The brushes shown above are No. 17, the Luxe Socket Blender (top) and No. 18, the Small Luxe Socket Blender (bottom). These brushes are what inititally attracted me to the brand. I really like shape and as someone with relatively small eyes, these are perfect for my needs. I use the large socket blender to do crease work and love the fact that it allows me to be more precise with placement yet doesn't blob on so much I can't blend.
I use the small socket brush to apply eyeshadow densely along the lashline. It's similar in design to the MAC 219 pencil brush as it has a tapered dome shape, but the smaller size allows for more precision and the bristles seems to be better at packing colour on. I found it particularly good for use with dark colours that I've previously found too sheer to make a good liner, such as the dark teal from my Chantecaille Turtles palette. I think this would work well to smudge eyeliner too.
I've included pictures of the brushes compared to some others that I own, to give you a better idea of their size. The larger socket brush is most similar to the Smashbox Definer brush, the difference being that it is more densely packed and the Smashbox brush is more floppy in comparion. The small socket brush is pretty much unique in my collection. It's quite a bit smaller than the MAC 219 and allows for much more precision. It's more rounded at the tip too.
|L-R: MAC 226, MAC 219, Small Socket Brush, Luxe Socket Brush, Smashbox Definer brush, GOSH smudger brush|
|L-R; MAC 219, Luxe Socket Brush, Smashbox Definer Brush|
|Small socket brush compared to MAC 219|
The London Brush Company brushes are handmade in the UK and designed by makeup artist Siân Richards. I believe both of these socket brushes are made from Squirrel hair. The brush hairs feel soft but not overly so, they pick up and hold colour well and have just the right amount of give. I think they use the word springy on the website which I think is an excellent description. They're definitely not scratchy which is a problem I often have with brushes that have the right shape and firmness (MAC 226, I'm looking at you). Price wise, these are around the MAC mark, maybe a little bit more. I think they're well priced for the quality and unique shape.
The London Brush Company brushes are available directly from their website or from www.cocktailcosmetics.co.uk. Both ship Internationally. I can highly recommend browsing the Cocktail Cosmetics website as they stock some amazing (and often hard to source) brands like Julie Hewett, La Femme Cosmetics and OCC.
Disclosure: These brushes were sent to me without cost for consideration for review.