The Original Beauty Blender. Can you believe I’ve never tried it until now? When sponges first started making their way onto the makeup scene I was still all about the brush, and by the time I was falling in love with them as an application method, just about every brand had come out with their own version – all normally cheaper than the one which started it all.
Whilst I have been tempted over the years to try the original pink sponge, I’ve had a huge stash of sponges to finish up. I was recently sent this by Marks and Spencer’s as an announcement that they were now a stockist for M&S which I happily announced on my Instagram at the time. However I’ve really wanted to test this out over the long term to see whether this was a worthwhile investment. Is it really worth spending over £15 on a makeup sponge?
The iconic teardrop shaped sponge comes simply packaged – in a light flexible plastic packaging to protect it and show it off in all it’s glory from every angle. For the price it doesn’t feel particularly luxe, however it’s small container means it’s not wasteful in size, and if you really wanted to you could keep hold of the original container as a way to travel with it without getting it dirty in your makeup bag.
The sponge itself now comes in a variety of colours, but bright pink was the original – and how the sponge became known. It’s covered in every which way from black to white – and even beige coloured shades now too.
One of the first issues I had with this was on the first wash – this shed colour like crazy. So much so that rather than seeing the colour of a foundation dripping away, it was like a unicorn was bleeding into my sink. I’ve noticed a little bit of colour run off in brands over the years, but nothing like the level that this has. And occasionally, even 2 months into using this regularly I’m still seeing tinges of pink running down the drain, which does leave me wondering that on some level it must also be transferring onto my face. In terms of rinsing out in general, I do find the texture of this a little more stubborn than what I’m used to and often find myself going in three times with the liquid soap I use to thoroughly get rid of all marks on the surface.
I always wet my sponges and this one is no different. It expands quite dramatically becoming almost double the size I expect when damp and has a very light texture. That sounds like something you should expect when it comes to sponges, but I’ve tried some very rubbery ones over the years which feel almost like they have a rock centre when bounced on squishy cheeks.
The shape of this is a perfectly symmetrical teardrop shape, there’s no flat sides carved out of this. The end is very very tapered and precise, to start with I thought this was going to be fantastic for getting into all the awkward angles, but because it’s so thin – when you bounce it down it goes off in any direction it fancies like it has a mind of it’s own, so I rarely use the tapered end at all.
Personally my favourite sponges all have a flat edge on them, I find them a faster to work with over all as you’re not fighting with the curvature of the sponge for surface area, but the sponge does give a very nice finish overall – it’s just a little more time consuming. Is it any nicer than my favourite sponge for the past year which is about three times cheaper? No, not really. I think the shape of the sponge is down to personal preference as to what you prefer overall, I don’t hate it enough to write it off, but if I was picking again I would pick the sponge.
Where I do think it excels a little more is that it’s maybe slightly more robust than some others. My favourites aren’t particularly prone to tearing, but I do find with longish nails when I’m rinsing sponges out and giving them a really good clean then nicks quite often appear – this seems to stand up better than quite a few and it’s chunky bottom shape also means that it’s got some extra weight behind it. But again, whilst it’s better I’m not sure it’s three times better, nor is it’s lifespan really that improved as a result. I would pretty much be repurchasing at the same rate as I would with ones which are £3.99-£5.99.
So, Is the Beauty Blender Worth It?
Whilst I’m enjoying this – I think you gather already that this isn’t my favourite sponge I’ve tried, I am enjoying using it. It won’t be the one which I continue to repurchase in future, but I can see why people like it. It all comes back down to the shape for me and if you can find this at a good deal (they have great offers on around black Friday, and sets for Christmas). Then it’s a good time to give a try, and makes a nice little stocking stuffer for a beauty addict who may not normally spend as much on their own.
I think it’s fantastic news that if you’re a huge fan of Beauty Blender that there’s an extra retailer who now proudly stock the brand – I hate having to go and hunt out my ‘essentials’ when I need to rebuy, and I’d happily pick up any and all essentials whilst perusing the M&S beauty aisles.
Have you tried “the original”?
Available widely including from M&S for £17.
Product sent by M&S as part of a PR parcel. Thoughts and experiences entirely truthful based on my experience with the product.