When to throw away old makeup + Makeup Expiration

February 1, 2017

Minimizing your makeup collection - when to throw away old makeup plus a guide to makeup expiration

We all know that our makeup has a shelf life, but I am willing to bet that 95% of us (myself included) tend to ignore those expiration dates. Additionally, it’s very easy to collect way more makeup than necessary – I know I have fallen prey to beauty blogger and youtube recommendations more than once! After years of collecting eyeshadows and concealers I had to finally ask myself the question, “How long do I have before I need to throw this makeup away?”

After doing some research, I compiled the most commonly accepted makeup expiration dates along with some helpful tips for making smart makeup purchases in the future.

Minimizing your makeup collection - when to throw away old makeup plus a guide to makeup expiration

STEP 1: Group  your current makeup collection

First before you do anything else, pull out ALL of your makeup and organize your products by category (i.e. face, eyes, lips – or if you have a ton of products get even more granular: foundations, powders, eyeshadows, eyeliners, etc.).

STEP 2: Clean your makeup storage solution(s)

Once everything is grouped out in the open then take a minute to clean your makeup drawer or organizer or medicine cabinet (wherever you’re storing all of your products). One thing to note is that makeup will last longer if stored in a dry, cool, place – so while it’s convenient to store it in your bathroom it is not the ideal location when trying to make these things last!

STEP 3: Clean your makeup brushes

Take one more minute to clean your makeup brushes – if you’re like me (and I am willing to bet you are on this one) you definitely do not wash your makeup brushes enough so do yourself a solid and take care of it right now.

STEP 4: Throw away old makeup products

Get a trash bag ready and use the below as your guide.

Minimizing your makeup collection - when to throw away old makeup plus a guide to makeup expiration

Makeup Expiration Guide:

EYES

  • mascara – 3 months
  • liquid eyeliner – 6 months
  • eyeliner pencil – 1 year
  • cream eyeshadow – 1 year
  • powder eyeshadow – 2 years

LIPS

  • lip gloss – 1 year
  • lip liner – 2 years
  • lipstick – 2 years

FACE

  • cream/liquid foundation – 1 year
  • concealer – 1 year
  • face powder – 2 years
  • cream blush – 1 year
  • powder blush – 2 years

Minimizing your makeup collection - when to throw away old makeup plus a guide to makeup expiration Makeup Shopping Tips:

BUY TRENDY ITEMS IN SAMPLE SIZES

If you want to test out a seasonal cream cheek color, a colorful liquid eyeliner, or any mascara (3 months does not give you a ton of time to finish a tube of mascara!) try to buy in sample sizes whenever possible. Sample versions of my favorite makeup and skincare products are often available on www.birchbox.com

ONLY KEEP ONE OF EVERYTHING

That’s right, the rules of a curated wardrobe apply to a curated makeup collection. Buy the best quality versions of your staples and stop yourself there. You will be more likely to use up your makeup before it goes bad this way!

CHOOSE ITEMS THAT DON’T REQUIRE FINGER APPLICATION

When you are putting your finger into a cream pot of concealer or eyeshadow, the bacteria from your fingers will increase the rate at which that item goes bad. Using a clean brush each time will slow the bacteria building process – or just avoid makeup products that come in pots… because who has time to clean their makeup brushes every single day?

Minimizing your makeup collection - when to throw away old makeup plus a guide to makeup expiration

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