Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Makeup Brush Hygiene And MAC Brush Cleanser

Brushes are necessary tools in makeup application. It's important to wash and clean your makeup brushes regularly to extend their life and to remove any makeup residue, dirt, oil, and even bacteria that have accumulated in the brush. The build up of makeup products in your brush will also affect its performance. If you notice that your foundation brush is not buffing  as well and it is leaving streaks on your face, that is a sign that your brush is way past its 'wash me' date. Dirty brushes also increases your risk of breakouts as well as skin and eye infections. If you are prone to pimples or suffer from acne, it's a must to keep your brushes clean at all times.

Related Post: Personal Makeup Hygiene

I use a conditioning shampoo and MAC Brush Cleanser to clean my brushes. The instruction in the MAC bottle says, apply to damp brushes and work through. Rinse well. Reshape and lay flat to dry. I used to use MAC cleanser to spot and deep clean all my brushes. To deep clean, I pour some cleanser in a small cup, dip my wet brush into the cleanser and rub the brush bristles back and forth against my palm. The cleanser will not lather as much as a shampoo, but it cleans brushes effectively (including foundation brushes), and it's so easy to rinse out the cleanser from the brush. For spot cleaning, I transferred some of the cleanser in a small spray bottle, I spray a clean tissue with the cleanser and then rub the bristles against the tissue until all the colors are out and the bristles clean. Sometimes it takes 2 or 3 sprays to do the job.

Although it is great, I don't recommend using MAC cleanser to deep clean your face brushes. Those big brushes will use up a lot of product and you will go through your cleanser in no time. Unless you have the means, it's not economical to use MAC cleanser when a regular shampoo will do the job just as well. I now use a conditioning shampoo to deep clean my brushes and the only disadvantage I find is that, it takes more time to rinse out the soap from the brush bristles. I don't use olive oil.  I know a lot of people use olive oil to remove the makeup from their brushes before deep cleaning. I tried this technique, but I had a problem removing the olive oil from my synthetic brushes. I had to wash my brushes several times until I ended up using a strong dishwashing soap to get rid of the oil. Instead of olive oil, I use MAC Cleanse Off Oil to break the makeup from my foundation brushes before washing. I pump some Cleanse Off Oil in a tissue and rub the brush bristles back and forth against the tissue, the makeup breaks and dissolves right before my eyes.

I still think that MAC Brush Cleanser is a good investment especially if you don't have a lot of brushes or if you are a makeup artist. Even if you don't have a lot of time, spot cleaning with MAC Brush Cleanser allows you to have brushes that are clean, dry and ready to use after only a few minutes.

There are so many ways to wash and clean your brushes. YouTube alone is full of videos on this topic. There are also different opinions on how often you should wash your brushes. You just have to use your judgement and develop a routine that works for you. Brushes can be an expensive makeup investment, washing your brushes regularly keeps them in good condition and provide you with many years of service, not to mention, your skin will thank you for you efforts.

Related Post: Drying And Maintaining The Shape Of Your Brush


  1. I just use regular soap and to clean, although I've heard antibacterial soaps work really well too. Olive oil can be a bit much, I agree! Baby shampoo or wash should work really well because it's gentle and won't strip off the bristles :)

  2. For washing my brushes I use Dr Bronner's Pure Hemp-Castille Soap ... you can get a huge bottle for around $15 and a little goes a long way :-)

  3. I actually use Palmolive antibacterial dish soap. I started using that when I was using ColorStay foundation cause NOTHING could get it out my my brushes; really liked how it worked so now I use it on everything.:) We all smile here.


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