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Spring cleaning isn’t only reserved for your home or your wardrobe; your makeup tools are begging for attention.
"Makeup brushes used with dry powders should be washed one to two times per week. Liquid foundation is an even worse culprit, and I recommend washing brushes every day. Makeup sponges should also be washed every day."
Fear not, there are plenty of beauty blender cleaning hacks — many of which use items that are already in your home or easily found at your local supermarket.
If it's good enough for your scalp, it's good enough for your beauty blender. Shampoo works like a charm on the goop that builds up in your makeup sponge. Opt for a mild formula that's designed for sensitive skin — baby shampoo is a gentle option, as are many organic shampoos.
Run your beauty sponge under the tap in lukewarm water until it has enlarged to its full size. Then, squeeze a couple of drops of your shampoo of choice onto the sponge, gently rubbing it against your palm. Rinse the beauty blender under the tap, gently squeeze out the remaining liquid and dab it dry with a paper towel. You can try this method out with (mild) dishwashing liquid or hand soap too.
Sanitisation is an important step in makeup tool cleaning. One way to sterilise them is by introducing a microwave step at the end of our cleansing routine. You'll need a microwave-safe cup, and either some baby shampoo or dishwashing liquid, as above. Mix a couple of drops of the solution with water, and fill the cup up enough so it can cover the entire beauty sponge. Then, pop the sponge into the cup, giving it a few squeezes so it's soaked in water.
Now, microwave your beauty blender concoction in the microwave for one minute, letting it cool for about 30 seconds before removing. Once cool, rinse out your beauty blender and let it dry on a paper towel.
While you can (gently) scrub away at your beauty sponge with your palms, a textured surface is your best bet for a well-rounded clean. BeautyBlender's texturised silicone pad is made to clean your brushes and sponges with ease. You simply slip it over your hand and it will delicately, but effectively, clean your sponges.
Puff Sponge Detergent
Beauty's worst-kept secret is this Daiso puff sponge detergent. A genius formulation that costs only $2.80, it works on both makeup brushes and sponges. All you have to do is apply a squeeze of the liquid straight onto your dry beauty blender, and squeeze and rinse thoroughly under running water. It works great solo, but you can pair it with Daiso's multipurpose silicone brush which can act as a cleansing pad, making cleaning easier.
In a viral video that has been watched over 8.5 million times, beauty blogger @lpbeautyblog shares her beauty blender cleaning hack — and it has divided the internet.
In it, she takes six beauty sponges and pops them in a bowl, then covers them with a generous scoop of Vanish Oxi Advance Laundry Booster (here's a similar one that's available in Australia). She pours boiling water over which turns into a dubious coffee-looking mixture (don't! drink! it!), and then drains them through a sieve and runs them thoroughly under water.
It's a technique that has some people worried about the safety of having something washed in laundry powder on your face, with one commenter recommending a second wash with cleanser.
Dr Deborah Lee says that if you look after your beauty tools properly, they can last years. So, start incorporating one of these five techniques into your routine and your sponges and skin will thank you for it.