One of the most important things to know about makeup is that you have to keep clean brushes. These are the tools that carry product from the container to our face, so whatever is on them, is going on your face. It is much harder to maintain a healthy, clean complexion if you are applying makeup to your face with a dirty brush. Also, the actual product will not go on as well if it's being applied from a dirty brush (old product makes brush hair clump, colored makeup does not go on true to shade when sitting with old product, etc..). Think about using a paint brush over and over again, without washing it, on a blank canvas! You get the point... There are so many different tips for cleaning brushes and there are tons of different products available. I have just recently tried Bobbi Brown's Brush Cleaning Spray, but was not a huge fan. It did in fact remove old product, but the formula was kind of greasy and it was expensive. The guru does have another "conditioning brush cleaner," which I have not tried... have any of you? Trish McEvoy makes a GREAT product called "Brush Bath" which works the exact same way as shampoo. Lather the product in the hairs, rinse it under luke warm (NOT HOT!!!!) water until it runs clear, and then lay them out to dry. Most of the designer products available for brush cleaning are great at removing product as well as maintaining the health of the actual hairs BUT most of these are expensive.
There are several great ways to clean your brushes at home that will give you the same results for much less. Baby shampoo is a great alternative because it is gentle and not abrasive. Dawn dish washing soap is also a great cleaner because it is a disinfectant and will not only remove all product but also harmful bacterias and germs. Fellow cosmetic junkie, Michelle Phan, suggests using a combination of Dawn soap and E.V. olive oil to clean the brushes. (Dawn cleans+disinfects hair while the e.v.o.o. conditions the hair leaving them soft). I have tried this method, and it is now my cleaner of choice! Also, make sure that when you are using your brushes, do not grab them by the hair... this will transfer any oils, dirt, bacteria, germs, etc. from your fingers->brushes->face!
**The most important thing to note when cleaning your brushes is that you allow them to dry upside down, with the hair of the brush pointing downward. It is so important to dry your brushes upside down because if the water runs back into the brush handle it will loosen the glue holding the bristles in place and also cause a wooden handle to swell over time. The best way to do this is by using "The Brush Guard." It's an expandable tube that slides down the handle of your makeup brush, over the bristles, holding them in their original form while they dry. Once you apply The Brush Guard to each of your brushes, you can put them in a glass, upside down, to dry and gravity will make the moisture run from the brushes into the glass, leaving you with clean, good-as-new tools!