Beauty Files: Cleaning Your Makeup Brushes

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Hello and welcome back to the blog! I spent some time this weekend organizing some of my spaces and decided it was way past time to clean my makeup brushes. I don’t wear makeup every day, but I do enjoy *putting on my face*, as my Granny used to call it. It had been a while since I cleaned my brushes, which prompted me to write this Beauty Files: Cleaning Your Makeup Brushes post!

Why the need for clean brushes?

Besides the obvious, which is to rid your brushes of built-up color, you want to clean your gear often to eliminate the gunk and bacteria that can build up on the bristles over time. If you’re having issues with acne, cold sores, or eye irritations, your makeup brushes could be the culprit.

So, what do you need to get those all important beauty tools spic and span? Keeping is simple, you’ll need soap, water, and a towel. Of course, they also make little gadgets that make it much easier to to get your brushes really clean, but as long as you have those three things, you have a great start!

Cleaning your brushes is a simple as one, two, three:

  1. Wet your brush or sponge with warm water.
  2. Apply your soap and gently massage it into the tool. Being to aggressive can cause the bristle to fall out or loosen or your sponge to tear.
  3. Rinse with warm water. Repeat Step Two if your brushes are really stained or dirty. Ideally, you want clean suds and clear water!
  4. Gently squeeze the excess water from your brush/sponge, reshaping the bristles if you need to before laying it out to dry on a towel. Never put them bristle side up while they’re still wet! This can cause the glue or adhesive to weaken and lead to bristle loss.

Now your brushes look great! Keep reading below to see my favorite products for keeping my brushes clean and in fantastic shape.

beauty files: cleaning your makeup brushes
  1. Sephora Brush Refresh Daily Brush Cleaner, $15- This spray helps keep your brushes clean on a daily basis. Just spray, wipe, and then store your brushes for the next use. Using this in-between deep cleans really helps save time and wear on brushes from scrubbing them to get the makeup out the gets pushed deep into the bristles.
  2. Sephora Color Switch, $18- This little sponge in a tub works great when you need to swap eye shadow colors! Simply brush your shadow brush lightly across the top and you can move on to the next shade without any carryover. I know there are similar sponges for sale on Amazon, but this is the one I use. When it gets worn out, I will probably switch to a different brand.
  3. Sephora Collection Solid Brush and Sponge Cleaner, $15- This is my go-to for when my brushes are really dirty or I need to clean my Beauty Blenders. I find the liquid soap I’m going to talk about next doesn’t quite get the job done on makeup sponges or really dirty brushes that you would use for foundation or concealer. My Beauty Blenders actually look brand new when I get scrubbing them with this product!
  4. EcoTools Makeup Cleaner, $6.99- I bought this liquid soap after seeing all the great reviews on Amazon. When I purchased the power brush cleaner, it recommended using it with liquid soap and this one was up there in the reviews. It does a good job on lightly dirty brushes, but as I said previously if your cleaning a makeup sponge or your brushes are really grimy, I’d opt for the solid cleanser.
  5. Silicone Brush Cleaning Pad, $4.99-These little guys are life-savers when it comes to getting all the makeup and soap out of your brushes! The silicone fingers are gentle on the bristles but effective at grabbing the dirty and soap without wrecking your brush. 100% worth the investment!
  6. Automatic Brush Cleaner & Dryer, $21.99-Ok, I know this one feels a little gimmicky. And I get that! But, it works. If I’m not doing a deep clean of my brushes, this cuts my cleaning time nearly in half. And it significantly reduces the time spent drying. Worth it! When I use it, I always make sure to gentle reshape my brushes because this does fan them out when it’s washing and drying them. 98% of my brushes are synthetic bristles, so they hold up very well to the spinning of this device. I don’t use many natural fiber brushes, so I can’t speak to the effectiveness or durability of those with this product.

Wrapping Up

So to wrap up this edition of Beauty Files: Cleaning Your Makeup Brushes, just know that you don’t always have to have the fanciest of gadgets to clean your brushes. Just a good quality soap, some water, and a little elbow grease go a long way! But the gadgets sometimes make it a lot more fun of a chore 😉 I’ll make sure to list these links on my shopping page for your convenience! Happy cleaning, friends!

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