If anything can be taken as a given during the Holidays, it would have to be acts of overindulgence and a plethora of make up brush sets for purchase. Sephora puts those two things together in its massive Stand Up and Shine Prestige Easel Brush Set* ($163CDN, 12 Brushes, valued at $320USD) where you can overindulge in beauty tools.
This set has everything one could need to start their brush collection. There is a Sephora Collection Pro Powder, Angled Blush, Foundation, Concealer, Allover Shadow, Small Shadow, Crease, Smudge, Liner, Smokey Liner, and Lip Brush, and a Double-Ended Brow Comb with Spoolie.
The white faux leather zipped travelling case can be propped up into an easel format. I think this was a good idea but since there are so many brushes, it ends up taking a lot of space on my table. The zipper also doesn't run quite smoothly along the track.
Concealer: This brush worked quite well for concealer since the bristles were dense and firm. I enjoyed using this for under my eyes.
Allover Shadow: This all over shadow brush is just too large for my eyelids. It could have used about 3mm less in height and that would have made it near perfect. Not the softest but not too scratchy.
Crease: The top of the crease brush is too large for my crease area. It would smudge out the color too high along my brow bone. Instead I might used this as a blending brush.
Smudger: The smudger has good density to help drag color.
Small Shadow: This one was more scratchy than the all over shadow brush and a bit too small to be the perfect one-wash-shade brush. It would be nice for spot colors like inner corner highlighting.
Liner: I like a really really fine edge for my angled liner brushes and found the MAC 266 perfect for this. The Sephora liner brush is still a bit too chubby for me.
Lip: Very soft and quite nice but just a smidgen too large for my preferences
Smokey Liner: I love pointed brushes like this since they can help with precision but there is something too pointed about the brush and the bristles feel like a small pinprick when dragged across the skin.
Powder: This brush seems soft but when swept across the face, a few bristles end up scratching your skin. The density is good for a light dusting of finishing or setting powder but not something I would use for a powder foundation.
Angled Blush: I've been using this for contour powders since I prefer an angled brush for that purpose. The brush is softer than the Powder Brush and has a good density to it. One of the better brushes in the set.
Foundation: This paddle foundation brush is firm and has a nice tapered and chiselled edge which helps get into the sides of the nose.
Double-Ended Brow Comb with Spoolie: The doubled ended brow comb actually comes off like a cap to reveal the spoolie.
This set is very pricy and would seem like a nice WOW gift but the brushes weren't that soft and a few were more harsh on the face than they should have been. I would also strongly consider the facial features of the person you may be gifting this too. Someone with smaller features and eye area may find the shadow brushes too large for their needs.
In general there were a few brushes that really worked but unfortunately, the value wasn't quite there for me to encourage someone to spend $162 on this set.