The Best Make-up Sponge

Updated on 7 November 2022

After spending 4 hours comparing 12 make-up sponges and testing 8 of them, we concluded that the best one is the Total Face from e.l.f. Cosmetics for its very attractive price/performance ratio.

This comparison is certified 100% impartial and follows our selection process.

Our choice, Best mid-range

e.l.f. Total Face

Practical, ergonomic and pleasant to use, this latex-free sponge is very easy to clean, for the best hygiene! It has good swelling when wet and offers a nice finish.

Price search in progress… please wait

elf Cosmetics Total Face

With its bevelled drop shape, this beauty blender came in handy for applying foundation and concealer in our tests. The domed and flat sides are for large areas, while the tip is ideal under the eyes. We found that it was better to tap it rather than rub it in for a more natural, streak-free look. Unlike many others, it absorbs very little product and it is even possible to recover its original shade by cleaning it (without colour residue). It is very light and pleasant on the skin. However, it does not include a storage/transport case.

 

 

Best budget

EmaxDesign (3 pieces)

Offering the best value for money in this selection, these three latex-free sponges are dense, yet pleasant to use. They need to be wet before use.

Price search in progress… please wait

EmaxDesign éponge de maquillage

Made from rubber and polyurethane, these three sponges swell well in contact with water but remain dense. Despite this, they were quite soft on the face during our tests. They each have a different size. The smaller ones were a little less ergonomic, as the grip on such small sponges is less convenient. Nevertheless, they can still be useful for small blemish corrections or for applying concealer. The larger one was more convenient for spreading our BB cream, but absorbed a lot of product (as we could verify during the cleaning). So we don’t recommend it if your make-up is more expensive.

 

Best high-end

Beautyblender Original

It is the original brand that created the first sponge of its kind. Its drop shape is ideal for spreading all the different types of makeup you can get.

Price search in progress… please wait

Beautyblender Original

Made from polyurethane, we found that this sponge absorbed a lot of product during our tests. With its spiked egg or drop shape, it came in handy when applying concealer, like our foundation. We recommend using it wet and patting it on rather than rubbing it on for best results. It was very light and felt quite soft and comfortable to use. Note that it swelled when wet and that this makes it even easier to hold. On the other hand, we noticed that it tended to lose its colour when we cleaned it, which can raise questions about what ends up on our skin…

 

Mid-range alternative

Real Techniques Complexion

The only one in this comparison to come with a case, it is intended more for people who travel. In the shape of a bevelled drop, it is ergonomic and effective.

Price search in progress… please wait

Real Techniques Éponge de Complexion

Made of foam, latex-free, vegan, and 100% cruelty-free, this sponge was very nice to use during our tests. Thanks to its shape, we were able to correctly and easily spread our foundation (by rubbing it) as well as our concealer (by tapping it). We recommend using it wet for the best results. Its texture is pleasant on the skin, but also on the hand when you use it. On the other hand, it kept traces of the make-up we used despite having washed it properly with shampoo. Also, note that if you also need brushes, it is also available in a complete set.

 

Our selection

Our choice, Best mid-rangeBest budgetBest high-endMid-range alternative
e.l.f. Total Face EmaxDesign (3 pieces) Beautyblender Original Real Techniques Complexion
Practical, ergonomic and pleasant to use, this latex-free sponge is very easy to clean, for the best hygiene! It has good swelling when wet and offers a nice finish. Offering the best value for money in this selection, these three latex-free sponges are dense, yet pleasant to use. They need to be wet before use. It is the original brand that created the first sponge of its kind. Its drop shape is ideal for spreading all the different types of makeup you can get. The only one in this comparison to come with a case, it is intended more for people who travel. In the shape of a bevelled drop, it is ergonomic and effective.
£ 7.00 on Amazon £ 15.77 on Amazon £ 17.00 on Amazon £ 7.99 on Amazon

 

800+ Comparisons
1000+ Reviews
100% Impartial

Why trust us ?

Selectos compares and tests hundreds of products to help you buy better. We sometimes receive a commission when you buy through our links, which helps fund our work. Learn more

 

How did we test?

To test the make-up sponges, we cleaned each one beforehand. Then we used them during our make-up routine to spread our foundation, BB cream or CC cream as well as our concealer. We were able to judge their efficiency (for spreading), ergonomics (when held) and practicality (depending on the shape).

Finally, we took a look at their materials and checked if they were easy to clean (different make-up products come off well, with no residue of the sponge’s colour in water…).

 

How to choose a make-up sponge?

The make-up sponge has gradually established itself as one of the most effective ways to apply foundation or other creams (with or without colour). However, there are so many different models available on the market that finding the right one can be a bit tricky.

Éponge Maquillage

First of all, be aware of the different types of materials that exist:

  • The foam sponge: this is more suitable for professionals, particularly for applying make-up to actors and comedians. As the foam is very absorbent, a lot of product is lost when using it.
  • The latex sponge: is fairly dense, it absorbs less product but is more allergenic than its foam counterpart.

Éponge Maquillage

  • Silicone sponge: in our opinion, if it is made of silicone, it is not a sponge. However, it is considered as such on the market. It does not absorb any cream, which makes it a great option for owners of expensive beauty products.

Next, it is important to define the shape you want.

  • The egg or blender: this is the most popular one on the market today. It is made of foam or very dense latex so that it absorbs very little product. Its shape allows you to easily alternate between the pointed side and the more rounded side depending on the area of your face to be made up.

Éponge Maquillage

  • The prism: this shape is appreciated for working on all areas of the face. However, it can be a little more difficult to handle.
  • The round or oval: these shapes make it easy to spread foundation or other products over large areas, but are less practical in the corners (wings of the nose, under the eyes to spread concealer, etc.).

Finally, you should wash your make-up sponge regularly (at least once a week). All you need is a drop of shampoo, warm water and a little elbow grease.

 

Other make-up sponges we recommend

Ecotools Perfecting Blender Duo (£8.99 upon publication): ecological sponges. Made from 71% plant-based ingredients, these double-bevelled drop sponges proved to be quite practical in our tests. Both foundation and CC cream were well spread. However, the concealer seemed to be absorbed more than spread. Also, they are very dense, especially the smaller ones, which makes them less soft and a little less gentle than other sponges. Finally, we never managed to get their original colour back.

 

Other make-up sponges tested

Yves Rocher: no longer on the market. We were less convinced by this sponge because of its inferior quality. The foam cracked quickly in some places. In addition, it is no longer sold by the brand and has been replaced by another model.

Kiko Milano (£7.85 upon publication): a perfectible design and a material that absorbs too much product. During our tests, it quickly became apparent that this polyurethane sponge absorbed a lot of product while being a little too hard. In addition, the format did not convince us.

EcoTools Bioblender Biodegradable (£4.49 upon publication): a biodegradable model that gets damaged the first time it is cleaned. While the idea of making a sponge to plant or compost at the end of its life is a nice one, it’s a shame that it gets damaged so quickly. However, apart from that, it ticks all the other boxes and is even more pleasant to use than its two little sisters. It’s a shame…

 

 

Translated by Ramsés El Hajje

Leave a comment