Investing in high quality makeup is important, but having the right tools is just as essential. Gone are the days of uneven blush and patchy eye shadow. Any makeup artist will tell you, brushes make a big difference! So once you have them, how do you care for them?
I'm are often asked how long makeup brushes should last. When cared for, brushes can last years! It’s critical to clean them often to remove bacteria and avoid product buildup over time.
Cleaning after each use
For makeup artists it’s incredibly important to sanitise brushes between clients, but for the everyday woman it’s also a quick way to switch between colours. Most of us have been there, applying an eye shadow shade only to realise you forgot to wipe the brush off after the last shadow, and now you have a muddled mix of colour on your lid.
Look for a spray on brush cleaner formulated with alcohol and antibacterial ingredients that are safe for both synthetic and natural hair brushes. Mist the brush and wipe the bristles on a towel or tissue.
Deep cleaning makeup brushes
Even daily surface cleaning won’t save your brushes from a deep cleanse. Brushes are made up of hundreds of tiny, individual hairs, and product coats the hair shaft. Clean the bristles at least once every two weeks to keep them free of bacteria. As a makeup artist, I clean mine at the end of the day. Due to be used all day.
This above is my set up, as you can see. Dirty brushes in my pot. Alongside my green original fairy, body shop coconut oil (I use on stubborn removal on brushes alongside protecting my bristles) and finally my IPA to spray over once completed. The kitchen roll to place brushes on once washed.
1) First, rinse the brush hair under lukewarm water. Wash the bristles only, keeping the handle and ferrule dry to prolong the life of your brush. If the ferrule (the metal part) becomes wet, the glue may loosen and lead to shedding and the wooden handle may become swollen and crack.
2) Add a drop of green fairy liquid to your palm, and swirl the brush in it to coat each hair. You can use the coconut oil too as if just gives the brushes that extra clean and protection.
3) Next, rinse the soapy brush in the water and watch all of the product that’s released. Depending on how dirty your brush is, you may need to repeat. Be careful to never submerge the brush in water.
4) Once it’s completely clean, reshape the brush head and lay it flat on a towel to dry overnight. The denser the brush, the longer it takes to dry. It’s important to allow your brush to dry flat because you don’t want water to enter the ferrule.
5) While drying, spray once all the brushes IPA to just remove any extra germs or dirt.
Cleaning your brushes is a crucial step towards clean, healthy skin. When we apply our makeup with brushes, the oils from the face get between the bristles and can generate bacteria growth and germs. Keeping your brushes clean (especially your foundation brush!) will reduce your chances of breakouts.