Here’s how to clean a beauty blender properly

How to clean a beauty blender, the right way...

How to clean a beauty blender
(Image credit: Getty Images / Irina Marwan)

Think about it, you use it every day to apply your make-up but how often do you clean it? And, we get it, it’s a real chore – but it’s got to be done. If you are looking into how to clean a beauty blender, there are a few different methods for you to clean your make-up sponge. Much in the same way that you’re cleaning your make-up brushes, they should be cleaned regularly to make sure you aren’t spreading germs. You want the make-up you apply to be fresh, and if you’re using one of the best comedogenic foundations, you don’t want it to clog up any pores. 

Follow these simple steps to ensure a squeaky clean sponge before you start applying your make-up.

Soak the sponge

In a small bowl, mix some liquid cleanser with some water and soak the sponge. This is quite easy, as after the sponge soaks you scrub it in the soapy solution until it comes clean. Keep an eye on any areas of the sponge that might have stains or be filthy, and give those spots a deeper scrub. 

Using the microwave

If you are careful, you can use the microwave to help clean your beauty blender. Follow similar steps as above to get the sponge wet and soapy. After you wring out the sponge and it is clean, give it a quick zap in the microwave for a few seconds to kill the last of the germs and get it dried out. 

A few tips to remember

Whether you are soaking your beauty blender or zapping it clean in the microwave, remember a few key points so you get the most out of your cleaning.

- It won’t hurt to soak the sponge for up to an hour – if stains are stubborn, give it a long soak.
- Any type of liquid cleaner should work, just rub it in good on parts of the sponge where the make-up has set it more. 
- Make sure you rinse the soap out – the sponge will not work as well for your make-up if there is soap still in it.
- After you ring out all the water, follow that up by blotting the sponge with paper towels – it is important to make sure the sponge is dry before using it again to apply your make-up.
- Clean your sponge weekly if you use it every day, and at least once a month it should be zapped in the microwave for no more than 30 seconds – the heat from the microwave helps kill more germs.

Arguably the most important thing to remember is that the goal of cleaning your make-up sponge is to kill germs. While cleaning the sponge will also ensure that your make-up is applied evenly in the future, you need to get rid of germs so that you don’t spread bacteria on your face, which could cause acne.

What to know about the make-up you use

In short, it does not matter so much about what make-up you use, in terms of cleaning your beauty blender, as how often you use it. Whether you use the best foundation for acne-prone skin or you use an over-the-counter drugstore foundation, the process for cleaning your beauty blender will be the same. Frequency is what matters. If you wear make-up only on special occasions, you  do not need to clean your sponge weekly. But, if you wear make-up every day, clean your sponge each week, or you risk spreading germs and having your make-up applied unevenly. 

Sharing your make-up sponge

Sharing make-up and beauty blenders is not advised. This is an easy way to spread germs and bacteria from one person to another. That said, if you do share your make-up sponge, make sure you give it a deep clean, complete with heating in the microwave, before using it on your face again. Mixing skin oils and mixing bacteria is a sure-fire way to develop acne or even worse ailments like pink-eye, which would lead you to a trip to the doctors for an antibiotic. 

Key takeaways

The most important part of cleaning your beauty blender is to be thorough. Make sure you use soap, as just rinsing it in water will not kill the bacteria. Remember – you can’t see the bacteria. Just because you give your sponge a good rinse and it looks clean does not mean it really is clean. 

Clean your sponge regularly and you should also clean your beauty blender if it has been sitting unused for a few months with make-up on it. It is a breeding ground for bacteria, so if there was make-up on it when you stored it, the bacteria will multiply even if you don’t use it on your face for a while.