Bun Bun Makeup Tips and Beauty Product Reviews

Do You Spot Clean Your Makeup Brushes with the MAC Brush Cleanser?

Makeup How-To: Tips & Tutorials
August 12, 2011
Composed by : Bun Bun

You know that feeling when you desperately need a solution for a task, and you read about a product that everyone says works wonders, and you go out and buy it, and you use it,

and then you go ‘That’s it??? Meh.’

Yup, that’s my reaction towards the MAC Brush Cleanser the first time I used it, the second time I used it, and the nth time I used it.

Why I Bought The MAC Brush Cleanser?

I really bought the MAC Brush Cleanser out of sheer desperation to thoroughly clean my Sigma F80 Flat Top Synthetic Kabuki Brush, which I almost threw out of the window because no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t return it to its original pristine white-tip bristles.

No staining – I’m anal like that.

Unfortunately, the MAC Brush Cleanser has done nothing to aid the process of thoroughly cleaning the Sigma F80.

It is absolutely impractical for foundation or blush brushes since they soak up so much of the product!

It doesn’t thoroughly clean the smaller eyeshadow brushes either, unless you swirl and swirl and swirl it in the cleanser for a (long x 100) while. Even then, not all the gunk is removed. It is such extravagance to use so much for one wash, and the results aren’t even worth the price.

Let’s put them through the test to know!

We have here the MAC 239 Eye Shader Brush (made of goat hair), Sonia Kashuk Bent Eyeliner Brush, and SASA Concealer Brush (both synthetic).

And MAC 168 Large Angled Contour Brush (made of goat hair).

Using the MAC Brush Cleanser for Spot Cleansing

I find that the MAC Brush Cleanser is just good for spot cleansing.

Even then, it does not work on ALL kinds of brushes. Brushes laden with liquid or cream products are the hardest to clean.

Here are the results from spot cleansing with the MAC Brush Cleanser:

A lot of concealer residue still on the brush.

The #238 is not entirely clean; it looks grey actually. It looks so SAD! =(

Not too good yea?

Works even worse for big fluffy brushes like the MAC 168 Large Angled Contour Brush. Took me about 5 minutes of intense swiping on 2 pieces of kitchen towels to get to……. nowhere.

So there goes my hope of deep cleaning my Sigma F80 brush with the MAC Brush Cleanser!

Additional Step Before Thorough Cleansing

Some people use the MAC Brush Cleanser as an additional sanitizing step before thoroughly cleaning makeup brushes, MUG does it, but I find it a total waste of time and money.

When I deep cleanse my makeup brushes every weekend, I just reach for my newly acquired Daiso Detergent for Puff and Sponge. And TAA-DAA! Clean and fresh brushes! That stuff is AH-MAZ-ING, I tell ya! I wrote a guest post on makeupandbeautyblog on the Daiso Detergent. Go read it!

Leaky Packaging

I secretly think MAC made the cap in this way so that at least 10% is wasted from spillage every time you pour the content out. Then you can quickly run out of product, and run out and buy another bottle.

If you intend to use it for spot cleansing, I suggest you transfer it to a spray bottle.

Spot Cleansing is Different from Deep or Thorough Cleansing

Spot cleansing is the method of removing leftover color on the brush from the previous application without the involvement of water or shampoo. This method is usually carried out by makeup artists who need to work on clients one after another, and have no time to deep clean their makeup brushes and wait for hours for them to dry. The MAC Brush Cleanser keeps brushes sanitized because of the alcohol content.

Some people swirl brushes in containers with the product; some people spritz the product onto the brushes, and clean the residue on paper towel. Both ways work.

As the colors for my everyday makeup got more intense and my brushes got dirtier with more layers, I knew that if I didn’t have the time to clean my brushes every day, the least I could do was spot clean them to prevent bacteria build-up.

Unless you are a makeup artist who uses makeup tools on many people in a day and can afford it, I wouldn’t recommend getting the MAC Brush Cleanser to spot clean your own brushes. You’re better off using baby wipes, which do a relatively good job at spot cleansing, and are much cheaper too! I love!

Get the MAC Brush Cleanser

Bun Bun thinks of the MAC Brush Cleanser as:

How do you clean your brushes?

Do you spot clean them after each use, or wait till the end of the week (month?) to deep clean them?