So… when’s the last time you cleaned your makeup brushes?
Look, I get it. Cleansing your makeup tools at the end of a weary workday is no fun at all.
But here’s the thing. I don’t mean to guilt-trip you, but the germs and grime that build up on your brush bristles aren’t doing your face any favours. Colour cosmetics don’t combine as well as they should, for one, and the months-old gunk you’re massaging into your mien is just plain gross plus pimple-inducing to boot.
Because ain’t nobody has time for multi-step rituals, I’ve streamlined this very necessary chore into one fabulously foolproof step – using just one hero product.
I’m talking about instant cleansing sprays, which are almost embarrassingly easy to use. Simply spritz onto a paper towel – never directly onto the brush-head! – then swirl the ends of your soiled brush on the damp cloth, making sure not to let the suds seep into the ferrule, which is the metal bit holding the bristles in place.
One big beauty bonus of using a spray instead of a conventional cleanser: The non-rinse formula means you can squirt it onto your multi-purpose brush between products to prevent colour transfer – especially handy if you’re using the same shadow brush to smoke up your eye and don’t want to muddy up your makeup.
Product recommendation-wise, consider gunning for the Make Up For Ever Instant Brush Cleanser ($35), which de-grimes without stripping your bristles of protective oils. I’m also particularly partial to the purse-friendly Sephora Collection Master Cleanse Daily Brush Cleaner ($13) which is just perfect at whisking away the most waterproof of mascaras. Then there’s cult cosmetics brand Artis Brush Cleansing Foam ($40.60, Net-A-Porter) which yields an exceptionally fine foam that cuts through filth without rubbing the fibres right off.
All told, these fast-acting sprays should dry in a minute or so, but you can speed the process up by patting with paper towels and laying them flat on a clean surface – never prop your damp brush upright in a container like you would your toothbrush, as gravity will cause water to drain back into the metal ferrule and weaken the adhesive holding it to the bristlehead.
And that’s it! Aim to use your cleansing spray fortnightly; or weekly if you’re a face-paint fiend. Because hey, the bristles on your brushes deserve as much tender, loving care as the locks on your head. Brushes at the ready? Go!
A version of this article originally appeared on www.herworldplus.com.