Sunday, April 5, 2015

Washing Makeup Brushes 101


There are two different types of washing brushes. Here I’ll show you how to properly take care of your makeup brushes. 

  • Spot Cleaning: Spot cleaning is great for a quick disinfecting clean. This is great for in-between deep cleanses. This is also a great way to clean brushes for makeup artists. When you’re working on many people in one day using a spot cleaner can disinfect the brush and drys fast. So you can use the same brush on multiple people. It’s important to know that deep cleaning your brushes is important. Don’t only spot clean your brushes because you can wreck them. Most spot cleaners are rubbing alcohol. Ex: MAC Brush Cleanser / ELF Studio Daily Brush Cleanser
    • How to: My favorite way to use a spot cleaner is to pour a little bit of spot cleaner on a paper towel. Then I swirl the brush on the damp area, not too hard because you don’t want to ruin the shape. After I get most of the color out I set the brush down to dry within a few minutes. I find that spot cleaning only works well with brushes that had powder products on them. I can’t spot clean brushes with foundation or concealer on them. It doesn’t cut through the product.
  • Deep Cleaning: Deep Cleaning is the best way to clean brushes. A god deep clean will get rid of all the makeup / germs off the brush. 
    • How to: Use warm water. Wet the bristols of the brush and swirl the brush in soap. You can put the soap in a dish and swirl or my personal favorite is to put the tiniest dot of soap in my hand. I don’t own a “washing glove” so I just swirl the brush in the palm of my hand. After the brush has suds I rinse it under the faucet. It’s important to remember to not get the handle wet, this will loosen the ferrule and glue holding the bristols in. Keep just the bristols under the running water. I also like to swirl the brush in my hand to help get all the soap. Do this very gently, don’t smash the brush into your hand. When all the soapy suds are gone I will squeeze (don’t pull and squeeze) out the water keeping the shape of the brush in mind! You can dry the brushes on a flat clean surface or upsides down (bristols down). The key is to avoid the water going up into the handle. I just lay them on a clean towel over night. But there are products like the Benjabelle Brush Stand which allows you to put the brushes upside down. There is also brush guards (The Brush Guards). They are mesh and stretch to go over the bristols. This allows the brush to dry in the proper shape. I don’t use these though, I just shape the brush with my hands and air dry.
      • Baby Shampoo: Baby Shampoo is my favorite. It’s gentle, doesn’t dry out my brushes, and gets them squeaky clean.
      • Gentle Face Soap / Hand Soap: When I have very stubborn foundation stains in my brushes I like to use face wash or hand soap. I swirl my brush in the soap and let it sit for 2-5 mins. This allows the soap to really dissolve all the foundation/concealer!
      • Olive Oil: If you want to go an extra mile mix a pea side of Olive oil with 1 spoon of soap (only use with the above Deep Cleaning options). The oil helps dissolve the makeup and moisturize the bristols. If you use too much it will make the brush greasy/slime-y. 
      • Dr.Bronner Soap: This is a great brand that is organic, no GMOs, Fair Trade, and Vegan. It has essential oils mixed in so you don’t have to add oil. It will clean and keep them soft. It’s inexpensive and comes in solid and liquid versions.
      • Beauty Blender Soap: BeautyBlender makes specific soap for brushes in solid and liquid. These are gentle and keep your brushes moisturized but not greasy.
I recommend cleaning your brushes after every use. If not after every use at least once a week. The reason it’s important to clean your brushes after every use is: if a cream product was used the brush is wet allowing mold to grow / if powder product was used it was most likely close to your eye (why risk a eye infection) or face (why risk getting acne). I always remember if you wouldn’t use a dirty brush on a paying client why would you do that to yourself? I think it’s worth mentioning but don’t blow dry your brushes! Treat your brushes like your hair, using heat will damage them.

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