It’s often the simple things we overlook in our beauty regime, such as cleaning make-up brushes. Did you know that you should be cleaning them regularly?
Using dirty brushes can make your complexion appear dull, and make-up application more difficult. – Foundation brushes in particular feel very scratchy on the skin when they’re dirty.
Brushes collect bacteria, oil and dead skin cells with regular use and the longer you go without washing them, the more dirt they accumulate. This can cause clogged pores, blackheads, blemishes and breakouts. Not to mention the fact that good quality makeup brushes can be expensive, so learning how to properly clean them is the best way of protecting your investment.
Clean brushes help avoid irritation, are easier to use, softer and help to apply make-up smoothly, giving a great overall finish. A good tip to know when a brush is ready to be washed is when it’s no longer soft and is caked in make-up. Of course, the makeup residue will be visible too.
I recommend cleaning brushes once a week as it’s about the right amount of time needed before they get a lot of build-up. Assuming you wear eyeshadow on a daily basis, these brushes need to be washed every couple of days, or after each application if you’re using different colours each time. Sensitive eyes are very prone to irritation and infection, so using a freshly cleaned brush helps to prevent that. Eyeliner and brow brushes, particularly if you use gel products must be washed after every application, as they tend to get very cake-y, making it much harder to use a second time. Foundation, powder and blush brushes need to only be washed weekly.
I find it helpful to incorporate brush-cleaning into my Sunday night routine, so I know that I have freshly washed brushes for the week ahead.
I use isopropyl alcohol on the brushes in my make-up kit, as not only does it clean and sterilise them, they dry within seconds, making it ideal for using them on multiple people and for large bookings. If you are a make-up artist, I strongly recommend this method, and your brushes should be cleaned after each client for hygiene reasons.
For the larger face brushes, I use baby shampoo. I massage the shampoo into the bristles and hold it facing downwards under a running tap, taking care not to get water into the metal casing as this loosens the glue. This method works really well, but takes around 6 – 8 hours for the brushes to dry.
There are specific brush cleaners available on the market, most containing alcohol which can can irritate the hands and face if any residue remains. For brushes that are super dirty, you can use a touch of almond or olive oil to break down the residue before you wash them.
When washing brushes, be sure to be very gentle to avoid changing the shape of the brush. Avoid the metal casing below the bristles; if it gets wet, it can cause the bristles to loosen and fall out. After the brushes are rinsed out thoroughly, I put them on a towel, with the bristles hanging off the edge of a window ledge to air dry naturally.
Washing your makeup brushes should be a regular part of your beauty routine.
What do you use to clean your brushes?