Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Best Cruelty-Free Dupes for M.A.C. 239

Best Cruelty-Free Dupes for M.A.C. 239

Sadly M.A.C. is not a cruelty-free brand.  Many makeup artists and YouTube creators use their makeup brushes.  While the brand has switched over to synthetic bristles for many of their brushes, there are still a lot of consumers who do not want to shop at M.A.C. until they become a truly cruelty-free brand. 

Don't worry, I have sifted through my collection, to find the best cruelty-free dupes.  Today's post features dupes for M.A.C.'s popular 239 (or now 239s) brush, which is a flat shader brush that works well for packing pigment onto the eyelid.  The bristles come to a taper at the top, which makes it useful for working along the lower lash line as well. The brush head is a nice compact size, which is ideal for those with smaller eyelids, or anyone wishing for more precise placement.

The three brushes in my collection that most closely resemble the 239, and work well for packing on eyeshadow are my Bdellium Tools 777 (green bambu line), Sigma Medium Sweeper E54, and Furless Cosmetics PE2. Let's dig a little deeper to see which of these is the best dupe, and why.

When it comes to handle length all of these brushes are about the same, except for the Bdellium Tools 777 from the green bambu line. The Green Bambu Series 777 brush is 5.6 inches (14cm) in length. However, if you prefer the longer handle, the same brush is available from Bdellium Tools in their Pink Bambu Series with a handle length of 6.6 inches (17cm).  The M.A.C.239 is just a little bit longer coming in at 7.3 inches (18.5cm).  

What I really looked for in this comparison, was soft dense bristles, that work well for packing pigment onto the eye lid.  M.A.C. brushes are known to be long lasting, so this was another important factor in deciding which brush is the best dupe.

I am happy to report that I have had the Bdellium Tools, Sigma and Furless brushes for a number of years. I actually have multiples of all three for my kit and the quality for all of these absolutely meets my high standards. All three brushes also have soft, dense bristles and work well for eyeshadow application.  Therefore, it really came down to the minor details when picking which brush was the closest to the 239.

Before I get into those details, I want to give an honorable mention to the Christopher Drummond Beauty Eye Color brush (pictured above along side the M.A.C. 239s). The reason this brush did not make the cut, is that it is my understanding that these brushes have been discontinued.  This really makes me sad because I have several full size and travel size Christopher Drummond Beauty brushes that I have owned for many years, and they are absolutely wonderful.  That being said, the bristles are just a bit too long for this brush to be a true 239 dupe.  However, it really is a wonderful brush!

Above is a side view of all of the brushes (from left to right): M.A.C. 239s, Bdellium Tools 777 Green Bambu Series, Sigma Medium Sweeper E54, and Furless Cosmetics PE2.  This photo is where a clear dupe begins to emerge. One of the key features of the 239 is that the bristles come to a tapered tip.  As you can see from the above photo, the only brush that is cut the same way is the Bdellium Tools 777.  The Sigma E54 is close, but the head is just a little fuller, with a more rounded tip.  The Furless PE2 has a brush head that is the same size as the 239, but the bristles do not come to a taper.  By no means does that mean any of these brushes are not worth buying. As I stated previously, I own multiples of each. The Furless brush is the fluffiest, making it very multipurpose. I can apply eyeshadow and blend all with the same brush.  The Sigma brush, works best for sweeping pigment on, which a lot of shimmery eyeshadows require for their best performance.  However, the Bdellium Tools 777 gives me that perfect packing brush, with the tapered tip that can blend shadow along the lower lash line as well. 

For this reason, the Bdellium Tools 777 Green and/or Pink Bambu Series ($9.00 each) wins as the best cruelty-free and vegan option for a M.A.C. 239. Looking for a set? Bdellium Tools offers their 777 Yellow Bambu brush as part of their 5 piece smoky eyes set ($27.00). Looking for a complete brush set? The 777 is also available in their Purple Bambu Precision 17 piece brush set ($130.00). All of the Bambu brushes from Bdellium Tools, regardless of color, are made with 100% vegan bristles. I own brushes from all of their bambu series, and am confident in their quality and performance. 

I hope you found this post helpful. If you are looking for a cruelty-free dupe for the M.A.C. 217, you can read my picks here: Best 217 Dupes. Is there an animal hair makeup brush that you want to find a synthetic-bristled dupe for? Let me know in the comments below.  Your question just may answered in my next post!

*This post contains brushes purchased by me, as well as brushes sent by the company for consideration.  I do not get paid to write reviews.  Any links in this post are NOT affiliate links, and are simply included for the reader's convenience. All opinions are my own. 

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