Thursday, 26 July 2012

When to Throw Away Old Makeup

Hi dolls,

So I came across an interesting article the other day on Everydayhealth about the longevity of your makeup, and when and why you should throw old products away.

We are all guilty of keeping old makeup whether it's that favourite lippy or the foundation that you spend loads on and still have half a bottle left. It can be hard throwing away products that you may have spent quite a bit on. But this is something we should do even if it's just a couple of times a year especially as old cosmetics can come with health risks.

There are sometimes tell-tale signs that makeup is on its way out - gloopy nail polish, change in colour or smell, or mascaras that have dried up beyond repair. However some products are harder to tell...

If you want to know the shelf life of your products look out for this little sign on the packaging:

This is what it looks like on packaging and can range from a couple of months to years:


Mascara carries many health risks as it's liquid - which tends to grow bacteria - and can increase the risk of eye infection. This product has the shortest lifespan of all beauty products and should be tossed two to three months after use. 

Lipgloss and Lipsticks

Lipgloss should be kept for around six months, but tell-tale signs that the product is going off include a change in smell or you notice discolouration. If you get a cold sore, throw any products that you were using away!

Lipsticks can last for around a year if not longer - it's always best to check the packaging. However if you do see any tell-tale signs such as mould or a weird smell it's time for that lipstick to see the bin. 


Foundations are one product that come with a great shelf life, and can last up to a year. However if they are not kept properly they can start to grow bacteria which present health risks. If your foundation has started to separate or feels thicks and clumpy or thin and runny it may have passed its expiration date. 

Be sure to keep your foundation in a cool, dry place and you can extend the life span of your foundation by using clean hands, a sponge or brush to apply.

Nail Polish

Probably one of the longest last products nail varnish can usually last up to two years, and have major tell-tale signs when they are on their way out. If your polish begins to separate or become gloopy it's time to throw it away.

Gloopy polish can be rescued by a nail thinner - but don't rely on that for polishes that are maybe five/six years old. Sometimes there isn't a cure. 


Powdered products are another which come with a great life span usually ranging from six months to two years. As they contain the least amount of water it means that it's harder for bacteria to grow on them. However make sure you clean the brushes you use to apply the powder regularly to stop any bacteria growing.

I hope you found the post informative, when I first started buying makeup products I would ignore the expiry date and would just continue using them. The site has included more products in their list including sun cream and hair products so feel free to take a look.

Do you take notice of makeup expiry dates?

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