Last year Hakuhodo launched a group of six angled duo fiber brushes in their G series. These six round brushes are quite unique in the stippling brush arena not just by being all-white, but also by having a shorter gap than average between the natural goat hair and the synthetic fibers. Not only that, but each of the three available diameter size also offers two options for that difference: 4mm and 2mm. This means that the longer synthetic hair has far less movement than in popular duo fiber brushes such as Sephora 44 or MAC 187; the Hakuhodo brushes are denser and firmer, and the choice between a 2mm and a 4mm gap takes this idea even further. The 2mm brushes do not pull the skin or move it even when you use it in a buffing motion.
Hakuhodo G5556-4mm is the bigger of the two brushes I chose. It covers large areas and works quickly and reliably. G5555-2mm with its 23mm hair length and 21.7mm width (both are under 1") is its complementing tool and I've been using it for precision evening out and concealing. As I mentioned above, the 2mm difference in length between the natural and synthetic hair ensures that the soft and springy fibers will not tug at the skin. It's especially important as I use it on sensitive areas such as under the eyes or the sides of the nose.
The angle of both Hakuhodo G5556-4mm and G5555-2mm makes it very efficient for reaching every nook and cranny of the face. The sturdy handle sits comfortably in my hand and feels very stable and balanced. The softness of the hair- both natural and synthetic managed to surprise even me- a Hakuhodo devotee. The brushes were made with a lot of thought about skin and makeup application. They make stippling, buffing and blending feel very easy, requiring little effort or a learning curve. These are pretty intuitive tools, especially since the angle helps them conform to the face and you instantly feel what direction to go.
Other than traditional duo-fiber brushes, the obvious comparison is to another new(ish) brush: Shiseido Perfect Foundation brush. However, it's important to remember that the Shiseido one is all synthetic and not a duo fiber. Thus, the way it moves, grabs product and deposits it on skin is much different (it's also significantly smaller than these two Hakuhodo brushes). Shiseido gives a fuller coverage and is more suitable for lighter textures, while the Hakuhodo G555x range can sheer out creamier and more pigmented products.
You can see an excellent review of two other brushes from this group: Hakuhodo G5552 and G5557 on Delicate Hummingbird. I can tell you that the G5552 is on my list of "buy next" for use with cream blushes.
Bottom Line: power tools.
Hakuhodo G5556-4mm ($69) and G5555-2mm ($54) are available from hakuhodousa.com. They ship all over the world.