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When to Ditch Old Cosmetics

Your makeup has an expiration date.

· cosmetics,makeup,beauty

If you’ve been using the same cosmetics for over a year now, you may notice that your mascara wand is starting to clump, your eyeshadow palette powder is blending in a weird way, your lipstick is drying out, and your nail polish has separated into oozy layers. If you’re experiencing any of these red flags, it’s probably time to replace your old cosmetics. Keep reading to learn the best practices on when to toss your makeup.

Just Say No to Hoarding Old Makeup

A study found that 89 percent of women keep old makeup “just in case.” While this practice may save you money in the long run, it’s not healthy for your skin. Old makeup can also spread germs, irritate skin and clog pores. In addition, old makeup can lose its efficacy and luster. After a while, it dries out, clumps, or gets “goopy” and doesn’t look as radiant as on the first day you opened the package. Cheaper products may expire even more quickly, so be sure you’re keeping an eye on the products you use in your daily beauty routine.

Signs Your Makeup Needs to Be Replaced

  • Discoloration
  • Inconsistency
  • Dryness
  • Shedding
  • Odor
  • Visible Mold, Bacteria, or Yeast
  • Damaged or Stuck Packaging

The rule of thumb for replacing cosmetics is between three months to two years. “Most beauty product labels have an open jar symbol that indicates how long it will last after you open it,” according to Business Insider, “but the U.S. currently doesn't require cosmetics to have an expiration date.”

That’s why it’s important to pay attention to when you first buy and open beauty products, especially since you’re using most of them on the delicate skin of your face.

Cleanliness and quality are key when it comes to the shelf life of makeup. Check out the recommended shelf life for cosmetics as suggested by Good Housekeeping, Elle, InStyle, PopSugar, and Bustle.

7 Cosmetics & When to Replace Them

Foundation and Primer: Products like dry powder foundation and primer typically last up to two years. Cream and liquid products like concealer only last about six months. Natural beauty brands such as Jane Iredale have plenty of mineral-based beauty products that are gentle on skin, and blend flawlessly.

Blush or Bronzer: Powder blush and bronzer products will also last for up to two years, but avoid touching them with your finger, because they can grow bacteria. Cream products last about six months.

Mascara: Any liquid makeup such as mascara should be replaced after about two to four months. The FDA recommends replacing eye makeup regularly, since it may grow bacteria, mold, or yeast.

Eyeshadow: Most powder eyeshadow palettes, if taken care of properly, can last for two years. Cream eye shadows only last about six months.

Lipstick: Depending on the type of lipstick, once opened, it usually has a lifetime of about one to two years. Lip gloss also lasts up to two years. After that, you should replace it. Besides, who would want to wear last year’s shades this season?

Liner: Pencil eye and lip liners last for one to two years after first use. Liquid liners should be replaced as early as after three months.

Nail Polish: When you start noticing that your nail polish is separating into several layers, it may be time for a replacement. Crumbly nail polish, bottles that are hard to open, and lacquer that won't blend after a quick shake may indicate that a nail polish has met its demise. This tends to happen after six months or so, especially if the product is not used very often. If you’re replacing your nail polish, Zoya brand products are a great choice. They’re free of harmful chemicals like DBP, camphor, toluene, formaldehyde, and formaldehyde resin.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Benjamin Stone

When to Replace Your Makeup Tools

When it comes to cosmetics, the tools and applicators you use don’t last forever either. Be sure to regularly sanitize products and clean your cosmetic brushes to prevent buildup of bacteria and other germs. Replace your foam blending sponge after one to three months, and replace your makeup brushes every three months. Other beauty essentials like hair brushes need to be replaced every six months to a year, especially if they have a buildup of gunk from hair styling products, or just globs of hair from brushing too hard.

As for skin care, replace products about every six months, or a year for products in pump bottles. For health-conscious women, we recommend 100% Pure cosmetics and skin care products, which are made with pure fruit pigments (no synthetic dyes).

The best place to store cosmetics and other delicate items used for your beauty regimen is in a dry, temperature controlled linen closet outside of the heat and moisture of your bathroom. Storing your cosmetic bag here will ensure a longer shelf life for your makeup too.

What advice to you have on maintaining the shelf life of your cosmetics? Share your tips in the comments below!

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Photo by freestocks.org on Unsplash

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