I know, I know, I griped about a couple of powder brushes in my last Chikuhodo post, but here I am again posting about them again. Folks, these brushes are from the brand new Takumi series released last Thanksgiving, I believe. If anything, these Takumi brushes fanned the fire to my regret in buying the Artists 20-4 and 20-5. I really should have skipped those two and went straight here and save myself some money. So here's my humble opinion: if you're new to Chikuhodo and trying to decide on what to get, unless you prefer squirrel hair because your skin is sensitive, etc., forget about all the other collections and skip straight to this Takumi one.
As you know, I've broken my no-squirrel rule many times, all with no regrets :P But squirrel hair is restricted to powder products, not to mention it's super fragile. See why I much prefer goat hair? It's resilient and super versatile, switching with ease between powders and liquids, and it washes well. And when it comes to goat hair, I'd much rather them be saikoho and un-dyed. Saikoho is the highest grade goat hair for a reasonable price. I think there's actually a grade or two above saikoho, but we're talking about something a person can afford here =.=" As for the un-dyed hair, I just think they look cleaner and nicer that way, despite of course getting stained much faster because, well, they're white. But that's why the microfiber cloth is awesome ^.^
Anyway, it's what this Takumi series is all about, un-dyed saikoho goat hair. And let me tell you, they're really really soft, and they feel soooo nice on the skin. Best of all, I know they're not princesses and I don't have to treat them like royalty. Don't get me wrong, I don't abuse my brushes or anything, but hey, I really do use them, and using them means not picking them up with a gingerly pinch of the forefinger and thumb :P
Brushes in this batch, from left to right: T1, T2, T4, T5, T6, T7, and T8. All are goat saikoho.
- T1, $130: there was a 20% off promotion at the time so I didn't pay the full retail (for any of my Chikuhodo brushes so far, actually!), but this brush is a huge splurge for me nonetheless. And it's literally huge too, much bigger than expected! Just look that beast! It's a rather interesting shape with longer hair but with an oval ferrule and rounded crown. It feels sort of like a rabbit tail on my face, very fluffy xD I do wish it was a tad more densely packed like the Hakuhodo J104 (still my most beloved powder brush, believe it or not!), but then again this T1 is a whole 10mm/1cm longer and 5mm wider. So I'm really happy with it!
- T2, $87: in contrast with the T1 above, this T2 is smaller than expected. It's actually much smaller and less dense than my Hakuhodo J531 (also my most beloved slanted powder brush!), even though they're about the same price. So for those who wants a slanted powder brush, I would recommend the J531 instead, especially when it's also un-dyed saikoho goat hair, and same quality craftsmanship.
- T4, $54: this brush is a mini of the Hakuhodo J104, and less dense too. A tad pricey for the small size so I'm glad I didn't pay retail for it. It's meant for the cheeks.
- T5, $54: this brush looks very similar to the T4 above, but it actually has an oval ferrule and an even more rounded and crown that tapers to a soft point (it doesn't look it in the photos below but you'll see the point after washing). The Chikuhodo website says it's for highlighting, but I use it for blush too ^.^ Again, a tad pricey for the small size (it's the same size as the T4), so I'm glad I didn't pay retail.
- T6, $38: Ah, now here's a brush that's worth every single penny in retail. The T6 is special because it's so versatile. It's smaller than a small liquid foundation brush, and of course not as dense. And having longer hair means it has more give as well and not as firm. At the same time, it's a large eye shadow brush that's bigger and denser than my biggest lay-down brush, the Chikuhodo R-S1 (I'm eyeing a similar brush from Hakuhodo also...). So it actually works to detail foundation, bb cream, or concealer. I also use it for eye base, and for highlighting the under eye area.
- T7, $27: you know what's funny with this Takumi series? The bigger brushes are really big, like T1 and T6 above, and the next size down is really small, like the T2 above and this T7. The middle size seems to be nonexistent in this series. This T7 is supposedly a "medium" eye shadow brush although I'll tell you right now it's smaller than my other medium brushes -.-" It's small enough to cover the area below the crease, which is what I use it for, sweeping the medium shades on below the crease. I do like the density and firmness though.
- T8, $24: hooray, a pencil brush! There was no way I'd skip this brush! However, funny enough I'm most disappointed with this brush, not because of quality but rather because it's too soft. I like my pencil brushes on the firm side with less give.
See my previous posts:
- Chikuhodo Brushes
- Chikuhodo Brushes Part II
- Chikuhodo Brushes Part III