Friday, 11 May 2012

How to: Clean your makeup brushes!

Hi guys. A couple of you mentioned that you'd like to see how I actually wash my makeup brushes after my last post. I thought I'd give you a quick low down on what I do to keep them lovely and clean.

I've got my dirty eyeshadow brush here. Obviously you need to work over the sink.

I use Johnson's Baby Shampoo or any other baby shampoo. You can get Tesco Value baby shampoo for something like 12p which is also good. The hairs on this particular brush are animal hair, as opposed to man made, synthetic hair - therefore it is much better to use a soap with as few ingredients as possible because you don't want your bristles to dry up.

Wet your brush under a running tap. Make sure you keep the brush tilted down at all times. You don't want to get water in the ferrule of the brush as this, over time, will degrade the glue used to hold the bristles securely and the whole brush head may even come away from the handle. (The ferrule is the metal part that keeps the bristles attached to the handle of the brush.)

Once your bristles are wet, apply a small amount of baby shampoo to the palm of your hand.

Use your hand as a 'palette' and massage the bristles back and forth as if you're mixing paint on your hand. No need to be too vigorous, just light swirls and back and forth will do just fine. You will start to see the makeup disperse from the brush onto your hand.

Rinse the brush, again with the bristles facing downward so that minimal water touches the ferrule.

You may want to repeat the process again to make sure all traces of makeup are cleaned off the bristles. I normally soap and rinse twice for each brush.

After, squeeze the bristles gently in a clean towel or clean tissue to get rid of the excess water.

It is important that you leave your brushes to dry lying flat, again to stop water seeping into the ferrule and causing damage in the long term. I like to sit mine on the windowsil on a clean paper tissue. Gently make sure that the bristles are shaped nicely (none sticking out!) so that they dry into a good shape. Depending on the size of the brush it will take 1 to 12 hours for them to dry naturally. I prefer not to hair dry or speed up the process as it tends to separate the bristles and you get a brush that looks disheveled and most likely will damage the bristles over time.


The same process applies to bigger face brushes. This is a Kabuki brush that I use for powdering the face.

Wet the bristles with the brush facing down to avoid water seeping in.

Apply a small amount of shampoo and massage into the bristles as before.

Rinse and repeat as many times as it needs for the water to run clear. I washed three times on this one as the bristles are very dense. Make sure that all traces of shampoo are washed out of the bristles!

I like to leave my kabuki to dry on a paper tissue again. I also roll a piece up to act as a stand so that the handle of the brush is higher than the bristles to avoid water getting in...

...or I sometimes just balance it on it's own bristles. Depending on the brush, you may not want to do this as it could distort how the bristles lie when dry, but mine seems to dry fine like this. I would normally wash this at night, leave it on the sil to dry while I sleep and it is normally dry by the time I need to apply my makeup in the morning.

I hope this helped. If you have any questions let me know and I will do my best to get back to you.

Happy brush cleansing!!
See you soon with a haul!


  1. Thank you so much !! that's really kind of you to do this post x It looks super easy so I will deff do that asap....
    and wow i can't beleive that eyeshadow brush was white lol

    1. Yeah I know! They feel so much better once they've been cleaned. Especially foundation brushes. I feel they need to be cleaned more often, although I do slack!!

  2. What a lovely post - I also use baby shampoo for my brushes - it's so brilliant! x

  3. Wow great and easy way to clean brushes , thanks for the link!

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  4. I just did a post about this and I linked you in it.. check it out xxx

  5. Eww reminds me I need to clean my yucky brushes : /


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