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best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by Guest on Fri Nov 13, 2009 11:53 pm

katyabbott wrote:ok this will seem like a silly question - do you pour the isopropyl alcohol over the brushes to sanitize or swish the brush in a cup with the alcohol?
Thanks!

Seperate container of alcohol. they need to be saturated, and then allowed to dry.

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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by Rosenberg-Cox on Sat Nov 14, 2009 9:08 am

I do use cosmetic sponges for smaller rainbow, etc but in general I use mostly the sponges from Michaels. I can get them between 40% to 50% off everytime and cut them into thirds. SO the cost is reasonable. I have also picked up the car sponges at the dollar store and cut them up into about 12 pieces but my kids have told me they think they are scratchy. I am not allowed to reuse the sponges here.

I use to use alcohol but my former set of brushes started falling apart (the little strands in the paint). I do not use alcohol anymore since I am not required to.
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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by Just Jenny on Sat Nov 14, 2009 10:31 am

Where are you? I would think that using one sponge per person without double dipping would be enough of a requirement. If you have to throw away the sponge after use, what do you have to do with your brushes? Can you double dip, reload them while painting the same person? do you carry enough brushes to use one per color per person? Can you clean, and reuse or do you have to clean, sanitize and dry before reuse? How much water do you carry and use? inquiring minds want to know.

I think that we need to keep up our standards of sanitization, and I'm always looking to improve. However, I double dip my sponges and my brushes, and I don't keep with one sponge per person. I keep a small bucket under my table to to throw my used sponges and my wipes into....more wipes then sponges, because I will wipe a face, my hands, or whatever....and average a couple of wipes or more per person. My brushes are one per color....and Black and White get a few, because some make better dots, some make better teardrops, but they just sit, half loaded with paint until I use them again during a given event. I sound like such a slob compared to your set up. I like to think that I start really clean and fresh though, I gotta be doing something right.

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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by Rosenberg-Cox on Mon Nov 16, 2009 11:16 am

Midwest, Kansas and Missouri (each having their own set of requirements) mostly. I can not reload the brushes on the same person when using the cakes, which is why I use more liquids (so I can just throw away or wipe off what is left on the pallet) for detailing, then get a new brush for the next kid. As soon as I am done with the brush it goes in to a 'bath' of sorts with baby shampoo and water until I can wash it and set it to the side to dry. I have A LOT of brushes! The brushes clean and dry on site. (I also have a little battery operated dryer they can sit under). The sponges are not considered washable by 'unknown' who decided this and are listed as disposable. Thus I can not reuse them. I carry a minimum of four 2 litter bottle of water to every job.

I really do not mind as I agree with this rule. I have seen some painters with 'rainbow stains' on sponges that I would not let my kids go to. They may be clean but do not look clean and since I have seen some painters reusing sponges on dirty faces and runny nose kids (not any of us, of course), I just choose not to go to them. I am not judging them, I am just choosing.

I am going to try my first sponge head brush though and see if they (Cosmetology board) will allow it. Although KS does not have set rules just for face painting, this falls under the rules for general cosmetics and hair stylists, wow, they have a lot of rules. (Ex: I can not use hair clip to hold any hair back, only disposable hair pins - one per person). I think it will be all right in Missouri as thier rules are not as enforced. It is the dotter wand. To date, I have been using qtips (disposable). I made just need to buy a lot of them if it is determined to be non disposable (as I think it will be for it has a handle).

It may sound like a lot but it really is not. I am a brush painter more than a sponge painter anyway. The sponges are so cheap after the coupon, it really isn't anything. Parents have told me how impressed they are with the steps I take to prevent contamination. I have worked with many sick and dying kids for 3 years now (a job I got because of the steps I take with sanitation of my supplies). Seeing their faces or arms when painted makes it all worth it.

I realy don't mind throwing away the sponges. Honestly. Very Happy
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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by Fanie on Sun Nov 22, 2009 9:58 pm

If you don't want any stains, I think the only trick is to wash your brushes + sponges as soon as you get home. :\
Does anyone know another trick?

For cleaning my material after a gig, I've been using the yellow Sunlight soap bar (Made for clothes cleaning). I find it more effective than regular soap to get the makeup out. And it smells like lemon! Mmm!

As for cleaning my material during a contract, I've been using good old water (which I change often) and I have a bottle of 70% alcool to desinfect at times. But I find that straight alcool is hard for the brush. I've also been using baby wipes to clean brushes quickly. And I've been using all kind of different "push" type products to clean the brushes quickly, but like it's been said, it doesn't clean water-based makeup very well.

I may give a try at Shannon's technique for cleaning brushes and sponges. Hoep you don't mind, Shannon! Smile It's always been a problem for me and I'm extremely conscious about health safety.
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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by Sweet Loretta on Mon Dec 07, 2009 7:12 pm

I use Masters in bar soap form - works great as it is meant to loosen up and get out those deep color pigments.
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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by Winger1200 on Tue Dec 08, 2009 3:42 am

Old Master's Brush Cleaner & Conditioner Soap is fantastic for getting paint stains out of brushes and, using the directions on the package, has even gotten dried up oil paint out of brushes. The soap lasts forever!
Just remember to rinse VERY well when using any kind of soap on FP brushes & sponges.
Cheers,
Susan
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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by LillyW on Wed Dec 09, 2009 9:49 pm

In a cup I make a mixture of 1/2 vinegar and 1/2 baby shampoo, with a few drops of Silly Farm's Brush Bash. I take all of the brushes and smoothies I use for white, and put them in brush down. One at a time, I take the white brushes and clean them under a running facuet. I have a casserole pan, full of vinegar to the side. I lay each brush in there. Once all of the whites are soaking in the vinegar (I have about 3 brushes and 2 smoothies per color), I grab up the next lightest color group, yellow, and set them in the cup with the soap/vinegar mixture. While they soak, I take the set in the pure vinegar, and lay them on a paper towel to dry. I repeat that, finishing with my black brushes.

As to the Rinse Well, I gave mine away after two months. I use a separate tub for each color. You can see the one I used to have, with only 4 tubs. The one I use now has 6 tubs.
http://www.facepaintforum.com/gallery/Personal-album-of-LillyW/Lilly-Walters-Workstation-April-2009-pic_1684.htm

With the Rinse Well, as soon as you touch your black brush to it, it takes FOREVER to get it clean.

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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by melisadill on Sun Mar 07, 2010 12:53 pm

Wow, ok I must be just stupid. And I'm ok with that, lol! It's fun to laugh at yourself. I am very concerened with cleanliness!! So, I have tones of questions....

1.) Do you only load the brush once? I load tons!! Have not gotten that whole thing down yet I guess.

2.) Do you sanitize every brush after every child and let it dry? How many brushes do you have to use for that? Omgoodness! I thought it was ok to use till after the gig. Obviously not using them on sick children.

3.) How do you find out about what governs your business? Like the cosmetology thing. I thought facepainting was diff than that. Actually I didn't think anyone governed you. I thought it was kinda left up to the painter. Of course I can see where that would make sense.

Again, I am very concerned with this. I have 3 little children and would NEVER want to do anything that would cause another child harm in ANY way! I use a buggy cover at WalMart etc and sanitize our hands regularly. What is the appropriate thing?
Thanks!!! scratch
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Do NOT use baby shampoo

Post by Clayton on Fri Mar 12, 2010 1:02 am

JBax wrote:I've heard about using baby shampoo. Any thoughts?

There is a pain reliever in baby shampoo to keep it from hurting if it gets in the kids eyes.
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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by TheKillerBurrito on Mon Mar 15, 2010 8:05 pm

I currently use dish soap for my brushes. (I only use them on myself.)
I'm going to try some of the other cleaning methods you guys suggested. Dish soap kind of leaves soap suds in the brush that take a long time to get out.

Also for sponges, do you think the cheap disposable triangle sponges (like the ones you can find in Walgreens) would be good when using rainbow cakes and such? I think I might buy them to try it out and that way I wouldn't have to deal with cleaning sponges.

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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by melisadill on Tue Mar 16, 2010 1:27 am

Hey Killer,
I'm still new, so haven't had a ton of experience. But, I went out and bought the cheap disposable sponges(got mine from walmart-don't know if there is a difference). Anyway they did seem to really soak up a lot of paint and then go thru and thru to get the fingers dirty. I then read...somewhere...that you should get high density sponges. I went to my local craft store and picked up some of those. I must say, much better!! They are a little more, but I have found they are worth it! Just my 2cents! Good luck!!
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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by TheKillerBurrito on Tue Mar 16, 2010 6:11 am

Awesome! I'll try getting some high density ones then. Thanks! Very Happy

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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by melisadill on Tue Mar 16, 2010 11:14 am

Welcome Very Happy
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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by CreateFaces on Mon Mar 29, 2010 3:15 pm

When I'm working: Clear rinse water to work then isopropyl rinse, clear rinse again and onto a paper towel.

Sometimes I use the antibacterial gel in a cup because I can stand my brush in and the bristles don't get ruined because they are suspended in the gel.

At the end of the day everything goes into a dish soap bath, a super hot clear rinse, back to the bath if necessary (and it usually is necessary,) super hot clear rinse, then isopropyl soak and air dry.
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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by Dawny on Tue Mar 30, 2010 7:58 pm

when do you use the alcohol? I use it after I wash my brushes with shampoo and conditioner - but how do you use it during a gig?
I guess what I am asking is .... Do you dip it in an alcohol rinse in between each client ? If so, is it diluted or full strength ? Sorry - i am still pretty new at painting clients - up until recently I just painted my kids ...
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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by CreateFaces on Wed Mar 31, 2010 2:54 pm

Dawny wrote:when do you use the alcohol? I use it after I wash my brushes with shampoo and conditioner - but how do you use it during a gig?
I guess what I am asking is .... Do you dip it in an alcohol rinse in between each client ? If so, is it diluted or full strength ? Sorry - i am still pretty new at painting clients - up until recently I just painted my kids ...
Personally, and I know that this varies greatly depending on if you are regulated by local laws or not, I'm not:
I use different brushes for different colors so after I'm done with that color brush, it goes to water, then alcohol, then water, yup between patrons.

Do you know what I mean? I usually try to paint all the white that's going onto a design in one shot, then that brush goes to soak, then I do the next color and so on until I line with black or white.

It's not a perfect science, but I make my best effort to to keep things clean between customers.
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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by Dawny on Wed Mar 31, 2010 3:10 pm

thanks sooo much for the information ! i really appreciate it - i really want to do everything properly and i am very attentive when it comes to cleanliness - so - thanks again!
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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by modernmagik on Wed Mar 31, 2010 3:50 pm

You should never use diluted alcohol, as it will actually promote bacteria growth if it is not used full strength. Also, unless you are using 70% alcohol (the higher percentages dry too fast) and allowing it to completely dry on the brush, then you are not actually disinfecting your brush.

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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by len sherrard on Wed Mar 31, 2010 9:51 pm

why not use diluted bleach (10/1) water? I'm sure there is a reason, so i would like to hear it. thanks
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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by modernmagik on Wed Mar 31, 2010 10:15 pm

Because it stinks???? LOL

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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by len sherrard on Wed Mar 31, 2010 10:17 pm

Rolling Eyes Very Happy i asked for that one Very Happy
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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by modernmagik on Wed Mar 31, 2010 10:19 pm

I aim to please!!!!

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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by aprilmoonflower on Thu Apr 01, 2010 9:21 am

curious about something...

is it bad for your brushes to leave them soaking in water?

I usually wash and dry them as I go, as I am really just painting for practice at this point..my kids do this when they paint though, drives me nuts. I am just going to designate them their own brushes at this point, but a couple of the brush bristles have gotten "bent" too...is there a way to fix that?
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Re: best way to clean brushes? what's your system?

Post by modernmagik on Thu Apr 01, 2010 9:32 am

Yes, it can be bad if they are left for too long (more than just a couple minutes) as it can really cause damage to the bristles, and if the brushes are made with wooden handles, the water will go straight up through the ferrule and cause the wood to swell, then the coating on your brushes will crack and flake off.

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