We understand: Cleaning makeup brushes can be a pain. We would argue that it is as important as flossing and filing taxes on our list of things we don’t want to do, but we must. It can be tempting to grab yesterday’s foundation toothbrush and use it again for today’s look. But for a host of reasons that we’ll discuss below, you should learn how to clean makeup brushes and then incorporate them into your daily routine.

Let’s get to the washing. YouTube and Reddit have many options for washing makeup brushes and sponges. You can use dish soap and olive oils to wash them or put your Beautyblender in a microwave to clean them. SELF recommends that you seek expert advice. We asked three makeup artists to share their tips on cleaning your makeup brushes. They also shared their thoughts about when you should wash your brushes, how often it is worth changing them, and what cleaners and accessories work best.

How often should your makeup brushes be cleaned?

Dr. King suggests washing makeup brushes and sponges at the very least once per week because they can become a breeding ground for bacteria. She says that this is a good practice for tools in the sensitive eye area. It’s especially important if they are used for cream-based or liquid products. These tools are more susceptible to contamination. Dr. King recommends a longer interval between washing tools with dry powders (which she claims is a more difficult environment for microbes) and tools concentrated on the delicate eye area, such as the cheeks and eyebrows. However, it would be best to wash them still at least once a week.

When is it time to replace all your makeup sponges and brushes?

Everyone agreed that makeup brushes could be used faithfully for many years if properly cared for. Schumacher states, “I rarely throw away a brush.” He also says that if a brush isn’t suitable for my kit anymore, I will usually recycle it by making craft brushes with them.

The life expectancy of your brush depends on how often you use it and how well you care for it. There are clear signs that it is time to get rid of your brush. Nam and Gowers say that split ends can signify that you need to get a haircut. However, splitting hairs or hairs falling out of your brush could indicate that it is time to retire. A bad odour can also indicate that your makeup sponge or brush is wearing out. Gowers states that if your Beautyblender starts cracking or is smelling funny, it’s time to replace it.

Gowers recommends that you clean the container in which your makeup brushes are stored now and again to prolong their life. Nam suggests slipping brush guards ($13 – Beautylish ) onto your brushes to prevent them from getting damaged.

These are the tools you need to clean your makeup brushes at home

Many makeup-brush cleaners are available in spray form. These sprays are convenient and quick for cleaning your brushes. They aren’t necessary for cleaning your brushes.

A liquid brush cleaner is another popular choice. We’ll explain how to use it below. We spoke to many makeup artists who preferred to use liquid brush cleaners. Schumacher loves the Parian Spirit cleaner. It is quick and easy to clean her brushes. She says, “It disinfects and removes in one step.”

Nam also said that one of her favourite liquid brush cleaning products is from MAC Cosmetics. “It disinfects quickly and gets makeup out quickly and it dries down very fast.” My brushes do not smell chemical and feel soft after use.


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