Learn How to Easily Clean Makeup Brushes

Last updated Sep 26, 2021 | Beauty Tips, Cleaning | 1 comment

How To Clean Makeup Brushes

A makeup brush is a useful, important tool for the application of makeup. Due to frequent skin contact and the natural oil of your skin, it is very important to keep your makeup brush collection clean to avoid infection, inflammation and irritation. Clean brushes last longer and stay soft. Plus, they feel great on your facial features and help you avoid the application of too much makeup which tends to build up on brush bristles like foundation. Brushes of high quality require special attention as these may easily distort and are fragile. Learning how to maintain your favorite makeup brushes and keep these in optimal condition will give you great results and long lasting brushes.
Makeup Brushes come in all sizes and shapes for your face’s different areas. These brushes come into contact with your face on an everyday basis and will require the right amount of cleaning to remove caked-on makeup and bacteria. Makeup brushes need a cleaner that gets rid of bacteria and dirt without damaging or altering the brush hairs. Regular makeup cleaning ensures a healthy facial glow month after month.
A lot of bacteria and dirt can be harboured in makeup brushes. Frequently washing yours can keep not just the brushes clean by your face as well. You can clean powder brushes, blush brushes and foundation brushes once a week. Eye shadow brushes can be cleaned once every 2 days. If you wear eyeliner sealant, make sure to clean eyeliner brushes after each use. Use liquid castile soap, mild shampoo, and hand soap to clean makeup brushes. Products like Woolite, Cetaphil and Johnson & Johnson baby shampoo is recommended.

Soaking Your Makeup Brushes

Using lukewarm water, thoroughly wet the brush. Every bristle of each brush must be soaked completely. Do not use water higher than the temperature of your body, as the makeup brush’s fur-like bristles are quite sensitive to heat. Compared to acrylic fibers or synthetic polyester, genuine animal fur is somewhat more resistant to heat. It might be easier to remember that the finer the bristles of the brush are, the easier they could be damaged by temperature. These types of bristles are also more easily deformed, curled or damaged.

Use Baby Shampoo on Makeup Brushes

Your makeup brushes will benefit from using gentle baby shampoo or Cetaphil especially since these products are gentle enough for a baby. The baby shampoo is gentle enough to remove makeup and bacteria from the brush without the soft hairs getting damaged. Apply a pea-sized amount of Cetaphil or a rice-size amount of baby shampoo to your palm. The one by Johnson & Johnson works well for many makeup brushes. Against your palm, gently swirl around each brush and pay special attention to the bristle base and the inner core of the brush, as these parts do trap a lot of powder. You will notice that the Cetaphil won’t lather too much but the baby shampoo will foam. You will notice a lot of color residue coming out of your makeup brush bristles as you swirl it around against your palm.

Use Dish Soap for Lipstick Brushes

There is a waxy ingredient contained in lipstick that helps it stick to your lip area. The bad news is that the same necessary waxy ingredient also adheres to the bristles of your lipstick brush. Grease-cutting dish soap will be needed to help cut grease. This dissolves the waxy substance to release it from the brush. Into a sink of warm water, mix one teaspoon of dish soap that has a grease-cutting ingredient. Place the brushes into water and work the soap gently into the bristles of the brush using your fingers. After you clean the brush bristles, completely rinse the dish soap from the brush and let these air-dry.
Remember not to soak your brushes for longer than fifteen minutes. The fine hairs of high quality makeup brushes get damaged by over-soaking in water. At all times, it pays to be very gentle with your makeup brush collection. Gentle cleaning will avoid warping the brush shape and prevent the fibers from getting warped.


Use lukewarm water to rinse your brushes and squeeze extra moisture out of the bristles. Use water to soak them again as you continue to swirl against your palm. Repeat this process until the liquid squeezed out of the brush runs totally clear.

Dry the Brushes

Air drying and hang drying your brushes with the tip facing downward is a good idea. It is not always easy to have the brush tip facing downwards, however, unless you have a special hanging apparatus or brush rack. You might want to find a chopstick rest or a Chinese calligraphy rest to rest your makeup brushes on as they dry. However, if you hang them horizontally this way, you might want to squeeze all extra moisture out to make sure they brushes don’t develop a permanent ‘tilt.’ Dry the brushes for forty-eight hours or more. Do not place them near heat or blow them dry. As mentioned previously, heat will damage your makeup brushes. Make sure that every brush is completely dry before you use them to avoid the overgrowth of bacteria.

Disinfect the Brushes

You can keep bacteria from forming on the brushes using antibacterial-wipes. After each application of makeup, lightly wipe your makeup brushes with an antibacterial wipe. This results in the liquid evaporating quickly from each brush and bacteria getting killed. You can ensure that your makeup brushes remain free of bacteria when you use an antibacterial wipe on a daily basis.

Don’t Forget the Sponges!

Clean makeup sponges ensures great hygiene and longer lasting makeup products. To clean your makeup sponges, fill a bowl with warm water and add three drops of antibacterial soap. Soap all your sponges for about fifteen minutes. Remove excess makeup by rubbing the sponges with your fingers. Let these run clear by rinsing with warm water. Remove excess water by squeezing the sponge. Hang each sponge to dry and place these on a wire rack. This will dry the sponges completely as air circulates around it.

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