Testing out 5 Morphe brushes for the face and eyes

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Morphe is the archetype of the social media makeup brand: it built its business and reputation on endorsements and recommendations from beauty influencers large and small, mostly on Youtube, constantly pushing their affiliate codes. I had no particular interest in ordering from their website, but a selection of their brushes and eyeshadow palettes recently became available at Ulta. I got a few brushes and after using them for a couple months I'm ready to give you my thoughts on Morphe. Are their brushes fantastic deals like all the Youtubers said? Let's find out!

First a few words about Morphe entering the mainstream beauty market at Ulta. This is quite a drastic change of direction for a brand that developed its customer base through an affiliate marketing strategy. Being distributed at a big retailer means they won't have the support of big names in the online beauty community, like Jaclyn Hill, to influence public opinion in their favor. So their products now need to be good enough to convince the average customer. It also means that all the Youtubers that helped them build their business will probably not make much money off of their affiliate codes anymore, since purchasing from Ulta is likely more convenient for most customers. I wonder how they feel about that.

Anyways, here are all the brushes that I've bought and tried:


The M441 is a tapered, fluffy round white goat hair brush ($6). The bristles are rather firm but still flexible.

This one feels pretty rough. It's not crazy scratchy, but it's also not a soft eye brush that's comfortable to use. You can see in the close-up picture that mine has a few random black hairs mixed in, and those are the most coarse. It also frayed quite a bit after the first wash, with bristles opening up all around, but it kept its general shape.

It's not the nicest or softest brush around for sure, but as a crease brush it still does the job. It blends shadows pretty well, and being rather thin it's also fairly precise.


The M518 is a round, tapered fluffy brush with white goat hair ($6). It's very similar to the M441, just a little flatter at the top which makes it feel larger. They're not exactly the same, but similar enough that you don't need both.

It also frayed quite a bit after the first wash, but at least it doesn't have rogue black bristles! Mine is a tad bit less rough than my M441, but it's still not a lovely soft brush.

Again, it's not the most pleasant brush to use, but it works for what it's intended to do. I use it to apply and blend shadow in a slightly larger area in and above my crease. I'm just not sure why Morphe describes it as a "slender" brush since it's larger than the M441.


The M444 is a very dense synthetic face brush with soft but stiff, short bristles and a thick handle ($13). It's has an almost flat, ever so slightly rounded top and it's made primarily to apply foundation.

You can see on the close-up that my brush has about half a dozen stray hairs that are longer than the rest. I tried to pull them out completely but I couldn't. Every time I wash it there's another hair that "grows" out. It doesn't really affect application but it's annoying for someone who likes their makeup tools to be neat! The handle also doesn't seem to be securely attached to the ferrule. It wiggles around when I use it and I wouldn't be surprised if it came off one day.

Besides the quality issues, this brush just doesn't work for me. Far from applying my foundation flawlessly, it creates a patchy mess. Dense brushes are supposed to be great at smoothing out foundation with a high coverage because they don't absorb any product at all. But this one is just too dense and stiff. It pushes the foundation around instead of buffing it into my skin. If I try to keep blending in circular motion it literally hurts my face because it's so stiff, even though I don't apply any pressure at all. I would not recommend this one, get the Real Techniques Face Expert instead - smaller and less stiff but still dense enough to apply foundation beautifully.


The M501 is a medium-sized pointed, tapered black natural hair brush ($8). Morphe recommends it for highlighter application.

This one is fairly soft but it sheds a bit, and again it frayed after the first wash, so much that it basically lost its pointy tip. It looks like the hair became a little frizzy. I don't use it much, it's just not my favorite brush to apply highlighter. I prefer something a little larger and slightly more dense (probably because I typically use very subtle highlighters).


The M310 is a medium-thick fan-shaped brush made with white goat hair ($5). It's supposed to be best for highlighting.

This brush is a joke. It smells like a goat pen, even after cleaning it multiple times. And it frayed so bad after the very first wash that it has completely lost its shape. It now has curly hair pointing in all directions. It's also awfully scratchy, and the bristles are not dense enough to pick up much powder product out of a pan. It's basically unusable!


I'm tempted to say that with Morphe you get what you pay for. But that wouldn't be fair to other brands of affordable makeup brushes that come up with much better quality products, like Elf, Real Techniques or EcoTools. My experience with Morphe brushes is an overall a negative one. I find their brushes to be low quality, rough, and they don't retain their shape well after being washed.
Some of them are still usable, and the brand offers a good variety of brush types and shapes. So if you have less than $10 to spend on an eye brush and you realize that you're getting a low end product, it might still be worth it. But the brand is in no way offering the fantastic value that I heard so many Youtubers rave about. No, their brushes are really not that good!


The products featured in this review were purchased by me. I received no compensation to write this post, which only reflects my personal opinion. This post contains affiliate links. I receive a very small commission when you click on those links, and the money generated covers a small portion of my expenses to purchase products for review. Clicking on those links helps ensure that Beaumiroir continues to publish reviews of new and exciting high end French products - at no cost to you!

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