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Similar to makeup products, there is a limited shelf life for makeup brushes. Although makeup brushes could be cleansed thoroughly, thus extending their shelf lives, there is still an “expiry date” to these brushes.
Here’s how often you should replace your makeup brushes:
How Often You Should Replace Your Makeup Brushes
Unlike most makeup products that need to be thrown out after two years, there is no exact timing as to when your makeup brushes will “expire”. Some say if you use your makeup brushes regularly, you should replace your makeup brushes every one to three years with regular upkeep. On the other hand, the time frame is different for those who dabble in makeup occasionally.
It is easier for one to determine when to replace their makeup brushes by spotting these signs:
Brush is Bent Out of Shape
As the function of a makeup brush is primarily dependent on the shape of the bristles and the brush head, brushes that are bent too out of shape no longer serve their purposes.
The differences between the makeup brushes are the way the brush heads are shaped, be it angled in a certain manner or tapered a certain way. If a makeup brush no longer holds its original shape after a good wash and drying, the makeup brush will no longer serve its original purpose.
In fact, using an expired makeup brush will lead to uneven makeup application, essentially destroying your whole makeup look.
Product Doesn’t Deposit Properly
For you to determine this sign, you would have to test out the brush. Sometimes, it is hard to tell if the brush is expired just by looking at it as it could be that some bristles within the brush have broken off without interfering with the shape of the brush.
If your product does not deposit properly, causing uneven or patchy application, it could be a sign that the makeup brush is expired. Before you toss that brush into the bin, you should wash and dry the brush first, for product build-up on the brush can also lead to patchy application.
If your brush starts to smell unusual, it is time to get rid of them. The unusual smell is a tell-tale sign that your brush is harbouring microbes like yeast and/or bacteria.
Bristles are Falling Out
Besides the shape, one should take note of the makeup brushes’ density. One of the ways to distinguish a high-quality makeup brush from its substandard counterpart is the rate they shed. As higher quality makeup brushes tend to be more resistant, they do not shed as much even if you wash them repeatedly.
One of the reasons why higher quality makeup brushes shed less is because of the way the brush was constructed. The glue used to hold the bristles together can also help reduce the shedding of the brush.
However, the shedding can also happen over time when the glue loosens when it comes in contact with water. This will cause the bristles to fall out rapidly. Thus, when you notice your makeup brush shedding a lot, it is time to throw them out.
On the other hand, you can also slow down the shedding process by washing the makeup brushes gently and drying them bristle-side down to make sure the water doesn’t seep into the neck or ferrule of the brush.
If your brush showed signs of being broken and can no longer be fixed, it is better to throw them out and get a new one. The cracks and crevices on the handle store bacteria which could be spread to your hands and face.
With consistent usage of the same makeup brushes, there will be a build-up in your applicators. These build-ups will be harder to clean, causing makeup stains to retain on your brushes even after washing. If you notice your brushes are filled with permanent makeup tints, it is time to get replacement brushes as product residue will cause one to break out.
How to Extend the Shelf Life of Your Makeup Brushes?
In order to extend the shelf life of your makeup brushes, you should ensure the brushes are clean thoroughly and stored properly. It is important to wash your brushes at least once a week, especially foundation and concealer brushes.
You can use quick-drying brush cleansing formulas like the Cinema Secrets Makeup Brush Cleaner for those brushes as they tend to have thicker and tighter hair, thus are harder to get into.
For powder and eyeshadow brushes, you can deep cleanse the brushes every other week. You should still spot-cleanse them every few days.
When drying the brushes, you can towel-dry them and leave the brushes on a slight downwards angle, so no water runs back into the handle.