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The only good brush is a clean brush...


Don't cringe...but in high school, I had no idea about the importance of cleaning my makeup brushes...

Looking back, I realize learning a little about sterilization and cleansing can go a long way. After all, people wash their hands with hand sanitizer that kills 99.9% of germs, and they wash dishes with heavy-duty antibacterial soap after use,  so why wouldn't you give the same treatment to the tools you use on your skin? Dirty brushes may have even been a contributing factor in the acne problem that plagued my younger years. 

Cleaning and sanitizing tools is one of the most important, and often overlooked, areas of makeup application and care. It not only shows that the individual or artist is serious about professionalism, but also prevents cross-contamination.

Cross-contamination is the passing of bacteria, microorganisms, or other harmful substances indirectly from one person to another through improper use or unsterile equipment, procedures, or products. In makeup artistry, this most commonly occurs through double dipping, using fingers, or reusing sponges or un-sanitized tools. By using the spatula to pull makeup from containers and using the palette to mix and dip into, the original source of makeup (container) won't get contaminated. Maintaining a sterile work environment prevents skin breakouts and lengthens the life of cosmetics.

Sanitizing your brushes

The quickest and easiest way to instantly sanitize and clean your brushes is by using Cinema Secrets Professional Brush Cleaner. The formula guarantees instant sanitization. If you use 99% alcohol, you will need to soak your brushes or tools for a minimum of 10 minutes before they can be considered sanitized.

How to use Cinema Secrets Professional Brush Cleaner

Cleaning your brushes with Cinema Secrets Brush Cleaner is simple, and to show you, I took pictures of the process (using my eyeshadow and blush brushes) after I did my own makeup this morning....


1. Brush off any excess makeup or product onto a tissue or paper towel. 

Step2.jpg2. Pour brush cleaner into a small tin, jar, or tub, as I have done here. You don't need much and the liquid will turn out a clear blue. When you're done cleaning your brushes, you will have less of the cleaner in your jar but it should still be the same color as it is straight out of the bottle.


Thumbnail image for Step3-Blush2.jpg

3. Dip brush into cleaner. It is very important that you DO NOT swirl your brush in the cleaner. This cause all the makeup and bacteria you want to get off your brush to go right into your brush cleaner!

For fluffier brushes, you don't need to submerge the whole brush in cleaner. Instead, you just need to dip the tip in the brush cleaner and then invert the brush (as I have done in this image on the right) to let the brush cleaner soak to the bottom of the bristles without wasting a ton of product. 


4. Work brush against tissue or towel to remove the makeup or product. 

Step5.jpg5. Repeat as needed until brush wipes clean on tissue or towel

Step6.jpg6. Allow three to four minutes for pencil sized brushes to dry and around fifteen minutes for fluffier brushes to dry. Any chemical smell will become a soft vanilla scent when dry.

AND VOILA! You have clean, sanitary brushes!

Sanitizing palette, tweezers, and spatulas

500-TA008.jpgTwo options:

1. Soak them in a 99% alcohol for maximum sanitization  (this should be done with tweezers specifically). Between uses, simply spray a bit of 99% alcohol on the palette or spatula and they will be ready to reuse instantly. *NOTE* Be sure to use 99% alcohol and not basic rubbing alcohol, which is only 70% and will not completely sanitize.

2. Dip in Cinema Secrets Professional Brush Cleaner and wipe dry to instantly sanitize.

For reference, as well as some extra tips and tricks, see our tutorial on
"How to Clean and Sanitize Tools"in the Education section of our site.