Over the last decade there has been a rise in make up techniques such as contouring and blending, and due to this, open cell foam has become increasingly more popular within the beauty and cosmetic industry. Prior to the inaccessibility of the correct tools, it was left to expert make up artists and professionals to achieve an airbrushed look for the camera. However, women and men are now looking to achieve that “photoshop” finish in the ease of their own home.
It’s now possible for anyone to buy the right applicators from their favourite brand on the high street and achieve a flawless finish. However, different types and cuts of open cell foam work with foundations and contour kits to accomplish the perfect jawline or highlight. We’ve paired our knowledge with the latest trends to highlight the best use of applicators with open cell foam.
Open cell foam is breathable, soft and moisture absorbent. If the foam is sourced correctly, it is hypoallergenic and exclusively designed for contact with the skin. It is called open cell because its structure allows for air to pass through it and for liquid to be absorbed. This benefits the skin and when teamed with water, the foam remains damp during the application of foundation (allowing for a smoother finish, less foundation and an easier to clean tool).
Originally cosmetic applicators came in the form of a triangular wedge but with developments in open cell foam technology and more innovative designs for preciser application, they’ve taken on several new shapes to offer a greater experience and finish for the user.
The teardrop sponge
The teardrop cosmetic sponge is an innovative open cell foam applicator that has changed the way make up is applied to the skin. Once soaked in warm water and rung out, the open cells maintain some moisture to allow for expert application. Its teardrop shape is cut for bottom blending and pointed precision.
The airbursh sponge
The airbrush sponge is exceptionally durable and dense. It’s perfect for creating a smooth blend and is suitable for liquid, cream and powder foundations. It’s recommended to wet the sponge prior to applying makeup and its open cell structure holds moisture as you work foundation against the skin. As open cell foam can be moulded and cut into any desired shape, its rounded bottom allows for blending whilst its rounded tip and flat edges achieves an airbrushed effect.
Sponge eyeshadow applicator
Foam tipped applicators are exceptionally well received when it comes to not getting makeup on your fingertips or avoiding fingertip smudges on your face. Often designed with rounded tips and denser open cell foam, it makes it easier to blend around the eyes for precise application. The soft foam is delicate on the thinner areas of skin around the eyes too.
Flat blending sponge
The flat edge sponge is specifically cut to avoid any lines and cover a greater surface area. The soft structure of the foam is non abrasive to the skin and offers a flawless contour to the cheekbones when paired with bronzer.
Multiple edge sponge
The multiple edge sponge covers all bases with rounded sides to blot larger areas, a flat edge for contouring and a precision tip to focus around the eyes. It’s become a more desired shape within the makeup industry as professionals don’t have to move between tools to create a chosen effect.
No edge sponge
The no edge sponge is an all-rounder and can be used with liquids and pressed powders with ease. It’s somewhat reminiscent of the old powder puffs used for dusting, but its open cell structure ensures that product goes further when dampened for liquid foundations. It’s more often used with mineral make ups to buff loose powder.
Open cell foam sponges are meeting the demands made by brands and consumers asking for applicators that will perform better for them. Foam has become a more functional option and the ability to shape and mould the material, means that creative design doesn’t have to be compromised. Originally starting with the triangular wedge to the teardrop, designers have developed more and more options based on the needs and requirements of their industry.
Value can be added through colour, multiple edge types to provide dual use, and varying densities to accommodate absorbing less of the product is used with. Not to mention laminating different types of foam together. Despite brushes continuing to dominate the market, sponges are becoming increasingly popular due to their convenience, price, disposability and hygiene. The demand for open cell foam is only going to grow.
At Zouch Converters, our highly advanced technical open cell foams are trusted by health professionals and beauty brands right across the world. We offer a customised, consultative service, fully focused on what you need – from the most effective materials on the market to a bespoke product created just for you, we’re here to support you every step of the journey.
Our skin-friendly, hypoallergenic materials are helping take the beauty industry by storm. The bespoke, problem-solving approach we use has secured exciting projects with award-winning global brands, and we’ve helped to empower them to grow creatively and strategically, whilst unlocking the potential of their product through our foam materials.
Our open cell foams come in grey, white or black as standard, but can be custom made in beige, blue, yellow, green, violet and red. As well as being cut and formed to the shape you desire. We offer environmentally friendly, hypoallergenic, quality foam products to suit all sectors of the cosmetic market. Get in touch with our expert team to discuss your specific application and we will support you from prototype to customer-ready product.