Why should you clean your makeup brushes? What's the best method?

                "Welcome to the Make-Up Chronicles"


Sprawled out on the sofa, half watching tv, Love Island of course, while scrolling on the phone, you hear a little thump. Odd. Your purse tipped over and your Strawberry Blonde Dewey Makeup Bag has fallen out. 



Well, I may be caked up with old foundation, but at least my bristles aren’t stiff as a board!


Oh, please. Your bristles are so old, their first job was a broom at the last supper.


Well your eyeshadow bristles are so dirty, they make mud look clean.


You grab the heart shaped charm on the makeup bag and unzip…ㅤ


What’s going on here?


Hey eyeshadow brush you’re so dirty, Victoria has a better time keeping secrets than your makeup does in her pores.


(Indignant) Well, when’s the last time you’ve been washed?


(Ponders) The last time you’ve been washed. Care to explain?




Have you been breaking out lately after applying foundation?


Well, my eyes have been a little itchy.


Sorry sweet pea, not my fault.  I’ve got germs. (shutter)


You immediately head towards the bathroom.  You dump your makeup out on the counter and start filling up the face sink with warm water.


My brushes are so dirty, they….


Oh now, she got jokes!ㅤ


No…you just got my attention!


If you got jokes and want to share them, head over to Datemymakeup.com and click on Make-Up Chronicles.

Hope to see you on the next one…oh…Safe Beauty to you! 

Listen to the makeup products come alive in our video below! 


 "Where your makeup speaks volumes"

Before we get into the specific reasons on WHY you should clean your brushes, do you know WHAT your makeup brushes are made of?

Here's the science:

WHAT is the material used to create makeup brushes? 

Makeup brushes are either made up of natural or synthetic materials.

Natural bristles are made using animal hairs, such as sable, squirrel or goat hair.  These hairs are naturally soft and brown or tan in color.  The bristles may also be dyed black or bleached white. 

Synthetic bristles are constructed with man-made hairs of nylon, polyester or other synthetic materials. These bristles are sometimes dyed, occasionally in vibrant colors, most often in shades of brown and tan to resemble natural bristles.  They're naturally white or colorless.

Unlike natural brushes, synthetic brushes don't have cuticles, making them less absorbent of product. Synthetic brushes are also easier to clean and much more affordable than natural brushes.

Next, it's time to talk abut WHY you need to keep them clean as well as HOW to clean them.

Let’s get it!

#1. To Prevent Those Nasty Breakouts! (Uhg!)

Most of us are no strangers to acne.  Those red things LOVE to pop up and litter our complexion, sometimes seemingly for no reason. 

Who do they think they are? Moving into our skin like that. They don’t even pay rent! 

Every single day, our skin produces oil as well as accumulates dust, dead skin cells and various bacteria.

Every time you use your makeup brushes on your skin without washing them, those bristles are absorbing the oil, bacteria, dust and dead skin cells. 

All that oil, dead skin and bacteria is being collected over the course of weeks or maybe even months on your brushes!

They’re having a party and spreading like wildfire every time you go back and use those same brushes on your face. 

Hence, creating a perfect environment for an acne break-dance-breakout. 

 #2. To Avoid Destroying Your Other Makeup (Uhh?)

Your skin isn’t the only place germs and bacteria love to be fruitful and multiply on. 

That’s right. They’ll target your other makeup too. *Gasp!*

If your brushes are caked up already with germs, every time you dip them into your eyeshadows, blush, contours, concealers, foundations, powders, glitters... you get the point...those same germs and nastiness are getting mixed into ALL of your other makeup.

This creates a melting pot of concocted eyeshadow-glitter-foundation-bacteria-extravaganza! 

#3. Viral Infections Caused By Germs (Yikes!)

Here’s the thing, dirty brushes can lead to infections. If you continually use dirty brushes, or let alone share them with other people, guess what?  You’re also sharing all that dirt, bacteria, dead skin, dust and who knows what else...


Not cute, right? Look, we KNOW sharing is caring. But in this case, you may want to make an exception. 

Sharing makeup brushes, especially eyeshadow and lip brushes, can increase the chance of infections like:

  • Herpes
  • Conjunctivitis
  • Styes and pink eye

Remember: Even if you don’t share your brushes, you can STILL get infections from your dirty brushes alone. All that foundation, blush, contour, eyeshadow, concealer and powder is caked up so thick, even Mr. Clean himself would gag. 

HOW to clean your makeup brushes without accidentally torturing them further. 

  1. First, wet the bristles with warm water. Warmer water helps kill bacteria versus cold water. 
  2. Take shampoo or standard soap.  Dish soap and most facial soaps work just fine. 
  3. Gently massaging soap into the bristles. Once gunk starts coming out the bristles, don’t panic! This is normal and a good sign. 
  4. Keep adding more soap and massaging the bristles until the water runs clear. 
  5. Squeeze out any excess water from the brushes. 
  6. Use a downward angle drying position.  Take a towel and roll up the end to create an elevated surface for the handle of the brush to rest on. (Never let the bristles dry on a towel, they may mildew.)
  7. Place the bristle over your bathroom sink, to let any water escape.
  8. Place a paper towel over the brushes, so airborne bacteria doesn't land on the bristles.
  9. Once dry, store them in a clean place! 

“How often am I supposed to clean my brushes, you may ask?” 

While the answer varies depending on how often you wear makeup, most makeup artists and dermatologists agree it's best to clean your brushes once a week to once every two weeks.  

Not only will this protect your skin and health from nasty germs, but also preserve your brushes and other makeup products to last longer. After all, buying makeup is an investment! You don’t want all that to go to waste, do you?

Here are your Safe Beauty Takeaways:

  1. Natural brushes are made from animal hair.
  2. Synthetic brushes are made from man-made materials.
  3. Want to avoid acne? Clean your brushes!
  4. Sharing is NOT caring, especially if you want to steer clear of developing infections.
  5. You can easily clean your brushes with good 'ol soap and warm water. 
  6. Clean your brushes at least once every two weeks. 
  7. Clean brushes means safe beauty.

Hey! DMM Blog Team here!

We had a lot of fun with this blog and we hope you liked it as much as we did creating it. We would love to hear from you.  Let us know if there is a topic you would like for us to research and share with you.

Want more makeup and personal hygiene tips? 

Then follow us on Instagram! @DateMyMakeup

If you have any comments, questions or would like to share any of your makeup experiences, don’t forget to leave them below! We would LOVE to hear from you. 

And as always, we hope to see you in the next one!

Safe Beauty to you! 


  1. https://www.frendsbeauty.com/blog/entry/natural-vs-synthetic-makeup-brushes
  2. https://www.qosmedix.com/synthetic-vs-natural-makeup-brushes
  3. https://www.allure.com/story/how-to-clean-your-makeup-brushes

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