How to Sterilize Hairbrushes

If you use your hairbrush every day without a second thought, stop and give it the attention it deserves. Over time, your brush may be clogged with hair, and will collect dirt, dust, hair oils and styling products. Cleaning and sterilizing your hairbrush regularly helps keep you hair clean and healthy, and will extend the life of your hairbrush. Simplify the job by cleaning all your brushes at the same time.

Step 1

Remove hair from your hair brush by raking the bristles of two brushes together or pulling it out with a comb. Work carefully to avoid damaging the bristles.

Step 2

Dampen the bristles of the hairbrush with warm water. Place a few drops of shampoo, dish soap or liquid hand soap on the bristles, and then rub the bristles with the other brush or your hand to remove dirt and grime. Rinse the brush under warm running water. Repeat if the brush doesn't appear completely clean.

Step 3

Combine 1/2 cup of warm water with 1/2 cup of white vinegar in a large bowl or the bathroom sink. Sterilize brushes by soaking them in the mixture for 20 to 30 minutes. Don't soak hairbrushes any longer, as soaking can mar wooden brushes and damage the rubber cushions. Alternatively, sterilize brushes by soaking them in a mixture of 1/4 cup ammonia and 1 cup warm water.

Step 4

Rinse the hairbrushes with warm water. Lay the brushes on a folded towel and allow them to air dry.

Things You'll Need

  • Extra hairbrush or comb

  • Shampoo, dish soap or liquid hand soap

  • 1/2 cup white vinegar or 1/4 cup ammonia

  • Large bowl


Tea tree oil also makes an effective natural sanitizer for hairbrushes. Soak the brush in a mixture of 1/4 ounce tea tree oil and a basin of warm water.

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