How to Properly Care for Your Makeup Brushes

Makeup brushes are often some of the most expensive makeup essentials, and yet experts agree that most should be tossed every two to three months. Why? They can be breeding grounds for bacteria and viruses of all kinds, and these are then easily transferred to your skin and your makeup whenever the brushes are used. Higher quality brushes can last longer, and can even withstand the rigors of being frequently cleaned, so if you know how to do it properly, you can use your makeup brushes for a longer period of time.

Clean Brushes are Makeup Essentials

Ask any makeup professional about their makeup brushes and they are likely to explain that they have applicators and brushes that they intend to replace every few months and some brushes that they try to keep a bit longer. Most have a very fixed cleaning regimen, and if you are willing to commit to something similar, you can keep your costlier brushes longer and let them serve safely as some of your makeup essentials for a little longer than 2-3 months.

The key, of course, is knowing how to properly clean your makeup brushes, and for that, we’ll ask the experts. Remember, though, that even with the best cleaning techniques, performed at consistent, regular intervals, your brushes still aren’t getting as clean as if you replaced them with fresh, new brushes.

What experts say is that “soaping up your makeup brushes regularly can extend the life of the bristles and make for a better makeup application.” To do that is simple and requires that you use fresh water and a gentle soap or a specialty brush cleaner and follow these steps:

1. Wet the brush with the warm water.

2. Put a small amount of cleaner in your palm.

3. Massage the tips of the bristles gently with the cleaner. Be aware that scrubbing the bristles with the soap and water can actually break down the glue that holds the bristles in place, leading to a shedding brush.

4. Rinse the bristles.

5. Squeeze moisture from the brush with a dry and clean towel.

6. Shape the brush and allow to dry with the bristles hanging over the edge of a counter (preventing any issues with the shape of the brush or contact with the surface, since that can lead to mildew). Never dry standing up as this causes water to pool inside the “ferrule”, which is what holds the bristles to the handle.

As you can see, where makeup essentials are concerned, cleaning the brushes is not a labor intensive or confusing process. It does take time to wash makeup brushes individually and properly, but it can prolong their lives by doing so. Do keep in mind that cleaning won’t remove 100% of the makeup buildup, though; also, that smaller and tighter brushes can be difficult to keep properly cleaned, and even if washed weekly in this way, should be replaced on that two month schedule.

Do you need help keeping up with these makeup essentials? Maybe you don’t have time to wash your makeup brushes as fully as outlined above? Maybe you won’t have time to head out and replace them along with other makeup essentials in your toolkit? If any of this sounds familiar, you can turn to BEAUTIAC, a subscription based cosmetics firm dedicated to ethically made products.