Friday Quick Tip: Master's Brush Cleaner

Ok, I've never used much in the way of cleaning products for my brushes. I've always just used water to rinse my brushes out often while painting. But I always end up throwing brushes to the terrain pile down the road and I've never thought to try using anything more than dish soap ( IF I think about it! ). But after watching this video by Les, I'm most definitely going to be picking some of this stuff up. Check it out:

(Edit:  Video no longer available.  This brush cleaner works wonders, you can find it from Dick Blick: 
Master's Brush Cleaner and Preserver

Anyone have any good cleaning tips to share?


  1. I use the Mona Lisa Pink Soap and it is great. The Pink Soap is a liquid, so it is a little easier to just drop some on the brush, but otherwise the technique is about the same.

    Time to bring some of my old brushes back to life... maybe I'll have a brush cleaning party next painting session.

  2. I also use Pink Soap. Brush cleaners are essential to keeping your brushes in good condition.

  3. I have had good luck using this stuff. If I don't do something with my brush - getting it in wet superglue - this stuff makes em last twice as long easy. Great buy for a cheap as it is.

  4. How creepy - not only do I use Master's Brush Cleaner, but I also have the exact same brush as in the video.

    Master's Brush Cleaner works wonders. It's amazing how, like he mentions in the video, it actually removes the color stains on brushes. The way I do it, though, is I wet the brush, swirl it in the brush cleaner until the colour changes, rinse lightly, wipe on a paper towel, rinse heavily. Repeat until no colors come out.

    I find that after you lather, if you rinse the brush, a lot of the paint will just come right out, like the soap has unbound the paint from the ferrule. It's a lot faster than the method they use in the video, with the swirl, swirl, swirl.

    It does get the soap tin dirty with color runoff, but that doesn't really matter. The soap works just as well even if there's a bit of color in it, and the lathering motion washes it away usually anyway.

  5. Wow, thank you so much for sharing this! Normally I just use regular ol' soap, but I am definitely buying some of this now!


  6. I paid about $20 5 years ago for a large tub and it is still going, with many years left. This stuff is a life saver. Dish soap isn't good for your brushes at all.

  7. Thank you. I had never heard of this, and was able to track it down here in New Zealand. It is awesome.

  8. this is fantastic stuff. I found a tub of it in an artists shop years ago and was amazed at how dirty my 'clean' brushes were!
    I don't use it after every session but every now and then and it seems to make my brushes last longer too - I'm a careful painter and I don't dip the brush fully ino the paint pot so I was amazed at the amount of old colour that came out.

    Well worth picking up some - it'll pay for itself in the long run!

  9. I agree about the Masters soap. I bought some recently. All my brushes were pretty munted and I was facing a bit of a steep bill replacing them. Now they almost look new.

    I washed them in the Masters, then I stuck them in my Ultrasonic cleaner (which broke out a lot of dried paint), and then washed them with the masters again.

  10. -begin ramble- Thanks for checking my video out guys. The problem most people have is they forget that (with the exception of synthetics) the brushes have real hair. Try washing your own hair using dish soap. Harsh soaps without conditioning lead to hair breakage and kill the life of the brush. Not knowing how to properly care for a brush keeps people from buying expensive brushes like the Series 7 or da vinci Kolinsky's. You should use masters soap when you see dried paint on the brush hairs (or your paint flow from brush will be off) and/or after every 30 hours or so of painting. And to get the "snap" back to the hairs, once a week you should condition your brushes, with regular hair conditioner found in your shower. Apply to all the hairs and let it dry. you will have soft bristles, snap, and flexibility so your hairs don't break. -end ramble- :)

  11. I use this same stuff, and its almost out! :D

  12. Most dish soaps are very mild since they get all over your hands. I've been using it on my brushes for years, no breakage. :)