We use them daily; dipping them into different creams and powders, buffing products into our skin, and carting them around in various beauty bags – but how often do we give our make-up brushes a thorough clean? According to a new study, many of us are slacking when it comes to taking care of our tools.
Research by Cosmetify has indicated that 26 per cent of women have never cleaned their make-up brushes, and 68 per cent of us have shared our tools with others.
Keeping your brushes clean is vital, not just for ensuring your make-up looks flawlessly applied, but for the health of your skin too. Dirty brushes can harbour bacteria within their bristles, leading to breakouts, congestion and irritation.
Here, we reveal the experts’ top tips for keeping brushes as hygienic as possible, from how often you should be cleaning them, to the best brush cleansers for the job.
How often should you clean your make-up brushes?
“For work, I wash my brushes every time I use them because I’m using them on different people, but if you’re using the same brush with the same product, once a fortnight will be sufficient,” says Nars‘ creative global artistry director Jane Richardson.
As Bobbi Brown PRO artist Aimee Morrison adds, there is a difference between quickly cleaning and thoroughly washing your brushes. “For best hygiene, make-up brushes should be cleaned once a week with a brush-cleansing spray, and washed once a month.” For brushes that are being swept over multiple shades, she recommends cleaning them after each use to keep your palettes pristine.
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Extend the life of your brushes by cleaning them with care. ❤️ – 2 WAYS TO CLEAN BRUSHES: 1️⃣ Use quick-drying Brush Cleansing Spray to remove product between uses. 2️⃣ Give brushes a deep clean by shampooing weekly with Conditioning Brush Cleanser. – #BBProTip: Always lay brushes flat and over a free-edge to dry (instead of vertically) to avoid water-logging the binding. This will keep them in shape for years of use. – #bobbibrown #springcleaningtips #springcleaningchallenge #makeupbrushcleaning #makeupbrushcleaner
How should you clean your make-up brushes?
- 1. For a quick fix, MAC senior artist Debbie Finnegan advises drizzling a liquid brush cleaner onto some dry tissue and gently ‘painting’ the brush back and forth over the top.
- 2. The purpose of a deep clean is to remove clogged liquids and powders from deep within the bristles. Massage your chosen liquid cleanser through your brush, before running under lukewarm water and rinsing well. Be careful not to harshly scrub the bristles, as this may lead to excess shedding.
- 3. Once clean, gently reshape the brush using your hands or a towel.
- 4. To dry your brushes, leave them flat on the edge of a surface, with the tip extending over the edge to ensure they dry into the correct shape. “This will allow the air to circulate and gradually dry the brushes,” says Finnegan. “I like to do this in the evening and by morning they are dry and ready to go!”
- 5. A backstage tip: steer clear of washing-up liquid when cleaning make-up brushes. “The harsh cleaning agents inside will destroy the bonds in your bristles,” warns Finnegan. “What’s more, don’t be tempted to use any kind of heat (this includes placing them by a radiator) to help your brushes dry quicker.”
This article originally appeared on Harper’s BAZAAR UK.