How To: Clean Your Makeup Brushes & Make Your Own Brush Cleaner


One thing I feel very strongly about is regularly washing your makeup brushes. I certainly am a bit of a makeup brush hoarder, so when it comes to cleaning, I sometimes avoid the dreaded task. Once you get the hang of doing it though, it becomes easier and easier each time and you find little tips and tricks to make it a faster process. Washing brushes is also super important if you want to avoid unnecessary breakouts caused from bacteria building up in your brushes. Today I'll take you through how I wash my brushes and my DIY brush cleaner ...




Lots of dirty makeup brushes! 

There are a lot of makeup brush cleaners out there on the market, and they can vary in price from around $5 up to about $50 or more. I have bought several different brands over the years, but I still prefer making my own makeup brush cleaner more than buying one. I use the Napoleon Perdis Brush Cleaner on my vanity just as a spot cleaner. It's very effective at quickly removing any traces of makeup on my brushes. It contains alcohol which disinfects the brushes, but I find it dries out the brushes and also has a harsh smell, so it's still important to incorporate a "deep cleaning" routine for your makeup brushes.

Make Your Own Brush Cleaner




You will need:

  • Mixing bowl
  • 1/3 cup of Dish Liquid (any kind will do), this will disinfect your brushes
  • 1/3 cup of Baby Shampoo, this will soften and clean your brushes.
  • 1/3 cup of Conditioner (any kind will do, I use a cheap one) this keeps your brushes nice and soft
  • Add about 1/4 cup of hot water 
  • A towel or old cloth to dry your brushes on

1. Mix together all ingredients into the mixing bowl. This will be used as your makeup brush cleaner.

Dish Detergent

Baby Shampoo

Sunsilk Conditioner

2. Start with your larger face brushes and wash them individually. Take a single brush and tip it upside down into the bowl mixture for a few seconds. Then, gently run the brush under warm water, using a slow tap setting so you're not wasting too much water.





3. Swirl the brush against the sink or the palm of your hand in circular motions to get all the gunk out of the bristles. Allow the mixture to work up a foam into the bristles. If you have a white sink, you can see all of the makeup and dirt leaving your brushes. I love this part! You can also rub the brushes along the palm of your hand which is effective to get them clean, and displace dirt that might be stuck in the brush hairs.




4. When the water begins to run clear, your brush is clean and you can move on to the next one. For stubborn brushes that are very dirty, leave it in the concentrated solution for 30 seconds, and then rinse again and it should come clean. 




5. Repeat until all your brushes have been cleaned. For eye brushes, I dip 4-5 into the solution at the same time, because they are smaller you can do more than one at a time and they are generally much less dirty than the larger face brushes. As each brush becomes clean, squeeze out any excess water and lay the brush down flat on an old towel or cloth to dry temporarily until you are finished all your brushes.



6. When all brushes are clean, lay down a towel on a flat surface, and arrange your brushes, bristle side down against a wall or window so the water can drip down into the towel. You can also lay your brushes down flat on the towel and take them outside to dry more quickly. Make sure they are secured if it is windy outside. You can also buy these handy brush holders from Benjabelle which are great if you are prepared to shell out some extra cash on a brush drying solution! Use code 'welcome' to score a discount! 

Some of my clean makeup brushes

TIPS TO REMEMBER

  NEVER use a hair dryer to dry your brushes because the heat from the dryer will melt the glue that holds the brushes together, causing them to fall apart.

  NEVER get water into the ferrule (metal part between your brush hairs and the brush base) because this will cause your brushes to rust and deteriorate, as well as shed.

My makeup brushes drying outside my little apartment!

I hope this little tutorial was useful to some of you. I have always made my own brush cleaner and I find it really works well for me! How do you clean your makeup brushes?



15 comments :

  1. It's interesting to see that you have a recipe for cleaning your brushes! I honestly just use shampoo, rinse then conditioner and rinse. xD

    Sheri | Behind The Frames

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    1. I know lots of people that just use shampoo & conditioner and rinse separately! I think everyone does it slightly differently but I always love reading posts about how people wash their brushes so that's why I thought I'd do one too! I'm glad you found it interesting though :) Thanks so much for your comment!

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  2. Ooh I just use a handwash with disinfectant to clean mine, I'll try this next time though! Great post :)

    Angela | The Sunday Chapter

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    1. I don't think there is any right or wrong way, there are so many different things you can use to get your brushes clean,sometimes I change up my little recipe and try different things like olive oil or vinegar! Glad you liked the post! Thanks so much for your comment :) xx

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  3. I've been doing a similar process but instead of using a dish washing liquid I use olive oil to break down the makeup in the brushes before shampooing :) do you know if you can use the same formula to clean sponges?

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    1. Hey Catherine, I have used olive oil before & it's definitely really effective at breaking down makeup. I once used too much though and my brushes were left greasy and gross! You always have to make sure you only use a small amount and rinse your brushes really well so there is no residue left. I'm sure you do that already though! I probably would just use a mixture of the baby shampoo & dish detergent for the sponges since they don't need conditioner at all. I've washed my beauty blender with dish detergent and baby soap before & it worked well! Thanks for your comment :) xx

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  4. I knew this one would be a hit! Love the photos lol... Seriously great entry can't wait to read what's next!

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  5. I love seeing how people wash their makeup brushes :) I did one of these posts about a year ago, but I do it a little differently now, so maybe I should update it. I love your little concoction of shampoo/dishwashing liquid & conditioner!

    www.kateflowermaquillage.wordpress.com

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    1. Thanks Kate! I'd love to see how you wash your makeup brushes! I love trying out different recipes when I get bored! xx

      Sarah | Bows & Pleats

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  6. Replies
    1. Thanks love! I actually got them from Kmart for $5 each! I think they are supposed to hold candles which is why they have the heart cutouts for light to shine through, but they make the perfect makeup brush holders! xx

      Sarah | Bows & Pleats

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  7. My brushes are very, VERY overdue for a wash! Will be trying this when I get around to cleaning them! Any tips on getting them to dry quickly?

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    1. Hey Ally! So sorry I didn't reply to this comment sooner. My trick is always trying to do them first thing in the morning on a day where I don't mind going around with no makeup, OR do your makeup first thing in the morning and then wash your brushes after you've finished, they need about 6-8 hours to dry properly. I always put mine outside on a table to dry and make sure they are secured down. Here in QLD, there is generally a nice little breeze and I have never had trouble with them drying. If you are nervous to leave them outside you can also place them near an open window. Hope this helps!

      Sarah | Bows & Pleats

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  8. Ah the satisfaction of having clean brushes. I usually use baby shampoo alone but I'll definitely be trying the mixture you recommended and see how I get on :) x

    http://beautywithcharm.blogspot.co.uk

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