How I Clean My Brushes

As a makeup artist I always get asked how I clean my brushes.

So below I'll show you my step my step process. This is just my favorite method I'm not saying everyone should copy me!

Step 1-Rinse brush tips in running warm water.

Step 2- Fill sink 3/4 up with warm/hot water.

Step 3- Starting with your face brushes, grab your biggest brush and add some soap to the bristles.

(I am currently using Sigma Sigmagic brush shampoo, in the past I have used beauty blender solid or a soft antibacterial hand gel)

Step 4- Lather up that soap, really work it into the bristles, its good to use a brush washing pad or device (again I am currently using the sigma brush spa)

Step 5- Once all lathered up place on the side of the sink and start with the next brush working from big to small.

Step 6- Swirl brushes one at a time in the sink of water removing most of the soap.

Step 7- Now it's time to rinse all your brushes in warm running water, make sure you remove all soap residue, on my sigma I have a special rinse pattern to run brushes over but any pattern on your pad/device will work.

Step 8- After you have rinsed each brush give them a little shake and squeeze out excess water. Place on a clean dry towel or tissue paper, it's important you slightly angle the brush in a towards position so that the water doesn't run back into the ferrule and cause the glue to soften or damage. This is not good for your brushes!

Step 9- After this I take my brushes and towel into the makeup room, I then take each brush and a baby wipe and wipe down all the handles and ferrule. A lot of people forget this part but it's a crucial step.

Step 10- I give the brushes another squeeze of excess water and a gentle rub with the towel, then I spray them with 70% IPA, this will make sure the brushes are fully sanitized. I leave the spray to dry in do not rub off (unless on handles)

Step 11- Nearly there! After spraying my IPA I just give my brushes a quick reshape whilst wet, making sure the shape is similar to what it should be and that the bristles are sitting flat and not ruffled up.

Step 12- Last step! For this step you can either roll your towel at one end to create an angle and place brushes bristle down or use like me the Sigma Dry'n'Shape spa and attach brushes, again bristles facing down and leave to dry over night!

Never be tempted to put them on the radiator or dry them with a hair dryer this is a big no and can cause serious damage to your brushes.

Dependent on use brushes should be washed ideally once a week to keep bacteria at bay. You'll notice a difference in your skin if you are constantly using clean brushes.

*Professional tip- You cannot sanitize a Beauty Blender or any type of makeup sponge. Yes you can wash them but it's a fact you cannot sanitize a sponge so make sure you are replacing them frequently as they are a breeding ground for bacteria.

If a professional makeup artist uses a used sponge on you walk away it's not worth the risk. The only time a sponge should be used with clients is if it they are brand new with each client and can be gifted or tossed after use.

I hope this helps & happy brush washing!

  • Laura


Brushes shown:

Louise Young (

Blank Canvas (






Most can be found here at Beauty Bay ( including the Sigma spa.

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