When it comes to spring cleaning, you're eager to freshen up the house and declutter your closets, but what about that dirty secret in your bathroom? (Relax! We're talking about your makeup bag.)
Your makeup brushes touch your face every single day, but if you're like most women, the last time you cleaned them was, well, you can't remember.
Long Island-based celebrity makeup artist Virginia Linzee, who has worked behind the scenes to beautify Beyonce's tours and runway shows for top designers like Marc Jacobs and Michael Kors, shared her tips to help refresh your makeup bag this season.
"The most important thing is keeping your tools clean," Linzee says, adding that bacteria buildup can cause breakouts and make even the best products look lackluster. "I clean my brushes every day after I use them and give them a good, deep cleaning with shampoo and lukewarm water once a week. On natural hair bristles, I'll even use conditioner."
For the day to day cleaning, she uses Mary Kay brush cleaner ($10 at marykay.com), which is fast drying so you can easily cleanse even between colors.
"There are so many bright, fun makeup colors for spring," she said, "and you don't want them to mix and get muddy."
Just spray the cleaner onto the brushes and sweep with a tissue to remove residue.
Keeping bristles in top shape is key to Linzee, who advises ditching the little bacteria-storing sponges that come with some compacts in favor of a good set of quality brushes.
"A big mistake people make is not using the right utensils," she says. "You can have the best makeup in the world, but if you don't have the right tools to apply it, it's not going to look as good."
When doing your spring makeup bag overhaul, Linzee advises trashing any mascara that's starting to get dry and powdery and blush or bronzer that have hardened patches, which are a sign of oil buildup.
If you'll be switching your winter foundation for something lighter and you don't have too much left, throw it out and start fresh next year, she says.
But after you do all that throwing away, what should you fill that space with this spring? A bold lip color, of course. Linzee's current pick is Mary Kay's True Dimensions lipstick in Wild About Pink ($18 at marykay.com).
"A bright lip is fun and easy, and you can keep the rest of your makeup light," she says.