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How to Clean Your Makeup Brushes

It is essential to keep makeup brushes clean if you want your skin to stay clear and healthy. Learn how to clean makeup brushes and remove nasty build up with our simple tips!

To care about cleaning makeup brushes, you need to know why you’re doing it. Here’s why: when makeup brushes are left clogged up, they become inefficient and fail to distribute your makeup properly. More importantly, dirty makeup brushes trap oils and moisture, which results in the growth of nasty bacteria. Now, that’s not something you want near your face, is it? The good news is that cleaning makeup brushes is a lot easier than you might think.

How to Wash Makeup Brushes: The Basics

While people might disagree about how to clean make up brushes, most of the methods are essentially the same. The only difference lies in the type of soap to use. Here are some easy guidelines to follow.

  1. Rinse the brushes in lukewarm water, but take care not to get the base of the bristles too wet, as this can cause them to swell and even fall out, which is a problem that is difficult to stop once it starts.
  2. Apply a small amount of baby shampoo and then lather into a foam. If you don’t have baby shampoo, regular hand soap works just fine.
  3. Rinse the makeup brushes in lukewarm water. Again, remember not to get the base of the bristles too wet where they meet the brush handle.
  4. Squeeze the makeup brush gently with a tissue, and leave it positioned sideways in a well-ventilated area so it can air-dry. This may take a couple of hours, but it’s important to be patient. If you attempt to speed up the process with a hair dryer, this can distort the bristles and damage your expensive makeup brush.

How to Clean Makeup Brushes: Natural Bristles

Using a stiff makeup brush is difficult – it makes it almost impossible to apply a light dusting of foundation, so you end up ruining your look and having to start over. This problem is especially relevant for premium, natural brushes, which tend to be more expensive than their synthetic counterparts.

The good news is this: you already have the perfect miracle ingredient for washing makeup brushes: your hair conditioner. Hair conditioner can restore the softness of your hair, so why can’t it do the same with other types of natural hair?

clean makeup brushes

How to Clean Makeup Brushes: Synthetic Bristles

Natural bristles require more care, but synthetic ones can be more troublesome. These types of brushes can face a lot of powder build up, so when you consider how to clean make up brushes, you need to give these types a little more attention.

If your brush is made of synthetic bristles, follow the instructions above. If they don’t seem to be doing the trick, feel free to use some liquid soap – if it can handle greasy food residue, then your makeup brush should be a piece of cake.

How to Wash Makeup Brushes: An Alternative

If you don’t want to use water, you can always use alcohol-based cleansers. These can remove almost all the same substances and tend to dry a lot faster. Cleaning makeup brushes with alcohol-based cleansers helps you remove bacteria and reduces the risk of damaging your brushes or their wooden handles.

Now that you know everything there is to know about how to clean your makeup brushes, you can apply these simple tips and keep your brushes in pristine condition for as long as possible. Enjoy smoother and easier makeup application and never endure a hard brush again!

Top Tip


You can use hair conditioner to restore the flexibility of premium, natural makeup brushes. So an easy way to remember how to clean your makeup brushes is to treat them the same way you treat your hair – always condition after washing.