Ever wonder if your mascara has turned radioactive? Do cosmetics expire? Almost anything we can think of has an expiration date. Not everything is required to undergo an indication of when this might be. Cosmetics are not required to carry a label telling us we have X amount of time to use it before it goes bad. Time to excavate that old makeup drawer! Hint: If it’s blue eye shadow circa 1993, toss it. No one needs blue eye shadow, unless it’s Halloween and you are going as a smurfette.
Old makeup can contain bacteria, and you know what that can mean; blemishes. Our faces can even get infected if the make up is old and nasty enough. How do we know when to chuck it, then, if there is no official expiration date? Riddle me this. Here are some guidelines, ladies (and men, if that applies):
Label make up according to when you bought it. This way you’ll know how long you have had it. Store all cosmetics in a dry, cool place. The bottom of your new boho bag is not an ideal storage place for your makeup. Nor is your car. Besides, how convenient is a melted blob of the lipstick formerly known as MAC? Not very.
Some organic or plant based brands, which happen to be my favorite, tend toward a shorter shelf life due to the lack of preservatives. So here is an estimated shelf life for some common beauty products.
Cleanser: six months to one year
Toner: one year
Moisturizer: six months to one year
Blush: six to twelve months
Concealer: six to eight months
Foundation: six months to one year
(Be extra vigilant with foundation as this is where the bacteria can be the worst.)
Eye shadow: six months for cream shadows and up to two years for powder
Eye Liner: two years (major infection alert with this as well)
Powder: One to two years
Liquid eyeliner: three to six months (risk of infection here too)
Mascara: three to four months (risk of infection)
Lipstick and lip gloss: one to two years
Brushes: wash every two to three months, otherwise, blemish city
Sponges: wash every week, chuck each month, or we are talking major blemishes
Applicator sponges and brushes: chuck disposable ones weekly, wash others regularly
Nail polish: one to two years
If it’s smelly, has a funky appearance, or the texture is amiss, chuck it. If it is out of style, chuck it. Don’t hang on to something just because it is a name brand. When in doubt, chuck it!