You eat healthily, drink plenty of water, exercise regularly, cleanse your skin properly and moisturize, but no matter what you do, it seems your skin is still experiencing breakouts.

While you may think you’re doing everything right, there is one important step you may be missing, as many women don’t even think about it: dirty makeup brushes. Those brushes could very well be the root of your problem, as they can harbor all sorts of gross stuff, from toxins in sweat and bacteria to oil, dirt, grime, dead skin cells, old makeup residue, germs and more. If you don’t clean them regularly, just imagine what they might hold? Yuck!

1. Castile Soap Method

This method primarily uses castile soap – Dr. Bronner’s Baby Mild 18-in-1 Castile Soap is ideal. You’ll also need a dry hand towel, a toilet paper roll (with toilet paper), and a flat place to lay your makeup brushes down to dry. The most effective, and easiest, way to do this is to clean each brush one at a time. Use the same water temperature that you’d use to wash your hair – not too hot or you could damage the bristles. Don’t scrub too hard, as the brushes are very fragile – treat them like you would a flower.

  1. Wet your first brush with the fluffy part pointing down and then place a small dot of castile soap into your hand.
  2. Swirl your makeup brush around gently, using a circular motion, and then swirl in the opposite direction.
  3. Rinse the brush, and then check to see if it looks and feels clean. If not, repeat and rinse again until it does come totally clean.
  4. Once the brush is clean, rinse your hands and your brush thoroughly until the water runs clear.
  5. Lay the brush on a dry towel, on a flat surface. Keep in mind that you should never stand your brushes upright when they’re wet. Always air dry them, but if you absolutely have to, you can use a blow dryer on the cool, low setting.
  6. Repeat with all of your other brushes.
  7. Once all of your brushes are on the dry towel, fold the towel over the head of each brush, and gently press to eliminate excess water.
  8. If you can, find a warm, dry, flat spot like a sunny window sill to lay down the towel. Don’t use the brushes until they’re completely dry.

2. Bar Soap

You can also use standard bar soap to clean your brushes. Simply massage each one against a sturdy bar of soap, working the cleanser deep into the bristles. We recommend using a natural chemical free bar soap like this one.  Rinse with lukewarm water, and then lay out on a dry towel, as per the above castile soap method. Be careful not to get the barrel of the brush wet, as it tends to loosen the bristles, and they could fall out.

3. Liquid Dish Soap

Another way to get makeup brushes sparkling clean is to simply use liquid dish soap, water, and a clean sponge. Pour a little dish soap onto your sponge and then rub a makeup brush against the surface. Rinse with lukewarm water and then lay it on a flat dry towel; repeat. Be sure to rinse your sponge and use fresh dish soap which is also free from nasties like this one available on Amazon each time.

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