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Disinfecting Brushes and Sponges.

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Disinfecting Brushes and Sponges.

Post by PNColwell on Fri Jul 05, 2013 2:35 am

When I was face painting in Baton Rouge we washed our brushes and sponges out (very thoroughly) with just water. I've seen on here that a lot of painters use Isopropyl Alcohol in their kit. I have never carried this in my kit. This may be a simple or stupid question, but do you use the Alcohol to disinfect? If not what do you use it for?
Also can any one give me any tips of on better ways to clean out my brushes and sponges. I am hesitant to use anything for fear that it will stay in the brush/sponge and become harmful to the kids. I'd rather have the paint stuck in the brush/sponge if that is the case because I know it's not harmful and I can always replace it with another from my huge backup stash.


Thanks!

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Re: Disinfecting Brushes and Sponges.

Post by fesspenter on Fri Jul 05, 2013 7:47 am

There are quite a few helpful threads on this topic, with a wide variety of answers.
Google Face Paint Forum Clean Brushes
The Search function on this Forum is very specific in phrasing and your computer search function will find a larger quantity of information.
In Alberta, face paint hygiene is regulated. It is not regulated here in Ontario. I follow the method taught to me by Infectious Disease Control at SickKids Hospital in Toronto;
Swish brush through first bath with one drop of Pink Hospital soap (surgical scrub brush wedged in the bottom of water well. You can purchase a ready-made Shining Feather Brush Bath online).
Swish brush though second bath of water with surgical scrub brush in bottom.
Rinse brush in third bath of water & swipe on clean towel to dry up excess water.
Dip in 70% Isopropyl Alcohol and saturate.
Leave to dry. Dries in 5-15 minutes depending upon ambient temperature and humidity.
Isopropyl alcohol leaves no residue in brushes after it it is dry.

Sponges are used once, and brought home and laundered in a lingerie bag on the "Sanitizing" cycle in my washing machine. Dried in dryer on high heat in lingerie bag. I buy Dollar Store sponges and carve them with an electric carving knife into wedges. I buy the Fantasy World Wide Sponges from the Face Paint Forum Shop as they are my favorite.

This method is not the only method. There are many different ways that face painters on this Forum sanitize their brushes and sponges. Please have a lot of fun reading the different methods and choose for yourself. Face Painting is not a hygienic pursuit. We just have to do our very best to keep our kits clean.

Happy Painting!
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Re: Disinfecting Brushes and Sponges.

Post by nikkili26 on Wed Jul 10, 2013 9:08 am

at an event, i rinse my brushes in water and dip in alcohol for a minute and air dry. afterwards, i wash individually with pink soap, swirl on my hand, vibrate ferrel on bottom of my water holder, and repeat till all the paint is out.


i don't leave paint in because it ruins the sharp edges and points of my brushes.


i microwave my sponges after washing for 2 minutes-because i don't have a laundry machine/ dryer to sanitize.
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Re: Disinfecting Brushes and Sponges.

Post by Coral3 on Sun Oct 20, 2013 2:45 am

I've been boiling all my sponges (new sponge -or two- for each child, so usually there's quite a pile) after first washing thoroughly with velvet soap and rinsing well.  I'm wondering if anyone else boils their sponges?  I have not noticed any damage to them, but then I read somewhere recently that boiling them changes the density (makes them more porous)? Has anyone here noticed this?  

My sponges are all TAG, but I'm waiting on an order of the always wicked dark pink ones & don't want to ruin the new batch by boiling if it's an issue with some sponge brands.

I usually boil, stirring, for about five minutes.  


(I realize this thread is a few months old, I just thought it might be better to tack my question here rather than start a new thread for it.)
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Re: Disinfecting Brushes and Sponges.

Post by Guest on Sun Oct 20, 2013 9:29 pm

I wouldn't boil but I know many who do - mostly in the UK. I know that washing them in the machine with bleach makes them stiff (mom washed my sponges for me ....once.... in the machine with the whites...)

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Re: Disinfecting Brushes and Sponges.

Post by nikkili26 on Sun Oct 20, 2013 11:49 pm

If i boil, it's for at least five minutes with a lid on the pot.doesn't harm the sponges.

In fact, I once dyed them black....porosity was unaffected. If you take care of the sponges, they stay good for a long time.
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Re: Disinfecting Brushes and Sponges.

Post by Coral3 on Mon Oct 21, 2013 7:30 am

Thanks for the replies!  

I don't think I'll risk boiling the new sponges, I'd hate for them to get ruined.  They arrived today & I am completely in LOVE - they feel great.  I also got some of their 'mini' sponges which are the same shape but about half the size of a TAG half circle sponge, which I'm looking forward to trying out for little faces.  

The TAG sponges I have boiled seem to be fine.  Like you, nikkili I dyed a heap of TAG sponges black at one stage & they were boiled for a good 40 minutes, without affecting texture.  (Although I still had to throw all 180 sponges in the garbage, because they kept leeching dye & were unusable, but that's another story!)
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Re: Disinfecting Brushes and Sponges.

Post by katerra77 on Mon Oct 21, 2013 9:38 am

Instead of boiling I steam my sponges in microwave. They have to be really wet though, so that you don't fry your microwave.
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Re: Disinfecting Brushes and Sponges.

Post by ssshaffstall on Tue Oct 22, 2013 12:07 am

I am a cosmetologist and also a face painter and I follow the Louisiana sanitation and disinfection rules and regulations. I use barbicide to clean my brushes and do not put them in a closed container until they are completely dried. I also try to put them out in the sun to dry. I clean my sponges with a Hibiclens and/or barbicide and do not pick up the sponges until completely dried. I also am careful when face painting persons with acne or open sores or pimples or even runny noses. I will not use sponges on those type of people if I do I never use that sponge on anyone else and I throw away the sponges but you can disinfect brushes easier then sponges. You can also make a solution of Hibiclens to clean your brushes during an event. Throw away q-tips once used on one person. I try to use anti-bacterial as much as possible during an event. I am extremely careful and a stickler about sanitation. Hope this helps.

Samantha
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