Best Makeup Brush Cleaner [Review] in 2021
written by nail expert Jess Rowley
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Every girl needs her makeup tools to create beautiful makeup looks, but after much loving, are you looking to give your brushes a clean so they can give you that original sparkle again?
Well lucky for you, you’re at the right place.
I’ve scoped through everything to know about makeup brush cleaners and found the top 32 cleaners available at the click of a button.
The buildup of dirt and oils on your makeup brushes can cause not only acne breakouts but potentially dermatitis; we all know cleaning your brushes can be a pain and a tedious task, especially when the foundation is stuck between the bristles, but it’s so crucial.
To make things much easier for you, I have listed down the top makeup brush cleaners to remove every inch of even the most stubborn muck and dirt.
Here’s something to remember: be aware of makeup brush belts and bags; they are bacteria feeding grounds. It’s all well and good cleaning brushes, but putting them back into a filthy bag can do more bad than good.
Your brushes are the backbone of your beauty kit; let’s take care of them together with my top picks.
Best makeup brush cleaner to care for your brushes
Real Techniques Deep Cleansing Gel
You’re gonna love this cleaner; this cleaner goes a long way. This is the most concentrated formula that’ll wick away all bacteria built up on the bristles.
This Real Techniques cleaner was built for deep cleaning and extending the life of your sacred brushes.
But here’s the best bit.
It is also dermatologically tested for sensitive skin, so it will eliminate breakouts and restore flawless performance in even the dirtiest of brushes.
The alcohol and phthalates-free formula will leave your brushes spick and span without stripping your skin.
This cleaner, along with the cleansing palette, will get even the toughest of grime.
Improve your brush performance, giving you that most loved glowing makeup looks with this cleaner. For a drugstore brush cleaner, this is one of the best.
- Alcohol and phthalates free
- Wick away all bacteria and buildup
- Ideal for sensitive skin
- Helps deal with acne
- It may not be ideal for all brushes
Latest deal: Real Techniques Deep Cleansing Gel
MAC Brush Cleanser
If you love the full coverage makeup looks as much as I do, I cannot recommend this product enough. This is the cleaner that’ll last you a lifetime even if you use it generously.
Not only does this cleaner keeps your tools sparkling clean, but the formula prolongs the life and performance.
It’s super a super easy clean, just apply generously on the brush itself or a towel or soak for 5 minutes to restore the brush’s reliable performance.
But what’s the bottom line?
It’s a super fast-acting and drying formula, so you’ll have your brushes restored to their former beauty in a blink of an eye.
- Breaks down full coverage makeup buildup
- Easy clean
- High quality
Latest deal: MAC Brush Cleanser
Beautyblender Liquid BlenderCleanser
best makeup sponge cleaner
This brush cleaner was built to soak out and wick away tough stains and even the most stubborn foundations to maintain the former integrity and beauty.
This gentle formula will keep blenders, and makeup brushes super soft and in top condition, all along with a calming lavender fragrance.
It’s a super-easy and quick clean.
It removes all excess residue and bacteria; it’s as simple as squeezing a bit of this cleanser in a Ziploc bag with water and all your favorite blenders and shaking it until it creates a foam, then rinsing and drying.
It adds that satisfaction you never knew you wanted, for the price you’ll absolutely love this product.
- Soaks out tough stains
- Easily removes stubborn foundations
- Removes excess oil, dirt, and grime
- Comes in travel size
- You can wash your beauty blender with shampoo
Latest deal: Beautyblender Liquid BlenderCleanser
EcoTools Makeup Brush Shampoo
Now, if you’ve read my other guides, you’ll know that I love EcoTool’s products for their natural and vegan products, and this cleaner is no different.
It naturally cleans and conditions your brushes and returns them to their soft and silky former glory without the pesky oily residue being left behind. Made out of gentle, plant-based materials while also being paraben, phthalate, and petroleum-free.
Experts suggest you should clean your applicators after every use to prevent any unnecessary build-up and breakouts.
But not to worry.
You only need a small amount to work magic. Just keep lying it flat after you’ve finished keeping its original shape.
It gives your brushes a newly just bought look for longer while also being excellent for the environment. Being both made out of renewable bamboo and recycled materials and packaging.
This will definitely keep your brushes spick and span without harming the planet.
- Cruelty-free and vegan
- Natural and gentle
- Removes oil and grime
Latest deal: EcoTools Makeup Brush Shampoo
StylPro Electric Makeup Brush Cleaner and Dryer
best electric makeup brush cleaner
If you’re looking for a carefree, effective brush cleaner, then electric makeup brush cleaners are up for the job. StylePro made it on my list because of how well it performs.
Enjoy clean and dry brushes in 30 seconds; you can get back to doing what you love in no time. This makeup brush cleaning comes with everything you need to remove, even the most stubborn of grime.
But wait, there’s more.
It’s designed to fit most makeup brushes, from large foundation brushes to the tiniest of eye brushes. The flexible material also ensures that your brushes won’t be damaged.
The bowl is also super durable, and BPA-free, dishwasher safe, scratch-resistant, and even stain-resistant for the most unbeatable clean.
For an easy and carefree solution, you can’t go wrong.
- Durable, BPA free and dishwasher safe
- Cleans in 30 seconds
- Flexible holder
- Removes stubborn oil and grime
- They don’t take returns
Latest deal: StylPro Electric Makeup Brush Cleaner and Dryer
TailaiMei Color Removal Cleaner Sponge
best dry makeup brush cleaner
This brush is a lifesaver for a quick and easy fix. Even the highest-pigment eyeshadow won’t stand in your way. Just run the brush back and forth a few times then you can get back to your makeup.
It saves you both time and money, no more waiting for your brushes to dry for you to complete your next look. This is a quick and easy solution, but it doesn’t replace washing your brushes as it doesn’t get rid of all dirt and grime.
It’s an effective color removal without the pain of water or chemicals that could be harmful to your skin.
But thats not all.
It is efficient and reusable; both sides of the sponge can be used while easy to clean, just soap and water. Overall this is perfect for a travel weekend away or a quick fix for a challenging colorful makeup look.
- Brilliant for on the go
- No need for water or chemicals
- Quick and easy solution
- Removes all dirt and grime
- Only a quick solution
Latest deal: TailaiMei Color Removal Cleaner Sponge
Sigma Beauty SigMagic® Brushampoo™ Foam
If you’re looking for a perfect, natural brush cleaner for the price, then it’s right here.
This cleaner was built for product build-up without harmful chemicals with 100% natural virgin coconut oil and ethically sourced palm oil.
Now, if you’re wondering- does this really work?
Of course! The antimicrobial formula prevents and slows growth even up to 2 weeks after cleaning and generous use.
With the natural ingredients and effective use, this one a golden.
- Prevents growth of bacteria up to 2 weeks after use
- Easy to use
- Fragrance, Parabens, Sulfates and Phthalates free
- Dissolves the most stubborn of pigment
Latest deal: Sigma Beauty SigMagic® Brushampoo™ Foam
StylPro Makeup Brush Cleaner Solution
Along with the StylePro makeup brush cleaner and dryer, I must introduce you to the shampoo they offer to go with the kit.
Keep your precious beauty tools clean with StylPro’s cleaning solution that will cut through any oil-based, non-soluble stubborn makeup that wedges itself in your brushes.
It is designed to condition and nourish every bristle on your brush, leaving them silky smooth and protected. It will wash away even the most stubborn makeup like foundation, concealer, and even lipstick, so your brushes will look like new!
Thus cleaner, along with the StylePro Makeup brush cleaner and dryer machine, was built to work wonders on your brushes in a fast and easy method. You don’t even need to add water!
Now, you may be wondering, is it safe for all makeup brushes?
Absolutely! It is completely alcohol-free, sulfate-free, paraben-free, and its gentle formula has been registered by the Vegan society. If you use it in conjunction with the StylePro device, it is faster and more hygienic than other methods.
We all hate the long waiting process after cleaning your favorite makeup brushes, but how about I tell you, you don’t have to worry about that again with this complete kit.
- Removes stubborn makeup
- Can remove oil-based, non-soluble dirt and grime
- Alcohol, paraben and sulfate-free
- Vegan and cruelty-free
- Doesn’t remove all oil
Latest deal: StylPro Makeup Brush Cleaner Solution
Elf Cosmetics Makeup Brush Cleaning Glove
While all the cleaners and shampoos are great for cleaning your brushes, you may be wondering what about a tool so I can get into all the nooks and crannies?
Well, let me introduce you to this handy tool by e.l.f; with multiple textures, this will get even the toughest of stains and grime out of your bristles, leaving your brush like new.
It even has two useful slots in the side that will help to support brushes while they dry; it works even on the more fragile brushes.
This will definitely make your life easier when it comes to the tedious job of cleaning your brushes without the worry of damaging them.
- Helps clean in all the nooks and crannies
- Rough textures remove the toughest of stains
- Two useful slots to support brushes
- Makes cleaning easier
Latest deal: Elf Cosmetics Makeup Brush Cleaning Glove
Best Makeup Brush Cleaners-- A Buyer’s guide
Makeup brushes are the essential tools to put a makeup look together, but they are bacteria breeding grounds that cause unnecessary breakouts.
They always say you must clean your makeup brushes to reduce the buildup of all the grit and grime from makeup, but how often should you be cleaning your makeup brushes?
Experts say you should clean your brushes once a week, and I know you’re probably looking at that shocked and questioning the last time you washed your makeup brushes.
But not to panic, that next to never happen, life gets in the way, we all get busy, we make excuses. With cleaning being such a time-consuming task, it’s understandable why we don’t wash our makeup brushes regularly.
It’s such a messy task that takes a lot of time and effort, and if you don’t have a makeup brush dryer, it can be up to 24 hours before you can use it again- such an inconvenience, I know!
Its something we all know we need to add into our weekly routine, so the best way to do it is to set a day every week or even every 2 weeks to ensure you’re on schedule; for example, set an hour every Sunday to get this pesky job done, trust me your skin will love you after you implement this.
But before you click to buy, I’m here to break down the confusing questions you may have so you can clean your brushes quickly and effectively.
When Should You Replace Your Makeup Brushes & Sponges Altogether?
For both blenders and brushes, you should in an ideal world wash regularly and replace every few months, but no one usually does it. Experts say that if they begin to smell, that’s when you should throw them out.
To preserve the life of your beauty brushes and blenders, I would recommend washing them regularly to prevent bacteria buildup. If you think about it, that brush could have a foundation from a makeup look you created 2 months ago, gross.
If your brushes start to lose their shape or fray, then that’s when you should chuck them out.
How To Make Makeup Brush Cleaner:
Don’t want to make the splurge on a makeup brush cleaner and wondering whether you can make a makeup brush cleaner at home? Well, good news you can!
Vinegar and Lemon:
If you’re looking for a natural way to clean your makeup brushes, one way would be to mix two tablespoons of white vinegar into a cup of warm water, swirl your brushes, and then rinse off with lukewarm water.
To eliminate the vinegar smell, rub your brushes against a lemon to give you that fresh, clean smell and look.
Washing up liquid:
Another quick and easy way to clean your brushes is washing up liquid and some water; swirl your brushes until clean, then boom. Be careful not to submerge the whole brush into the water, as this can loosen the glue on the bristles.
Baby shampoo was sensitive enough for your scalp as a baby. It will definitely be perfect for your brushes.
All you need to do is wet your brush in lukewarm water, add a bit of shampoo and rub in a circular motion until all of the makeup is out and your brushes look squeaky clean.
Frequently asked Questions
How do I sanitize makeup brushes?
- Firstly start by running the brush under lukewarm water using your fingers to spread out the bristles. Avoid water where the brushes meet the handle, as it can loosen the glue and damage the brush.
- Secondly, apply a cleansing gel pump or shampoo out of our list onto the brush. Spread the bristles to remove any clogged-up makeup, swirl either in your hand or with a cleaning mat, and lather up the soap.
- Rinse the brush under warm water, then gentle wipe on a clean hand towel to remove any leftover makeup.
- Reshape the brush by pressing the bristles between your fingers and then, once dry, store upright.
How do I clean makeup brushes with shampoo?
Fill your bowl with lukewarm water and squirt of shampoo, gently swirl your brush tip in the water and then in the palm of your hand to lather, then rinse with running water.
Which makeup brush cleaner is best?
For me, it’s either MAC or Real Techniques because it will get out any tough grime, even from the most stubborn of foundation or concealer, keeping your brushes looking flawless.
But if you want to go for convenience, I love StylePros makeup brush cleaner and dryer and making it the best makeup brush cleaning machine.
Overall in this guide today, we have gone through the very top makeup brush cleaners that will give you the best outcome and stop those pesky spots from coming up every time you use foundation.
Searching for makeup brush cleaners can sometimes be challenging, with some chemicals that can damage the bristles or loosen the glue underneath. It is important to remember not to submerge your brushes in water completely.
We all know cleaning, like washing our bedding, is something we often avoid; we just don’t want the hassle of the process. However, by not cleaning your brushes, you’re putting all the gunk from months of makeup back on your face.
If you may be wondering why you keep getting spots, this may be your face telling you those brushes need cleaning, girl!
Overall these brush cleaners were made to make your life easier; whether you’re going for the StylePro cleaner and dryer or just the basic brush cleaning solution, I’ve listed the very top on the market to buy.
Pick whichever of the products I’ve listed above and get back to creating your next glam look.
Cheif Editor & Nail Technician Expert
Jess Rowley, a veteran nail tech, has been studying beauty over the last 11 years and has completed the nail technology program in California. Watching the latest trends in beauty, Jess searches for the highest quality products that make your nails feel loved.