Home Beauty How to Properly Clean Makeup Brushes

How to Properly Clean Makeup Brushes

by Jenny

How to Properly Clean Makeup Brushes


For makeup stylists and beauty professionals, makeup brushes are the tool for which we make our livelihood. Possibly, more importantly, makeup brushes are the tools through which we express our passion for the art of beauty. As such, we must care for our makeup brushes and treat them with the respect they deserve by keeping them clean and well maintained. However, even if you aren’t in the beauty industry, there are still several important reasons that you should also take good care of your makeup brushes. 

The first being that when brushes are not cleaned well and often, they collect and grow bacteria. Using brushes with a build-up of bacteria transfers the bacteria to your face when you use them to apply makeup and, in turn, can lead to breakouts and skin problems. Second, quality makeup brushes are an investment and can be incredibly costly. If you fail to take proper care of your makeup brushes, they won’t last as long, and you will need to purchase new brushes on a more frequent basis costing you time and money.

If you are scratching your head right now because you aren’t sure how to clean your brushes or think that you are one of the people guilty of not cleaning your makeup brushes often enough, don’t worry! Now is as good of a time as any to implement cleaning your makeup brushes into your weekly routine. Below I walk through practical steps to cleaning your makeup brushes, including how often to clean them, what to clean them with, and how to clean them the right way.


Most experts recommend cleaning your makeup brushes at least once a week; however, how frequently you wash them depends mainly on your skin type and how often you use them.

 For example, if your skin is dry to normal and you only use your brushes once to twice a week, you can probably get away with washing your brushes less often than once a week. 

If your skin is more oily, sensitive, or acne-prone, you will want to take extra care to wash your makeup brushes at least twice weekly to avoid skin irritation or bacteria buildup. 

I also recommend using a brush cleaner in between washes to keep your brushes bacteria-free. For use in my business, I make sure to clean my makeup brushes thoroughly after each client. 

Use water and either a gentle soap or brush cleanser

What you use to clean your makeup brushes is primarily up to your preference. There is no lack of makeup brush cleanser on the market, so you have plenty of options to choose from if you go this route. I recommend using a mild soap or a brush cleaner and of course water. I love the Parian Spirit Professional Makeup Brush Cleaner.

If you don’t want to spring for a makeup cleanser, your face wash will do the trick just as well.  You can also Google DIY makeup brush cleansers if you are in the mood to make your own. 

Whether you are using your facial cleanser or a makeup brush cleanser, make sure you check the ingredients first. Avoid using anything with parabens or sulfates, as they can irritate your skin.  

Cleaning Process

Step 1: Hold your makeup brush upside down and dampen it with lukewarm water

Step 2: Squeeze a drop of cleanser onto a dish or your palm 

Step 3: Massage the tips of the bristles into the soap gently to remove the makeup/gunk

Step 4: Rinse the bristles with clean water and then squeeze the brush to remove excess water from the bristles.

Step 5: Lay the brush flat to dry

Voila! An easy five-step process to cleaning your makeup brushes. Easy peasy. Remember, you should always be cleaning your brushes at least once a week to not only make the makeup brushes last longer but to eliminate the residual makeup, dirt, oil, and bacteria that build up on your makeup brushes through regular use.

Feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions or are looking for any specific product recommendations. Don’t forget that you can view all of my favorite products on my Amazon Storefront here. I look forward to hearing from you!

And if you want to learn more about how you can elevate and grow your bridal beauty business schedule your free demo call here:

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