Cleaning Makeup Brushes


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September 8, 2016

Homemade Makeup Brush Cleaner SolutionThis is my homemade version of a makeup and brush cleanser solution that works as well as the $12 ones at the shops. It's easy to make and easy to use. If you don't have coconut oil, you can also use olive oil.


Total Time: 5 minutes


  • 2 parts antibacterial dish soap
  • 1 part coconut oil or olive oil
  • luke warm water
  • 1 plate (not a paper plate)
  • 1 lint-free towel, t-shirt, or paper towel
Homemade Makeup Brush Cleaner Solution


  1. For the purposes of this tutorial, I cleaned one brush. In a plate, add one big drop of dish soap and half a drop of coconut oil.
  2. Homemade Makeup Brush Cleaner Solution
  3. Wet your dirty makeup brush with some lukewarm water.
  4. Homemade Makeup Brush Cleaner Solution
  5. Dip your brush in the soap and oil solution and gently draw little circles. It will start to foam up and smell good. You can also use just your hand which I usually do-- I just didn't have extra photographer hands!
  6. Homemade Makeup Brush Cleaner Solution

  7. Rinse bristles under lukewarm water. Swirl the brush against the palm of your hand until water runs clear. Please DO NOT use hot water as the temperature will ruin your brush.
  8. Homemade Makeup Brush Cleaner Solution
  9. Gently blot excess water with your towel. When rinsed, you do not want to prop it in a cup bristle side up as this will ruin your brush. Instead, fold your towel and lay the brush down at an angle, brush side down. Let dry.
  10. *Foundation and eyeliner brushes should be cleaned often to keep bacteria away from your skin and your eyes.
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January 13, 2012

I found a cheap and decorative way to store and clean my makeup brushes. The mason jar and marbles keep the brushes in place and add a cute shabby chic look to my vanity.

Makeup Brushes in an empty mason jar with marbles.

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September 27, 2011

I use scar makeup, which is as thick as stage makeup. Well, a lot of that inevitably ends up on my powder brush, and after a bit it needs to be cleaned.


I've tried expensive brush cleaners and high-end shampoos, but nothing worked!

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October 6, 2011

For my eyeliner brushes that are hard to clean, due to the fact that cream eyeliner is not water soluble, I clean with olive oil. I put a little oil on a paper towel, 'dip' the brush in the oil, and 'brush' the paper towel.

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Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

October 29, 2005

How can I make a homemade sanitizer for makeup brushes? I know rubbing alcohol cleans, but is it sufficient to sanitize?

Rob from Spokane, WA


By gator10tx (Guest Post)
October 30, 20050 found this helpful
Best Answer

Alcohol was created to kill germs and whathaveyou and was used for only that for a long time. It won't kill *all* germs but if it's good enough for a nurse to swab my skin w/it b4 giving me a shot, i'd think that does a pretty good job of killing 'wee beasties.'


If you'd like another method to sanitize your makeup brushes, you could make a solution of 1 pint of water to 2 drops of household bleach. That's a tad stronger than what's used in hospitals to kill germs (to make water potable, a person would add 6-8 drops household bleach to a gallon of water and wait half and hour, or longer, before use). It would my suggestion you let your brushes soak a long time.

Another way to clean your brushes: one of my teachers in public school used to wash her hairbrushes and combs in a solution of dish detergent and ammonia. She let them soak half an hour. She said it removed all the hair spray build-up and got them very clean.

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December 15, 20050 found this helpful
Best Answer

When I was going to school at Marca (Esthetician) and we washed our brushes with shampoo and conditioner.

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May 18, 2016

This is a page about DIY brush cleansing palette. A repurposed plastic lid and some hot glue is all you need to make an economical makeup brush cleansing palette.

DIY Brush Cleansing Palette

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