We try it!

We Try It!: BeautyBlender Makeup Sponge Review

These days, I’m in the office five days a week. This has been a big change from rolling out of bed to work at the desk in my office. The most notable difference has been the amount of makeup I’m wearing. I went from wearing makeup very occasionally to wearing it every day. (The other big difference is showering regularly, but anyway…) Enter the BeautyBlender makeup sponge.

The problem with disposable makeup sponges is the following: they soak up a ton of the foundation (even if you dampen them first), they often place the foundation unevenly, and most importantly, they are downright wasteful. All of those $1.99 packages add up over time, too. For me, there is the added premium of space. Husband and I share the master bathroom and there is just not enough room to keep stacks of makeup sponges lying around. With these concerns in mind, then, I thought I would give the BeautyBlender sponge a try.

close-up of the pink beauty-blender sponge
Image courtesy of BeautyBlender corporate website

According to the corporate website, the BeautyBlender sponge claims to be the ultimate makeup sponge applicator. Invented by Rea Ann Silva, a Hollywood makeup artist, the sponge purportedly leaves users with a “professional finish and a flawless complexion” thanks to its suede-like material. Speaking of the material, it is latex-free, non-allergenic, and free of any odors (which is one thing I dislike a great deal about disposable makeup sponges). And the advantage of using makeup sponges in general is that they save foundation and (theoretically) do not leave foundation streaks.

How to Use

I prepped the sponge according to the enclosed directions, which stated that I needed to hold the sponge under cool water and squeeze it 10 or so times to fill it with water. After doing so, I pulled it out of the water, gave it a good squeeze, and as the directions recommend, squeezed it in a towel to remove any excess moisture. During this process, the sponge expanded and became larger than it had been dry. This put my mind at ease because it had seemed a little too small to be effective before this step.

The directions recommend “bouncing” the sponge against your face when applying the foundation; the fancy term for this process is called “stippling.” This method prevents any texture and tone differences, which in turn makes the makeup less obvious (cakey-ness is the enemy!). Once you finish using the sponge, you’re supposed to give it a few squeezes under the water, towel dry it, and let it finish drying in the “pedestal” that comes with it. (Very space saving!)

Well, Does It Work?

Yes. That’s the quick answer. Yes, it works wonderfully. Let me say right off the bat that I will probably not be going back to disposable sponges unless I must. I have been using this makeup sponge for a month now and have had excellent results. I never have any streaking, my skin does indeed appear smooth, and even my heaviest foundation goes on natural and non-cakey, which is an accomplishment with my super fair skin.

And my dry-skinned friends will love this: the sponge is soft enough that it does not aggravate skin dryness and leave you with flakes after applying foundation. I have a perpetually flaky forehead and nose, typically. While I do use a good micropeel before applying makeup, that only handles the flakes on my forehead. For my nose, I must use the micropeel, a gel foundation primer, and a very moisturizing liquid foundation. Even this had not been enough to avoid the flaking. Not until I got my hands on the BeautyBlender makeup sponge. It stipples softly enough that it does not cause the skin flakes to lift but helps glue them to my skin.

In addition, I have a couple of small scars on my face which have always made applying foundation, and liquid foundation in particular, very difficult. They are small, almost unnoticeable scars, but when you put foundation in them, they stand out. Not with this sponge. This sponge deposits just the right about of foundation on the scar, even in the small depression, thus hiding the scars rather than making them more obvious.

Finally, this sponge seems durable, durable, durable. As I’ve said, I’ve been using it for a month and it shows no sign of wear yet. Consumer reviews I read before purchasing this product indicate that folks have been using it for months and months and are still going strong. For someone who needs a sponge to use daily, this is a big, big plus!


That said, there are two drawbacks to this sponge. The first is its price. At over $25 for two sponges on the corporate website (you can get these for under $22 for two on Amazon, FYI), it’s significantly more expensive than disposable sponges. In fact, for some folks, it may even be prohibitively expensive. The second drawback is the way in which the sponge discolors with foundation. No matter how many times I squeeze it under the faucet after applying foundation, it still holds on to some of the foundation color. The water does run clear, but the sponge stays stained. Supposedly, with a little soap action, the foundation staining disappears. I have not tried this yet, frankly because I’m scared of what soap will do to the sponge. I may try it with a little Castile soap in the next week or so.

The Bottom Line

Yes, I’d recommend this sponge and I think anyone who wears makeup frequently should give it a try. I have donated all of my disposable sponges and will not be going back.

What do you think of this sponge? Has anyone else tried it? Does anyone have a contrasting or similar experience?


Michelle Miller has not received compensation of any sort to write this review. All of her thoughts are her own and she purchased this product with her own funds.



By Michelle Miller

Michelle Miller is a twenty-something blogger, cook, freelance writer and editor living in Seattle, Washington. She’s a feminist trying ever-so-hard to embrace her spaces, conventional or not. She looks forward to numerous bad hair days, burnt cremes, a soapbox or two, and maybe (just maybe) a yellow polka-dot bikini in the years ahead.

16 replies on “We Try It!: BeautyBlender Makeup Sponge Review”

I don’t wear a lot of makeup, never wore any until my late 20’s when I noticed a significant change in my skin. What I do wear is fairly minimal. My skin is on the oily side and a medication I take makes me sweat a lot (so horrid in the summer months). Does anyone else have this problem?

The products I use are all from DHC. I LOVE everything they make (I don’t work for them I swear). I start with moisturizer (I’ve noticed that it makes no difference how “light” a moisturizer is in terms of the oiliness of my skin so I use a what works best to heal my skin), use a silicone primer then apply a base makeup that’s similar to a tinted moisturizer, eye concealer and concealer on any blemishes. And of course mascara. It all last pretty good throughout the day but I wonder if there is anything out there that would help decrease the inevitable sweat/oil slick that happens. Any suggestions??

The best thing I can recommend for oilier skin is a powder finishing veil. A friend of mine who has a serious struggle with oily skin, too, swears by her powder finish veil. She carries some in her purse with a little brush and when she’s in the restroom, she’s quickly brush some on in the middle of the day. She’ll refresh it once if she’s going out in the evening. It’s very quick: dip, brush, brush, brush, done.

Beyond that, I am STUMPED. I have super dry skin, so I’m on the opposite end of the spectrum, though I can certainly relate to any makeup struggle, heaven knows!

Is there really such a benefit in using sponges/brushes for foundation? I’ve always used my (clean! very clean! I have acne so I am obsessive about washing my hands) fingers for everything, and never had any issues, but I see everyone using them and I wonder.

You know, fingers worked okay for me, too. The main reason I switched to sponges was because it saves me product. The secondary reason was that it applied the product in such a way that looked flawless and natural, which–at least with my skin type–I could never quite achieve with fingers.

But if fingers work for you, I say go with it. Why spend $20 when you don’t need to? :)

I wear really light foundations (I usually mix tinted moisturizer and a light foundation 50/50). I like brushes and sponges because they save me product (the foundation stays on the surface of the sponge and brush rather than sinking into my fingers) and helps me be efficient about spreading a little product a long way.

Also, at least for my skin type (which is dryyyyyyyy and red in a few areas), my fingers have never been enough to keep the flakes down and the makeup from looking a little cakey and uneven. The brushes help me get all the little corner without lifting up flaky skin. Brushes and sponges are better for patting down the flakes and getting makeup to look “natural” in my experience. :)

I use a 50/50 mix of CoverGirl Aqua Smoothers Liquid Foundation and Aqua Smoothers Tinted Moisturizer. But I’m going to give you my whole routine from start to finish because I know how frustrating it is finding makeup that actually works for our skin type.

Step 1: Use a Philosophy Microdelivery Peel Pad (you can get these for a good price on Amazon with S&S). Let it dry thoroughly on skin.

Step 2: Apply moisturizer (I use CeraVe Facial Moisturizing Lotion PM) and let sink into skin. Just takes a few minutes.

Step 3: Apply a gel foundation primer (I use ELF Mineral Infused Face Primer, which is the best I’ve found for any price). When applying it to the dry patches on my face, I smooth down the flakes and avoid aggravating or lifting them as much as possible. Let sit for a few minutes until primer sets.

Step 4: Apply concealer (I use Maybelline Lumi Touch because it is very light and moisturizing; I stipple it on with a small concealer brush over my nose, which is always red and flaky).

Step 5: Mix a 50/50 concoction of foundation and tinted moisturizer. Stipple this with the makeup sponge on to your face. Let sit for a minute or two. Apply cream blush.

Step 6: Spray with a makeup setter. I use ELF Studio Makeup Mist & Set Spray. It’s cheap and it has some cooling ingredients that keep my skin from getting irritated. What’s more, it creates an imperceptible sticky layer that helps to lock in moisture and keep the flakes against the skin.

Hope that helps!

You know, it sounds like a lot of work, but it takes me 10 minutes total. I move like the wind in the morning!

I’m actually blessed with awesome skin, so this isn’t something I feel like I have to do. But I kinda have fun with makeup in a self-expression sort of way. I usually end up rolling out of bed and showing up to work without any makeup one or two days each week. I guess three days a week of makeup wearing still feels like a lot to me!

Plus, I never shy away from a challenge, and flaky skin is a challenge for makeup! :)

Just thinking out loud here; have you tried some BB creams? They’re not all created equal by any means, but they’re similar to a mix of a tinted moisturizer and foundation, so it’d save you a step (they also can act as a primer). There are a ton of brands out there now & I’ve tried a few; the key to them really is to not use too much and to sample a few to find one that fits best.

Also, the ‘experts’ always say to do the concealer after the foundation; is there a reason that you do the concealer first? I use one that has a little rollerball on the end to blend it in (it’s made by LORAC and also has a highlighter).

That’s a good point. I usually put on the concealer first because I’m covering red areas and I find that when I put the concealer on last, it is too noticeable, even with stippling and a light hand. Might just be I need a different concealer, but I haven’t found another one that doesn’t make my skin flake.

I’ll give Bobbi Brown cosmetics a try. I was trying to think if I’ve ever used some from that line before, and I do not think I have. And I am all about SAVING STEPS at 5 AM!

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