Makeup and cosmetics have come a long way in the last decade or two.  There are so many options for looking awesome and natural, and many of these options include makeup brushes.  Many women have come away from using their hands and sponges to using these to polish their look.

The only problem with this method is that the oils and products do tend to collect in the bristles and not only will your brush not work as it did, but it can cause breakouts if not properly cared for.

It all depends on the products you use.  If you use mostly loose powders, then using a gentle soap such as baby shampoo will do the trick.  If you use oil based products you need to work with a different approach.

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Clean Makeup Brushes Used with Loose Powder and lighter Products

Step One:  Get a few things organized.  You will need a small bowl, gentle baby shampoo, absorbent towel and warm water.

Step Two:  Gently massage the shampoo into the brush ends using your fingers. 

Step Three – Fill the bowl with warm water (not hot or it will damage the bristles)

Step Four – Gently swirl it in the warm water to loosen the dirt and soap.

Step Five – Run the brush under some running warm water from the tap to get rid of any residual soap making sure to only do the ends and not get the shaft part all wet.

Step Six – Gently roll in an absorbent towel, don’t tug on them, you just want to get rid of excess water.

Step Seven – Unroll the towel and reshape the brush with your hands.

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Step Eight – Find a place where the brush can lay with the bristles hanging off the edge such as with a counter or dresser or the vanity where no one will touch it, and let it dry overnight.  This will retain the shape, and you are ready to use them again.

You can also get a dryer stand which basically allows the brushes to stand upright and dry naturally without losing their shape.

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Step Nine – Fluff them back up with a hairdryer on gentle setting or hold far away from the ends.

Electronic Makeup Brush Cleaner

If you prefer to have an appliance that does the cleaning for you, or if you own a lot of brushes, this machine will do all the steps in one go.  This would be a great gift idea for anyone on your list that uses makeup and accessories daily.  You could simply do this overnight and have them ready for the next day.  This can save you the bother of doing them yourself.

Using Oil Based Cosmetic Products

If your brushes have been used for more oil based products, you will need an extra step.  Sometimes the baby shampoo may loosen it, but being gentle it doesn’t work as well.

Step One – In a small bowl place some olive oil

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Step Two – Swirl your brush in the olive oil and then help it with your fingers.  This will loosen the built up oily residue from products. You should see it loosening

Step Three – Continue on with the steps above to finish.


How Often should you Clean Them?

It all depends on how heavily you use them.  You can tell after a while they don’t seem to work quite as well as they will build up.  It is best to clean them before they get to this point.

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Once a Month is a good place to start when it comes to cleaning your brushes, unless you are prone to facial breakouts in which case once a week might be better.

Replace Them

There comes a time when even cleaning simply doesn’t bring them back to life.  They become heavier with product and just don’t work the way you want them to.  Eventually you will need to treat yourself to a new set. 

No point in investing in high quality makeup and cosmetics if the accessories don’t work well.   Just like with an artist you are only as good as your tools.  So if your tools are not in the best of shape, it may be time to replace them.

Keep them Clean

I know we are all in a rush in the morning, but leaving your brushes and makeup things all over the vanity or sink where people are washing their hands or others are simply using the area is a recipe for trouble.  Bacteria, water and more can get into the ends and this can transfer to your face.  Your brushes are like the artist tools, you need to keep them clean and in good shape to get the best to clean a makeup brushCredit:

It is important that you keep them away from the general sink area after use.  Nothing worse than using a brush that has become damp or has fallen in the sink.  You don’t want to keep dipping a bacteria laden brush into your new expensive makeup either.  So it is very important to keep them clean just like your other accessories such as a hairbrush.  Maybe do it all at the same time.

Note:  If you share a bathroom with others keep your makeup and your accessories in your own area or at least in an organizer that will keep them away from harm and bacteria.  If you clean your makeup brushes regularly they will last a good long time.