Monday, April 30, 2018

Talking to Rae Morris, Makeup Artist about her Jishaku brush range


One of my favourite beauty talents to follow – and interview – over the years, Australian makeup artist Rae Morris is an absolute superstar in the industry and has been for many years. I have her books and watch her tutorials, and now I’ve also been lucky enough to play with some of the elements of her stunning Jishaku Brush Range, which is available locally at Mecca Cosmetica. 
Made in Japan, the collection sees Rae’s original brush designs more refined, with lighter handles and optimizing her world first, magnetic functionality. Using the best brush makers in the world as her manufacturing partner, Rae’s Jishaku range takes traditional Japanese brush making techniques and applies them to her modern designs to create the ultimate makeup brush range. Designed for efficiency and precision, the fact that they can stand upright anywhere means they take up less space, are super easy to organise and find, and are the ultimate in hygiene because the heads touch nothing but your face! Plus, you can secure the brushes upside down for drying after cleaning, how amazing is that?
I asked the amazing Rae a few questions about the lust-worthy new range… 

You have said: “To me, makeup is all about brushes. You can do more with minimal product and an incredible brush range than you can with cotton buds and drawers full of makeup”. Has that always been your philosophy?
Absolutely. I’d say, show me a MUA who doesn’t have a lot of brushes, it’s the one thing we all have in common. 

Is that hard to emphasise to young MUAs, many of whom are product junkies wedded to their Beauty Blenders and use brushes as an afterthought?
It is a little bit because blenders have their place and are good at placing foundation, but I like to polish and buff foundation and make it look undetectable on the skin, even with coverage. You need to buff and polish with something like my Radiance Brush to make that happen so I find that once they try it, they are often converted. 

Consumers too, often think of a highly priced brush as an extravagance, how do you ‘sell’ them on the idea of investing in great accessories?
I always say that makeup is an art, it’s like asking a painter not to buy paint brushes. You can’t do a beautiful fine eyeliner or feathered brow with a thick brush, so once you use a great brush, experience the blending and see the result, you can see how important they are. Cheaper brushes have courser hair and they often leave eyes irritated and scratched. You’re using them on your face so it’s important to invest in something that will be gentle and ultimately make you feel good. Brushes will also outlive most of your makeup – you don’t need to buy a new lip brush every time you buy a new lipstick!

I read that you made a personal pilgrimage to Japan to find the best brush makers to make your new brush designs happen – how did you find the company that you worked with?
I found my brush maker through a client of mine in Switzerland, who only buys bespoke brushes that are in the realm of $5-$10K per brush. She has a personal collection valued at around $500K and only buys Japanese made brushes so I knew that she would be the best person to speak with. After I spent time researching the tradition and found that he was one of the only two remaining Masters of Craft living in the world, I asked her to introduce me. What got it across the line was that I wanted to keep the standard of my brushes high and keep it in line with the technology and principles of the calligraphy brush. He liked my character and after a few trips, we managed to lock it all in. 

How do you define the concept of a ‘magnetic’ brush to someone who knows nothing about them? It is such a cool idea!
It’s a great way to display your brushes at home in the bathroom without them getting dirty. It means they are easy to see and reach for if you’re in a hurry and you need minimal bench space for them. When buying luxury brushes, it’s important to keep the shape of the brush and make sure they aren’t touching each other – you don’t want a clean powder brush leaning against a lip brush covered in red lipstick. I find it’s really a great organisational tool, it looks beautiful and also keeps them protected when travelling, more than a canister or brush roll. 

You have been a makeup artist for a super impressive amount of time, what do you think about the hyped-up contour trend, is it just that – a trend?
Yes, but it’s a trend that I think some girls will never not do. Contouring has always been around, it’s just the heaviness that is newer and I personally don’t think it will stick around. Everyone thinks they need to contour but it’s actually not for everyone – if you’re aging it can make your face look more hollow and gaunt. 

And what about the proliferation of MUAs on Instagram in particular, how does a normal makeup lover know what is skill or product, and what is just crazy filtering skills?
I always think it’s best to cross-reference. If someone is posting about a product that you’re interested in from their photo or video, research it and see how other makeup artists are using it and read reviews on the product. If you can, go in-store and trial the product, walk around and see how it works on you before deciding. 

If someone is looking to invest in a few great brushes from your collection, what sort should they look for? There are so many to choose from...
I would look for something that fits your face perfectly. If you have small eyes, get a small pointed brush like the #9 Detail Point Shader Brush and a small oval brush like the #11 Medium Oval Shader Brush. If you have bigger eyes, #10 Deluxe Oval Shader Brush and the #8 Medium Point Shader Brush will work well for you. I’d also recommend a great eyeliner brush for those who can’t go passed it. We have two essentials - one to achieve a fine line (#14 Perfect Eyeliner Brush) or for a thicker, Audrey Hepburn-esque eyeliner use the #15 Precision Bent Liner Brush. I would also recommend either Kabuki brush (#1 or #2) for blush and powder and the #26 Radiance Brush for use with all types of foundation. 

Your favourite brush is the Radiance Brush, why?
It cuts your foundation application time by half, can be used with liquid, cream or powder foundations and it polishes the product so well that the skin looks as close to airbrushing as possible. A sponge pushes the product into the skin, whereas the brush buffs it in beautifully. 

Lastly, you have released some amazing books. Any plans for a new one?
No, not at the moment. I poured my heart into the last one and the three hours of video content on the app as well. The book is timeless, the looks in it are timeless and it has everything I know about anti-aging so I think it will still be relevant in 10 years time. 



Rae Morris’ Jishaku brush collection is available exclusively at Mecca Cosmetica and at meccabeauty.co.nz 


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