Tuesday, January 10, 2012

How To Wash Makeup Brushes: 3 Ways

One of the most frequently asked questions I get is, "How do you clean your makeup brushes?" It seems like it would be a really simple task, but with all of the levels of cleaning and various methods you can do, it can easily become a daunting endeavor.

Here, I show you the methods I use most frequently broken down into 3 levels: spot cleaning, basic cleaning, and deep cleaning.


Products mentioned:
Wet Ones
Parian Spirit (Japonesque version here)
Sigma Dry & Shape (use code 0112XJML for 10% off through 1-31-11)

American Apparel turtleneck dress
Hollister ponchor (similar / similar)
Headband is from Forever 21 (similar / similar)
Nailpolish is Sally Hansen Diamond Strength Tyin' The Knot with Sephora for OPI Traffic Stopper Copper on top



1. Spot Cleaning - Best for daily use or on-the-go situations


For spot cleaning I actually learned the Wet Ones trick from another makeup artist and I've found it to be a really great tool not just around the house but absolutely in my makeup kit as well. It can clean up little mistakes on the face as well as wipe down and disinfect makeup tools and brushes. When I need to apply makeup to many faces in a short period of time, I always do a quick disinfecting of my brushes between clients using these wipes as well as a spray of rubbing alcohol if needed.


2. Basic Cleaning - Quick and easy for a few brushes


Parian Spirit is a liquid cleansing system that I bought at IMATS last year. It's great for cleaning & disinfecting brushes in most situations as long as you don't have a million brushes to clean at once. Just pour the citrus-scented liquid into the small glass jar, swirl your brush on the plastic mesh, and wipe down on a paper towel! I like this method the most because brushes dry quickly and it removes even the toughest gel liners and residue of brushes. You can even use this to remove eyelash glue off of lashes!



3. Deep Cleaning - A thorough wash and reconditioning of brushes


For deep cleaning I use several methods. Since I have my bad habit of going through a million brushes before I finally deep clean them (as evidenced in the video) I showed you the method that I use most often since I don't want to waste my MAC brush cleanser. With a simple mixture of olive oil, dish soap, and water, you can get through a large batch of brushes while disinfecting and conditioning them at the same time.

I also wanted to mention my new best friend for brush bath sessions, the Sigma Dry & Shape! Oh man was I so happy that this thing actually works. You guys know how much I love my F84 brush for foundation but those buggers (and most synthetic brushes) take a lot longer to dry than their natural bristle counterparts. With the Dry & Shape it takes brushes that would still be damp in the morning to being totally dry in 4 hours. The only downfall is that with hardcore use, some of the elastic bands on mine have started to become unstitched so I'm going to need to buy a replacement soon.


I finally went through nearly all of my brushes and deep cleaned them on the day I recorded the video and let me tell you, it took hours. Ridiculous, but necessary for a fresh start! For the first step of my New Years resolution to pare down my brushes to my favorites, I'm putting most of these into storage to try my first grouping of just my favorite brushes. Wish me luck!

Disclaimer: Sigma Dry & Shape was kindly gifted by the company. All other items were purchased myself. This post and video are not sponsored in any way. :)



45 comments:

  1. The Wet Ones method is my favorite, mainly because I'm so picky about clean brushes. I generally clean my brushes once every few days and discovered it's the cheapest and easiest way for me to handle the job on my smaller brushes.

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  2. I need to start doing spot cleaning because I just tend to wash my brushes once a week. I love using Dr Bronner's castille soap (super important to rinse with cold water) because it gets every last bit of waterproof product out really easily. thanks for the super helpful post!

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  4. I am really bad about cleaning my brushes :| I usually wash them with sulfate-free shampoo; I don't think I'd ever have the nerve to use dish soap - that's what I use to strip the hair dye out of my bleached sections! All my brushes are synthetic though, so they don't get stained as easily as natural hairs do and therefore don't really need heavy-duty cleansers.

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  5. I like your spot cleaning idea, very quick and easy. I also use olive oil + dish soap to deep cleaning, it cleans very nicely and keeps all brushes soft! Sometimes I use bath & body works' hand soap to clean my brushes because they can also disinfect the brushes and keep them soft!
    I haven't tried Sigma's Dry & Shape, am still very skeptical on how can brushes dry faster if they're semi-covered by the elastics.

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  6. Love the tips! I usually just use shampoo on my brushes once or twice a year...I know that's bad! But now I think I will at least try to use the wet ones for maintenance.

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  7. Thank you so much! I need to wash by brushes but didn't want to spend a fortune.

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  8. I must be the only person who washes their brushes with soap and water after every use! Spot cleaning's not good enough for me, I'm too paranoid about the dirtiness and germs; hand sanitizer or wet wipes are never the same as washing your hands.

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  9. thanks for the tip about spot clean! i can quickly clean my brushes without waiting them to dry.
    i really like that you write up summary in addition to your video. i can always look them up quickly for reference.

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  10. Awesome Blog! I am just starting my own "A Girl's Gotta Give" and already posted a link to your site. Check it out! xo
    http://girlsgottagive.blogspot.com/2012/01/helpful-links.html

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  11. Thanks for the spot cleaning tips! I typically just wash my brushes every 3-4 days with the deep cleaning method.. now I can keep my brushes more sanitary in between deep cleanings!

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  12. Thanks so much for the tutorial Jen! There are so many similar ones out there, but I think yours is by far the most comprehensive!

    The spot-cleaning idea is great! I wash my brushes after almost each use, but I am a bit worried that over-cleaning would break them faster. I'll get some wipes and start doing some spot-cleaning and see how that works out instead.

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  13. I use Bobbi Brown Brush cleanser, then soap, once a week!

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  14. I like the way you have 3 diffrent ways =)

    http://tzeyien89.blogspot.com/ xxx

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  15. Great post and very useful video! I really should clean my brushes more often, but some days I am just so lazy :P

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  16. OMG! you are definitely the most beautiful asian girl I have ever seen! how can anyone be so pretty! I just accidentally found your cool pink new years look on youtube. I don't even own a single brush, you recommend sigma as far as I have seen? love, louisa :o)

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  17. I never thought of using Wet Ones. I always use a clean towel and disinfecting brush spray to spot clean. This is probably a more affordable option - and one that does cause me to look for a clean, lint-free towel every other day.

    I need to deep clean my brushes more regularly. I get so lazy!


    www.cocomechanel.blogspot.com

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  18. Girl, you got hella brushes...my goodness!! Great tutorial, I never even thought abt using wet wipes, that's a great tip. Keep up the great posts.

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  19. what brush would you recommend for putting on tarte smooth operator??

    thanks!

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  20. Loving your brushes collection.

    http://www.fashionablememories.com

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  21. i'm terrible at cleaning my brushes...! this post inspired me to do it and boy i really need to do it at least once a week. i usually use the mac brush cleaner but i tried the dish soap + olive oil method out of curiosity and wow! i even washed the brushes i thought were clean since i didn't use them in a while and they had so much gunk! so embarrassing but now i'm happy that they've been taken care of. this post is awesome! you're awesome! :)

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  22. I always forget to clean my brushes! thanks for the tip!!

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  23. great idea! you made me want to clean my make-up brushes today! way to start the year right!
    http://desertheels.com/

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  24. Thanks for the tutorial ! =)) guess I have to stick with spot cleaning n deep cleaning. Never tried using dish soap n olive oil. Will definitely try it one day! ;) eeesh, I can't be lazy on cleaning my brush anymore....lol >.<

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  25. This is one of my new year's resolutions...to clean my brushes more frequently. I am so bad about doing this and everytime I've tried the brush gets frizzy. Definitely will put these tips to good use! Thank you :)

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  26. you were not kidding when u said u have a lot of brushes! lol

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  27. Loved the ideas!!! Thanks for sharing!! =D
    I'll definetely try them out!

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  28. I heard of all of those ideas already. Please come up with something new!

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    Replies
    1. You should have explained that you got the ideas from other people, because as I recall, there is a really good reason why you use olive oil and regular dish soap.

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  29. It's so hard to wash all the brushes but it's always a must!

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  30. Thanks for the tutorial! I've always been wanting to know how you go through the week without deep washing brushes your brushes! I've been deep washing them with shampoo after every use! I'm gonna get some Wet Ones and try out spot cleaning now! :)

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  31. this post was soooo helpful!!
    this is my first time leaving a comment but thanks for all your wonderful tutorials and tips!!! you rock@@@

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  32. awesome, thank you Jen. you cleared up things i wasn't sure about when it came to cleaning brushes. :D

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  33. Hi, Jen! I really like the 2nd way but i wonder the picture that u posted is the whole set. But I would like to know which one is the exact one that u show us on the clip. Also, the little jar do they sell seperate or whole set?

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  34. Im really interesting in 2 nd method but do I need tobuy the whole set as the picture that u posted or seperate is fine?

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  35. Thanks for cheaper alternatives for washing brushes. It's helpful since I don't have that many brushes for me to buy actual brush cleaner.

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  36. Great tutorial! The sigma code is invalid tho :(

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  37. This was extremely helpful and it was fun to watch for some reason haha.
    I gotta say... You have a ton of brushes! How long did it take you to clean all of them?

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  38. Those are some great tips! Try The Brush Guard's brush cleaning kit. It works really well and is super easy to use. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BvbTaWKMKw0&feature=player_embedded

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  39. Hi, I just want to say that I LOVE U. Your tutorials are super easy to understand and easy to find. I was about to look for a tutorial about how to clean my brushed, but u already have that up. Whenever I'm looking for a special look, u also already have sth up that fits well. I'm soo thankful :D
    PS. it's been a long while since I last dropped by ur blog, but the new look is great!! And of course you are as pretty as always ;)

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  40. Hi, can I use Makeup remover? (demaquillant) thanks

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  41. Hi Jen,
    I loved reading this piece! Well written! :)

    Prety
    cheap makeup

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  42. Hi Jen, How often should you spot clean vs use the Parian Spirit vs deep clean everything? Especially like foundation brushes?

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    Replies
    1. I use Parian as frequently as I feel I need to (sometimes daily for eyeliner brushes or whenever I switch eyeshadow colors) and I deep clean about once a month. That's just what I personally find works best for me!

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