Dr. Bekanich’s Blog

3 Ways to Keep Your Tools & Cosmetics from Ruining Your Skin

Posted on January 11, 2017 | by

By now, most of us know the rules of taking care of our skin: exfoliate, clean, moisturize, protect. But even when we do all the right things, issues still occur, thanks to genetics, air quality, lifestyle habits—and your beauty tools.

Yes, you heard us right: your favorite kabuki brush or go-to concealer may be the culprit behind your latest breakout (or even your long-term issues with poor skin health). The good news is that there are a few key things you can do to ensure you aren’t contributing to skin inflammation.

If you don’t regularly clean your makeup brushes, you could be applying what amounts to a petri dish of microbes directly to your face on a daily basis. Yuck!

1. Keep your tools clean

Did you know that the bacteria on a makeup brush can multiply exponentially the longer you wait to clean it? You could be applying what amounts to a petri dish of microbes directly to your face on a daily basis. Yuck! Not only is it gross to think about, it can also make keeping your skin clear and healthy nearly impossible.

Here’s how to clean what and when!

Foundation brushes:

Liquid foundations and concealers can gunk up a brush pretty quickly—and these brushes cover the most surface area on your face, meaning you’ll want to make sure you stick to your cleaning schedule.

When to deep clean: At least once per week, depending on your personal use. Beauty blenders may need a little extra love because they are so porous.

Eye brushes:

Powdered makeup doesn’t leave quite the same mark as liquids, but you’ll still want to give them some TLC to both keep your face clear and your makeup application smooth.

When to deep clean: When there’s any build-up or at least a few times per month.

Olive oil is a kitchen-staple that will not only remove even the most stubborn product from your lip or eyeliner brushes, it’ll also help condition the bristles.

Lip brushes:

Not only is lipstick notoriously sticky, it’s also quite pigmented. Which means a dirty lip brush is difficult to use and can muddy up your next color choice.

When to deep clean: After one or two uses.

How to clean your brushes

You can use a specialty cleanser, though many beauty gurus swear by warm water, a little Dawn dish soap, and your hand. For lip or eyeliner brushes with a buildup of residue, try using a bit of olive oil; not only will it help remove even the most stubborn product, it’ll also help condition the bristles!

While you don’t need to clean most of your brushes on a daily basis (unless you have ultra sensitive skin), all of your brushes could use a light wipe down with a towel after each use. Check out these additional tips to get all the deets on brush cleaning.

2. Keep the bathroom clean & clutter-free

Most of us are guilty of hoarding to some extent—and odds and ends in your bathroom can pile up quickly. While most don’t pose any risk to your skin, there are a few surprising culprits. Clear out your bathroom stashes every few months and keep surfaces clean.

Using out-of-date products can lead to inflammation, breakouts, and other skin irritations

  • Old, dull razors need to go stat, or you risk cuts, razor burn, and inflammation.
  • That tub of face cream that’s looking a bit funky shouldn’t be anywhere near your face.
  • Disinfect surfaces to avoid contaminating your tools, brushes, and products—and be sure to close the toilet lid when you flush!
  • Toss old cosmetics, which brings us to our next tip…

3. Consider expiration dates

Did you know that your makeup and skincare products have a shelf life? While expired mascara won’t have the same impact as spoiled milk, using out-of-date products can lead to inflammation, breakouts, and other skin irritations—in addition to impacting how well the product works.

Here’s a general guide for when to toss your products:

  • Mascara: after two to four months to avoid styes, conjunctivitis, and eye irritation.
  • Liquid foundation & concealer: six months to a year; throw away when color starts to change or product separates.
  • Face powder: Up to two years. Avoid double-dipping with dirty brushes to extend its life & keep it safe.
  • Blush: Powdered blush can last a year or two, similar to face powder. Cream blush will need to be trashed after six months to a year.
  • Eye shadow: Experts say three months for powder shadows and to pay even closer attention to cream shadows, which are prone to bacterial build up.
  • Lip products: They last a year or longer because they have no water content, but you may want to replace if you’ve been sick recently or if you see any signs of deterioration.

If you follow all of these rules but still battle skin issues, you may need a helping hand. Dr. Bekanich offers a variety of Austin skincare treatments and products and can help you find the perfect solution. Contact us today to book your consultation!