Looking for Budget-Friendly Makeup Brushes? Check Out Ricky’s NYC!

If like me you’re always on the lookout for affordable high quality makeup brushes, I would like to introduce you to my latest discovery – Ricky’s NYC Paintbrush Collection, created by Ricky himself! From the promo images I’ve seen, looks like there are 21 brushes in the collection, plus several travel sets, but I don’t see them all on the website, which makes me think the full range is sold in stores only.

rickys-new-york-paintbrush-review-02The brushes are numbered and labeled like real paint brushes; I thought that was a fun and clever move [give it to Ricky’s to turn everyday objects into quirky and artsy masterpieces!]. I was sent four different types to try: #10 Cream Concealer Brush, #15 Smudger Brush, #17 Crease Eyeshadow Brush, and #33 Precision Foundation Brush.

rickys-new-york-paintbrush-review-07#10 Cream Concealer Brush has soft, densely packed nylon bristles that are firm but not pokey, if that makes sense. It works best as a concealer for the face, excluding the eye area, because I feel like a rounder brush or a sponge works better for that [but that’s just my opinion]. I used it to cover blemishes, discolorations around my nose, and post-acne scars, and it didn’t make those areas look cakey at all. It’s also great for outlining the brows to achieve that perfectly defined result.

rickys-new-york-paintbrush-review-03#15 Smudger Brush is a short and stubby brush with very densely packed natural bristles [I think those are goat?]. It worked best with powdery formulas, and helped me create several beautiful smoky eye looks.

rickys-new-york-paintbrush-review-06#17 Crease Eyeshadow Brush has long bristles that are slightly pointed at the end. Among all of the inexpensive crease brushes I own, this one is actually my favorite! It can transfer a lot of color in one swipe and blend the edges softly without dragging the pigments too much. Sometimes crease brushes can diffuse the eye shadows, making them lose their intensity, but I didn’t experience any of that with Ricky’s.

rickys-new-york-paintbrush-review-08If you’re into contouring, you have to try #33 Precision Foundation Brush. Its large, densely packed, rounded nylon bristles create the perfect contour even with runny foundations, when precision is key [no pun intended]. I also used it as a regular foundation brush, and it covered those hard to reach areas around the nostrils, in the inner corners of the eyes, and around the mouth as well as my HG beautyblender. Very impressive performance!

rickys-new-york-paintbrush-review-09Overall, I feel like Ricky’s brush heads are comparable to, and sometimes feel better, than Real Techniques and ecotools from the same price range. The packaging, the ferrules, and all brush handles look simplistic, which allows the company to make them more affordable, while providing a high quality product. Out of four that I tried, #15 seems like the most unique one – short and fluffy smudger brushes are pretty hard to find within drugstore price range.


$8-30 USD, exclusively at Ricky’s NYC online and at retail locations.

What are some of your favorite budget brushes?

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