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How to Clean Makeup Brushes: The Lazy Girl's Guide

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All makeup junkies have been guilty of this at one time or another: neglecting to clean their makeup brushes. Possibly every girl at the age of 16 and above have their own set of makeup brushes. You only need to go online, and you will find every tutorial you'll ever need on how to use every kind of makeup brush there is. You can even find one on how to clean your brushes, but it is something that even beauty editors admit to putting off all the time.

Makeup brushes are the best supporting cast in every makeup kit. "I can't emphasize enough that the right tools are as important in getting the look you want as the actual makeup itself," says makeup artist Bobbi Brown. With these words of wisdom from an industry veteran, give your brushes a bit more TLC.

How to Clean Makeup Brushes: The Lazy Girl’s Guide
(Photo : Laura Chouette / Unsplash)
When was the last time your brushes had a good wash? Here are easy ways to clean makeup brushes.

Also Read: Jones Road: Bobbi Brown Launches Clean Makeup Line


What you need to get started

1. Liquid cleanser, which can be a gentle facial wash, baby shampoo, or even a mild dishwashing soap
2. Glass of water
3. Dishtowel or paper towels
4. A cleaning glove or mat


Gather the usual suspects

Take out all your brushes, especially the ones you use daily.

There are at least two ways to clean your brushes. The first is to mix in some cleanser in a glass of water and dip your brush in it. Swirl it around a few times until the water gets cloudy with the product. Repeat until water is clear, squeeze off excess water, then lay your brush to dry. You can place it horizontally on a dish towel or paper towel. Preferably, use the disposable paper towel instead of a terry cloth one as some makeup artists say that leaving them on damp towels can develop mildew. Change the paper towels when they get wet until the brushes are completely dry.

The second (and faster) way of cleaning makeup brushes is to use a cleaning glove or mat. These are the silicone gloves or mats you can find in makeup aisles that have waves, zigzags, and circular patterns on them. Squeeze a dollop of cleanser on the glove or mat, then swirl your brush through the different patterns to loosen makeup residue and wash it off. Follow the same drying technique above.

Ideally, you should wash your makeup brushes at least once a week. If you're a makeup artist, clean them after each client. Ensuring that your brushes are always clean saves your skin from breakouts and other skin and eye infections.


Other common mistakes

Soaking your brushes in water for an extended length of time. You may think that leaving your brushes in a glass of water overnight and rinsing them in the morning is a timesaver, but it will only dislodge the head from the handle. Avoid getting the ferrule wet. The ferrule is the spot where the brush meets the metal part of the handle.

Leaving your makeup brushes exposed in the bathroom. A damp environment is not good for brushes as they can develop molds and mildew. Even more disgusting is the fact that fecal matter from flushing the toilet can land on your precious tools.

Sharing your brushes is also a no-no. You never know if someone has a skin condition that may be infectious. Even if they would have none, the dirt and oil from someone else's face is not something you would want on your brushes.

Caring for your brushes well will make them last for years. In an Elle article, makeup artist Ashleigh B. Ciucci shares that she's still holding on to a MAC makeup brush from 1994!

Related Article: How to Make Your Own MAC-like Makeup Brush Cleanser

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