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11 Ways to Clean Makeup Brushes (Complete Guide)

Ways to Clean Makeup Brushes: If you use cosmetics often, you know that your makeup brushes will get soiled after a few applications. Maintaining healthy skin and a flawless makeup application may be as simple as cleaning your makeup brushes.

Ways to Clean Makeup Brushes

To keep your brushes in pristine condition, clean them right away after each use and give them a thorough cleaning once a week. Here are effective ways to clean makeup brushes.

But then, what are the different types of makeup brushes and their uses?

Types of makeup brushes and their uses


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types of makeup brushes and their uses

1. Concealer Brush

The concealer brush is generally shaped like a paintbrush but slightly denser with firm bristles and made of synthetic fibers. This brush is great for concealer under the eyes as well as cream eye shadow.

2. Brow brush

The brow brush, like the concealer brush, should have dense, firm bristles. This brush can be used to define and fill in brows, as well as to apply gel eyeliner. This brush is usually reasonably priced.

3. Blending Brush

This is also known as the “windshield wiper brush.” It is the favorite brush for applying eyeshadow in the crease. In general, the rounder and larger the tip, the softer and more blended the application. This is an excellent brush for beginners as well as for blending out shadow, hence the name “blending brush.”

4. Crease Brush

This is another type of blending brush. It is angled rather than round. If you are unsure about the color of your crease, this brush is more precise and can make placement easier.

5. Pencil brush

This brush is essential for creating a soft and smokey shadow look, as well as wearing liner and eyeshadow on the bottom of your lashes. It gives a much softer and more flattering appearance than a pencil. This brush is small and shaped like the tip of a pencil.

6. Flat eyeshadow Brush

This brush is absolutely vital for flawless eye makeup application and is one of the few brushes that you actually need. This brush is essential for laying down a smooth foundation for any eyeshadow application. You want dense, firm bristles and a brush that is a little thicker. For the best application, natural bristles are preferable.

7. Lash and Brow Spoolie Brush

This small spoolie brush is ideal for taming brows and declumping mascara after application. These are reasonably priced. They are usually found on the other end of your brow pencil.

8. Flat eyeliner brush

The flat eyeliner brush is the preferred tool for applying flawless eyeliner that lasts all day.

9. Lip Brush

This is by no means a must-have, especially if you prefer a glossier look. It does, however, come in handy when wearing a bold lip and is also a great way to keep an extra application of a lipstick in your travel bag. Simply pack lip color onto bristles and put on the cover.

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10. Foundation Brush

For a flawless, airbrushed finish, use a foundation brush. Again, there are numerous versions of this brush, and much of it is dependent on the type of foundation you are using. Because not all foundations work well with a brush, it really depends on the type of foundation you have.

11. Stippling Brush

This brush type produces a flawless, airbrushed base with high-definition results. It’s great for applying foundation, blush, bronzer, powder, and highlighters. It’s also great for applying liquid and cream products. The top of the brush has duo-fiber bristles that provide a light, gentle application that looks very natural. These brush ends have a light, feathery feel to them.

12. Powder bronzer, blush contour highlight Brushes

In my opinion, this is where people are fooled out of a lot of money. Don’t get me wrong, having all of these lovely brushes is wonderful, but you don’t need a separate brush for each of these things. All of these things can be accomplished with a single good brush. So, spend a little more money on ONE REALLY GOOD BRUSH that lays on color beautifully and does it all.

But then, how do you clean your makeup brushes? Find out below.

11 ways to clean makeup brushes

Here are 11 smart ways to clean makeup brushes so they are durable:

1. Remove any extra makeup with a paper towel

In order to start the thorough cleaning procedure, you must do this first. Get a clean paper towel or hand towel and wipe off the entire brush, including the handle, before proceeding to the next step of cleaning.

Performing this fast once-over will simplify your cleaning routine significantly, and you may be surprised by how much makeup comes off.

In order to get rid of all the makeup on your brush, try scrubbing it against a cotton wipe many times.

2. Hold the brush so that the bristles are pointing down while you rinse

The water won’t be able to seep back into the brush’s core, where it might weaken the glue holding it together. Shake the brush and separate the bristles to get a good look inside.

Avoid drinking really hot water and instead go for lukewarm. If you wash your brush frequently in hot water, the bristles may get brittle and break.

3. Mix shampoo and warm water.

Baby shampoo or clarifying shampoo is also acceptable. Add your preferred shampoo after adding some sink water to a bowl or small dish. Make sure there is enough water in your measurements—they don’t need to be exact—to completely submerge your brush’s bristles.

  • Detergents or makeup removers are alternative options, but shampoos work just as well.
  • While some cosmetic professionals advise using dish soap because of its ability to remove grease, others caution that the harsh detergent may eventually dry out your bristles.

4. Add coconut or olive oil.

Only around 1 US tbsp (15 mL) of oil is required to assist in cleaning your brush. Add 1 US tbsp (15 mL) of olive oil or coconut oil to your water and shampoo if you use makeup or concealer that contains oil as a base. The oil will make it simpler for the makeup to be broken down, resulting in a cleaner, fresher brush.[4]

This is an excellent method for maintaining the cleanliness of natural brushes.

5. Brushes in your mixture should be whirled.

For the greatest results, attempt to create a thick lather. It ought should simply take a few seconds. As the makeup falls off your brush, you’ll probably notice that the water is becoming hazy or soiled, which is a positive indication!

Work up a lather with your brush in the palm of your hand if it’s particularly grimy. The bristles will get more agitated as a result, which may result in a deeper clean.

6. Rinse the brush

To thoroughly clean the bristles, keep stroking them. Rinse again until all of the soap or shampoo is gone, keeping the brush pointed downward to prevent water from running back into the handle. If your brush isn’t quite clear yet, don’t panic; you still have time to wash it more thoroughly.

Your brush is good to go if the water flows flawlessly! You don’t have to clean it once more.

7. Use white vinegar for a deep clean mix.

For a deep clean, mix 1 part white vinegar with 2 parts water and soak the brushes for 10-15 minutes before following steps 2-6.

For the majority of brushes, a second washing will be sufficient for thorough cleaning. However, feel free to continue cleaning your brush if the water doesn’t flow clearly after the second wash.

8. Squeeze extra water out.

Ensure that your brushes are not too moist. Gently compress the bristles with your palms or a fresh piece of paper towel until they are moist. Avoid wringing or rubbing the brushes since doing so might harm the bristles.

To prevent water from running into the handle while the brushes are still soaking wet, try not to tilt them upward. You may be a little less cautious about this once you pat them dry.

9. Set out your brushes to dry.

To absorb any more moisture, spread out a clean towel. In order to prevent the bristles from flattening out while drying, hang the brush’s tip off the edge of a counter or table. To prevent water damage to the handle or the glue within, try to keep the brushes flat until they are completely dry.

  • The amount of time it takes for your brushes to dry will depend on their size and thickness.
  • Avoid using heat to dry your brushes, even if it can seem like a smart idea! The bristles on your brushes can become damaged and warped by hair dryers, especially if they are synthetic.

10. After each usage, give your brushes a spritz of rubbing alcohol

Brushes may be kept free of germs and bacteria if you clean them every day. Spray some rubbing alcohol over the bristles of your brush, and then wipe it gently with a clean towel after each usage. Before using the brush, let it air out.

  • Rubbing alcohol is readily available at any pharmacy or drug shop.
  • Investing in a cosmetic brush sterilizer is a good idea if you’re nervous about spreading germs. You may use this gadget to get 99.9 percent of the germs off your brushes in a matter of minutes with the use of UV light.

11. Do a weekly thorough cleaning.

Acne and blocked pores are both direct results of using filthy makeup brushes. Once per week to ten days, if you use your brushes frequently, give them a thorough cleaning. You’ll notice a difference in your skin’s texture and tone.

Makeup brushes, especially those used for foundation and concealer, tend to be caked with product.

Ways to Clean Makeup Brushes (FAQs & Answers)

Here is a few more stuff to take to heart. Read answers to a few of the frequently asked questions on how to clean makeup brushes.

1. Why is it important to clean makeup brushes?

It is important to clean makeup brushes to prevent the buildup of bacteria, dirt, and oils, which can lead to skin irritation, breakouts, and infections. Clean brushes also help ensure that makeup is applied smoothly and evenly.

2. How often should I clean my makeup brushes?

It is recommended to clean your makeup brushes at least once a week if you use them daily. Brushes used less frequently can be cleaned every two weeks.

3. What should I use to clean my makeup brushes?

You can use a gentle shampoo, dish soap, or a specially formulated brush cleaner to clean your makeup brushes. Some people also use a mixture of water and vinegar or rubbing alcohol.

4. Can I use a hair dryer to dry my brushes?

It is not recommended to use a hair dryer to dry your makeup brushes, as the heat can damage the bristles. Instead, allow the brushes to air dry by laying them flat on a clean towel or using a brush drying rack.

5. How can I keep my makeup brushes clean between washes?

You can use a daily brush cleaner or spray to remove makeup residue quickly and bacteria from your brushes between washes. It is also a good idea to store your brushes in a clean and dry place to prevent the buildup of bacteria.

Dermatologists Recommendations

To clean your makeup brushes, dermatologists recommend the following tips:

  • Rinse the tips of your brushes under lukewarm, running water to remove residual makeup. Only rinse the tip, as submerging the whole brush head will eventually dissolve the glue that connects the brush head to the handle.
  • Fill a bowl with lukewarm water and a tablespoon of either gentle shampoo or clarifying shampoo. Using plain soap and water can dry out the bristles.
  • Swirl each brush tip in the bowl. For a good lather, you can also massage each brush tip in the palm of your hand.
  • Rinse the brush tips under running water.
  • Continue shampooing and rinsing each brush until the water runs clear from the brush.
  • Squeeze out excess moisture with a clean, dry paper towel.
  • Lay your brushes flat to dry on a towel with the tips hanging off the edge of the counter. Do not dry your brushes upright in a container, as this will cause the water to run down the brushes, loosening the glue that connects the brush head with the handle.

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Keeping your makeup brush clean is crucial for maintaining good hygiene. A dirty makeup brush can harbor harmful bacteria, leading to infections and other health issues.

We have examined practical ways to clean makeup brushes. Follow the guidelines effectively. To protect your skin and kill any harmful bacteria that lingers in your makeup brushes, it’s a good idea to wash your brushes every 7 to 10 days.

At a time when skin infections are on the rise, never share your makeup brushes with anyone else, and wash them often.

If you suspect that your makeup is causing acne breakouts or other skin irritation, make an appointment to see a board-certified dermatologist.

We hope you found this article helpful. Do well to share it with others. Thank you.


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