I first discovered Dr. Bronner’s Magic soap at a Target. They were starting to carry more natural product lines and I saw a travel size bottle of this in a lower shelf basket while I was looking for a natural face toner (a blog about toner shall follow soon!). All the nonsense writing on the label caught my attention and it’s claim for multiple uses (18!) made me really want to test it out. I bought the lavender scent to try and so far it’s my favorite, with Almond trailing second. This soap is all natural, biodegradable, and made with Certified Fair Trade and Organic Oils, a definite plus. It”s also very affordable, averaging at $8 for a 16oz bottle that will last you a VERY long time.
Before getting to the point of this posting ( “how to keep your makeup brushes perfectly clean”), I’d like to talk about how great this product is for it’s other uses. This soap extremely concentrated, needing only a few drops to literally dissolve dirt and oils.
1. as a facial cleanser: I wouldn’t recommend using this full-strength as a facial cleanser because the scent can be irritating and do avoid your eyes. It works really well if you add a few drops to a creamy cleanser to get a thorough cleanse, but not overdry. It removes makeup really well.
2. as a laundry detergent: this soap is great for handwashing, especially washing delicate clothing i.e. undergarments, swim wear, etc. Just fill up the sink, add a few squirts and you’re good to go! Note that the water turns a little cloudy, but most likely you will not see any suds (or very little) because there are no synthetic foaming agents added to it. It’ll leave your garments with a nice light scent, and completely clean.
3. as a shampoo: I wouldn’t advise using this as an everyday shampoo, especially if you have processed hair (I wouldn’t recommend washing your hair everyday anyway. A little natural oil is good!), but it’s great to use once a week for a deep cleansing. This product doesn’t contain any sulfates (like Sodium Laureth Sulphate) which are in most shampoos and can cause irritation and strip that expensive hair coloring job you got. Realistically, most likely you’ve used many products containing sulfates because its an inexpensive detergent and foams well, but there are sulfate-free shampoos available (try the Alba Botanica line or Pureology). Now, you will only need to use maybe a nickel sized amount because it will produce a lot of lather, since you’re not mixing in too much water. Cleanse as usual and you will feel that your hair is squeaky clean, similar to when using a clarifying shampoo. You may also add a few drops to a shampoo you already use for a cleaning power boost!
4. as a makeup brush cleaner: NOW, to the point of this posting…this soap works wonders for cleaning makeup brushes. I’ve used shampoos, expensive brush cleaners (Smashbox brush cleaner sucks) and I find that this soap works best for deep cleanings. It immediately dissolves makeup from the brushes and rinses very clean. I don’t think it’s necessary that you wash your makeup brushes everyday (who has time?), so I’ll explain my regimen for my personal-use brushes:
If you wear makeup every day, you should clean your brushes often. Every couple days or few days is manageable, so for a routine brush clean, I like to use Cinema Secrets brush cleaner. This by far the best makeup brush cleaner I’ve used. It’s made by Cinema Secrets, a professional makeup brand originating from Hollywood. This cleaner kills bacteria and viruses (very important as some brands do not), conditions, and removes all traces of makeup, even waxy makeup. It leaves a really nice vanilla scent on your brushes. I’d caution you to use it in a well ventilated area because it does have a strong fume.
To clean your brushes, fill a small spray bottle with the cleaner and spritz the brush while holding it over a clean paper towel. Then you simply swirl the brush on the paper towel in circular motions until no more product remains on the brush. For larger, extra dirty brushes, you may have to repeat the step. Alternatively, you can pour the cleaner into a shallow cup, dip the brush in and then swirl on the paper towel. A little goes a long way, so dip only the tip of the brush and it will absorb the cleaner. To dry, reshape the brush head neatly and dry it flat uncovered.
Once a month, you will use Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap to thoroughly clean your brushes. This is very important in maintaining the condition of your brushes. Afterall, they are not cheap and and the quality of the hair greatly affects the way your makeup applies. I simply put a few drops of the magic soap in my palm, run the brush quickly under water to get it wet, and swirl the brush in my palm. It should foam and you’ll see all the traces of makeup being dissolved. Rinse clean under running water, making sure to hold the brush upside down only. You want to prevent the least amount of water from entering the “root” of the brush strands. Wring out gently as much water as you can, reshape the brush head, and dry it flat on a towel. When dried, fluff the brushes and spritz on a layer of the Cinema Secrets cleaner. This will condition and protect the strands of hair. With this regular and gentle cleaning, your brushes should last indefinitely!
Where to buy:
Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap: Target stores, CVS stores, Sunshine Health Foods or other health food stores
Cinema Secrets brush cleaner: http://www.naimies.com/
Affordable quality makeup brushes: crownbrush.com (call to order)