The reputation of Japanese makeup brushes not only lies in the extravagant price or premium feather material but also from the exquisite craftsmanship of the artisans of the cherry blossoms’ land.
The art of making palm in Japan originated from the Kumano rocky mountains. The terrain was not convenient for cultivation, so the people here began making brushes to increase their income from the 1840s. By the time demand for the brush declined, the artisans in Kumano town began to open broad range, switch to produce makeup brushes. Famous brush brands such as Hakuhodo, Chikuhodo, Suqqu, Mizuho are all born from this land.
The preciousness of the material
The Japanese palm trees are beloved by their hairs to achieve astonishing smoothness, each time surfing on the skin leaves a gentle feeling like a gentle wind. Most are made entirely of natural hair such as squirrel, goat, horse, and mink hair because the epidermis of these hairs is made up of 6-10 layers of keratin stacked, similar to the hair structure of the human. The horny layer creates tiny pores that make it easy for cosmetics to stick to the brush. It is this feature that helps the natural hairs to pick up pollen and hold it better than artificial fibers.
The most used hair in Japanese make-up is the squirrel hair, but only the blue squirrel, gray squirrel, Canadian squirrel, and Kazakh squirrel own long fur. Blue squirrel hair is often used for chalk brush and blush brush for smoothness and softness. Kazakhstan and Canada squirrels are thinner, suitable for eye-catching, or light-brushing by providing a gentle flushing effect. Currently, on the market, the best squirrel hair squirrels are Chikuhodo’s green squirrel, Koyudo’s gray squirrel, and Hakuhodo’s green squirrel.
Mink also contributes much to this craft industry. The mink coat has a long, pointed cone shape, covered with a tile-like surface that helps absorb a significant amount of chalk cream. Brush made from mink hair possesses good elasticity after repeated use retains its original form. Among them, the Kolinsky mink fur is the most expensive, depending on the length, the price of Kolinsky mink can be up to $ 16,000/kg. It is the male mink tail hair, taken when it is winter when the fur turns brownish-red. Brush made from mink fur, mink Pahmi, brown mink is not equal.
Makeup artist Sonia Kashuk is very fond of Hakuhodo, Chikuhodo hand-painted palm trees in her makeup tutorials on YouTube. Wayne Goss, the owner of a YouTube channel with 3.5 million followers, always praised the softness and sophistication of Japanese brush. He sees it as an inspiration to create his line of Wayne Goss brushes in 2013, also ordered hand-made in Japan and entirely made from natural fur.
Level of the artist’s hands
The feathers used in Japanese palm trees are mainly imported from Europe or China. To ensure the quality of the products, the artisans (also known as fude-shi) choose the best hairs and remove any curled, damaged or split ends. An average brush will take about a week to complete and undergo a total of 60 different stages, entirely without the intervention of machines.
In addition to the precious brush hair, the names of Japanese palm trees lie in the neck and handle. Some brands are gilding palm necks, making mosaic laminates, or using rare woods to add value to the palm. The famous red-rolling palm trees Hakuhodo S100 Series besides expensive green squirrels, also feature exquisite lacquered logos and 24K gold-plated palm neck. Makie Series brushes made by Chikuhodo make women fascinated with the handle carved with lovely cherry wings; The Kokutan Series Hakuhodo palm is luxurious with a handle made of vein-engined ebony.
Hakuhodo, Chikuhodo, Koyudo, Takeda are all palm firms that are classified as expensive. The price of a small eye brush, lip brush usually ranges from $ 20–40. Foundation brush, foundation powder, blush costs from $ 50–150. Limited edition brushes even up to $ 1,000. Not only that, they never discount, ordering is no less difficult because most of these brands are only sold in Japan, except Hakuhodo has two more stores in Singapore and Los Angeles (USA).
The craft of traditional Japanese palm carries the quintessence handed down from generation to generation. The works that came out of the hands of fude-shi became more and more perfect and sophisticated over time. Always a lavish dream in the heart of a woman who loves beauty, Japanese palm trees not only cover the skin of radiant makeup but also sow its joy with indescribable joy.