Come with me as I explore an unconventional yet game-changing tool that’s transformed my approach to makeup artistry on set. It’s not what you might expect—no brushes or palettes here. Instead, I’ll reveal how a simple device has become my secret weapon, saving time and enhancing efficiency daily. If you’re ready to discover how to streamline your makeup setup and keep those precious minutes in check, let’s dive in to my latest beauty breakthrough.

beauty breakthroughs #3: my glorified airbrush cleaner
ultrasonic jewelry cleaner for airbrush cleaning

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In This Episode We Cover:

  • Embracing simplicity and opting for less clutter and more essential items for pure focus.
  • Investing in an ultrasonic jewelry cleaner for airbrush maintenance is a game changer that can significantly streamline your workflow.
  • Taking part in workshops and being open to learning new knowledge can not only refine your skills but also help you feel part of a community of learning.


click here to read the transcript!


Episode 64: Show notes

ultrasonic jewelry cleaner for airbrush cleaning

I wouldn’t go so far to say I’ve pretty much seen and tried it all when it comes to makeup tools and products.
As this post shows, it’s the unexpected discoveries that often prove to be the most invaluable.

And this was definitely the case recently on a busy movie project where time was most precious (as it always is).

Today, I’m excited to share a little gem that has transformed my daily work routine and might just do the same for yours.

Let me set the scene: on set, every second counts. Half way through an intricate makeup application, the last thing you want to deal with is a clogged airbrush.

It breaks your flow, tests your calm, and trust me, losing your zen in the middle of a 16-hour day isn’t ideal. Enter the hero of my current setup—not a fancy, high-end makeup tool, but a humble ultrasonic jewelry cleaner.

Yes, you read that right. A jewelry cleaner. This compact device has taken a permanent spot on my dare I say spartan makeup station. And why wouldn’t it, when it works wonders cleaning my airbrushes quickly and efficiently?

With a splash of Windex, this little powerhouse strips away makeup residue in minutes, leaving my airbrush looking brand new, ready for another round of applications. It’s like having an extra set of silent, efficient hands, all without taking up much space or creating clutter—which anyone who knows me will tell you is a major plus in my books.

The beauty of this ultrasonic cleaner isn’t just in its functionality. What excites me most is the sheer simplicity and how it integrates into the hectic world of film and TV makeup. It’s like finding that one piece in a jigsaw puzzle that makes everything else fall into place. At the end of a day, when time to pack up is as crunching as ever, efficiency becomes your best friend. This cleaner means there’s one less thing to worry about, allowing me to focus more on the creative aspects of my job while it takes care of the cleanup.

For many years now, I have overlooked the potential of a jewelry cleaner for my airbrushes.

Skeptical at first, I couldn’t believe something so simple could be so effective. Yet here I am, converted with a bit old hallejulah! It doesn’t stop at just being a neat tool; it represents a shift towards innovative, practical solutions that respect our time and the pressures we face in the makeup department.

Furthermore, it’s a testament to thinking outside the box—a skill every makeup artist needs to cultivate. Not everything has to come from a high-end makeup brand to be indispensable. Sometimes, it’s the most unassuming items that pack the biggest punch.

If you’re starting out in makeup, new on this journey, or worn from years on set, consider this a little nudge to explore beyond the conventional.

You might just be surprised at how items from entirely different contexts can revolutionize your workflow.

In the end, it’s about keeping your station functional, your makeup kit efficient, and your mind open.

As we continue navigating through the demanding, exponentially and ever-changing world of film and television, tools that enhance our efficiency are golden.

So I’m all for embracing unconventional gadgets (but this bad boy is so much more than a gadget) that make our professional lives a bit easier.

After all, in a job where artistry meets breakneck pacing, every little edge counts.

Click here to listen to this episode!


Episode Transcript

[00:00:02]: I see a strong pattern occurring within my beauty breakthrough episodes, which may just result in a little reworking of the title of these episodes.
Because once again, I have found a product that has become a lifesaver for me on a recent movie job and one that has nothing, zero, zilch to do with makeup.

Yet this product has become a daily time saver, labor saving device. Oh, how I love to throw that term around here and is, quite frankly, on my makeup station now and will no doubt continue to be for many moons to come.

[00:01:18]: Okay, any guesses? I love saying that. I know I can’t hear your answers, but it’s so fun because I know if it was me listening, I’d be like, oh, I bet it’s this or that or some kitchen utensil or a piece of hardware or something else entirely. Well, yes and no.
And my movie makeup friends are probably well aware of this device already, but I’m just going to put my hand up in the air, first of all, and preempt this by admitting that I don’t like a lot of clutter on my makeup station. I don’t like crystals and decorations and fancy clutter that are intended to show off my personality or cause my station to look more like some kind of mini-designer apartment than a professional makeup work zone. Yep, I’m the fun police. That’s me. I know, I know.

[00:02:12]: But seriously, I’m not there to read someone’s tarot cards, quite frankly. Who has the time? We are busy bees at work and all that stuff. Well, for me it’s just stuff. Extra irrelevant stuff that aims to showcase our personalities to those who we work with. Oh, boring.

I just put makeup on people’s faces, so. Yep, sorry about that, folks. And again, I’m off on a tangent, but getting back to it, this all falls in line with the real reason I’ve avoided this product for many years.

[00:02:47]: I’m a big believer in the less is more mantra for my station, my kit, the trivial decor surrounds, and yes, a jewelry cleaner.
Did you guess?

Yeah. So this beast cleans my airbrushes for me. It’s like unpaid labor. Oh, that’s terrible. I shouldn’t have said that. But who needs an assistant when you have this little ultrasonic box?

They’re quietly awaiting your makeup to be finished. You just pull apart your airbrushes, pop the pieces into a nice slashing of Windex, close the lid, press the button, and off to set you go.

[00:03:25]: No more clogged airbrushes, having to change nozzles or tips mid makeup. Losing those oh so precious minutes that we have to take out legal suits to fight for on productions now. And when you get back to wrap at the end of the day, it takes a couple of minutes to carefully put your airbrushes back together. And there they are.

They’re shiny, brand new for your next working day. I went through a couple of these as I bought quite a small one first up, and sadly, giddily, I used it like a new toy for a kid on Christmas morning and overused it. I loved it and squeezed it and hugged it and loved it to the point where I think I overloaded it and I got Windex inside it. It was a whole thing.

[00:04:14]: So it was goodbye to my first little airbrush cleaner, or jewelry cleaner, should I say. But now I’ve settled on one that it’s a little bit bigger, but it’s still sleek and it doesn’t take up a lot of room. It runs for about a three-minute cycle, I think.

And honestly, it is like an extra set of hands that gets this job done while I can be somewhere else or doing something else entirely. And as you know, we’re all multitasking on set all the time, so that makes this ultrasonic superstar a must for me.

And literally, you just need the box itself and some Windex and you’re all set. I’ll link to the very unit that I am very happy with now in the show notes. So you know you’re going to find a good one.

[00:05:03]: Now, they are available in much bigger sizes, but again, I’m all about less is more on my station. Packing up and loading in, packing down for travel, I want to carry as little stuff as possible. I just don’t have the patience for stuff that serves no purpose anymore. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love a nice looking makeup station, but mine just doesn’t have to give an insight into my personality to anyone else.

For me, this is up there with bumper stickers in terms of, like, a weird form of self promoting what you want people to know about your innermost workings kind of thing. Anyway, I hold no judgments. If this is you, that’s totally fine. And I really mean that.

[00:05:49]: I’m not judging anyone else, because we’re all different beasts, right? And I still love you. It’s. It’s just not for me. Okay. Sorry. I keep getting distracted by the stuff because that’s literally what stuff does, doesn’t it? It distracts us.
Well, your new ultrasonic jewelry cleaner definitely won’t be just stuff. It will be an invaluable tool that will save you time and allow you to have your airbrushes cleaned while you can complete other tasks.

[00:06:22]: Just don’t do what I do. Don’t overuse it. You’ll have to get another one straight away. And these are particularly great if you’re on big special effects-heavy jobs. I was putting super baldiez mixes through four airbrushes each day on a recent project, and so this cleaner made my working days so much easier, so much more streamlined.

I can’t rave about it enough. That’s my latest beauty breakthrough. I just couldn’t help but share it with you.

[00:06:54]: Not entirely a beauty breakthrough, but nevertheless worthy of its own mention, this episode of 5 Minute Face Talk was brought to you by my very own airbrush workshop.

If you’re new to the world of airbrushing or not so new, but just wanting a refresh and up for learning some of my tried and true airbrush techniques, then I wanted to share with you my very own airbrush upskill workshop. I put this together after meeting so many wonderful young artists at a makeup trade show at the beginning of this year. And if you’re listening in the future, that was 2024, and I was inspired by how intelligent and eager these students all were to learn.
They all asked me really smart questions, mostly about airbrushing. So this one’s for you guys.

Inside the Airbrush Upskill Workshop, I share a lot of stories from makeups I’ve done over the years and demonstrate one finished piece from start to finish as I break down a project into a simple, easy-to-follow roadmap that you can take with you and adapt to every project you work on tomorrow and well into the future. So check out the makeup refinery.

[00:08:16]: So check out The Makeup Refinery Airbrush Upskill Workshop at I’ll link to it in the show notes for this episode that you can find on the website under the podcast section.
Look for this episode show notes, which will no doubt have a picture of an airbrush on it, and you can also search for the beauty breakthrough titles as well.

Okay, that’s it. I’ll see you next time on 5 Minute Face Talk. Bye.

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