How to Make a DIY Makeup Brush Cleaner (Using Only 2 Ingredients) — Sustainably Yours

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I have a confession to make. I don’t clean my makeup brushes as often as I should. In fact, I used to go months without cleaning them.

I know that’s wrong but I never made it part of my routine. And when my makeup brush cleaner ran out, I kept forgetting to buy a new one.

Finally, I tried a DIY makeup brush cleaner for my brushes. And it worked amazingly. Since then, I’ve tried different DIY methods and they all do a great job.

Want to know what these DIY methods are? Keep reading!

You’ll also learn why you should DIY your cleaner and the proper method to cleaning makeup brushes.

SUGGESTED READ: How to Make Hand Soap at Home — Using Only 2 Ingredients

Why You Should Use DIY Cleaners

DIY cleaners are great because you are using items that you most likely already have in your home. You are not spending extra money to buy something so you save money.

Plus, you are helping the environment by preventing extra packaging from coming in to your home.

If you buy these household items in bulk or you buy multiple at once, it will help reduce your emissions even more plus save you money. You don’t need to buy several different products to get the job done.

Lastly, most conventional makeup brush cleaners use chemicals or toxic ingredients. When you think about the fact that those brushes go on your face, it’ll make you think twice about investing in them.

Making your own cleaner helps you make sure that you are not putting anything harmful on your skin.

How Often Should You Be Cleaning Your Brushes

I’ve heard a lot of different people say different things. Some beauty gurus will wash them every day. Others wash them every few days while others wash it once a week.

How often you clean your makeup brushes will depend entirely on how often and how much you use them. Beauty gurus tend to use a lot more product than you or I so that’s why they (generally) wash them every day.

If you wear minimal makeup, once a week is a good time to wash them. You can add washing your brushes to your morning routine or with your weekend chores.

Why You Should Clean Your Brushes

Makeup brushes are a host for bacteria. Especially if they get wet.

Have you ever sprayed an eyeshadow brush with your setting spray? That wet brush is now a great place for bacteria to grow.

Since brushes go all over your face, they also accumulate also sweat and oil on their bristles.

This mixture of bacteria, sweat and oil can — on terrible occasions — cause infections. More likely is that they will clog your pores and give you pimples.

No thanks.

Luckily, it’s very quick and easy to wash makeup brushes especially with items you already have in your home.

Best DIY Makeup Brush Cleaner

My favourite DIY cleaner is a mix of olive oil and dish soap. I use Attitude dish soap. It’s non-toxic and you can get large refill boxes that will last you months.

You can choose to use whatever dish soap you have at home. From my experience, Dawn and Palmolive are also soaps that can clean your brushes well.

What’s great is that you can wash your beauty blender with this mixture too!

Important! If you use this mixture, make sure to only get the bristles wet. If you get the glue wet with this mixture, it could make the bristles fall out.

Shop Makeup Brush Cleaner Products

If you are looking to make a DIY makeup brush cleaner without olive oil, don’t worry. There’s plenty of methods you can use.

One popular method is to use baby shampoo to clean your makeup brushes. The great thing about baby shampoo is that it’s made for babies so it has safe ingredients. Attitude is a trusted brand to make non toxic baby shampoo.

If you don’t have baby shampoo at home, use apple cider vinegar. Mix together 1 cup of water with 1 tsp apple cider vinegar and use that mixture to clean your brushes. If you find the smell to be overpowering, mix in some lemon juice for scent.

Lastly, if you have castile soap in your house, you can use that too. For each brush, wet the bristles then use one drop of soap to clean you brushes. Not sure how to properly clean your brushes? Keep reading to find out how!

How to Clean Your Brushes Properly

Cleaning brushes is really easy. It can take some time depending on how large your brush collection is. If you only have a couple brushes, it shouldn’t take more than 10 minutes.

First, you need to collect your materials. You will need:

  • A bowl
  • A small towel
  • Your makeup brushes
  • A Makeup Brush Cleaner Mat *optional but highly recommended
  • Your cleaning products (olive oil, dish soap, baby shampoo, apple cider vinegar or castile soap)

Follow these instructions on how to clean your brushes:

  1. First, prep your area by putting cleaning product into a bowl. Set a towel up next to the sink.
  2. Wet the bristles of your brush. Then dip your brush into your cleaning product.
  3. Next, swirl your makeup brush along your cleaning mat until the water runs clear. If you don’t have a cleaning mat, you can use the palm of your hand and it works just as well.
  4. When the water is clear, squeeze the water out of the bristles. You can also flick the brush to get as much water out of it as possible.
  5. Your brushes are clean!

To dry your brushes, there are two ways you can do it.

First, you can lay them down on a towel. When they’re still slightly damp, pick up the brush and shape the bristles into place. Then place them on the towel again until they are dry.

Another method is to use use rubber bands to hold the brushes upside down over a bowl or sink. You will have to find an area to hand the brush like a hook. This way, the bristles don’t have to be put into their shape. The bowl or sink will catch any water droplets.

Start Washing Your Brushes

Now that you know how to wash and dry your brushes with make sure you wash them at least once a week! You want to avoid getting pimples from dirty brushes.

These DIY makeup brush cleaners will make cleaning your brushes very quick and easy. You’ll never have to worry about dirty brushes again.

Originally published at on January 18, 2021.

I have a passion for living a sustainable lifestyle to help heal our planet. Read my posts on living an eco-friendly lifestyle at

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