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What Is the Shelf Life of Makeup



By Tiffany Moore

No matter how much you love your favorite makeup and want to keep them until every bottle or tube is empty, the truth is cosmetic can't last forever. They have expiration dates. Using old or expired makeup is a very bad idea – yeast, fungi and bacteria can grow in old cosmetics over time, causing skin irritation, rashes and acne breakouts.

To determine how long can makeup last, use this guide to help you find out the approximate shelf life of some common cosmetics you've in your makeup bag.


When to Throw Out Makeup

Foundation, including liquid or cream based concealer, and cream blush only lasts about 1-2 years.

If you notice any changes in color or consistency before a year, toss the remainder away as the fatty acids have gone rancid. To keep them longer, use sponges and brushes to apply.


Most lipsticks will stay good for 2-3 years before they need to be discarded. One clear sign that your lip color has gone bad is when it starts to smell "off".

Always use a lip brush to avoid transferring germs from your lips onto your lipstick tube.


Mascara has a very short shelf life, about 3-6 months. Since mascara is applied on your eye area, it's important to make sure that it's clean and sanitary.

If your mascara gets dry before its expiration date, it should be thrown away. Never try to re-moisten it with water or your saliva. It'll not only upset the chemical formula of your mascara, but also increase your risk of getting an eye infection.


Eye pencils and lip pencils can keep well for 3 years. To ensure that they remain safe to use, sharpen them regularly and store with their caps on.


Powder, blush, and eye shadow usually last a bit longer than other types of cosmetics, about 2-3 years.

As with foundations, always use a brush instead of sticking your fingers into the product. If you notice a color change, it's time to replace them.


Nail polish lasts for about 2 years. A sure sign that your nail varnish has gone bad is when you shake the bottle, the color and the oil do not mix, or the polish has developed a tacky consistency



How to Reduce Cosmetics Contamination

1. It's a good idea to write the date on the product when you open makeup for the first time. That way, you can keep track of how long you've had the cosmetic.

If you don't remember when you bought or opened the product, look for tell-tale signs – bad smell, change in color or texture. When in doubt, throw it out!

And, if you've an infection on your face, you should also discard products that have come into contact with those areas.


2. Also, never share your makeup with anyone. Bacteria from her face can be transferred to yours.

The same rule applies to the cosmetic counter at your local department store. Many shoppers have sampled the same makeup before you so don't be tempted to try them on.


3. Temperature and climate can affect the quality of your makeup so be sure to store them in a cool, dry place (not in the bathroom), away from direct sunlight. Always close the lids tightly after use.


Keep these tips handy so that you can determine when it is time to throw out your expired makeup and purchase new cosmetics.




when to throw away makeup

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