Miniature Wargames

Miniature Wargames

Monday, August 9, 2010

It's been awhile... but I thought I would talk of brush cleaners

As most if not all of you have noticed over time brushes tend to split and or tip curl after "water cleaning".  Well after getting exceptionally tired of buying new brushes every other week due to tip curling issues I finally got some brush cleaners and conditioners from a local art supply store.  The ones that were available at the store were of several different types and manufacturers, the few that I chose were B&J "The Masters" brush cleaner and preserver and another one called "Pink Soap".  The B&J type is in a sealed screw lid type container and kind of like a cake the other "Pink Soap" is a liquid in a dropper bottle.  The are not very expensive with both being under $5.00 USD and considering what they do for your brushes a great buy!  You can search the internet or you tube on videos on how to clean your brushes but I will give you a couple of tips.

1st.  When cleaning the brush either on a cake type or in your hand with a liquid type always draw the brush away from the tip, NEVER push the brush into the cleaner.

2nd.  When using the cake type cleaners, after you get the majority of the paint off in your brush water, take the brush with a good amount of water still on it and work the the brush over the cake to make kind of a mushy paste of the cleaner on the brush and continue to work the brush through the cleaner until no more paint comes out then rinse it and then get some more cleaner conditioner on the brush and drawing to a tip, put the brush a away, yes with some conditioner still on it.  I use the liquid type(Pink Soap) for this step.  Anyway I hope this is understandable, if not like I said earlier look for videos on youtube about cleaning brushes and you will get the idea.  I just started doing this but I am told it will help eliminate the brush tips from curling or splitting.


  1. I think in my case its because I'm continuously wiping my brushes on kitchen roll is where the damage comes from. I have tried brush cleaner but can't say if it helped or not but yes I do go through quite afew.



  2. Ken, yea I am not sure it will work either but I am hoping it does something. You said something that I had not thought of before, that being I use paper towels like you do, I wonder if that could be the issue. Perhaps using a facial towel or something like that may fix the issue. I have always used paper towls and up until recently I would put the brush in my mouth to draw the bristles into a tip. I stopped doing that thinking that was the issue but I guess not. Anyway what do you think?

  3. Interesting.

    I've looked at using these products in the past, but have yet to buy a specific soap.

    I tend to use a UK soap called Imperial Leather to clean my brushes and about twice a year give all my brushes a though clean and use conditioner (my wifes) to spruce up the bristles.


  4. Its that gradual build up of paint at the base of the brush that causes the biggest problem - splitting. Once the point is gone you may as well throw away the brush! One of the best devices I've seen is a sonic cleaner - it was used for tech pens but works on fine brushes too - but they are expensive and specialised - haven't seen one for a while. A sign-painter mate of mine used vasoline to preserve the point of his brushes. I've tried it and it sort of works. But you must use tissue or a soft cloth to wipe it off before use. Anything to extend the life of your favourite brush - itsan expensive business constantly replacing them!