If putting on makeup is part of your daily personal care regimen, then you probably have many makeup brushes in your tool kit. To make sure you keep your makeup products as sanitary as possible, cleaning your brushes is a must. While you might not know where to begin when it comes to cleaning your brushes, making DIY makeup brush cleaner is very easy!
Makeup brushes are a breeding ground for germs if you don’t take proper care of them, so finding a cleaner that works is essential. As your brushes come into contact with your skin, they pick up dead skin cells, oil, dirt, and other bacteria such as fungus, viruses, and even E. Coli, in addition to clinging to the makeup residue left behind after application.
Without proper cleansing, these harmful pathogens can not only cause skin issues such as acne but can also be dangerous to your health. Experts recommend cleaning makeup brushes anywhere from once a daily to once a week, depending on the type of brush.
If you’re buying brand name brush cleaner, then the price can add up. That’s why we’ve put together this list of easy DIY makeup brush cleaner recipes and tips so that you can learn how to clean makeup brushes at home.
12 Amazing DIY Makeup Brush Cleaner Tips & Recipes
1. Simple Homemade Makeup Brush Cleaner
Making a solution to clean your dirty makeup brushes is easy. This simple recipe requires only two ingredients that you probably already have in your kitchen!
While we’ve listed the ingredients in cups, this cleaning solution calls for two parts of soap to one part olive oil, so you can make as much or as little as you need. Mix the two ingredients in a bowl, stirring with a spoon until thoroughly combined.
This recipe provides deep cleaning, as the olive oil breaks down old makeup stuck to the brush bristles while the soap kills all germs and bacteria. To clean your makeup tools, first wet the brush with lukewarm water, holding the brush with bristles facing down, and then let them dry completely.
Next, dip your dry brush in the homemade makeup brush cleaner and work the solution through the bristles, running the brush back and forth over your hand until thoroughly coated. Continue doing this until the suds are free of color from the makeup.
Finally, rinse the brush with lukewarm, running water, until there are no more suds. Reshape the bristles with your fingers and allow the brush to air dry.
2. Use Baby Shampoo
If you ask any makeup artist their number one tip for cleaning their dirty brushes, they’re likely to say baby shampoo. To start, run the bristles under lukewarm water and then squirt a nickel-sized dollop of shampoo into your palm.
Next, grab your damp brush and swirl the bristles in your palm, coating it in suds. Once there is no more leftover makeup in the bristles, rinse the head again in lukewarm water. Squeeze out the excess water with your fingers. If the water is clear, your brush is clean! Using a paper towel, dry the bristles, reshaping them as you go.
3. Disinfect with Vinegar
Vinegar is a critical ingredient in many homemade cleaning products, and it’s perfect for disinfecting your dirty makeup brushes. After washing with baby shampoo, you can achieve deeper cleaning by swishing the bristles in a vinegar solution.
Combine one part water and two parts white vinegar in a bowl. Take your gently cleaned brush and swirl it in the solution for about one minute. Rinse the bristles under water to wash out the vinegar. Pat them dry and lay them flat on a paper towel to dry.
4. Clean with Rubbing Alcohol
Rubbing alcohol is a quick and efficient way to clean brushes. You can choose to either dip your brushes or spray them. Either way will do the trick.
If you want to dip your brushes, fill a small bowl with rubbing alcohol. A shallow bowl works best, as you don’t want to submerge the makeup brush too deeply. Swirl the brush around in the alcohol, making sure only the bristles get wet. You will notice the makeup coming off and coloring the liquid right away. Do this for 10 to 20 seconds.
Remove the brush from the alcohol and wipe the bristles on a towel. Though you want it to be clean, it’s best to use an old towel that you don’t care about, as the makeup residue will likely leave a stain. Repeat with unused alcohol until all the makeup dissolves, and then squeeze out the excess liquid and reshape the bristles with your fingers.
If you prefer to spray your brushes, lay them flat on a towel and squirt the bristles on all sides with a spray bottle. Continue until the brush is completely saturated and then proceed as if you had dipped them.
5. Use Tea Tree Oil
This essential oil has been used in many natural medicines for hundreds of years thanks to its potent antimicrobial and antiseptic properties. This makes it a great additional ingredient to use in your DIY cleaners to get a thorough cleansing.
Create a natural makeup brush cleaner solution by mixing lukewarm water, a squirt of baby shampoo, and three drops of tea tree oil in a bowl. Run the brush under lukewarm water and then swirl the bristles in the solution. Proceed with cleaning as instructed when cleaning with rubbing alcohol.
You should always have some tea tree oil on hand, as it is one of the best natural cleaning products for several other personal items. For example, it is one of the best ways to clean a hair brush.
6. Natural Makeup Brush Cleaner
This natural makeup brush cleaner recipe breaks up dirt and grease and disinfects and conditions bristles, keeping your brushes in great shape. It’s perfect for more brushes made with real hair, or other beauty products that are of higher quality.
Combine all ingredients except the water in a glass bottle and swirl. Once everything is combined, add the water and shake well. When you’re ready to clean your brushes, pour a small amount of the cleaner into a bowl.
Dip the bristles into the mixture and swirl. Rinse the brush with the bristles point down and squeeze out excess water. Place on a clean towel to air day.
7. Use Dish Soap
A gentle dish soap like Dawn makes a perfect cleaner. For this method, you will also need a sponge.
Pour a small amount of dish soap onto a clean sponge and then rub your dirty makeup brush against it. Once it is sudsy and clean, rinse the bristles with lukewarm water and then wipe with a towel to remove leftover residue. Lay the brush flat to dry.
8. Microwave Your Beauty Blender
Brushes aren’t the only tools that require cleaning; all of your beauty products do. Beauty blenders have recently become a must-have item for any makeup kit, but the porous material soaks up a lot of bacteria.
The easiest, most efficient way to clean your beauty blender is to zap it in the microwave. Combine water and mild liquid soap in a microwave-safe cup and then put your blender inside. Make sure it is completely submerged. Place the container in the microwave and set it for one minute.
When you take the cup out, the soapy water should be full of makeup residue. Once you allow the hot water to cool, fish the beauty blender out and ring out the water.
9. DIY Makeup Brush Cleaner
This natural cleaner recipe is perfect for dirty brushes. The apple cider vinegar wipes out all potentially dangerous bacteria, leaving your brushes clean.
Combine all of the ingredients in a glass and stir. Allow your brushes to soak in the mixture to break down the dirt and residue, though be careful not to submerge them past the bristles. Rinse out the brushes with cool water and place them on a dry towel to air dry overnight.
10. Dissolve Dried Makeup with Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is an excellent replacement for a makeup remover, so it makes sense that it would also be able to help clean makeup brushes. Just pour some liquefied coconut oil into a small bowl and dip your brush.
Gently massage the bristles under hot water until the water runs clean. Pat dry with a towel and then lay them flat to air dry overnight.
11. Brush Cleaning Spray
This cleaning spray is perfect for any brushes that require daily disinfecting.
Pour the alcohol in a spray bottle that can hold 8 ounces or more. Add the water and drops of your preferred essential oil to cover the scent of the alcohol. Shake the bottle well to combine ingredients and always shake before using this homemade brush cleaner.
Lightly spray your brush bristles with the cleaner and then run the brush over a towel. Allow it to air dry for a moment or two, and then use the brush as usual.
12. Dry Your Brushes Upside Down
If you find that laying your makeup brushes flat on a towel doesn’t work for you, then you should add a drying rack to your list of DIY projects to make! All you need for this project is a hanger and some rubber bands.
Attach your brushes to the bottom of a hanger using rubber bands, affixing them by the handle with the bristles pointing down. Be sure to place the drying rack somewhere where the bristles aren’t touching anything, as you want the brushes to maintain their shape as they dry.
Making these DIY makeup brush cleaner recipes is equal parts fun and efficient. You can save a lot of money not only on the cleaner itself but by extending the lifespan of your makeup brushes by taking proper care of them!
We hope you found these homemade brush cleaner tips helpful. Share these simple makeup brush cleaning tricks on Facebook with any friends and family who love makeup!