You wouldn’t wash your face with the same washcloth for weeks on end, yet few of us think twice about swiping that same blush brush or powder sponge over our faces time and time again. But the fact is that those dirty makeup brushes do more than trigger our gross factor reflex. Rather, dirty makeup brushes can spread bacteria, cause breakouts and even lead to eye infections! Eww! To prevent the nastiness that comes with dirty makeup brushes, we need to thoroughly clean our makeup brushes, sponges and other applicators at least once each week and, well, we think that Makeup Free Mondays are the perfect day to do it since you won’t be using those babies anyway!

How To Clean Your Makeup Brushes In 3 Steps

1.  Squirt a small amount of baby shampoo in a mug filled with warm water and, like you did in elementary school with your paint brushes (albeit more gently), softly swirl your makeup brushes in the soapy water to loosen the oils and makeup. Dump out the water and repeat until the water runs clean. (If you have a particularly soiled brush, put a small amount of baby shampoo in your palm and clean the brush by hand.) Prop the handles of the brushes on a ledge or on top of a folded towel so that the water will drain down and out of the bristles. Let them air dry overnight and fluff in the morning. Use a blow dryer to dry, if needed.

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2. Spray all pencils with rubbing alcohol (or dip them in a shot glass with rubbing alcohol) before sharpening them. Even if they don’t “need” sharpening, this will remove the outermost (and dirtiest) layer.

3.  Place all sponges, buffing cloths and powder puffs in a lingerie bag and place them in the washing machine or wash them by hand using Woolite.

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