You could safely classify me as a clean freak. (My family is nodding their heads affirmatively, certainly.) I have written about the topic before: cleaning to avoid the flu herecleaning your air here, cleaning your bathroom here . . .well you get the idea.  I suppose it wouldn’t hurt to cover my incredibly easy way to clean all your brushes, too. Why not?


5 effortless minutes to clean all your brushes for better health (via #health #cleaning #beauty


It may seem overkill, but those brushes you use daily to brush your hair, your teeth, your body, your face, and your dishes deserve a little attention on a regular basis. They can get overlooked. So, let’s easily fix that!


Gather these brushes for a regular cleaning:

  • facial and make-up brushes
  • dry brushes
  • hairbrushes
  • toothbrushes
  • dishwashing brushes

And, here’s why:

  1. Clean brushes make you look better and get the job done faster.  Your clean brushes will work better when they are clean as the bristles won’t get matted or misshapen or collect dust and germs.
  2.  Clean brushes save you money.  They will last longer and you won’t have to replace them.
  3. You won’t get sick.  Clean brushes greatly reduce the chance of germs being spread or infections that can form from dirt and germs. Infections may require antibiotics which are tough on your digestive system and can be tough to treat, too. Doctor visits cost money, as well.


Before we get to “the how,” let’s cover a few little tips to brush through this process and make cleaning your tools a tiny, easy task . . .

  1. A quick scrub right before bed.  The best time to clean your brushes is at night after you have used them for the day.  That way they can dry all night and be squeaky clean for you the next morning.
  2. One full sweep every other week (or so) should do.  Instead of making a separate cleaning task for each type of brush, wash them all at once. I gather them all and begin the task.  That way the supplies are there ready to go.
  3. Keep it to 2.  The two supplies I gather are so simple: baby shampoo or a gentle hand soap, a sink or bucket of warm water. (Does that even count as a supply?)
  4. Hang over the edge.  I like to dry my brushes with the brush (not the handle) hanging over the sink edge so that the air circulates all night and they are always dry by morning.



Here are five brushes to clean on a regular basis. Since I usually clean them all at once at the end of the day after I have used them, the whole process takes me five little minutes or less.  I start with the first type of brush and then move on to the rest.

1.  Facial and Make-Up Brushes: These brushes take the longest of all the brushes to clean, but still not long. I do this by my bathroom sink. Here are the steps for each makeup brush:

  1. Pour a small dot of baby shampoo in my palm. Add a trickle of warm water and blend with my fingers.
  2. Take my first makeup brush and swirl the tips of the brush using a gentle circular motion to work up a lather so that the soap is distributed throughout the bristles. Don’t press down too hard as you swirl, since this can damage the bristles.
  3. Turn on the tap and rinse the brush in a gentle stream of warm (not hot) water. Rotate the brush to make sure all the soap is removed. Be careful not to allow water into the brush barrels/handles.
  4. Keep washing until water runs clear of soap and make-up.
  5. Lay the brush to dry on towel with brush head over sink edge so that air can circulate. Reshape bristles if necessary.

2/3.  Dry Brush/Hairbrush:  If you don’t dry brush, maybe you should!  Lots of reasons why here.

I clean these next two brushes together and here is how:

  1. In the sink, pull up the stopper and fill the bowl halfway with warm water and a trickle of baby shampoo. Swish around to create a lather.
  2. Place brushes in the water and let soak for a minute or two. While they are soaking, go brush your teeth somewhere else. Your toothbrush is next!
  3. Come back and scrub the bristles a bit with your hands.
  4. Let the water drain from the sink.
  5. Rinse brushes well under warm water.
  6. Allow them to air dry on a towel.

4/5.  Toothbrush and Dish Washing Brush/Sponge:  This is the last step of my brush cleaning routine and it is the easiest.

It is a one-step wonder: I put both of these brushes in the dishwasher to sterilize them and let the dishwasher do all the work! Yes, even The American Dental Association suggests it!

I am a bit of a fanatic about dental care (see here).  I replace my toothbrush a lot.  But, here are some great tips from the American Dental Association on how to keep those toothbrushes up to speed and ready to create pearly whites and be cavity free.

Cleaning devices in the kitchen like brushes and sponges really collect germs!  I throw mine in the dishwasher each night when I run it to sterilize it.  I replace those brushes/sponges frequently, too.



  • After all that cleaning, treat yourself to a nice bath. Try it this way!



Great article. Avoiding chemical cleaners is the best solution. I am trying to clean all my stuff with natural cleaners. Usually use coconut oil. Best regards! Keep posting!

Thanks for the post! Now I will take better care of my brushes! <3

I really have to finally clean my brushes! Thanks for the post! Really useful post! Greetings, Morden Carpet Cleaners Ltd.

Glad to hear it was helpful for you and very happy you stopped by!

I definitely believe in cleaning all types of brushes. I need to clean my foundation brush more and the toothbrush gets changed out every 6 months. These are some good suggestions.

So glad you liked the ideas! That always means a lot.

I always forget about cleaning my makeup brushes until I go to use them. Ugh. I need to get in a better routine with cleaning those! Thanks for the reminder!

You are welcome! Do my quick routine and you are good to go!

I have to remember to clean my brushes. I might clean them once a year. #wowlinkup

I hope this speedy routine can help you! So worth it for your skin, your health!

I love these tips, Lori! I am not going to lie I need to get better at remembering to wash my make up brushes! This post was a great reminder! And I LOVE the dishwasher tip!

The dishwasher tip makes it so easy and rest assured germ-fighting! As always, I enjoy hearing from you, Ceara!

We put our dish brush in the dishwasher but I never even though about the toothbrush! that is SO smart!

I agree! Thank the ADA for that one as I do it all the time now (especially after travel and my toothbrush has been enclosed on a flight, etc.) Thanks for coming by, Liz!

Hi Lori! Ha, I clean my make-up brushes very similar to you. Always use baby wash but instead of the sink (my sinks always drain the water too quickly for me) I swish in a cup. Then dump the cup and do it again. And again. I'm a total germ freak! I think you could have probably have guessed that! If I don't wash my make-up brushes my skin breaks out terribly. But never have I thought to wash my hairbrush, ewwww. Haha, like I need to be anymore paranoid, but yes, I am going to start washing. And if people only knew what I threw in my dishwasher and wash machine….then they'd know for sure I was a total neat nutcase!!

Ok. It's official. We are both members of the neat freak club! Welcome! Ha!

Erghhh, I never clean my make-up brushes and I know I really should. Thanks for the reminder!

Glad I could give you a nudge! Don't end up with an infection, Dannii! I appreciate you taking the time to comment, always.