Cleaning your makeup brushes is an often overlooked yet ridiculously important step in your makeup routine.
A makeup brush a breeding ground for a mess of bacteria and dirt that can easily cause breakouts and, according to dermatologist Dr. Jeannette Graf, can pose a risk of infectious agents like fungus (ringworm), parasites, and viruses too. Another reason to lather up: Regular cleaning keeps brushes soft, easy to use, and makes them last.
Makeup artist Sonia Kashuk says any makeup tool can become contaminated, “especially brushes used to apply concealer, eyeliner, lip color, and cream eyeshadows or blush. Plus, sponges and eyelash curlers are also common breeding grounds for bacteria.” She recommends washing makeup tools weekly, “with the exception of brushes or tools that touch the eyes, which should be washed more frequently. Here, she gives the how-tos on keeping your brushes clean:
A quick and easy way to clean your brushes—daily or weekly—is to use a spray brush cleanser. Just spray on, rinse until the water runs clear, and air-dry.
Bare Escentuals Quick Change Brush Cleanser, $18; Bare Escentuals Well-Cared for Brush Conditioning Shampoo, $14.
Specialized liquid cleansers work too, or try a gentle baby shampoo.
Sephora Purifying Brush Shampoo, $14; California Baby Super Sensitive Shampoo & Bodywash, $11.49.
If your makeup brushes are beyond help, invest in new ones for fall, like the ones below: