When you work with nails, whether in a professional salon or you are just starting to learn the skills, hygiene is one of the most important things you should know about.
One of the main tools you will need is something to clean the nail brush with, and most of the time this is just a simple acrylic brush nail cleaner. If you do not clean the brushes correctly in between clients, then you cannot expect your tools to work efficiently.
This is because if they are left to buildup grime and dirt within their bristles, soon they will become damaged and unusable to have in your kit. Not only will it be annoying to have to keep changing them, but it will also become expensive.
Also, hygiene should be a big factor as you are using the brushes on every client. By cleaning the brushes after every use, it will mean that the brushes will stay in great condition for a long time, and they will work better too.
Because you already know how important it is – otherwise you would not have ended up here – let us take a look at how to clean brushes to keep them in good working order.
Original Method Using Monomer
The usual way to clean an acrylic nail brush is to use the monomer that you used for the nail extension. This would mean regularly wiping the brush with monomer on a lint-free cloth to keep it clean of bacteria.
You can also use an acrylic nail liquid because, just like the monomer, it is gentle on the bristles. You do not want to use something that will ruin the bristles because that is the thing you need most when it comes to this type of nail tool.
This quick cleanse should be your regular go-to when removing bacteria and general dirt to stop any buildup of bacteria before it gets out of control.
Using Monomer On Stubborn Dirt
There are times when stains or debris may form on the brushes, and when this happens, you cannot just wipe it off. There are ways to treat this problem with monomer still, so here is how to do it:
- With a shallow dish, fill it with some monomer nail liquid and place the brushes in to soak them either for a couple of hours or overnight depending on how stubborn the stain is
- Once you remove the brushes, rinse them under some warm water
- Shake to remove any excess water and place them lying flat on a towel to let them air dry
- Once dry, and if needed, place them once again into a shallow bowl of monomer nail liquid for a couple of hours
- Repeat the process of rinsing under warm water, shaking and air drying on a dry towel
This is a good process to use if you want to remove any buildup of acrylic, for example. If you find that your brushes have a lot of lumps within the bristles, you may not be using the correct nail acrylic ratio. Always refer to manufacturers instructions for advice.
Soap and Water
Using soap (or shampoo) and water is an easy, yet effective, way to clean acrylic nail brushes. If you do not have any monomer to hand, then this is a good method to clean the brushes thoroughly, though it will take some time to do.
- Using either shampoo or soap, apply it to the bristles of the brush and massage for a bubbly mess
- Once you feel you have finished, rinse the soapy mixture off with water
- Fill up a bowl of clean water and soak the brushes for a few hours
- Once you are ready to remove them, dry with either a paper towel or clean towel
- Take an unused and clean mascara brush or brow brush to gently comb through the bristles
Just Using Water
If you want a quick method to clean a brush, then simple water will do, though it may not be the ideal way to give your brushes a thorough clean. This process can be an effective way to remove excess acrylic nail polish.
- Fill a cup with warm or hot water, but not boiling
- Dip a brush into the water and then wipe the excess on a clean towel
- Repeat the process again until the dirt has been removed
Can You Use Acetone to Clean Acrylic Nail Brushes?
Acetone is not the best thing to use when it comes to a higher quality natural hair nail brush. This type of brush may last longer, but the use of natural material means that they also damage a lot easier than synthetic bristles.
Whilst it is best to use a monomer or the soap and water method on natural brushes, do check that the monomer does not include any acetone. If it gets on to natural bristles, it can cause them to go dry and brittle.
If you must clean your synthetic brushes with acetone, then apply it to a lint-free cloth and wipe the brushes. This is best done if there is stubborn dirt that will not move after the traditional way of cleaning the brushes. Just like with natural hair nail brushes, synthetic brushes can also go brittle, though it is less of an issue.
Related: How long do acrylic nails last?
Keeping nail brushes clean means that they last a lot longer, and you will not have to keep repurchasing new ones. If they become too unhygienic to use and cleaning will not work, they will have to be thrown away and new ones will need to be bought.
Making sure you wipe your brushes with monomer after every use with a lint-free cloth should be your first go-to to avoid the buildup of bacteria. However, dipping them in a shallow bowl is a good way to give them a good clean.
There are also many other methods to clean brushes if you want to try something new, or do not have any monomer to hand.