Regularly cleaning your brushes and beauty blenders is essential. Think how much makeup gets on them. The build up causes bacteria and then you're using them on your face. You might as well buy yourself some spot cream now Sharon!
How to clean them is actually one of my most asked questions. So here's everything you need to know to get those babies squeaky clean.
There are hundreds of different brush cleaning products out there. I've tried and tested many. The technique I'm going to show you is for a deep clean. I do this after every shoot or job. I would suggest you do this every week, although even once a month is better than most. You should see some of my friends makeup brushes, naming no names, (Kyra)-ha! I have seen brushes that have NEVER been washed. FOR YEARS! I'm sure they purposely show them to me as they know I can't deal with it and have to wash them for them. Damn it, just thought of that, that's 100% the case!! Here's how.
This Solid Pro Soap by Beauty Blender is my absolute favourite brush cleaner. It's meant for the sponges but works brilliantly for brushes too. You wet the brush, rub it over the soap, and then use the sigma mat as directed below. I'd actually run out of this baby when writing this post, so I used my back up, the Kiehls Botanical Cleansing Oil. This is meant for your face but works very well on brushes. It's gentle, so is great for sensitive skin. Remember, you're going to be putting the brush on your face afterwards. Another alternative is to use your hair shampoo. It's meant for cleaning hair and you know you're not allergic to it. Just make sure you only use a tiny amount. You really don't need much. All of these above are quite pricey so remember, less is more. You can always buy a cheaper shampoo, just make sure you test it on yourself first to ensure it doesn't irritate. You can pop a bit behind the ear for a few hours, if it doesn't react then you're good to go. Please, whatever you do, don't use washing up liquid!! Here's another reminder that you'll be using these brushes on your precious face.
My fave quick dry spray cleaners are Cinema Secrets Brush Cleaner and the Makeup Forever Instant Brush Cleaner. Both are great if you're in a rush, or if you only have a few brushes and want to clean them during your makeup application.
The Sigma Brush Cleaning Mat is one of my best purchases ever. I must have had it for at least 8 years and it's still like new. I also have the Glove Version for when I travel. You stick the mat to the bottom of the sink with the attached suckers, and you use the textured areas to deep clean. It's written on the mat but you use the larger bumps for larger brushes, such as one's for foundation, blushers and bronzers. And the small bumps for smaller ones such as eyeshadow, concealer and lip brushes.
You can move the brush around the different areas to get rid of stubborn product.
If you don't have a mat. Whirl the brush around the palm of the hand and with your chosen product. Rinse and repeat until all the product has gone.
Just like with skincare, I like to double cleanse my brushes. Finish by thoroughly rinsing them out and gently squeezing the excess water out of the bristles.
Make sure the water you're using isn't too hot as this can melt the glue in the brush handle and cause the hair to shed.
Finally, lay all your brushes on a dry towel overnight. Don't use any heat to dry them as this can also melt the glue and make the hair splay which is VERY annoying as it will effect the placement and blending of your makeup.
Beauty blenders are a whole different ballgown. ( Ha! Obvs mean ballGAME. Has there ever been a spelling error that's more me)?! They can be a nightmare to clean if you don't wash them after every use. The Pro Solid is the best soap I've found. I soak them with water, cover them with soap and then squeeze to foam the soap to remove the dirt. I repeat this until the sponge is as clean as possible.
I heard that cleaning the sponge, putting it in a microwavable cup full of water and whacking on the microwave for one minute works wonders. Once you take it out, leave it to cool before you squeeze out the sponge. I haven't tried this because we don't have a microwave, but if you have, let me know below if it works! Would love some before and after pics to add to this post.
So that is my brush cleaning 101. I hope this helps and remember, wash them AT LEAST once a month pretty please with a cherry on top!!
If you have any different tricks and tips, feel free to leave them in the comments below. I'd love to hear them.
Until next time, Love & Lipstick,