I’ve tried it all; soap bars, shampoo, dishwashing liquid, face cleanser, heck, even actual brush cleansing solution. Nothing really kept my brushes cleaner than what I’m going to share with you now. In saying though, you’ll probably be like “Anthony, what the fuck?”
Keep reading to see what I use to keep all my brushes and sponges free from makeup and dirt.
My secret ingredient for brush cleansing, is literally hot tap water, a silicone brush cleansing device (the one with all the grooves) and…
HOUSEHOLD LAUNDRY DETEGENT
Yes, you read right. I remember one time, I got makeup all over my clothes, and I tried everything to get it off, and the only thing that remove the makeup from my stained clothing was laundry detergent, so I decided, why not use them on my makeup brushes as well?
Keep in mind that washing liquids of all types have a pH higher than 7; in chemistry terms, these agents are referred to as alkaline. When mixing an alkaline with an acid, you can neutralize the two agents to (hopefully) produce a neutral pH rated substance.
With this in mind, I always wash my brushes and sponges with a laundry detergent, and follow with a quick wash using a sub acid cleanser for extra precaution.
Sitting at the bathtub, with my laundry detergent and hot water ready, I prepare all my makeup tools to the side, ready for washing them all.
I find that washing your tools with just soapy water and your bare hands can prove to be difficult, so I picked up a cheap brush egg with grooves built in, to allow my brushes to be thoroughly scrubbed down and free from makeup, dirt and impurities.
From here on out, it’s as simple as dipping the brush in the water, giving it a quick swish around and scrubbing the living daylights of them all, to ensure they’re clean. With the laundry detergent mix though, I’m spending no more than 30 seconds per brush, so cleaning does not take long at all.
For verification, I put to the test my most stubborn brushes to clean against this laundry detergent mix.
I use this brush practically everyday to add blush to my cheeks, and blend out my contour. Sometimes, I’ll even dive right in with foundation if I want to be a little bit extra, or have a lot of time on my hands. My last cleanse with this brush, using a brush cleansing solution from a Western brand (I can’t remember which, but DB sounds familiar) left all my tools stained and not properly cleaned. I thought that this would be a good opportunity to see how it fairs against laundry detergent.
Though it”s not pristine white, most of the color did come off very quickly, and the water was practically clear giving the brush a rinse after a 15 second scrub. I guess, with brushes used for powder products, they clean almost immediately.
Next up is foundation. I use the Pony Effect Flat Foundation Brush virtually for all liquid products. Foundation, concealer on wider areas of the face, contour, liquid highlight. EVERYTHING. So in saying that, this brush was filthy prior to cleansing. Again putting the laundry detergent to the test, I wanted to see how liquid makeup fairs against it.
Clean. Not a single drama at all with laundry detergent. Had I used a specific branded brush cleanser, I’d probably be sitting at the bathtub for a good 10 minutes just on ONE foundation brush. Don’t even get me started on how shampoo and dish washing liquid works on them.
How about a spooly? Such a weird brush to clean. Whenever I do my brows, I always use a wax to sculpt my brows, either powder or liquid to fill in, and then a coat of brow mascara to change the hair colors. With each step, I use my spooly to brush out the brow hairs into place, and to also blend the makeup. That said, this brush used every day, get’s a lot of gunk on the bristles.
Not even 10 seconds, and the brush was clean. What else can I say, other than not to scrub this brush too hard as the bristles might fall off like mine. Oops.
NOW FOR THE REAL TEST
Brushes are easy to clean, but how about sponges? They’re the real devils when it comes to makeup tool washing. Again, just like the brushes, I’ve never actually had any good luck using everything else. Even specific brush cleansing solutions. The beauty sponges always stay dirty, and cushions don’t ever return to it’s former white color.
Beauty sponges are one of the most daunting to wash; they absorb all the water and end up not even cleaning the makeup off properly. Even when you scrub and squish the living daylights out of them, they always remain dirty. How does laundry detergent fair though?
I forgot my sponge was this shade of pink. Wow. That’s all I can say.
“Yeah, but sponges are more easier to clean than cushions are.”
That’s very true. I’ve gone and seen many reviews on cushion cleansing, and virtually every single one I saw, nobody could get their cushions looking half decent no matter what they tried.
The liquid definitely made the cushion white again, which is definitely a relief, and the cushion itself is clean for sure. However, as the image shows, the Etude House band is stained from the foundation, and I wasn’t able to remove it at all. Nonetheless, this is by far the most cleanest I’ve ever got a cushion to, so I’m pretty darn happy.
After cleansing with laundry detergent, I go in for a second cleanse with face wash, and then lay all my brushes and sponges out on some kitchen paper to dry. Except for the Pony Effect brushes. I hang them upside down.
After all the hard work, and probably 30 minutes in the bathroom, would I recommend using laundry detergent as a cleaning agent for your makeup brushes?
Well, it all depends. Of course looking at it from a skincare perspective, I’m sure we can all agree that laundry ANYTHING should never come in contact with our skin. However, the results do speak very loudly, and I guess, my answer is somewhere on the fence.
Until I can find a good makeup brush cleanser, I guess I’m sticking with Fab.
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