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When to Throw Out Makeup!

Start your year off right and update your stash of makeup products! All makeup products have a shelf life and can be a breeding ground for germs and bacteria. Generally makeup can last from its opened date up to 12-18 months. Products with water as its first ingredient have the shortest lifespan after opening, since the water encourages the growth of microbes. Products without much water, like eyeshadow or blushes, have a longer lifespan since there is nothing for bacteria to grow on. If any of your products are looking or smelling a bit funky, just give it a toss. Here are some tips and guidelines on when you should be throwing out your old makeup products.



The Number is the Month and the M stands for Month. So some may have 6M, 12M, or 24M etc.
This little guy is on the back of most beauty products, From Shampoo, Lotions, and Most Makeup Items!


  • SPF Makeup – Makeup with sunscreen have expiration dates listed on the bottle, which you should toss since the sun protection will degrade. Physical blocks like titanium dioxide don’t usually have dates, and are good for about three years. If you’re unsure whether or not you need to throw it away, take a sniff and look at the texture of the product. If it’s clumping, runny, or smells out of the ordinary, it’s time to give it a heave-ho.
  • Gel Eyeliner – Gel eyeliners usually dry out before they turn bad. But any liquid or wet makeup products that are used on the eye can harbor bacteria so you should give it a toss after a year.
  • Cream or Liquid Concealer & Foundation – If the concealer or foundation begins to separate, it’s time to throw it on out. Part of the concealer will look like water and the other will be thick and dry. If your stick concealer or foundation becomes dry and starts to break apart when you use it, it’s a sign that bacteria is forming. Overall, cream or liquid concealer and foundations should last a solid year. Shake up the bottles every so often so the product doesn’t start to separate early.
  • Powder Eyeshadow, Foundation, or Blush – These can last up to two years since bacteria will not develop as quickly, due to the absence of water. But if texture and pigment begin to change and you find it harder to use the product, give it a chuck. You can tissue off the top layer of these powders every so often to keep the colors fresh and bacteria-free.
  • Makeup Brushes – Most makeup brushes will last for a couple of years, with weekly washings and care. If you feel the bristles of your brushes feeling harsher or there is excessive shedding, it may be time to throw them out.
  • Lipstick & Lipgloss – Lipstick can last up to 14 months, with extra care by wiping off the bullet with a tissue and 70% alcohol every so often to sanitize. If you see beads of formula separating on the lipstick or the product becomes harder and drier, it’s time for a new one. With lipgloss, the constant swiveling and swishing in and out of the container is a sure winner of collecting bacteria. If the gloss has changes in its taste and smell, toss it. If the gloss has a doe-foot applicator, it’s best to throw it out when it hits 6 months.
  • Mascara – There is a reason why the experts say to toss your mascara out in its third month. We all have microbial eyelash mites but if we continue to use the same mascara on them for a long period of time, they can clog up and cause an infection.
  • Lip & Eye Pencils – If the pencil starts to crumble or is severely dry that it can no longer glide on your skin properly, it’s time for a new one. You can nearly triple the lifespan of your pencils by sharpening them every so often to keep them sanitized. The warmth of the sharpening friction can also keep the pigment softer for a longer period of time.

Source from Stylelist and with permission of Beautylish.com

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