Sunday, 27 September 2015

Makeup Brush Cleaning: Tips and Tools

The idea of cleaning my makeup brushes is one that really divides me. On one hand, they will last longer and won't spread bacteria if kept clean, and using freshly washed brushes in the morning is one of the best feelings. But on the other hand, it's really boring. I know, I know, no contest right. So I thought I would compile some tips and the tools I use to make brush cleaning a little easier. 

Firstly I'll grab all the brushes that need washing, as I don't wash all of my every time, and round up the tools I use. For a deep clean I like to use Johnson's Baby Shampoo as it is gentle on the bristles but still removes all traces of makeup and doesn't leave a lingering smell. I spot clean my brushes regularly using The Pro Hygiene Collection Makeup Brush Cleaning Spray which is antibacterial, so I don't mind that the shampoo isn't. I also use the Soap and Glory Massage Glove to rub in the shampoo and the Benjabelle Daisy Brush Tree to aid the drying process. Once I have collected these items I'll put on some music to make it a little less boring, and get cracking.

I run the brush under lukewarm water, making sure to keep the brush facing down so no water gets into the ferrule - the bit where the bristles meet the brush handle - as this can interfere with the glue and cause shredding.

On bigger brushes I like to pop a small amount of the shampoo straight onto the bristles, as I find it easier to judge the amount needed, and then swirl it around on the gloved hand. Before I purchased the glove I used to do this on my bare hand which works just as well, although I found it would irritate my skin after a while. So it has definitely been a good investment, and I would recommend it if brush cleaning dries your skin out. As you can see from the rather grim photo, a lot of product will come out, especially for brushes that use cream/liquid products or ones that haven't been washed in a while.

Once they are looking cleaner I rinse the them thoroughly to remove all of the shampoo, and squeeze gently. If the water runs through clear, it's ready to be reshaped and dried. If not, I'll add a little more shampoo and repeat the process again,

When it comes to allowing your brushes to dry, it's best to avoid standing them upright the water will run into the ferrule as disrupt the glue. My bathroom has a rather large windowsill ledge which is perfect for drying brushes, because they are over an edge, rather than laying flat, they keep their shape better. Another way of drying brushes if you are short on space is a brush tree (Benjabelle Daisy pictured above), which hangs the brushes upside down, allowing them to keep their shape and avoid ferrule damage. I think it is a great idea, especially if you have a shared bathroom, or don't have an appropriate shelf to rest them on, but I haven't noticed a quicker drying time compared to brushes on the ledge. 

When the brushes have had some time to dry but are still damp, I like to go back round and gently reshape them. I find this helps to tame any flyaways, especially on natural haired brushes. After quite a few hours (depending on brush size) they are dry and ready to use.

I hope you've found this useful, and I would love to know if you have any tips and tricks for brush cleaning!


  1. Thank you for the great tips. I always find cleaning my brushes such a chore, plus some cleaning stuff can be really expensive! xx


    1. It's such a chore, but always feels so rewarding once it's done! That's why I love the baby shampoo, it's only a couple of pounds and does such a great job! Glad you enjoyed xx


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