Never Store Your Makeup Brushes Like This

Updated 05/26/19

Nancy R. Cohen/Getty Images 

We all have our go-to spot where we like to perform our ritual of putting on makeup: by a window with plenty of natural light and a handheld mirror; at a vintage vanity lit by lightbulbs you've spent a lifetime searching for; in the sanctuary of the bathroom.

If your case is the latter, question for you: Do you store your makeup and tools there in the bathroom as well? If so, then it’s important to pay special attention to how you’re housing your brushes. If you keep them out in the open air, you’re exposing them to really gross bacteria—from the toilet. That's right. Every time you flush, particles of bacteria can end up anywhere in the room, including on your makeup brushes. Yep, those same brushes that touch your face (not to mention your toothbrush, too!). Not trying to be gross, just being real.

Makeup Brush Storing Tips

Don't panic. The solution is simple and actually completely obvious: Take those brushes out of the open air of the bathroom. Put them into a sealable container, like a freezer bag (or those adorable Glossier pink, bubblewrap-lined zip-top pouches that come with every purchase), and tuck them away in a drawer.

We also love a good acrylic case that closes neatly and keeps our makeup and tools in plain sight; this is great for making sure things are easy to find, and it also inspires us to play with our look every time we glance at our beauty haul. To keep your brushes standing upright and separated in one of these containers, fill it halfway with whatever you wish—coffee beans, crystals, coarse salt—and stick the brush handles in.

If you are the lucky owner of more brushes than you can handle, divide them up between face and eye brushes so you don't have to scramble through the drawer to find what you need on a hectic Monday morning.

Don't Forget to Clean Your Brushes

Of course, you absolutely must clean your brushes regularly to get rid of all kinds of breakout-inducing bacteria. Once a week is a good rule of thumb if you use your tools often. Cinema Secrets Brush Cleaner ($24) is a lifesaver—or at least it saves you from contracting unnecessary germs through your brushes. Let the brushes dry laying flat on a towel (away from the bathroom for the aforementioned toilet issue). Note: In case your brushes are wet, never let them dry with the bristles pointing upward, as moisture can leak onto the glue in the base and ultimately make the brushes split apart.

And there you have it—brushes stay untouched by gross bacteria, and you have storage and cleaning solutions that'll make your life easier and keep your face fresh. Now, what to do about the toothbrush thing? Fortunately, these same tips can apply to that, too.

How do you store your makeup brushes? Any recommendations? Tell us in the comments below!

Related Stories