Cleaning brushes

anjabeeMay 2, 2011

Just read this tip from Renee Mullins~"Giving my brushes a "good cleaning"!! Does anyone ever clean their brushes with Non-Acetone nail polish remover? Gets everything out of your brush!... Sometimes I get dried paint in one of my brushes, especially a liner brush... just soak in Non-Acetone nail polish remover and it's good as new....make sure you rinse well and then use soap and water to finish cleaning them... shape them up and lay them flat to dry. I've always made sure not to keep my brushes in water, but I am terrible about laying one down with paint in it! Keeping your brush in water or washing and storing them standing up when wet will make your bristles flare out and you will loose your crisp edge to your brush.... the water gets into the ferrell. That's why I always lay my brushes to dry."

I have been using alcohol since Luvs suggested it a few years ago and it works great too, but it never hurts to have a few ways of doing things. The alcohol doesn't work on the brushes I've used for specialty paints like a certain glitter paint I have used so I will try the non-acetone polish remover on that brush and see how it works. Also I will start laying my brushes flat to dry. ~Anj

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Thanks for the tip....I have been using Winsor & Newton Brush Cleaner & Restorer for years and my bottle is almost empty and it is now hard to find a replacement bottle.

I use Mona Lisa Pink Soap in my cleaning water all of the time, and then just rinse the brush in clean, pure water. And until recently stood the brush up to dry, and as you said, that is sooooooooo wrong. Now I press the water out with a paper towel and they lay flat to dry.

I also keep my "in use" brushes separate from the other brushes and really clean them when a project is finished or if a brush gets really dirty I use the W & N cleaner sooner. You really have to be careful not to get the cleaner on the handle of the brush or it will take the paint off there as well.

How does the Non-acetone remover do with non metal ferrules? I do have several really good brushes that have some kind of plastic ferrules. Guess I could try it on a very small area to see what happens...DAAAAAH!

Thanks for the info Anj!


    Bookmark   May 2, 2011 at 11:08AM
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I've always used The Masters Brush Cleaner and it works great on the bristles, ferrule, everything.

One thing I would recommend if you are using alcohol or polish remover...they will dry out your brushes quickly so after cleaning I would use something to condition them. The Masters does both but I also use a touch of vaseline to condition and shape older brushes to make them last longer (I learned that from my one and only oil paint instructor back in high school). Just rinse the brush well before the next use.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2011 at 5:29PM
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I think I have tried everything and I have used the non-acetone polish remover. I will try anything on my cheaper brushes but I am very careful with the ones I pay a lot of money for. I have used alcohol, VODKA, non-acetone polish remover, Old Masters, Ivory soap, Lava soap, hand sanitizer - the list goes on and on. After cleaning I normally run my brush over the bar of soap to keep their shape, then rinse well before using them.

It is so great that we have so many wonderful painters on here to share their tips. I have a whole folder that I have collected over the years -

One of my favorites is the brown paper bag for sanding.
Happy Mothers' Day yall.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2011 at 10:38AM
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