How to Clean Makeup Sponges at Home: 8 Effective Methods

How to Clean Makeup Sponges at Home
Looking to clean your makeup sponge quickly and easily? Check out our top tips for how to clean makeup sponges at home!

Most women reuse the same makeup sponge repeatedly without washing it beforehand. This might be due to laziness or because some people do not know how to clean a makeup sponge at home properly. You should know that the makeup sponge is one of the essential items in any beauty kit. The results of their proper application can resemble the smoothness of airbrushing. It can infect your face if you haven’t been careful about keeping your makeup sponge clean.

Because makeup sponges cling to foundation, concealer, and grease, makeup sponges contain bacteria after just one use. Makeup sponges must be cleaned at home. What is a beauty sponge? Beauty sponges, or makeup sponges, can be found in various sizes and textures. There are more than 40 distinct varieties of beauty sponges on the market, but the popular egg-shaped kind has taken the industry by storm.

Makeup sponges lost some appeal in the beauty field due to the rise of makeup brushes. Until the invention of the beauty blender, at least. With its egg shape and pink color, the blender revived beauty blending. Use a beauty blender to apply and blend your favorite cream or liquid makeup for a flawless, airbrushed look. Its unique spherical shape and water-activated foam make it ideal for cleaning hard-to-reach areas of the face.

Three methods of cleaning a beauty blender

Basic cleansing:

Basic Cleansing
  1. Make a bowl of warm, soapy water:

First, choose a makeup-brush soap or a natural body or face wash without chemicals or scents. Avoid acne-prone or greasy face washes. Baby shampoo and organic shampoos work well, although any skin- or hair-safe soap can be used. Next, put some mild hand soap or shampoo in a bowl filled with warm water. Mildly combine till foam appears on the water’s surface. The use of dish soap is discouraged since it might cause skin irritation if you need to reuse the sponge later.

  1. Put the sponge in water for half an hour:

Toss the sponge into the bowl of soapy water. Squeeze it a few times and then let it alone soak for approximately half an hour. The sponge’s soaking water may change color. The sponge should grow to its full size as it soaks in soapy water. The water will turn beige or tan as it pulls makeup from the sponge.

  1. Rubbing the soap into the sponge:

Patiently message the cleaner into the sponge for two or three minutes. Never use a cleaning brush or other harsh tool on a sponge; doing so will cause lasting damage.

  1. Get the soap out of the sponge:

Ensure all the detergents are removed from the sponge by rinsing it under hot running water. Any excess makeup resting around the sponge’s surface should also be washed away during this stage.

  1. Use paper towels to absorb excess water:

First, remove excess water from the sponge by wringing it with your hand, and then roll the sponge in some clean, dry paper towels to absorb any remaining moisture.

Deep cleaning

Deep Cleaning
  1. When necessary, clean the sponge thoroughly:

If your blender sponge still seems dirty after doing the basic cleaning steps, you may need to give it a more thorough cleaning.

  1. Wet the sponge:

Keep the sponge under warm, flowing water for 30 to 60 seconds or until it expands to full size. There’s also the option of soaking the blender sponge in a dish of hot water for 5-10 minutes. Soapy water is unnecessary, and neither is waiting for the water to turn a specific hue before moving ahead.

  1. Cleanse the dirty areas using a cleaner:

Just as with the regular cleaning routine, you should only use mild cleaners on your sponge. But for deep cleansing, apply the cleaner, either solid or liquid, to the sponge’s dirtiest spots. You may also use solid Castille soap, liquid baby shampoo, or a delicate formula like an organic one.

  1. Use your palm to rub the sponge:

Scrub the soiled area with the covered side of the sponge by pressing it against the palm’s center and moving it in tiny circles. Keep scrubbing for another 30 seconds with the sponge.

  1. Scrub while you wash:

It may take numerous rinses of the sponge under running water to remove all residues of soap. Don’t hurry with this step; thoroughly rinsing the soap leftover is essential.

  1. Test the sponge:

Apply extra cleanser to the sponge and massage it against your palms. The sponge is clean if the foam is white rather than gray or beige.

  1. Dry the sponge:
  • Carefully press the sponge to remove most of the extra water.
  • Roll the sponge over some fresh, dry paper towels to expedite the drying process. Since the sponge is likely still wet at this point, it should be let dry naturally.
  • If you want to use the blender sponge as an applicator, wait until it’s dry.

Heat sterilization

Heat Sterilization

The sponge has to be sterilized once a month

A monthly heat sterilization is recommended, even if you clean your sponge every week. Basic and deep washing kills surface germs. But a brief burst of extreme heat is the only way to eliminate deeper-lying bacteria in a sponge.

Soak the sponge in the water dish

Put about 1 inch of water into a bowl that can go in the microwave. Drop the sponge right in the middle of the puddle. Microwaving a dry sponge might damage or burn it.

Set the bowl in the microwave

Put the bowl in the microwave and heat it for 30 seconds. Don’t worry if it grows or if smoke trails form.

Stop the microwave instantly if it rises or if significant smoke forms.

Let it rest

If you’re using a microwave, wait a minute or two before taking the bowl and the sponge out of the water.

Dry the sponge

Repeat the process of the basic and deep cleansing methods to dry your sponge.

How to clean your makeup sponges at home?

Modern beauty tools like beauty blenders and makeup sponges make applying and mixing foundation and sunscreen quickly. But they must be cleaned periodically rather than packed back into the cosmetic bag. Unfortunately, that lovely makeup bag may provide the right conditions for bacterial development. Your makeup brushes & sponges will become clogged with dead skin, clumps of dried makeup, dirt, and filth if you don’t clean them regularly. So, can you clean makeup sponges easily at your home? Yes, you can. Do not worry; several beauty blender cleaning tips employ common household materials. This section will discuss the easiest way to clean makeup sponges.

1. Cleansing pad

Cleansing Pad

You can give your beauty sponge a little scrub with your palms, but a rough surface will better clean it. The BeautyBlender’s cleansing pad is ideal for scrubbing away makeup leftovers from your makeup brushes and sponges. With a simple slide over the hand, you’ll have clean sponges that won’t damage the fabric.

  • To thoroughly wet your sponge, give it a few lights squeezes while it’s under running water.
  • After that, apply a bar of mild soap and then start rubbing or tapping the sponge lightly against the mat until you see makeup coming off it.
  • You will need to repeat the rubbing process from a variety of angles.
  • To complete the process, rinse the sponge under the running water in the sink and gently squeeze it to remove any remaining makeup.
  • Set your sponge aside to air dry.

2. Clean your makeup sponge with soap and water

Clean Your Makeup Sponge With Soap And Water

Since just water and soap are needed, this is the simplest approach. Also, you can get your hands dirty. It doesn’t matter if you use a liquid or bar cleanser; your sponge will look as good as a new one.

  • Maintain the sponge under flowing water until it swells to its full size.
  • If you want to use liquid soap, squeeze some onto the sponge and knead it in with your fingertips or rub it against the palm of your hand to loosen stubborn makeup. A soap bar may be worked into a lather by rubbing a sponge directly on the soap. Many professionals also swear by dish soap as a more affordable alternative to Beautyblender’s specialty liquid and bar soap.
  • Rinse the sponge under running water once it has been thoroughly soapy. To prevent any soap from being lodged within, give it a little squeeze while you wash it.

3. Clean your makeup sponge in a soak

Clean Your Makeup Sponge In A Soak

A lengthier soak is in order if your sponge is very grimy, to the point where you had forgotten what color it was when you bought it. Your beauty blender will appear as new as possible when done in this way. You can use face wash, baby shampoo, liquid hand soap, etc.

  • Prepare a soap bath of water and liquid soap in your small bowl. The best way to ensure that any bacteria has been killed is to boil the water before using it.
  • Get a sponge, drop it in the solution, and let it for five minutes soak. Makeup will fade and crumble as a result.
  • Squeeze your sponge to force the soap solution through it when the timer goes off. Rub some more soap on your palm and apply it to the places that require it. Then, wash it off under a running stream of warm water.

4. Clean with olive oil and dish soap

Clean With Olive Oil And Dish Soap

If you want to get the greatest results, use a mild bar soap, dish soap, or the cleaning solid that comes with a beauty blender. The stains may be removed easily, and the sponge won’t be harmed thanks to this cleaning solid’s gentle recipe. All-natural cleansing solids kill 99.7 percent of bacteria and other germs on cosmetic instruments for up to 24 hours after washing, even if stains remain.

  • Combine two teaspoons of oil (olive or coconut works well) with 1 and 1/2 teaspoons of dish soap and a cup of warm water in a bowl. On the sponge, spread an amount of soap that is roughly equivalent to a dime. Boost the foam and eliminate stains by squirting some detergent onto the sponge. Give the sponge a minute-and-a-half massage.
  • After giving the sponge a thorough squeeze and massaging it with your hands, place it in the hot soapy water and let it soak for a few minutes.
  • The stains can be cleaned by rubbing the sponge in the mixture. You may eliminate all the soap, oil, and makeup residue by massaging the sponge under warm water and squeezing it out.
  • Wash it under running water until all traces of soap are gone and the water is clear, and then squeeze it again.
  • To remove extra moisture, gently roll it on a clean towel and lay it flat to dry.

5. Clean with organic products

Clean With Organic Products

Makeup sponges may be easily cleaned with organic products. You know that organic oils are used to create a certified fair trade soap that is also vegan, cruelty-free, biodegradable, non-GMO, and non-irritant. So, the organic product is safe for washing your makeup sponges.

To use, Put a few drops of liquid face wash into the sponge and begin rubbing it while running water. Put up with the soaping for a little. Makeup-free washing will be complete when the foam turns white.

6. Clean with a cleaning solution

Clean With A Cleaning Solution

A cleaning solution may restore your cosmetic sponge to perfect condition. Whether you use a name-brand product or micellar water, you can get fantastic results with this strategy. Using any standard liquid disinfectant, you may safely clean your beauty equipment.

  • Make sure there are lots of bubbles in the water after adding the cleaning solution.
  • You can get the most use out of your cosmetic sponge by soaking it in water and then squeezing off the excess water. That way, you may be sure the entire sponge has been scrubbed clean.
  • Remove the residue from the sponge’s pores by rubbing it against your fingers or a disposable tray. To ensure thorough cleaning, squeeze it and rinse it again.
  • Let the sponge air dry after being wiped down with a clean cloth. Do not use it if it is still wet.

7. How to clean your makeup sponge in the microwave?

How To Clean Your Makeup Sponge In The Microwave

The microwave approach is for you if you’d rather risk a bad breakout than spend the time washing and soaking your sponges. Simply giving your cosmetic sponge a brief zap will ensure it is clean and ready for use. You may get the same results from microwaving the sponge in soapy water as you would from washing it in the washing machine, which also utilizes hot water and soap to clean materials. Instead of using the washing machine, consider the microwave if you want to take extra care to kill bacteria. If you throw it in there without following the instructions, you’ll have a melted mess on your hands.

  • Put one cup of water and baby soap in a microwave-safe bowl, then heat it. Don’t worry about being exact; ensure the sponge will fit under the water. Before putting your sponge into the soapy water, it’s a good idea to soak it in plain water. When added, Olive oil may also be used as a cleaning agent.
  • Put the cup in the microwave for one minute, then wait at least 30 seconds for it to cool before picking it up. The liquid should be saturated with foundation, transforming your disgusting sponge into a new one.
  • The last preparations include a final washing under running water and a quick squeeze to remove any remaining foundation. To dry, put it in an open area.

8. How to clean your makeup sponge in the washing machine?

Clean Your Makeup Sponge In The Washing Machine

Those of us who have a collection of cosmetic sponges will find this approach to be very useful. They may be easily cleaned by putting them in the washing machine; however, you will need a sufficient number of sponges to make this worthwhile. This tip will teach you how to clean a beauty blender without touching any grime.

  • Get a net lingerie bag and fill it with all your sponges. Place the bag in your empty washer.
  • Add liquid cleanser and laundry detergent to the washing machine before running it on mild with an additional rinse cycle. You need to remove the lingerie bag from the machine. Leave all your sponges in the bag to dry on a clothesline.

Another way you can wash your makeup sponges is in the washing machine.

  • Soak the sponges in a bowl of soapy water and a couple of squirts of liquid dish detergent. You may use this technique to wash away tough stains and dissolve any leftover makeup.
  • Put the sponges in a pillowcase and secure the end with a knot after soaking. You should set the washing machine to the warm, delicate, no-spin cycle. Put the sponges on a paper towel to dry after washing.

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Why you should clean your makeup sponges?

Why You Should Clean Your Makeup Sponges

Using an infected cosmetic sponge is a poor idea. Hygiene is a primary concern. When misused, a Beauty Blender or other makeup sponge can breed bacteria and germs, which can subsequently be transferred to the user’s skin. Second, a new product’s color can be affected if a sponge is soaked in an old foundation.

How often should you clean your makeup brushes and sponges?

It’s best to clean your skin frequently to maintain it’s is looking and feels young and healthy. The sponge absorbs a lot of product, and because it is submerged in water before usage, bacteria might develop inside. You should give it a deep wash once a week to prevent this. You can accomplish this in a variety of methods, but make sure you do it at least four times every month because nobody wants to put stale foundation and bacteria on their skin.

How to clean makeup sponges at home: real life story

Avoiding skin damage from pollutants and bacteria is a top priority. That’s why we are all girls who love to pamper ourselves to set a skincare routine. In this routine, we love wearing face masks, cleansers, toners, and serums to get glowing skin. But you probably haven’t given much thought to the dirty Beautyblender you’ve been using on your face nonstop for months. When you use a Beautyblender in the morning, you spread bacteria and oil all over your face since it retains both.

I am not a different one. I am always busy changing my face mask or cream when I face some skin problem. However, once I change my old makeup sponges, I suddenly notice my skin itches & pimples vanish. But buying make sponges are costly. So I went online in search of instructions for washing my makeup sponges. Some methods are fruitful, and some are not. By experimenting with my makeup sponges, I damage many sponges. At last, I found a technique to use my makeup sponges longer.

At first, I turned the water on; then I put it under water to soak it up with water to make it big.

 After that, I take some liquid soap and mix it well in my hands. Then, I pick up my dirty blending sponge and keep it in the middle of my hands.

 Next, I started to rub it very carefully between my two palms. From this technique, I clean it from both sides without using my nails and digging into it or causing tears. I did this a few times around it and twisted it every few seconds.

Again, I turned the water on and squeezed it so that all dirty things came out of the beauty blender.

At last, I kept it on a tissue towel to soak its extra water. Keep it aside for drying naturally.

One thing I always do is let the sponge dry thoroughly between uses. The sponge must be dehydrated before being stored so that infection doesn’t develop. I keep them in the open where they can get the most air. Most of the time, I leave them out in the sun to dry; not only will they dry more quickly, but the sun’s ultraviolet rays also have antibacterial properties.

For a quick wash, I always try to follow this way. For deep washing, I use dish soap and warm water to make it bacteria-free. Once a month, I try to clean my makeup sponges in the microwave.

Nancy Wright


1. When should you throw out your makeup sponges?

After you have finished applying your makeup with a beauty blender each time, you should clean the sponge. You can wash it with a baby shampoo or a cleaning solution specifically designed for beauty blenders and warm waters. Bacteria and germs tend to accumulate over time, and warm water is the best way to eliminate them.

2. Which one is better – brush or makeup sponges?

Blending is easy with a sponge and especially effective with more fluid formulations. They are not as sanitary and require more frequent cleaning. On the other hand, brushes may be found in a wide range of sizes and shapes, making it easy to apply a tailored look. But, achieving a precise blend is more challenging, particularly with liquid foundations. Compared to sponges, they are ideal for use as a solid base.

3. How long does makeup sponges last?

A cosmetic sponge has an average lifespan of three to six months. However, this can vary greatly depending on how well you care for it and your purchase quality.

4. Can you use reusable makeup sponges?

Cosmetic sponges are meant to be used more than once, but they must be cleaned frequently and maintained carefully. They can become a source of germs and lead to skin infections if not removed regularly.

5. Where you can store your beauty blender sponges?

Be sure to let your beauty blender air dry before putting it away. Put it away in a dry container and keep it away from moisture.

6. Do different colored beauty blender sponges serve different purposes?

-Daily skincare products, including sunscreens, serums, and skin oils, are best applied using a white beauty blender. Just be sure you wet them down first.
-Primers, foundations, concealers, and other similar cosmetics are best applied using pink beauty blenders.
-Black beauty benders are made for deeper tones, so use them with darker cosmetics like bronzers and foundations. They are experts at making fake tans that seem natural.

7. Is it possible to fix makeup mistakes using a beauty blender sponge?

Yes. Extra blush or eyeshadow can be removed using a dry makeup blender.

8. How can you keep your beauty blender longer?

First, keep your beauty blender out in the open, in a cosmetic bag, so it can dry completely. Secondly, instead of putting it in a Ziploc bag, put it in a pouch with ventilation for the trip.

9. Why should you use a dump beauty blender?

Soak it in water by holding it under running water or placing it in a container, then squeeze out all the moisture. Just keep doing this until it reaches its full size, which should take three or four times. Apply your foundation, concealer, and other makeup using the moist beauty blender or sponge. Wet sponges can only absorb so much liquid before they become useless. To achieve full coverage, put the product onto the sponge or straight to the skin, and then use the sponge to smooth it out using a stamping or dabbing motion. Swipe it across your face if you want a sheerer application.


You can use your clean makeup sponges until you have acne outbreaks and skin illnesses. Though you use it frequently, even if you wipe it off, let it air dry, and put it away appropriately, you need to change it within 3 to 6 months.

Key Points

  • Soap, a silicone pad, the microwave, and the washing machine are used to clean cosmetics sponges.
  • Regularly cleaning sponges remove bacteria and reduce skin irritation and breakouts.
  • Clean makeup sponges once a week.
  • Based on use and cleanliness, a beauty blender can last three to six months.

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