Friday, 2 March 2012

Keep it Clean

“Cleanliness is next to godliness.” – Francis Bacon

I’m sure when Mr. Bacon coined this phrase back in 1605 he wasn’t thinking about makeup, but nevertheless, the saying holds true for cosmetics and brushes alike. For this weeks post I’ll be doing something a little different, instead of a review I will be giving you some tips on how to ensure that your makeup, brushes and sponges stay as clean as possible in order to avoid infections and breakouts. Pay close attention, there will be a test.


Brushes that are used to apply powders (think eyeshadows, bronzers, powder foundations) should be cleaned once a month. However, brushes used to apply liquid cosmetics should be cleaned once a week.

To clean your brushes you can use a solution specifically designed for makeup brushes, or you could just use a baby shampoo, much less expensive and just as effective. Once you’ve finished cleaning your brushes, lay them flat to dry to ensure that the bristles don't lose their shape.


Your sponges can last a surprisingly long time if you take care of them properly. Ideally, you should wash your sponge after every use, but once a week will do if you’re short on time. To clean sponges, rinse them out with warm water and a little bit of baby shampoo (make sure there is no shampoo left in the sponge or it will irritate your skin.) To dry, simply place the sponges on a towel and let rest. Throw out sponges after one month of use.


All makeup has an expiration date, and as heartbreaking as it is, it might be time to trash that discontinued lipstick you’ve been holding on to. Here is a basic breakdown of how long your makeup will last before it becomes a breeding ground for bacteria.

Mascara- 4 months (To get the longest life out of your mascara don’t pump the wand in and out of the tube. This forces air into the mascara, which allows bacteria to breed faster.)
Lipstick/gloss- 1 to 2 years

Liquid foundation- 1 to 1 ½ years

Powders (e.g. mineral foundation, blush, bronzer)- 2 years

Eyeshadow- 3 years

Eyeliner- 3 years with regular sharpening

Concealer- 1 year


  1. I honestly never thought to clean the sponges. I usually just throw them out. This is excellent. Thanks!

  2. I did not know that eye shadow expired, I should probably go through all my makeup and throw some stuff out.

  3. I'm not gonna lie... i have some of my mom's makeup from the 80's.... should prrrrroobbbbbably throw that out.

  4. Francis Bacon, discoverer of inductive reasoning! My make up is bad? I feel fine .. My make up is good.

  5. I had no idea that sponges could be washed. I wash my brushes but I always just throw my sponges away. Oh man, the money I could have been saving.

  6. HAHAHA Ian seemed to peg the thinking here. Good thing Francis Bacon was around to put on make up.