top of page
  • Writer's picturePaula Pace

"Top 10 Brush Hygiene and Cleaning Guide Every Professional Makeup Artist Should Follow"

Updated: 5 days ago

Your Ultimate Guide to Maintaining a Clean and Hygienic Makeup practice for budding Makeup Artists and Makeup enthusiasts.

Hand next to makeup and brushes
Clean hands and brushes, the perfect first impression

Makeup Brush Cleaning and Hygiene Guide for Professional Makeup Artists

If you have been following my Blogs you will know I've been a Wedding Makeup Artist for a very long time now, and one thing I'm incredibly passionate about is simple makeup hygiene. Maintaining a high standard of cleanliness during makeup application is a crucial part of the job to ensure the health of your clients skin and preventing bacterial infections.

First Impressions Really Do count

A dirty kit, unclean and unsanitised brushes, products, tools and accessories is not only unprofessional and will give off a bad first impression but can also pose a risk to your clients health. In this Makeup Brush cleaning Hygiene guide, I will be sharing #10 ways to help you provide a clean, safe first class Makeup service 

Someone washing their hands under a tap
First things frst, get those hands scrubbed clean with antibacterial hand soaps

  1. Hygiene ritual –starts here! It may sound obvious, but its a core fundamental that good hygiene protocol begins with clean and sanitised hands. Wash thoroughly with antibac hand wash and then follow with an alcohol based hand sanitiser. (Remember the hand washing routine during Covid? the same still applies) And remember, keep those hands fresh and makeup-free throughout the makeup application – especially around any white dresses!!!!

  2. Use Clean Tools and Brushes: Make sure all your makeup brushes, sponges, and applicators are clean before using them. Be sure to deep-clean your brushes regularly with a mild antibacterial shampoo or specialised brush cleanser and allow them to dry completely (laid out flat) before using them again. Dirty brushes can harbor bacteria and lead to breakouts and skin infections. Between clients, its better to use clean brushes, however a good alcohol brush cleaner will dissolve any makeup and kill off any bacteria between uses. Allow brushes to dry thoroughly before use. Try this ISOCLEAN Makeup Brush Cleaner Liquid Spray Top Solution - Vegan, Cruelty-Free, Fast Drying, Easy to Use - Works in 60 seconds (110ml).

  3. Sanitize Your Makeup: Periodically sanitize your makeup products, especially those in cream or liquid form, to kill bacteria and prolong their shelf life. You can use alcohol sprays or wipes to sanitize powder products like eye shadows and blushes. Try Pro hygiene Antibacterial Sanitising Spray for piece of mind and to ensure complete sanitisiation. I have a simple video on another brush cleaning blog. Expert Tips: Cleaning Your Makeup Brushes | Paula Pace Sunderland (

  4. Lip & Eye Pencil hygiene: Are your makeup pencils sharpened before and after each session? An unsharpened pencil used between clients is just as bad as double-dipping, and sharpening with a sanitised sharpener is the best way to clean makeup pencils.

  5. Depot or decant: Make sure to sample products such as liquid foundations, lip glosses, lip colours or concealers using fresh, clean spatulas into pristine pallets, dishes, or tissues, and avoid double-dipping. Tap out loose face powder or loose pigment colours onto clean tissue or a clean dry cotton pad and use product from that.

  6. Keep Your Makeup Area Clean: Ensure that your makeup area is clean and free from dust, dirt, and other contaminants. Wipe down surfaces regularly with salon grade disinfectant wipes or Barbacide spray to prevent the buildup of bacteria. You can find Barbacide spray here.

  7. Do Not Double Dip: Avoid double-dipping with cream or liquid products to maintain 100% cleanliness standards Dispense products onto a clean palette or the back of your hand (covered with an adhesive palette) before application. For mascara, cross-contamination is a concern due to bacteria and lash mites. Professionals use separate, sanitized brushes for each eye to prevent contamination. Disposable mascara wands are a popular choice to eliminate risks entirely. This caution extends to all makeup tools and implements to prevent cross-contamination. Ensure an adequate supply of quality disposables for a safe makeup experience for the entire wedding party.

  8. Check Expiry Dates: Regularly check the expiry dates of your makeup products and discard any expired or old products. Using expired makeup can cause skin irritation and infections.

  9. Store Makeup Properly: Store your makeup products in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight and moisture. This helps prevent bacterial growth and extends the shelf life of your products.

  10. Give Your Whole Kit A Regular Spring Clean: Do Make sure all your equipment has had a good old clean over. Everything from your kit bag, makeup seat, mirrors, brush bags and palettes. Making sure your whole kit is immaculate will give your clients peace of mind that the service given will be professional and completely safe and hygienic.

Cosmetic sponges in candy pink lilac and green and beige
The ever popular beauty Blender - but they must be kept scrupulously clean

Top Makeup Tip - Beware of latex makeup sponges in your makeup kit – check with your bride and members of the bridal party of any allergies to latex. (Lash glues also contain latex, it would be wise to check this too)

Mascara Brush and other makeup items
Never double dip your Mascara brush

Remember, its your job to keep your service professionally clean

Keeping beauty professionally and hygienically clean is common sense and, as a professional makeup artist, you have been hired to do a job and provide the best possible service and care to your client.

And remember,  it’s not just about the bride’s/ client, model's right to receive best practice – which means having a makeup artist who is trained, experienced, qualified, and insured, but it’s about your professional reputation, income, word of mouth referral but most importantly doing the right thing.

Makeup should be fun, glamorous, uplifting and creative whether for a special occasion like a wedding or full on glam down the catwalk – let’s keep the Beauty Industry Clean by ensuring as makeup artists and beauty professionals, we take hygiene and the health and safety of our clients seriously.

A selection of used Makeup products
Makeup can be sanitised effectively with bacteria killing sanitising sprays

Some Other Important Points To Consider.

  • Avoid sharing makeup: Its far too easy to transfer bacteria and viruses such as herpes simplex (cold sores) by sharing makeup products, especially eye and lip products. Just don't do it.

  • Never use your kit lip brush over a cold sore. Always use a disposable brush to ensure there's absolutely no risk of cross contamination, which I like to wrap in a tissue to dispose. Make sure hands are sanitised after application regardless of whether you had contact with the skin or not. In college, we were instructed to isolate the area with a blob of petroleum jelly, but I think those spot/cold sore patches would work better. 36pk Spot & Coldsore covers

  •  When applying makeup to your bride using your hands and fingers, ensure they are impeccably clean. Regularly use a suitable sanitizing gel or soapy handwash to prevent product buildup on your hands, as even clean hands can quickly become hot and oily, potentially causing oil spots and spoilt makeup application.

Bottles of sanitisers, boxes of tissues, sprays
So many sanitising products out there. There's no excuse for not keeping a clean Makeup kit

So there you have it. Your #10 point Makeup Brush cleaning and hygiene guide, to help you carry out the best and most hygienic service you can and keep the Beauty Industry sparkling clean.

Thanks for reading.

If you have any blog post ideas you would like me to write, drop me a comment.

"At Weddings Makeup and everything else blog, I value transparency. My reviews, posts and recommendations are unbiased, reflecting our commitment to honesty. While we may earn commissions from affiliate links, rest assured, they incur no extra cost to you. I believe in empowering my readers with truthful insights into the beauty world, ensuring you make informed decisions with confidence."

1 commentaire

Michael Dustin
12 mai

Hello paula

bottom of page