A rundown on the current sponge landscape.
Remember when makeup sponges were just those free wedge-shaped ones that you could take, like, ten of at Sephora? Times have changed and so have the sponges. When beautyblender first came onto the scene, they completely disrupted our makeup routines.
There are now more makeup sponges than we can think of, and they do more than they ever have before. You could pretty much finish your entire face using only makeup sponges.
We've rounded up the OG's of the game, as well as the newcomers and recent innovations. Welcome to the cheat sheet of makeup sponges.
1. Hourglass Ambient Strobe Light Sculptor
Hourglass is kind of the champion of a dewy, glowy, well-lit face. The brand's Ambient Lighting Powders taught us that you can powder your face without losing that glow you just spent 10 minutes perfecting. It's therefore pretty logical that the brand came out with with a highlighter specific sponge—the Ambient.
The flat diagonal side of the sponge picks up an optimal amount of highlighting powder, and if you're using cream, I'd suggest using the curve side. No design opportunities were lost with this sponge. The bottom of the sponge also has a velvety texture, which is key for a well-blended face.
Hourglass | $22
2. Real Techniques Miracle Diamond Sponge
If I was heading to a desert island and could only take one makeup sponge, it would be the Real Techniques diamond sponge. It does everything. First of all, it's a good-looking sponge. It's marbled in grey and white and shaped like a diamond. The diamond shape is not as gimmicky as appearances might have first had you believe. It actually makes it an insanely versatile tool.
I use the tip of the diamond to clean up lipstick and highlight the inner corners of my eyes. I use the flat-top edge to buff in my foundation. The small side serves for a more precise highlighter application.
Real Techniques | $10
3. BeautyBlender Micro
The only issue I had with the original beautyblender is that it's sometimes difficult to get into those hard-to-reach areas where I typically apply concealer—under the nose, the sides of the nose, the dip of the chin, and the cupid's bow. Although the original does work in these areas, I've found myself messing things up with my less than precise hand. The small size of the beautyblender micro means it is not only adorable by default, but it also allows you to better see what you're doing and get a more precise concealer application.
Beauty Blender | $30
We already know that beautyblender is the OG of the makeup sponge game, but they're still worth revisiting. Since releasing the original beautyblender, the brand has created like a million different versions of it, all of which are equally useful. Although the original pink sponge will always have a special place in my heart, I prefer using the beautyblender pro, which is the same as the original except it's black. You already know the drill with this one! You can use it for like anything. I personally use mine to buff in my foundation and blend the rest of my makeup.
Beauty Blender | $20