Story: McCarley Slater

Graphics: N. Bridwell


Makeup is fun. In today’s internet-fueled world there are endless tutorials on getting your best face on. Even 14-year-olds are walking around with full contours and smoky eyes. I saw a meme once about how teenagers these days should have to suffer through the right-of-passage of white eyeshadow and foundation that is two shades too dark just like we did. I tend to agree. It builds character, right?. However, the Kardashian age is upon us and now teenagers look fabulous. Not. Fair. Since I have added contouring to my daily routine, my brush count has doubled. I also noticed that I was getting more blemishes in the areas I contour–not to mention the ever annoying color-swap that happens with dirty brushes. We’ve all been there…In a rush, you swipe a brush across your lid expecting to see your new Urban Decay “Mugshot” shade, but instead you have a muddy mix of “Darkside” and “Nooner”. Why? You didn’t clean your brushes after girls night!

Today I want to talk about some easy and efficient ways to keep your makeup brushes clean, because a nice set of brushes is an investment and we can’t have unnecessary breakouts ruining our day. Here are our Top 5 Brush Cleaning Tips.



  1. Rinse

    First, you want to rinse your brushes under running water to get rid of the loose makeup. Always rinse only the bristles, with the water stream going downward. Going against the grain will ruin the shape of the brush. Also, you don’t want to get water in the base, because it may cause the glue to loosen and the brush will not last as long.


  1. Cleanse

    Next, you want to work a gentle cleanser into the bristles while running it under the water. Don’t get carried away, just gently work between your fingers until the water runs clear. Baby shampoo is the most commonly used option for this step and I have used it myself with great results.


  1. Disinfect

    The most important step to ensure you rid the brushes of bacteria that may cause breakouts is to disinfect them. Mix 1⁄4 cup of white vinegar with 1⁄2 cup water and swish your brushes in this solution until you feel they are good and clean. Again, be careful to submerge only the bristles and avoid getting the base of the brush wet. Don’t fray the bristles so they will keep their shape.


  1. Shape and Dry

    Reshape the bristles and gently squeeze the excess solution out. Lie them flat and let them dry overnight on a towel.


  1. Beauty Blenders

    I wanted to add one tip about Beauty Blenders. These handy dandy little sponges are great for blending, but they are porous and hold lots of gunk that will cause breakouts. I learned this the hard way, so now I do a special routine once a week and it has helped tremendously…First drop the spongues into a bowl of water and add a drop of Dawn dish soap. Let them soak and then squeeze them several times to get the makeup out of them. Give them a good rinsing under cold water and then drop them into a bowl of water. Pop that bowl into the microwave for about a-minute-and-a-half, and then let them cool and squeeze dry. Super easy and so worth the few minutes it takes!



Using these simple tips will keep your brushes and your face looking fresh! Thanks for stopping by The Powder Room!

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