Beauty 101: Make-up expiration guide

Saturday, May 23, 2015

 Hey girl!

and hello, beauty product hoarders. It is clean-up your make-up drawers time. I know it is hard to let go of your favorite unemptied beauty products but, when the time is right to let it go, you should. While you were busy building up your dream make-up collection, you might want to recheck if you still have your first batch of products purchased piling up with your collection for many years. I am a rookie in make-up and beauty products and I am thankful to know more about make-up expiration dates before I indulge myself in building up a huge collection that might not be good to use after a certain time. Admit it now, you can't hold on to your beauty products forever until it's empty. There is no forever! in make-up..(Who can relate? lol) Although, most of the beauty products the we bought doesn't have an expiry date there are certain time that we should be storing and using a particular beauty product. Even if we thought it is still good to use, we don't want to risk ourselves for breakouts, irritation and infection. So, when is the right time to let go of our beloved make-up? I've seen a lot of lists and compare it. Here are the timeline based on my research.

It is still best to see if the brand has specific expiration date on the packaging. Some products have a partly opened jar image with a number that looks like this: 12M. M stands for month and the number stands for the time it can be used after it was opened. So, 12M means 12 months then, the product only lasts for that certain time (see photo below). I knew for sure, most of us, including myself doesn't remember the day we opened each product that we have on hand so, starting now, you should keep a list of your products or get a sticker and label each product once opened. Keep track on the day to make sure when to actually toss it especially if you have a lot of make-up and beauty products. The main point about taking note when you first opened/used the product is that once it is exposed to the air, some ingredients evaporate and lost it effects in a span of time. For now, if you can't determine if you need to trash it or not because you barely remembered or your confused with overwhelming products in your collection. What to do? Then, check the following:

Does it smell strange?
Is there any changes in color and texture?

If you answered YES to any of this question, then, get your garbage bag ready and throw it out, girl! I remembered, our rule in maintaining asepsis in nursing: when in doubt, throw it out! Rather than risking yourself and your health into products that gone bad, check it out first. One thing, if you are a fan of buying a pre-loved products, better ask the first owner when did he/she start to open or use the product just to be safe on your side and also, don't forget to sanitize it. You don't want any cross contamination of bacteria. Gross! (How to: Sanitize and clean your make-up products)

Here is what it looks like. Look for this image in your beauty products.
Here are some quick tips that I gathered when to throw and how to take care of your beauty products.

Liquid foundation/cream. It is the most prone product to be contaminated because obviously, it is liquid. Where there is moisture, there is a pool for bacterial growth. Dipping your finger repeatedly in it will make its shelf life shorter that's why liquid foundation in a pump tube is better. When it is overdue, you may notice a change in color and consistency of the product. Some of the product dried out in the tube and the color turns orangy or yellowish.

Powder(foundation/blush/bronzer/eyeshadow). Unlike the liquid, powders are least likely to become a breeding ground of germs unless you always wet it when applying. It has longer shelf life that most likely, since these are the products the we always use, it was emptied before it is time to let it go. You just have to make sure to clean the brushes that you use with your powders to not let the bacteria transfer into your face. After its shelf life, powder can harden up and the color of eyeshadow isn't as good as before.

Mascara. You have to establish a love-hate relationship with your mascara because you can't keep them for too long. They might gave you the most charming eyes but after its shelf life, it is no good to use even if you felt it is still a legit. I admit that I kept mine for a year when I still don't know about the make-up expiration but not until I got red eyes because of my mascara. Now that I knew about it, I make sure to throw it on time. Avoid pumping the wand repeatedly because you can introduce more bacteria to your mascara. Overtime, it will become dry and clumpy. 

Lipstick and Lipgloss. It will took long to discard your lipstick so you can have a long-term relationship with it. However, when it dries out on your lips, some hue changes and the smell is different from the time you first purchased it, you know it's time to let it go. It is not the same rule for the lipglosses, it has way shorter shelf life than lipstick especially those with the applicator stick/wand like mascara. The smell gone bad and the consistency becomes sticky. 

Liquid and pencil eyeliner. Liquid eyeliner can be treated like mascara because the tube eyeliner with applicator can be a breeding ground of bacteria. It will dried out and become stiff after its shelf life. However, pencil eyeliner lasts longer because it can be cleaned whenever you sharpen it. Make sure to sanitize your sharpener too.

As you can see, the beauty products that are mostly used near our eyes are the ones that needs to go first. It is because there is a higher risk to cause it an eye infection, as the eyes is the only sterile part the is exposed in our body, so let's take care of our beautiful eyes. The thing is, you should be vigilant and keen with the products you put on yourself. Check for unusual smell, moisture and changes in texture of the products you are using. Clean and sanitize the product often to avoid contamination that makes it more susceptible to bacteria. Also, store your beauty product in a dry and cool place not in place with extreme temperature and humid environment. As a beginning beauty hoarder, I know it is hard to toss away products just like that. So, it either you hoard more or choose one product at a time. It is up to you. Now that you clean up the clutter and the piling up of unused products that gone bad long before you knew it, you can now rest and stay beautiful with your unexpired beauty products on hand.

Let's talk again on my next blog.
Yes, YOU lovely gorgeous.

Love yourself because you are beautiful.

Hugs and Kisses,
Princess Mikee 

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  1. Great post. As a rule of thumb, buy only those with expiration dates, and even so, anything that touches your skin, or you touch are prone to contamination, so actual shelf life may be shorter. It may cost money, but your health is far more important.

  2. How nice of you to share some 101 beauty pointers for us! I honestly didn't know that "M" part until I read it here though I was mostly a good judge of smell if something needs to be thrown out. I don't have that many anyway and I'm lucky to have free alternatives and options in case I run out. I have to agree with the early expiration for mascaras, sorry to hear about getting red eyes. But I think all's set, you've done a good job giving us some pointers!

  3. You're right.. It actually is clean-up your make-up drawers time. I rarely do that and I should more often. I get so attached. I never want to throw away any of my make-up. But I do buy more and more. I use my mascara every day, so that is mostly empty within the right time. powder/ creams: I have them quite long and I really need to be more aware.

  4. Great post about make up. As a make up artist I know a lot about it. It's surprising me how some people don't use make up. And especially because they don't know how to use it. It's fabulous.

  5. I was not aware of this until our singles group had a talk aboout expiration dates of make-ups many years ago. Since then, I became more conscious of this. This knowledge also helped me spend less on buying new make-up, remembering that they have expirations dates. The photo you made with expriation summaries is a good reminder!

  6. I always check my beauty products every now and then. The reason why I can't open new product sometime is because I think that it may accumulate and I might forget the old products' expiry date. That's why if I can , I make sure that I only have at least two on one particular product and will not exceed 4. Example 2-3 moisturizer is okay. My only dilemma are lipsticks! I have a bunch of them.

  7. I have learnt about makeup expiration or up to when we can consume a make up from my cousin. I didn't know that makeups have expiration. Good thing that my cousin shared it to me. It's just that I forgot about the specific life span of each makeup. Good thing I bump to this post of yours. I will definitely be taking note of this. :)

  8. Thank you for this guide. I love my make-up but I am not using it so often so some things do expire. It breaks my heart to trow away expensive lipsticks of mascaras. :)

  9. Now this is something my wife should read! She has tons of beauty products here and most of the time, they are untouched. It has always been the issue for most ladies, I suppose. I see shampoos , and lotions pile up and new acquisitions still coming in.

    But yeah, I guess the best tip would be to always check the expiration date. Throw it away when it's done. And if you haven't used the product for 3 months, just throw it away or hand it over to someone else.