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As faithful makeup wearers, we've seen firsthand how the Beautyblender has changed the entire makeup application process as we know it. Never has our foundation looked as flawless as when we first dipped the small, egg-shaped sponge into our product and ever-so-gently bounced it off our skin. It was like pure makeup sorcery was happening before our eyes. And unsurprisingly, whenever we get a peek at a celeb makeup artist's station, we almost always see a Beautyblender in tow. It truly is the best of the best.
Rea Ann Silva, the creator of the Beautyblender, had a plan to help makeup seamlessly blend into the skin and didn't quit until she dreamed up the perfect concept. Below, read her story of how the Beautyblender was found.
The Idea Behind the Beautyblender
If you're like us, you've likely always wondered what went into bringing the seemingly-simple-but-totally-life-changing sponge to life. Luckily for us, Silva was willing to spill the tea.
"I was working as a makeup department head for one of the first television shows shot in HD and knew we needed a tool to allow us to create a flawless face, free of lines or demarcation," she said. "I spent hours in my trailer cutting sponges to the perfect elliptical shape while also realizing that we needed to create an airbrush effect without actually using airbrush—so the idea was born."
Bringing the Beautyblender to Life
Once Silva's idea stuck, it was time to put it in action on a larger scale, but she knew she'd need help.
"I always say I'm a makeup artist, not a product developer," she says. "It was not easy, but a determined attitude and a relentless work ethic got me through. I did my homework, and through very diligent research and 'pounding the pavement,' so to speak, I was able to find someone who had the knowledge to get my idea made and believed in the idea. That person is still part of my team today and still helps me bring all my ideas to life."
Tips to Keep in Mind When Using a Beautyblender
Since it's common practice to use makeup brushes dry, some people think the same is applicable for Beautyblenders. Of course, Silva says you should consider re-thinking that.
"It still surprises me that some people use their Beautyblender dry," she says. "If you love using it dry, it will change your life if you use it wet. We came up with the slogan—wet.squeeze.bounce.—to remind people that while you may think sponges should be used dry, this product is unique because of what happens to it when it's wet: It expands in size, does not suck up your makeup, and leaves the texture of your skin flawless. Another important fact is that you don’t have to only use the Beautyblender with cream or liquid makeup. It is amazing with powdered makeup, as well!"
Additionally, Silva reminds us that Beautyblenders can be used for more than just complexion makeup—it can work with any type of cream, liquid, or cushion foundation, too. "Our Micro.mini is perfect for creating a smoky eye or for applying cream eye shadow," she says. "It also makes highlighting and contouring a breeze. Another fun fact: Once you're finished with your Beautyblender, you can use it to create ombré nail designs."
The Future of Beautyblender
The Beautyblender brand has already gone beyond just selling makeup sponges. Now, they've delved into other tools to assist in the make-up process (like the Liner.designer, $16) as well as face products to use with the sponges (like the Glass Glow Shinelighter, $25). As a result, the possibilities are endless for what's to come from the cult-favorite beauty brand.
Ed note: This interview was inspired by "Rea Ann Silva's amazing road to Beautyblender." Since publishing, Byrdie has learned of Veronica Lorenz's affiliation with Beautyblender as an early investor who helped the concept get off the ground. Lorenz has since parted ways with the company, and Rea Ann Silva has expressed to us her responsibility for the idea, creation, development, and growth of the brand.