I've been using this pricey little sponge for almost four years. The people who don't like the beauty blender, from what I can tell, tend to be people who prefer a heavier foundation application. Yes, it makes your foundation go on somewhat sheer, but it is buildable. However, you will probably use more product with this then you would with a brush. Having said that, I find the beauty blender to give a flawless finish (even with cheaper foundations) that I've found in no foundation brush I've ever tried. This is a holy grail product for me for applying liquid foundation, blending out cream contours and highlights, concealer, or applying your bake. I've tried cheaper dupes for this and none of them even come close. BB has a unique texture and firmness that the cheaper sponge applicators can't seem to mimic. They're almost just as good in my opinion, but due to their smaller size and the fact that they don't last nearly as long as the BB, this one wins for me hands down. Yes, it's ridiculously expensive, but it really will last you a long time if you take care of it. I find that you can use it for longer than the recommended time frame if you look after it properly and make sure to wash and air dry it after each use. I've only ever purchased the original pink ones, but have read that the black pro sponge gives heavier coverage. So that will be my next purchase to test this out. It's worth the money!