There are a few categories of people when it comes to business of washing brushes. For the first category, the thought of washing brushes is absurd, they’ve never heard of it.

The second category know something has to be done to clean these brushes but know not how to do it. The third think dirty brushes are a great excuse to buy new brushes.

Let’s face it, too many of us let our brushes sit in filth for far too long between washes. Keeping them clean keeps your skin healthy. Or you can think of it as an anti-aging step for your brushes because well maintained brushes can serve you for more than a decade!

We’ve broken down this business of brush cleaning to simple steps with pictures. So here’s something you can try this weekend.

 

Tools:

  • Dirty brushes
  • Gentle shampoo
  • Soft towel
  • Bowl for water
  • Tepid water
  • Sink (not shown)

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Step 1 – The Prep

Prepare a small amount of tepid (room temp) water, add a small amount of gentle shampoo and agitate. For the amount of water here, we added a 1/3 teaspoon of shampoo. It should not be too soapy.

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Step 2 – Watch Your Level

Dip brush into soapy water. Do not submerge brush any further than this or you will rot the handles and the brush head may fall off!

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Step 3 – The Wash 

Here’s when the fun begins. Hold brush handle between palms and roll rapidly to make the bristles twirl in water. This action allows soapy water to reach as many bristles as possible while trapped dirt gets flung out. Do this for 15 seconds or 30 seconds for dirtier brushes.

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Step 3.5 – The Wash

What do you do with smaller brushes that won’t flare in the water when rolled? Make your palm a washboard.

Gently work brush against a clean palm in soapy water.

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Step 4 – Remove Excess

Remove excess water after Step 3 by lightly pressing brush against the bowl and set aside.

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Step 5 – The Rinse

Throw out the soapy water, rinse bowl and refill with clean tepid water. Now repeat the spin technique you mastered in Step 3. This time you want clean water to get in and rid the soapy water. Repeat the technique from Step 3.5 for small brushes.

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Step 6 – The Drying

Place brush on soft dry towel and press down firmly several times to absorb the excess water. Never rub to dry. Repeat for all brushes.

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Step  7 – Reshape

After excess water has been absorbed, reshape the brush for the final drying process. Smooth bristles forward and press gently to create the right shape.

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Step 8 – Drying

Lay brushes on a flat surface and leave overnight to air dry. Never, ever, ever, stand wet brushes upright to dry. Moisture will flow back into the handles and loosen the brush head and rot the handles.