Japan leads the world when it comes to brushes, especially in the makeup industry. And Kumano, a small town in Hiroshima prefecture, is the epicentre of the craft. In fact, Kumanofude (brushes made in Kumano) are used by internationally renowned makeup companies, who seek only the best brushes to complement their world renown brands.

Kumanofude wood
Nestled in a mountainous area in Japan, the brush capital of Japan is home to over 1000 artisans who use techniques refined over centuries. (Photo from: Hiroshima Prefecture)

Prized for their quality and handcraft, Kumano is the largest manufacturing region in Japan for calligraphy, painting and makeup, totalling a staggering number of 15 million brushes a year.

Made from natural hairs of goat, squirrel and horse, these hand-made brushes keep the natural tips in tact, which produces a more delicate contact with the face, ensuring an even application of powder and pigment. Since there are slight gaps naturally in between the animal fibers and the tip, Kumano brushes hold powder and color pigment better for a more even application. Meanwhile, machine-cut bristles are harsh and can be prickly, unlike natural hairs used in Kumano brushes which taper to a fine tip.

Kumano’s reputation for excellent makeup brushes has precedence in its history of producing calligraphy brushes since the end of Japan's Edo period (1603-1868). When Japanese calligraphy was introduced as a school subject later on, the brush industry flourished, making an indelible mark in the fabric of Kumano’s community. In fact, traditional events surrounding the brush began in the Showa era (1926-1989), almost a century ago. Fudematsuri (Brush Festival), held on the Autumn Equinox in September, puts the brush on a pedestal, specifically all 10,000 of them, hanging along the path leading to the10th century Sakakiyama Shrine.

Rituals celebrating the work of used brushes reveal the deep-seated respect and appreciation to animals and master craftsmen of the blush that brought Kumano its repute and prosperity.

As the demand for calligraphy brushes decreased over the years, Kumano started producing more makeup brushes instead. Guided by their longstanding reputation and superb craftsmanship, Kumano is now synonymous with high-end makeup brushes, producing the tools some of the world’s best makeup artists swear by.

The best makeup is wasted without the right tools.

Elevate your makeup game with Kumanofude today.  You’ll see the difference right away. The good news is that Hiroshima Artist Brush Manufacturing, established in 1869 in the heart of Kumano, can deliver to your doorstep!

Face Wash Brush

Discover the luxurious, comforting face wash brush made of soft goat hair. Start and end your day with the Face Wash Brush that expertly cleans your pores, leaving your skin feeling clean, fresh and revived.

Hiroshima Artist Brush Manufacturing Face Wash Brush
From Hiroshima Artist Brush Manufacturing
Face Wash Brush


Kumano Makeup Brush Set

Selected as one of "The Wonder 500" hidden gems that represent Japan, this is a perfect set to reward yourself with or gift a girlfriend who deserves it. Handy and pretty, it's the perfect set of tools to create that Instagram-ready look. The charming kimono case keeps the face brush and lip brush ready for touch-up on the go or in the office.

Hiroshima Artist Brush Manufacturing Kumano Makeup Brush Set
From Hiroshima Artist Brush Manufacturing
Kumano Makeup Brush Set With Kimono

USD 110

Portable High Quality Brush Set

The powder and cheek brushes are made from blue squirrel hair while the lip brush is made from high-quality weasel hair. Each brush is collapsible and compact, perfect for storing in the office or even in a handbag. The maki-e (lacquer work) brush handles provide that touch of whimsy and elegance in your makeup repertoire.

Hiroshima Artist Brush Manufacturing Portable High Quality Brush Set
From Hiroshima Artist Brush Manufacturing
Portable High Quality Brush Set With Makie

USD 170