The best way to keep your makeup brushes soft (and safe to use!) is to clean them before the first use and regularly thereafter. The bristles accumulate makeup, oil and dead skin cells, creating the perfect environment for bacterial growth. Clean brushes can help prevent breakouts, apply makeup better and last longer.
Most brushes should be cleaned every week or two, with eyeshadow brushes needing to be cleaned a couple of times a week. This will always depend on how often you wear makeup, but it's a good guide. If you wear makeup every day, it's a good idea to own more than one of each brush so you have one to use, leaving the other free to be cleaned.
You don't need to spend a fortune on specialty makeup brush cleaning solutions either; any mild foaming cleanser is fine. Try a mild shampoo, a baby shampoo, or your everyday facial cleanser is perfect.
How to Clean Your Brushes
- Keep your brushes pointing bristles down at all times. This prevents water softening the glue that holds the hairs together.
- Wet the bristles with warm (not hot) water.
- Use your fingertips to work a small amount of cleanser through the hairs and into a lather.
- Rinse well with warm water. If the water doesn't run clear, repeat the process.
- Wipe off excess water with an absorbent towel and lay flat to air dry.
- Allow to dry completely before using. The density of the brush will determine its drying time.