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The Real Reason Why You Have to Get Rid of Your Old Makeup

Ok, let’s let she who never used old makeup cast the first stone. Easier said than done, right? It’s fine. It’s possible that you’re very aware that you have to throw your old makeup away. But maybe you are not aware. So, we’re here to give you the details on why it is important to only use fresh makeup.

Once you open the packaging to your product and air enters, the clock starts ticking and your makeup will naturally begin to oxidize and degrade. This is nothing uncommon, since most beauty products have a life span of only 12 months to three years. (Remember to always double check with the supplier when buying if you’re not sure what the lifespan of your makeup is.)

Eyeshadow, blush, lipstick and foundation shades will not get worse over time as the color pigments are consistent throughout the product. But keep in mind that the texture and consistency may change depending on the environment that they are stored in.

A user on Reddit decided to do a test before throwing her old products away. She put a sample in a petri dish and waited a few days to see what happened. She did not place the Petri dish in an incubator, but the summer heat was enough for the bacteria to grow in a sample of lipstick and mascara.

While not all bacteria is harmful, it is important to remember this, as old makeup can cause a multitude of problems to you face. This is why it is also very important for when you use different brushes; you’ll have to clean them in order to take out all the old makeup that’s in them, because it could bring very unpleasant consequences to your face.

Infections in your eye and skin tend to be the most frequent problems with old, used and borrowed makeup. That’s why you should never share makeup, especially lipstick, mascara, eyeshadow or pencils. Maybe the other person could have a silent, unseen, yet still infectious cold sore or eye infection that’s easy to catch and pass on. And this is most definitely why you should never use old makeup.

Here is a guide to know roughly when your makeup will expire:

  • Powders (including blushes, bronzers, and shadows): Two years
  • Cream shadows and blushes: 12-18 months
  • Oil-free foundation: One year
  • Cream compact foundation: 18 months
  • Concealers: 12-18 months
  • Lipstick and lip liner: One year
  • Lip gloss: 18-24 months
  • Pencil eyeliner: Two years
  • Liquid or gel eyeliner: Three months
  • Mascara: Three months

Now, it may be hard to part with your old products, but it is much safer than the alternative. Avoid skin and eye infections and only use product within its lifespan before discarding.


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