Cleaning Artists Brushes


Cleaning watercolour brushes is a simple process. Your brushes can be held under the tap and let the pigment wash off them with the flow of the water, or you can get a bar of gentle soap and use the palm of your hand to gently wipe the brushes back and forth in the suds until clean. Once clean, rinse them thoroughly and gently squeeze the water out of the brush and reshape them to dry. Store upright and condition them from time to time.


You must clean your Acrylic brushes in between each use; not doing so will allow the Acrylic paint to harden the bristles or fibres and bond them together.
It is recommended that synthetic brushes over natural hair brushes is a general rule since they withstand the abuse of Acrylic paint and they clean more easily. You must not let the Acrylic paint dry on your brush as this is really difficult to get out.

Use a rag or kitchen towel and wipe away any excess paint from your brush to begin with as this will make the washing process faster and easier. Thoroughly rinse the brush with water while wiping the brush in your palm to get the paint out. You can use soap to speed this process and condition your brushes.


Start by wiping your brushes on a rag or paper towel, then wash them thoroughly with a good soap, you could use olive oil soap for example. If you want to clean them thoroughly you can use fairy liquid..
It is suggested that you avoid the use of mineral spirits or solvents, they maybe quicker for the cleaning: but are a known brush killers. Oil is cleaned by oil, so safflower, rapeseed & linseed oils should work to clean your brushes more gently.

A good tip is not to load the brush right down to the ferrule. You must make sure you clean the whole brush; not doing so will cause paint to collect at the base and will cause it to splay outwards. Be sure to reshape the brush once you’ve cleaned it.


No matter what works for you, ensure that you reshape your brushes to the way they first looked when you bought them, before you let them dry. If you have round brushes with caps on them, we recommend to throw those away. The protective cap we use is for transport purposes only and unless you have brilliant eyesight and a steady hand, you’ll bend back the hairs each and every time you try to get the cap back on.
Always leave your brushes somewhere they can dry completely. It is recommended that you do not store them in an air-tight container before they are completly dry as this can lead to your brushes becoming mouldy and rot will set in. Invest in a wrap or brush case to carry your brushes.

We sell Desk Top Brush Holders for a few pounds to keep your brushes upright and dry in your studio. They are easy to assemble and inexpensive. Alternatively, we sell beautiful bamboo brush rolls for carrying your brushes. Both of these allow your brushes to dry naturally and ensure no mould set in to the hairs or fibres.
The colour of the hairs or fibres used in your brushes will change over time – this is normal and does not affect the performance of the brush.
Natural hair brushes can enjoy a treat of conditioner from time to time, soak them and leave them for 30 minutes – when you come back to them and rinse them out they should feel nice and soft again. Make sure the conditioner is fully washed out before using your brushes.

Polymers Plus

Pure Red Sable Brushes


Made exclusively for Polymers Plus by a top European brush Manufacturer

100% Pure Red Sable, short length, with slim handle.

Ideal for watercolour, acrylic and oil miniatures, the natural characteristics of the Red Sable hair offer a good "belly", allowing a liquid holding capacity greater than many other brushes used for watercolour.
The Red Sable hair, used in our range, has a beautiful spring and upon touching the paper, will easily flow and release watercolour paint similar to a fountain pen. For acrylic and oils, our Red Sable brushes are also a good choice where a softness with a delicate spring is required.
The short hair allows for a more bulbous and controlled mark and, although the point may appear shorter, they are still super sharp.

Sizes Available

10/0; 7/0; 5/0; 4/0; 3/0; 2/0; 0; 1; 2; 3. Price for all sizes £4.75 each.

A 'set of any 5 brushes can be supplied for £21.25, a saving of £2.50!