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How to Properly Clean and Disinfect Your Beauty Products

Zoe Weiner

Zoe WeinerMarch 18, 2020

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Photo: Stocksy/Leandro Crespi Studio

These days, keeping clean is top of mind for everyone. We’re washing our hands more often, wiping down our countertops on the reg, and tossing our clothes in the laundry after a single wear. One more thing you might want to add to your “daily disinfecting” list? Your beauty products.

According to the CDC, in order to protect yourself from COVID-19, you should “lean and disinfect high-touch surfaces daily in household common areas, because the virus can live on surfaces and transfer when you touch them. With that in mind, it’s a good idea to regularly disinfect any makeup or skin-care products you’re coming into contact with (which, for what it’s worth, is something you should be doing whether or not there’s a global pandemic going around).

The CDC states that solutions with a minimum of 70 percent alcohol serve as effective disinfectants, so celebrity makeup artist Mari Shten recommends cleaning your products at least once a week with a spray bottle filled with alcohol. (Jason Teatro, microbiologist and author of The Germ Filessuggests using nine parts undiluted alcohol mixed with one part distilled water.)”You can use it for sanitizing the space you’re using; any powder makeup like pressed powder, eyeshadow, and blushes; and certain lipsticks,” Shten says. Just hold the bottle 10 inches away from the product, spritz it generously, and let it dry. 

You should also be regularly cleaning the outside of any products you’re using, such as skin-care bottles, and that goes double for the ones you share with other people in your household.  “If you have anything that you’re using in the shower and is being shared, you might want to give it a good soap-and-water wash before you pass it along to someone else,” Teatro told Well+Good earlier this week. He explains that this is an easy way to ensure you aren’t passing the virus along to someone else who might be using the same shower. And while you’re at it, wipe down the outside of your Purell bottles, too.

There are a few other things she recommends doing to ensure your space is extra-safe: Clean your makeup table, chair, and chair arms with a disinfecting wipe, wash your makeup bag (either with soap and water or in the washing machine), and shampoo your brushes—each at least once a week. And of course, be sure to wash your hands with soap and water before putting on makeup and skin care… and regularly throughout the day as well.

This derm-approved trick will keep your hands from drying out, no matter how many 20-second washes you’re putting them through. Plus, the myths an MD wants you to stop believing about COVID-19.

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