Chances are you have a variety of makeup brushes that you use for contouring, concealing, and applying color to your lips, cheeks, and eyelids. With all these brushes and how often you use them, do you know when you should be cleaning them and how? This is one step of your beauty routine that you may often neglect. Not washing your makeup brushes regularly can lead to clogged pores and breakouts since bits of make, oily and debris can gather on the brushes. 

How to Clean Makeup Brushes

The first step to deep cleaning your makeup brushes will be acquiring the necessary tools. You will need:

  • A bowl

  • Baby shampoo or a gentle clarifying shampoo

  • Sink

  • Lint free cloth

Steps for cleaning your makeup brushes:

Step 1. Run your makeup brushes under warm water to remove any leftover makeup residue. Avoid getting the handle wet and instead focus on just the bristles.

Step 2. In your bowl, add warm water and some of the shampoo.

Step 3. Swirl your makeup brush in the bowl of water to build up a lather on the bristles. You can use the palm of your hand for a better lather if needed.

Step 4. Rinse the shampoo off the brush under warm water again.

Step 5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 until the water you rinse the brush under is clear.

Step 6. Using the lint free cloth wipe the bristle of your brush and reshape them.

Step 7. Lay out a dry cloth, so you can set your clean brushes on it to dry. Use your fingers to reshape the bristles and smooth them out.

You want to ensure the brushes are completely dry before replacing them in your makeup bag. Brushes that are left wet can mildew and will have an unpleasant smell. So when it comes to how to clean makeup brushes, it is important that you lay the brushes flat to dry. If you leave them upright to dry, water will gather at the base of the brush and the bristles tend to loose their shape and begin to fan out.

These are the simple steps to take to make sure your makeup brushes are clean. You can also purchase specially formulated shampoos that are specifically used to clean makeup brushes, but you will get the same results using a baby shampoo or clarifying shampoo.

When should you clean your makeup brushes?

Cleaning your makeup brushes is a fairly quick and easy process, but how often should you be doing it? Use a daily brush cleaner on your makeup brushes after every use and once a week you should be performing a deep cleaning of your brushes. Keep in mind that it can take a few hours for your makeup brushes to dry completely, so you will want to schedule your deep cleaning after you have already applied your make up for the day or when you know you won't be using them for that day.

What others do when cleaning their makeup brushes?

  • I like adding a few drops of tea tree oil in with the shampoo I use to clean my makeup brushes. The oil contains antiseptic properties and the makeup brushes end up smelling great. After the final rinse of my brushes, I use my fingers to squeeze out any excess water before laying them out to dry.

  • How to clean makeup brushes can be done a number of ways. For me, I like to clean my brushes after every use using a liquid brush cleanser. I always clean my concealer and foundation brush last, then use a tissue to absorb most of the water on the bristles before laying them flat to dry.

  • I don't use a shampoo to clean my makeup brushes. I find it easier to use an organic bar of soap instead. I simply rub my brushes on the soap to get all the residue off. Then I will let them dry in front of the air condition since the cooler air helps keep the bristles soft.

Store Your Makeup Brushes Properly After Cleaning

There are many ways you can store your makeup brushes. Most makeup brushes will come with a holder that keeps the brushes separated and make it easy to take them with you on the go. If you don't usually take your brushes on the go, consider getting a holder for your brushes that you can keep on your vanity or dresser. Storing your makeup brushes in an upright position will help your brushes maintain their shape and last longer. You don't need to invest in a specially designed brush holder - a mason jar will also work. Just be sure to place something in the jar, like coffee beans, that will help keep the brushes in an upright position and keep the bristles from touching or bending.

After learning how to clean makeup brushes properly, you'll want to keep them on display so they maintain their shape and are easy to access. Whether you store them in a decorative jar or a brush holder is completely up to you.


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