If you’re faithfully cleansing and moisturizing daily, only to follow up with a sticky, dusty powder brush, you’re painting dirt and grime right back on your face. Don’t sabotage yourself and wash those germ sticks regularly to avoid problems like persistent irritation and sparse eyelashes.
How often is regularly? Depends on where you store your brushes and what kind of products you use. If the bristles of your brush are stuck together with old product, it’s been too long. Use liquid foundation and keep your brushes on the vanity where they get blasted with hairspray? Wash those suckers twice a week. Monthly is the absolute outer limit if you wear makeup daily.
Exactly why should you go to the time and trouble of cleaning innocuous looking brushes?
Dirty Brushes Break You Out and Cause Skin Irritation
Dirty makeup brushes can cause irritation and give you acne. If you think foundation is ruining your skin, it could be your routine and not the product itself. Wipe off the lid after each use and clean those brushes. Even if your skin is “clean,” your brushes are still collecting oil, dust, dead skin, and fallout from greasy hair products you spray around your mirror. Do not save it up in your brushes unless you enjoy wiping a concentrated mess of filth all over your T-zone.
Dirty Brushes = Terrible Color Payoff
To get naturally blended eye shadow or dramatic looks like a cut crease, you need a precise application that you cannot get with a dirty brush. Keep eye shadow brushes clean and dry so you know exactly what colors you’re putting on your face.
Ewwwwww… Pinkeye and Other Unwanted Maladies
Let’s say you don’t wash your brushes, allowing it to accumulate bacteria, dust, and dirt. Then, you swirl it in your expensive face powder or gel eyeliner, transferring all that grime into your beloved products. Gels and creams are wet environments where germs can multiply, just waiting for you to feed them again with a dirty brush.
Share your Netflix password, share your curling iron, but Do NOT share your lip or eye brushes, especially if you live somewhere like a college dorm where pinkeye is living on every surface.
Protect Your Investment
Cleaning your brushes keeps them in good shape and prolongs their life. Decent brushes often cost as much or more than cosmetics, so it’s worth the ten minutes you’ll spend cleaning them to keep them looking nice for years.
Mystery Breakouts and Allergies
You may think you have sensitive skin, when all your skin really objects to is being attacked with leftover cat hair lurking in your makeup brush. Keep them clean, and you’ll know if you’re really allergic to your foundation, synthetic bristles, or that new cleanser you tried.
Round up all your brushes, give them a quick bath with one inexpensive product, and just try not to marvel in horror at the glittery debris left over in your sink. You’ll need a gentle detergent, a clean hand or tea towel, a shallow bowl or cup, and a sink. Your cleanser can be anything skin/food safe meant to remove oil, from an inexpensive clarifying shampoo, baby shampoo or natural dish soap. If you use standard dish soap, add a few drops of olive or coconut oil to your mix to recondition the fibers of your brush. Dish soap is super drying but will work in a pinch.
Pour a half teaspoon or so of detergent into your cup, fill two inches deep with warm water, and dunk in your brushes. Swirl around to loosen up grime.
Try to avoid submerging the ferrule (metal bit where the bristles connect to the handle) in water.
Take the wet, soapy brush out and swirl it against your palm to remove dirt and makeup. If it’s really caked with foundation, you may need to swirl in a little more soap. Rinse under lukewarm water until the bristles feel totally clean.
Spread out a clean hand towel. Blot out excess water from your brushes and reshape their bristles, paying special attention to odd shapes like pointy crease and contour brushes.
Lay brushes flat on a hand towel to dry. You don’t want to stand them up (not even kabukis) because water will run down into the handle, where it can loosen up the glue and shorten your brush’s life.
You’ll be shocked how much better your brushes look and feel when cleaned regularly. A clean face is a happy face.