that they’re in is really flimsy. It’s a good thing it zips up, because as soon as you go to close it, the brushes go everywhere and I had to be really careful not to get any of the hairs in the zipper. They’re not secure in their little pockets.
Price. They work out to be about $10 each which is cheap, but you can get better brushes just about anywhere. It’s also worth considering if you would use every single one of these brushes when you travel – if there’s even 2 or 3 that you wouldn’t get any use out of, my suggestion is to buy your travel brushes individually from MAC or Sigma.
Basically… you can do better. Really. Look deep down inside, then look at your existing brushes, then look at the Internet. You can do better.