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4 surprisingly effective ways to clean hairbrushes at home

Let your hair down with these cheap and cheerful tips on how to clean a hairbrush quickly and effectively.


a blue hairdryer and a hairbrush next to colourful hair products

Key steps:

To clean hairbrushes at home follow these key steps:

  1. Remove visible dirt, grime, and hair.
  2. Wash the hairbrush in your chosen solution: detergent, white vinegar, baking soda, or tumble dryer sheets.
  3. Leave to soak if the hairbrush is really dirty.
  4. Let it dry naturally before using again.

A hairbrush is an essential tool for most people but they also tend to get messy quickly due to regular use with loose hairs and excess styling products causing an unpleasant sight. Luckily, it's very easy to get rid of these nasties from your grooming utensils. Just try one of our four methods and learn how to clean your hairbrushes in a few easy steps.

Detergent works wonders on old hairbrushes and combs. Use a good quality laundry powder like OMO for a really powerful clean.

Has your cleaning regime changed during the Covid-19 lockdown?

1. How to clean hairbrushes with ... detergent

Got some laundry powder at home? It'll make a great hairbrush cleaner.

  1. Pour warm water in a large bowl.
  2. Add two tablespoons of detergent powder.
  3. Agitate the water to lather it up.
  4. Rub the lather into your brush.
  5. Use it to remove visible dirt and grime.
  6. For any stubborn areas, simply leave the brush to soak.
  7. Rinse thoroughly and then allow your hairbrush to dry naturally.

How to clean a hairbrush with ... white vinegar

It’s cheap and easy to use, and you probably already have a bottle in the cupboard. Here’s how to clean hairbrushes with vinegar.

  1. Combine equal parts white vinegar and warm water in a bowl big enough to fit your brush.
  2. Place your brush in the bowl and let it soak for a few minutes.
  3. Scrub the bristles gently using an old (but clean!) toothbrush to get into every nook and cranny.
  4. Rinse under the cold water tap to remove any remaining vinegar residue.
  5. Allow the brush to dry naturally. 

Safety Warning

Make sure the water is warm rather than hot to prevent any scolds or burns.

How to clean your hairbrush with ... baking soda 

Need a clean hairbrush but don’t have detergent or vinegar to hand? Try another household staple and learn how to clean hairbrushes with baking soda.

  1. Get a small cup of warm water.
  2. Add one teaspoon of baking soda plus one teaspoon of gentle shampoo. 
  3. Using an old toothbrush apply to the hair brush, rubbing away any dirt or grime. 
  4. Rinse thorough then allow to dry.

How to clean hairbrushes with ... dryer sheets

You read that right - tumble dryer sheets can be used to easily clean hairbrushes.

  1. Put some warm water in a bowl.
  2. Add two dryer sheets.
  3. Put all your brushes and combs into the solution.
  4. Soak for approximately 2-3 hours. 
  5. Rinse thoroughly.
  6. Pat dry before leaving to air dry.

Make sure you clean your hairbrushes and combs at least once a month to keep them hygienic and don't forget to clean other beauty items too - like makeup brushes.

Dirty hairbrushes aren't the only common problem that affects our heads. Read our article on tackling headlice to deal with these pesky intruders too.

Originally published