What's with the obsession? You could spend $60 on several sets of palettes and shadows! Why spend on the tools? Because if the tools suck, the colors on your face will suck too.
THE SEARCH ~ Have you found the Holy Grail of them all?
No. I haven't.
Reading reviews from other consumers helps me in choosing which to bite on with the limited resources that I have. For example, I like one brush from Shu Uemura, but then just one costs as much as an entire set of Too Faced Teddy Bear Hair. Some one would probably call me stupid for choosing Jarrod Blandino (I love you, Jarrod! You are a heavensent!) and his sexy brand over makeup genius Uemura. But based on my criteria and personal quirks (if you'd call it that), I'd choose Too Faced since it's synthetic and antibacterial, unlike those made of natural fibers. I get more for my money, as well as my undying love of animals.
Why spend on something high end when you can purchase a cheap brand from the department store? DON'T BE SO METICULOUS!
In my own twisted perspective, the material and composition of the item also sways my decision on splurge vs. save on brushes. As the article on Look Magazine's December 2008 issue says, the workings of an expensive, branded brush has an effect on how much color it deposits on your face. Also, for people like me who have sensitive skin, cheap brands that have natural hairs often scratch your skin, creating burrows where bacteria can deposit. So far, I've lived with natural hairs and the very subtle pain that comes with the scratching. Ouch.
People tend to have varying opinions on different products, depending on how it works for them. I may have a positive word for said set, but others may think otherwise. So until I try one prize at a time for myself, the quest shall continue.
Until then, ciao amore.