How to properly clean and sanitize your makeup

How to properly clean and sanitize your makeup

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One of the positive effects of COVID-19 is that we’ve been made more aware of the importance of keeping ourselves clean. But for those who regularly use makeup, did you ever think to clean and sanitize them apart from your hands and your face?

Applying makeup is essentially a large part of a lady’s routine. However, the more it gets used, the more likely it is to become a host for nasty germs and bacteria that can get you sick. And if you don’t want to transfer those to your face, especially at this time of coronavirus, sanitizing your makeup is essential.

Now that most of us are quarantined to our homes, we can take the time to disinfect our belongings and spaces. There are different methods for sanitizing different kinds of makeup but all you need are things that you probably have lying around the house.

Start with those brushes


Cleaning brushes are probably as far as most girls go in cleaning their makeup. There’s a ton of products out there specifically for this task but if you don’t have any on hand, all you need is a little bit of gentle shampoo.

Rinse your brushes in lukewarm water, then pour a bit of the soap/shampoo in your hand or in a jar and swish it around for a bit. Be gentle as to not dislodge or alter the shape of your brush then rinse under running water until clear. Gently squeeze out excess water, reshape the bristles, then lay flat to dry on a dry towel.

Sponges are next

Sponges require a little bit more elbow grease. Grab your dirty sponge and scrub it on a soap bar under running water. Repeatedly scrub and flip sides until the water turns clear. Squeeze excess water then leave on a clean towel to dry. Do note that it’s sometimes best to just throw away sponges if they’re too dirty and beyond cleaning.

Don’t forget about makeup palletes

To clean makeup palettes, dip a cotton bud in water or micellar water then use it to clean the palette itself. For the makeup pots inside, put 70% isopropyl alcohol in a spray bottle and spray them at a distance. If pools of alcohol form, gently dab away the excess with a soft tissue then let the product completely dry for several hours.

Be wary of makeup palettes that are made of cardboard, don’t get them too wet or they might deteriorate. This will also work for powder compacts and powder blushes.

Disinfect other touchpoints

Liquid makeup that come in pump bottles often have caps on them. Don’t lose that cap. Not only does it spare you from accidental leaks but it also keeps the nozzle clean for a longer time. To disinfect, dip soft tissue or a cotton pad in some alcohol and wipe both the cap and nozzle very well. Let completely dry before attempting to dispense any product.

Yes, even your pencils

For pencils, first, shave away the exposed layer with a sharpener then wipe clean with a cotton pad soaked in alcohol.  Clean the sharpener by placing it in a shallow bowl of alcohol for about five minutes. Wipe then let both pencil and sharpener dry completely.

Spray from a distance

With bullet lipsticks, be gentle. Carefully wipe off the top layer of the lipstick with a soft tissue then, at a distance, spray with alcohol. Dry completely before use. Additionally, clean the container by simply wiping alcohol on it.

Liquid lipsticks are a bit more difficult. Ideally, you’d use disposable lip wands and never use the original but it’s pretty wasteful. If you haven’t shared your lipstick, you can, at the very least, clean the wand. Take out the wand and run it under warm water. Gently wipe away excess product then submerge it in alcohol. Dry completely before reinserting back into the tube.

Finally, your eyelash curlers

Eyelash curlers can do with an alcohol wipe down for the body. Some eyelash curlers rust so make sure to wipe it dry, especially in the corners and joints. For the pads, use an eye makeup remover to remove excess residue, dip a cotton bud in alcohol then wipe clean. As everything else, dry completely before use.

As for the others

Products that come in pots or tubs are quite impossible to clean so it’s best to practice using a small spatula instead of your finger from the beginning. Our hands contain germs and when they come in contact with products in tubs or pots, they’re likely to be infected. If you’ve had the product for some time now, it’s best to replace it with a new one to avoid further contamination. Mascara is quite similar. Since eyes are generally sensitive, they’re easily infected. You can clean the wand the same way you’d clean a lipstick wand. Remember, though, not to keep mascara for more than three months.

Last but not least, your makeup bag. Often overlooked, a dirty makeup bag can cause even more damage to your precious makeup. Different bags call for different cleaning methods. Fabric can often be laundered while plastics may just need an alcohol wipe down. Some bags have cleaning instructions attached to them so just refer to those so you won’t end up destroying it.

On a final note, cleaning and sanitizing your makeup isn’t something you should do just because of the coronavirus scare. As much as possible, you should do it every few weeks to keep yourself free from germs and bacteria.

Trust me, your face will thank you for it.