All products recommended on have been chosen by our editorial and research team. We may receive a commission on qualifying purchases made through our affiliate links.

Why Your Makeup Brushes Are Shedding

Last Updated on November 30, 2021

Why Your Makeup Brushes Are Shedding:

Have you just applied a new makeup look and found your makeup brushes shedding all over your face when you apply pressure leaving your beautiful base covered in bristles?

Well, the girl, let me tell you, you’re not alone. 

It may cause you to worry and question: Am I choosing the wrong makeup brushes? Am I pressing too hard? There are so many reasons for makeup brushes to shed and trust me; it’s nothing you’re doing wrong. 

Well, no need to worry. I’m here to answer all of your questions, getting to the root of why our makeup brushes shed and whether there is any way of stopping it. 

Now let me tell you something: 

There will be no more picking at your makeup look to remove the tiny pesky hairs. There will be no more blotchy makeup and no more spending 20 minutes staring deep in the mirror to remove every hair.

Let’s jump into everything you need to know as to why your makeup brushes may be shedding. 

makeup brushes clean

So why do my makeup brushes shed? 

There are many reasons why your makeup brushes may shed, It can be as simple as the manufacturer manually bundling bristles, and as a result, they may not be bundled tight enough, causing them to shed. 

Sometimes the glue can also be the culprit for shedding as most bristles are glued to the handle to keep them in place, but if this is done quickly, snd rushed, you may find that bristles will fall out. (You will find this in cheap makeup brushes often). 

The brushes’ quality is crucial for their longevity; if made from poor quality materials, they may break, dry out or become damaged easily, causing the bristles to fall out. 

Cleaning your brushes vigorously can also cause bristles to fall out.  Submerging your brushes underwater or leaving them to soak in warm water for an hour or two can also cause your bristles to fall out.

This is because the water will loosen the glue of the bristles and cause them to fall out. 

It is also important to dry your brushes correctly; instead of standing them up, leave them on the side to dry. I will go into more detail shortly! 

cleaning makeup brushes

Some things to consider:

Here are the top reasons why your brushes may be shedding:

Are you using a brand new makeup brush?

Most brand new brushes will shed hairs when you first get them; this is because they have been packaged for so long that they haven’t been bend or flexed to cause them to shed.

It is the same concept of not brushing your hair for a long time; when you brush your hair, it starts to shed, and the same goes for brushes after not being used in a while. There’s no need to worry; it’s completely natural.

When you get yourself a brand new brush, your brushes may have light glue to keep your brush in place. Break this glue by brushing your blush back and forward on a dry towel to remove any glue. You may notice that it will shed a lot of bristles, and that’s fine.

 If you notice that your new brush is shedding in big clumps, then that’s when you need to send your brush back.

Are you using an old brush?

It can be difficult to part with an old trusty brush, but when it starts to shed and become more brittle than you’ve noticed before, then thats a clear sign that it may need replacing.

Hair bristles can wear away over time; no matter how well you look after your brush, this will happen as time goes on. It may even be a great way to get yourself some new brushes too!

shedding makeup brushes x2

Synthetic vs. natural hair brushes: which one is more likely to shed? 

Neither one nor the other sheds more, so it is entirely down to personal preference.

Natural brushes are more likely to absorb oils and emollients like natural hair, whereas synthetic makeup brushes the oils and product will sit on the brushes’ surface. 

Natural hair brushes use natural animal fur to make their bristles. This often givers a super soft feel when blending makeup on your face. Thanks to their natural cuticles, they have great picking up and blending properties for a non-blotchy look. 

On the other hand, synthetic brushes are often made from artificial materials such as nylon, taklon, or polyester fibers. They are not as soft as natural makeup brushes, but they’re usually more affordable. 

Synthetic makeup brushes are often cruelty-free and vegan as their bristles are not derived from animal fur like natural makeup brushes. 

Synthetic makeup brushes are also much easier to clean than natural makeup brushes, as you can use most soaps with them without the worry of it damaging the hair. They also dry out a lot better than natural hair. 

In terms of shedding, they are both as durable as each other; the only factor contributing to shedding is the quality of the materials you are using. 

How can you prevent makeup brush shedding?

In most cases, makeup brush shedding is pretty unavoidable, but there are some ways you can look after and preserve your makeup brushes to make them last longer. 

Here’s how:

Clean your makeup brushes frequently

Don’t go too long between your makeup brush washes as this can cause foundation build-up, which can be very damaging to your bristles. 

I would recommend setting a day every 2-3 weeks (maybe a Sunday) to clean for a makeup brush wash day to keep a routine going. 

Don’t submerge your brushes in water: 

When cleaning, I often find many people soak their brushes for a few hours before cleaning them; whatever you do, don’t do this. Submerging your brushes in water can cause the glue to become loose and cause the bristles to shed more frequently. 

While you’re cleaning, don’t let the water get higher than the metal point (the ferrule) where the metal meets the brush, as this is where water can seep in too. Run under a tap and run in your hands rather than submerging in water. 

Allow your brushes to dry on their side. 

Another way to prevent your bristles from coming loose is to allow your brushes to stand up while they dry. This will prevent water from dripping down the ferrule and handle and causing the glue to become loose. It also prevents bacteria build-up. 

Don’t be too rough or press down too hard on your brushes:

Whether you’re cleaning your makeup tools or applying makeup, make sure you don’t press down too hard, as this can cause your bristles to snap. 

Make sure you use a cleaner or soap that’s gentle and not too harsh if you’re cleaning your natural dirty brushes.  For synthetic brushes, mild soap or shampoo will do the trick to break down the oils. 

Don’t use cream products on natural brushes: 

Due to their natural hair follicles, using cream products on natural brushes can put too much on the bristles and cause them to become weak and bristles. They work well with lighter liquids ut for creams; I would stick with synthetic makeup brushes as they are much more durable. 

types of makeup brushes


There is generally nothing to worry about when it comes to makeup brush shedding; it is entirely natural. Just by considering the steps above, you may notice a massive difference in your brushes’ longevity even after a few weeks. 

I would always recommend going for quality makeup brushes in the first place, they are most likely to last longer, and the bristles will be of better quality. 

Keep up to date with your cleaning routine, don’t miss out on wash days as the build-up of makeup may be more damaging to your brushes than you may think. 

Let’s boss our makeup looks once again, ladies! 

Latest guides
Best Rodan+ Fields Products
Best Rodan+ Fields Products

[Review] in 2022  written by nail expert Jess RowleyCheck out the results fast - here are our review winners[dica_divi_carousel item_width_tablet="400px" item_width_phone="345px"...

Related Post: Best Heat Protectants For Your Hair