June 14, 2016

Confession time: I’m pretty gross. I can go weeks without washing my makeup brushes, and since we can’t all be rich beauty YouTubers blessed with a hoard of brushes – that means I’m constantly using dirty brushes on my face, everyday. Ew.

But here’s the good news – you’re not me! And armed with a whole lot more discipline and common sense, you’ll definitely want to make a habit of washing your brushes regularly, to remove unsanitary build-up that messes with both your makeup and your skin. And if you’ve been putting it off claiming that you don’t have the right brush cleansing liquid, here are five easy alternatives to getting your makeup tools squeaky clean.


1. Brush cleaner


For the lazy lass who can’t be arsed to wash her brushes every time she uses them, a quick and easy cleaning spray does the job. Simply spritz it onto the bristles, and rub the brush back and forth over a paper towel or piece of clean tissue, till all the comes off. The spray dries within minutes, so there’s no need to bother with drying your brush before dipping it into another product – which is why many professional makeup artists swear by it. Try the highly recommended Cinema Secrets Aerosol Spray (worth shipping from the States), or pop into a local Sephora to check out the other brush cleaner options on offer.


Cinema Secrets Makeup Brush Cleaner, US$8, available online




2. Shampoo/Conditioner

A tip I picked up over the years from various beauty enthusiasts is that regular shampoo works in cleaning makeup brushes – after all, they’re made of hair. In the same vein, soaping up your favourite brushes with conditioner helps to keep them soft and smooth too, like your own luscious locks. Swirl your brush in a mix of shampoo and water before rinsing off with cold water, making sure to tilt your brush downwards so no water gets to the glued-on tips of the bristles.


3. Johnson’s Baby Shampoo


If you’re willing to pick up a shampoo brand other than the one you use, make sure it’s Johnson’s Baby Shampoo. Makeup artists and girls everywhere appreciate its extremely gentle formula and the fresh, powdery scent afterwards. If it’s good enough for the scalps of soft, squishy babies, it’s good enough for your makeup brushes.


Johnson’s Baby Shampoo 800ml, $11.10, available online and all Watsons stores



4. Anti-bacterial hand soap

Sounds a little rough, but what’s cleaner than anti-bacterial hand soap? (Let’s be real, no one’s washing their hands with BeautyBlender cleanser after a trip to the loo.) Squeeze the hand soap onto the bristles and rub throughly; then rinse out and feel good about your now 99.9% clean brushes. If you’re still a little wary, you can leave using hand soap as a disinfectant for your synthetic hair brushes.


5. Facial wash/cleanser

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Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser, $21.90; Avene Gentle Milk Cleanser, $30.16 (on offer), available online and at Watsons and Guardian

My personal favourite; when I do make the effort to treat my filthy brushes to a deep cleanse, my daily facial cleanser is my go-to product. Think about it this way – you’re washing your brushes (which touch your face) with the same thing you use to wash your face; there’s really no way you could go wrong. Spring for a milder cleanser like Cetaphil or Avene – dermatologist faves and formulated for sensitive skin – to take the best care of your brushes. That way, you’ll avoid damaging your brushes with a rough, heavy-duty facial wash, and possible breakout from using said damaged brushes in the future. Win-win.