Ever have that morning where you pull out your eyeshadow palette and it clicks just how messy and dirty it looks? Overspilled product smears the plastic in between pans, or the crumbled end shade has now found it’s way into it;s neighbor’s pan, and it’s just not looking pretty? Maybe your eyeshadow palette is more than a little overdue for a good cleaning…

How to keep your powder makeup products clean
black handle makeup brushes

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In This Episode We Cover:

  • Why it’s important to keep your powder makeup products clean.
  • My two favorite techniques for cleaning and sanitizing powder makeup.
  • The importance of storing after cleaning your products.


click here to read the transcript!


Episode 39: Show notes

black handle makeup brushes

I wanted to chat about powder makeup products specifically this week.

Makeup sanitizing is talked about a lot these days. And with good reason. But we can tend to focus our efforts on our liquid and cream products.
And this is because, well, they can be more prone to shorter shelf life and higher risk of bacteria.

And because of this, sometimes our powder makeup products can get pushed aside a little.

So let’s focus on our powder makeup – as they do make up a big portion of what we actually use on the face.

I want to delve into the importance of keeping powder makeup clean and provide practical tips for sanitizing powder products.

So let’s take a look at these key points:

Importance of Sanitizing

It is as important to keep your powder makeup (like eyeshadow palettes, singles, compacts, and loose powder) clean and sanitized as it is your cream and liquid makeup. Bacteria can breed in dry products, so proper hygiene is essential.

Quick and Easy Techniques for Cleaning and Sanitizing

I like to recommend using 70% isopropyl alcohol in a spray bottle to sanitize loose powders, compacts, and palettes.
And another favorite product I like to use is a product called Beauty So Clean, which contains alcohol and certain other emollients, to ensure products are not overly dried out or altered by repeated alcohol use.

Sanitizing Steps

The easy steps I take to clean my powder products usually involve the process of spraying powder products with Beauty So Clean, wiping between pans with a tissue or towel, and using Q-tips for hard-to-reach areas.

Then I like to leave the palettes open to air dry before storing them vertically to prevent any liquid from getting trapped and not evaporating (which can lead to bacterial growth).

The Importance of Establishing a Cleaning and Sanitizing Routine

Finding a routine that works for you is important. And advisable. A weekly sanitizing routine for powder makeup, and more frequently, while at work, is the best practice – where you must be sanitizing your products before and after each use.

Key Methods to Keep Your Powder Makeup Clean:

  • Using 70% isopropyl alcohol in a spray bottle for sanitizing loose powders, compacts, and palettes.
  • Getting yourself some Beauty So Clean to ensure products are not overly dried out by repeated alcohol use.
  • Wiping between pans with a tissue or towel and using Q-tips for hard-to-reach areas.
  • Air-drying palettes before storing them vertically to avoid liquid accumulation.
  • Create a sanitizing routine for powder makeup, especially in a professional setting, with special attention to sanitizing products after each use and before the next use.

Click here to listen to this episode!


Episode Transcript

[00:00:00]: How to keep your powder makeup clean.

Now, I guess I could answer this question very quickly for you simply by sanitizing them, but that really wouldn’t be very helpful, would it? So let’s get into the nuts and bolts of hygiene and why sanitizing your powder makeup is as important as your creams and everything else, and can be done without spoiling your precious. And let’s not deny it. Pricey products.

[00:01:02]: I know that we can hear about how bacteria loves to breed in moist and damp areas, and sometimes this can lead to a focus on our liquid and cream makeup being the spotlight for sanitizing.

But this doesn’t mean that we should neglect our dry products by any means. Eyeshadow palettes, singles, compacts, even loose powders require the same level of sanitizing as everything else. So the first rule of fight club is, I mean, makeup. The first rule of makeup is keep your fingers out of your makeup. Yep. No more fingers into eyeshadow pans, please. Okay.

[00:01:44]: There are two separate techniques that I like to use to sanitize my powder products, and they are used based on the product that I’m cleaning. For loose powders, I like to use 70% isopropyl alcohol just in a spray bottle and give it a spray as often as I can. I then let the alcohol quickly dry and evaporate and simply pop the lid back on.

I do this on compacts and press powders as well, and on my blush and eyeshadow palettes.

In fact, any powder palettes, really, I like to give them a spray with a product called beauty so clean, which is a cosmetic sanitizer. So why use this?
Why use anything other than 70% isopropyl alcohol if it’s fairly affordable and it works, it does the job right. Well, it’s all to do with the ingredients that are also in beauty so clean, because on top of alcohol, it contains a few different emollients. And what these do is ensure that your products are not going to dry out or be altered in any way by the repeated addition of alcohol to them.

[00:03:00]: So once I have spritzed my palettes with beauty so clean, I usually then wipe in between the pans with a tissue or a setup towel and a small spritz of beauty, so clean onto the tissue or towel. Or I can use 70% alcohol to ensure that the whole palette is clean and free of overspilled eyeshadow. Or, heaven forbid, when you drop a palette and that one shade in the corner crumbles. Oh, the pain. It’s heartbreaking.
And if you have tiny little areas that you need to get into, I like to use a fine-tipped qtip spritzed with beauty so clean so I can get in there and bring my beloved palette back to its former glory and cleanliness. And that’s it, really. It’s very simple, and therefore it’s something that you can be practicing often and repeatedly.

[00:03:49]: But by using beauty so clean, you can rest easy that you’re not overly drying out your finest eyeshadow pigments or altering their makeup, pardon the pun, in any way, shape, or form. Be sure to leave the palettes open to air dry once you have sanitized them, and only close and store them once they’re completely dry.
Storing pallets vertically can be another level of ensuring that the liquid just doesn’t sit inside the pans. I love the iDesign Sarah Tanno clear storage system for these.

I’ll link to them in the show notes page for this episode, so if you want to find them, you can just go to themakeuprefinery.com/sanitize-powder-makeup and you can find all the links there.

But her shelves and storage dividers make it so easy, and they just make your products look really pretty, whether on your makeup station, at work or at home, in your cupboard or shelves, or if you have a dedicated area set up, they just look so pretty or presented clean and sleek too. So getting into the routine of a weekly sanitizing is a really good practice. And at work, I aim to sanitize all of my products after each use, and also again, when I pull something out to use the next time.

[00:05:10]: So it’s usually more frequently than that.

And if you’d love to take my free mini masterclass about sanitizing your makeup palettes, I’d be thrilled to share it with you. You can find it at themakeuprefinery.com/palette-masterclass, and we can have a big old palette sanitizing party together. All righty.

This has been a fun refresh on something that’s really important in makeup and see how quick it can be so there’s absolutely no excuses. Okay, see you next time.

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