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Conjunctivitis, herpes simplex 1, and hepititis oh my

Here's a link on ways to clean makeup brushes

This time of year many women head to their local malls in search of new makeup looks for fall; but be aware the risks of those department store brushes.

Conjunctivitis, herpes simplex 1, and hepatitis C can all be spread through dirty makeup brushes and if you don't ask you'll never know if the brushes used on you have been sanitized since the last makeup counter patron to get their makeup done. Its simple, ask or risk infections.

World wide people seem to be taking greater steps to wash their hands more frequently, to use gel sanitizer, disinfecting wipes for their home and office to help prevent the spread of influenza and the common cold; however not many of us think about the makeup tools we let "beauty consultants" touch to our face spreading not only conjunctivitis, hepatitis C, and herpes (HSV 1), but also the flu, cold, and other diseases that are spread through skin to skin,  blood to blood  and more commonly through mucous membrane to mucous membrane contact such as through eyes, lips, and nostrils.

This information is not only to make consumers aware, but also to help keep "beauty consultants" in their clients good graces. Nothing says I want you to keep coming back to give me commission off your purchases like not spreading disease to your clients. We love going through the malls and checking out the new beauty products and sometimes even trying them out, but both sides (retail and patrons) need to do their part to make sure they aren't spreading germs from one person to another.

(According to hepatitis C can live out of the body for up to 16 hours. To put this in perspective, if someone with hepatitis C has a small cut on their lip that has any blood production at all uses a lip brush then that brush is used without being cleaned on another patron within 16 hours with a similar cut (sometimes the cuts aren't that visible) person number two has potentially been infected by the virus.

Likewise herpes simplex 1  (HSV 1) and conjunctivitis can be spread  even more rapidly and commonly than hepatitis C merely by infection to skin contact.)


  • Mary 5 years ago

    OMIGOD!!!!! I NEVER even thought about that before...totally gross!!! Thanks for the warning!!

  • Marian Nicholson 5 years ago

    Herpes simplex has to be kept at blood heat to stay alive. Therefore within a few seconds, any cold sore virus on the brush will die of cold. Cold sores are not transferred on brushes, towels etc because of their delicacy. Just by kissing...
    Check out the website for a great page on cold sores.

  • Amy Conklin 5 years ago

    Thank you so much for your comments, I would however like to address the issue of spreading Herpes simplex 1. While I will not argue with anyone's personal beliefs, according to my resources at the below link herpes can in fact be spread through contact with immediate objects that have had contact with the virus as I have posted below from the site; I have also contacted a nurse from Camp Pendleton Ca, who says that herpes simplex 1 can in fact most definitely be spread through contact with contaminated objects especially those making contact with mucous membranes. If this is true or not as the link posted above states that herpes(HSV1) cannot be spread through objects I would say use your best judgment.

    "It is also possible to transmit virus particles to another person through intermediate objects such as a drinking glass, eating utensil, lip stick, lip gloss, toothbrush, or even a face cloth." (

  • Nicole 5 years ago

    Awesome post! I have to agree that cold sores can in fact be spread by sharing objects (including brushes). It may just be a person opinion, but I have family members with cold sores and grew up not sharing chap stick etc. as the doctor told us it could spread the virus. I think the light on the subject is much needed. Thanks!