Show and Tell: How I Wash My Makeup Brushes
I think that most makeup enthusiasts already know about the importance of washing makeup brushes regularly, and how to do it. But in case you’re a bit of a newbie to makeup, or if you’ve just bought your first makeup brush—hey, you need to wash that brush first before using it, as well as after. There are two reasons why you need to wash them. One, if they’re not cleaned, bacteria can breed from the accumulated makeup, sebum, and dirt in there, potentially causing acne on your face. Two, so that the brushes will last years and so that they stay soft, not scratchy. Everyone probably has slightly different ways or rituals for washing brushes, and I wanted to share mine, as well as a few tips.
1. First, I gather all the brushes that need to be washed. I place them on a flat, wide plastic lid.
2. Then, I take the thick ones, like the kabukis, and place the head under running water. I just get them wet enough so that they’ll lather well later. Tip: try your best not to get the handles or the ferrule (which is the metal part, or where the hairs meet the handle) wet. Water getting into the ferrule may loosen the glue holding it together, which can cause the head to dismantle.
Pardon the dirty sink.
3. Next, I pour baby shampoo onto my wet palm and rub each brush on there. Not in circular motions, but in swift, straight lines, back and forth, so the hairs don’t get splayed or too messed up. Tip: soaping up the brush this way helps the hairs stay in place and the ferrule from getting wet. Then, I put each lathered brush horizontally around the sink.
4. After I’ve lathered each brush, I put their heads under running water. Then I place my palm under the faucet and rub the brushes on it again in back-and-forth motions, only this time with no shampoo. I do this with each brush until it looks clean enough.
5. Next, I squeeze water out by holding the brush with my thumb and forefinger at the base of the ferrule, and wring the hairs gently with my three other fingers. Tip: do this gently, but firmly, to wring out excess water from the hairs.
6. I take a washcloth and gently pinch each brush head between it. For the bigger brushes, afterwards, I also brush them on back and forth in straight lines onto the washcloth, same as the motions I used in step 3. This helps make them dry faster.
7. Finally, I fold up the washcloth length-wise on a flat, sunny area and lay the brushes on it to air dry. An important thing to remember is to lay the brushes down with the heads hanging slightly lower than the handle. This prevents water from seeping into the ferrule and damaging the brushes.
All nice and shiny!
By the end of the day, or overnight, they should be nice and dry, and clean and nice-smelling. I usually do this weekly, and my makeup brushes remain as soft as they originally were. I hope you enjoyed my little show and tell, and happy weekend!
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