By BR Kellie
Last year for a time it became all the rage for bloggers and vloggers and YouTubers to cut their makeup sponges in half to see what icky greeblies might be hiding inside. Some makeup lovers were confronted with internal foundation stains, mould and even fungus growing on their beloved makeup applicators. Whereas others got to shine their halos as their grubby-on-the-outside sponges were pristine on the inside.
Well, colour me intrigued. Not having a makeup sponge on hand I decided I needed to buy a new one (any excuse!) and set up my own little experiment. Cut to me buying a Beauty Blender (my first ever, but not my last… those things are amazing!) in August last year.
In order to ensure things were as scientific as an unscientific person could get them I made sure I followed the directions that came with the Beauty Blender. Every time I used it I ran it under water first, then towel-dried it before using it to apply my foundation and on occasion cream blush and highlighter. I then sat it up on it’s little holder to dry before using it again.
Now I didn’t use the Beauty Blender every day, in fact I probably only used it twice or so a week, so it wasn't given the workout it might get from other beauty lovers. But it definitely was well used and in the last month of its life I've noticed it's started to develop some small tears.
As for the cleaning regime? I maaaaaay have been a bit slack due to not using it all that often. I clean my brushes once a month (still not enough, I know) but the Beauty Blender probably was cleaned every second month. Ok, every third month. Alright, alright, I’ve cleaned it exactly three times. The most recent being two weeks ago because I had a feeling that at nine months old and having not been cleaned for nearly three months it was probably getting a bit yuck.
Recently the immovable foundation stains on the outside of my Beauty Blender became to great to ignore and little tears had begun to show on the outside of the sponge, so I bought a fresh one and decided it was time to open up the original in the name of science.
Can I tell you what hurts? Splitting a Beauty Blender in half with a pair of kitchen scissors. The only thing I can imagine that would hurt more would be to take my ABH Mario eyeshadow palette and to drop it from three floors high to see if the pans would smash (not that that is ever going to happen.)
So… the grand reveal…
Well thank goodness it’s nice and bright pink in the centre. The fear was real that I would find spores and all sorts in there. So at least the times I was washing it I was giving it a good deep clean. Phew. However… the outside had those foundation stains, which since I didn't clean it before cutting into it was to be expected, and if you look on the outer left hand side and the outer right hand side you can see a couple of mould spots. Well, technically one big mould spot that's been cut in half. Ew. Ew. Ew. How glad am I to have decided to chuck this one now instead of stubbornly continuing to use it?
To be fair to the Beauty Blender my house can get a little damp, and there were times when I went to reuse it where I found it hadn't dried completely. So really it was a breeding ground for mould and I'm amazed it's not worse That being said, I’ll be drying my new Beauty Blender on the window sill so the sun can work it’s bacteria-destorying magic. (I actually have no idea if the sun works that way with makeup sponges, but I’ve read it’s ultra-violet rays can kill bacteria on clothing that’s hung up to dry, so I’m just going to go with it. If anything if it’s placed in the sun it’ll dry more effectively, leaving less chance for mould to take hold and grow.)
So there you go… the contents of my beauty blender for all the interwebs to see if they feel so inclined. So, do tell… have you cut your makeup sponge open in the name of curiosity… I mean, science… Would you be willing to? Cut away, pop your findings on the Photowall and some very un-mouldy points may be sprinkled your way!