How often do you really need to clean your makeup brushes—and what’s the best way to do it?
If you're hoping we're going to tell you that—good news!—a new study has found we're all washing our brushes way too much, then you're about to be let down. The fact of the matter is, like flossing and all the other boring but very important things in life, cleaning our makeup tools is something we need to get serious about. “I clean my brushes after every client,” says makeup artist Jillian Dempsey, “but if you’re just using yours on yourself, you should clean them at least once a week to prevent dirt and bacteria from building up and causing blemishes.” There are plenty of brush-specific washes on the market (Dempsey uses Make Up For Ever Instant Brush Cleaner, but a gentle face wash, like Cetaphil, works just as well. Make sure to wash your brushes in the direction of the bristles to prevent fraying (and only use harsher soaps like dish soap when they’re in need of a heavy-duty deep cleaning), then shake out the excess water, press the bristles with a paper towel, and lay them flat on a towel to air-dry. Store them inside your medicine cabinet (try sticking them in a chic, emptied out Diptyque candle holder) or in a clean pouch where they won’t collect dust.