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How should you clean your makeup brushes and how often should you do it?


You can use a professional cleaner or shampoo to clean your brushes (Picture: Getty)

Makeup brushes may look pretty on the dressing table, but if they’re not looked after properly they can be the cause of bacteria build ups, breakouts and beauty disasters.

And so, it’s important that you’re cleaning your brushes regularly, for healthy skin and a perfect finish.

But how can we make sure we’re looking after them properly?

Patricia Boland, a beauty expert from Colorescience UK, says that the best way to clean your brushes is to slightly dampen the bristles with lukewarm water, squeeze out the excess and then apply a proper makeup brush cleaner to the brush head.

You can find makeup brush cleaners from the likes of Superdrug, Boots and Amazon, at decent prices.

If you don’t have a professional brush cleaner, you can also use shampoo.

An additional, lesser-known step would be to apply a few drops of extra virgin olive oil to the brush head to moisturise and protect the bristles. Then, gently swirl the tips of the bristles in your palm, squeeze out the dirt from the brush and rinse with water.

Instead of using a hairdryer, dry the brush using a paper towel – and always make sure you’re drying the brushes with the head facing downwards, to prevent the excess water running up the handle and loosening the glue that holds the brush together.

So, how often should you clean the brushes?

You should change your brushes every three to four months (Picture: Getty)

Patricia tells Metro.co.uk: ‘There is a difference between cleaning your brushes and washing them.

‘Cleaning your brushes could be as simple as investing in quick cleansers to assist colour switching or even wiping the excess colour off on a makeup wipe.

‘Washing a makeup brush is more of an overnight process. I would recommend cleaning your brushes every two to three days to avoid makeup build up and residue of other colours mixing into your makeup look.

‘Brushes that are used on the face should be thoroughly washed once a week to avoid a build up of bacteria that could result in acne and skin irritation. Eye brushes should be washed once every two weeks so that messy application does not occur.’

Of course, you can’t keep washing the same brushes forever. Unfortunately, they don’t last years and years – and you should look to replace your brushes every three to four months.

Patricia tells us: ‘If you notice any signs of shedding, discoloration, smelling or breaking, you should replace the brush immediately but as a general rule, I would replace makeup brushes every 3-4 months.

‘Using a gentle, conditioning cleaning product, whether that be shop bought or a shampoo, will ensure the preservation of your brush.

‘If you wash your makeup brushes correctly and care for your brushes, the bristles should not dry out and the glue should not be loosened.’

So basically, cleaning your brushes should be quick and easy if you’re doing it properly, and the better you look after your brushes, the longer they will last.

Though let’s be honest, picking out a new set of makeup brushes, while not too good for the bank account, is quite exciting – wouldn’t you agree?

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