wingatprsct

What is the shelf life of cosmetics?

I know mascaras are supposed to be replaced every 3 months, but what about foundations, concealers, blush, powders, eye shadows and lipsticks/ lip glosses?  I recently went through and got rid of makeup that I knew was old.  Now, I'm not sure what should be tossed or used up. 

marydiva

Re: What is the shelf life of cosmetics?

I don't toss mascara...I always get the LashSTASH whenever Sephora comes out with a new one, and I usually open them all up at once and play around with them and keep them till they're empty or gross. (Usually a year or so.) My full sizes last about two years. If it starts to smell funny, I toss it, but I really don't see any problem with keeping mascara more than three months. I've never gotten an eye infection from mascara or anything. I feel like the "3 month rule" is just a way to get you to buy more mascara! 

poemelyric

Re: What is the shelf life of cosmetics?

I'm bad... I keep blushes and lipstick forever but if they start to smell funny or separate, I toss them.  And anything like foundation, I toss when it hits the expiration date.  And I store everything in a cool, dry place.

sephoramusthave

Re: What is the shelf life of cosmetics?

When I only had one of everything I used daily ( err.....that was I think 5-6 years ago) I didn't have to pay attention to expiration dates because I used things up long before they expired. Now I kinda follow katie1724's rule---if it changes color/texture/consistency etc its a toss, if it looks and works the same as the day you bought it, keep. Things like mascara and eyeliner I only open up one at a time....but I have a LOT of eyeshadow, most of which has a 6M or 12M logo on it but I've had it for longer than that, and there's no way I'm tossing those because I do USE them, it just takes me awhile to completely use it up because I like to change my products up a lot. Same thing with blush----I have 15. I'm very light skinned and don't need much blush to show up on me so it takes me a good long while to hit pan on one of them. I go through my makeup stash pretty often and if I see anything I don't use, I give it away.

prettyinpa

Re: What is the shelf life of cosmetics?

I think a lot of beauty expiration dates are for liability issues- the company figures how long a product could be used every day before it got a high enough bacteria load to cause a problem, then calls that the expiration time. A product could certainly get unusable before the expiration date if you stuck your germy fingers or dirty brushes in, or shared with other people, so in that way, the dates are not so useful. I also use the common sense method for products that go on my face, but am extra careful about eye products since I got an infection once.

wingatprsct

Re: What is the shelf life of cosmetics?

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Thanks for all the helpful advice!  I will look for the expiration dates and use some common sense.  I was really worried about my foundations.  I change shades from winter to summer in different formulas from heavy foundations to tinted moisturizers and need to either use up what I have, save it for next winter, or throw it away.

starletta8

Re: What is the shelf life of cosmetics?

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I think you've got a good plan with your foundations.  I don't change colors so I don't run into that issue!

starletta8

Re: What is the shelf life of cosmetics?

Use common sense above all else- be wary of cremes beyond their expiration dates, etc.  However, most powdered blushes or eyeshadows will last far beyond their dates. As long as you're using clean tools, just keep an eye on them.

sephoralovex

Re: What is the shelf life of cosmetics?

Oh wow I never noticed that M/Y stood for month/year. Lol and I never have cared to look at expiration dates. I just looked at one of my NARS blushes and it says 24M.. I've had it for over 2 years now and still use it to this day and I haven't seen anything wrong with it. I think the only items I would really worry about and throw out if it's expired are lip products and foundation. Of course Mascara too

katie1724

Re: What is the shelf life of cosmetics?

I have a NARS blush that's at least a decade old, possibly more -- and it's fine. I'll never throw it away because it's a long-discontinued color, and it really hasn't changed a bit. As long as you store them properly and keep them clean, powder products will not spoil / go bad past the expiration.

kalex

Re: What is the shelf life of cosmetics?

I honestly pay close to zero attention to supposed expiration dates. I have lipsticks and eyeshadows that I've had for years and they still have the same smell, consistency, color etc... and I've never gotten an eye infection from them and I'm rarely sick. I do clean my brushes regularly though and don't stick my fingers in the jars or pans.

Of course when it comes to mascara I only open one tube at a time so I never have one more than a couple of months.

 

A lot of it is common sense. If it changes - toss it. You could try keeping a Sharpie and some little stickers in your makeup drawer to make sure you always know when you opened something if you are concerned about it.

katie1724

Re: What is the shelf life of cosmetics?

[ Edited ]

I'm the same way -- I have some powder blushes that are at least a decade old, and they are absolutely fine -- and, worse, I still have (I have no idea why) a Bonne Bell lip balm I've had since middle school, and (even though I don't use it) it really must be loaded with preservatives, because that smells exactly the same as it did nearly 20 years ago. I use common sense way more than actual dates.

denden798

Re: What is the shelf life of cosmetics?

They are all required to say on them. On the bottom or side or whatever you will be able to find what looks like a pot of lotion or some kind of container with a number in it (of months) like 12M or 32M

wingatprsct

Re: What is the shelf life of cosmetics?

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I have never seen them.....well, I've never looked for it!  I'll have to get a pair of magnifying glasses to see some these dates!

 

Thanks!

MoreGun89

Re: What is the shelf life of cosmetics?

No worries, they're usually small :smileyhappy:

MoreGun89

Re: What is the shelf life of cosmetics?

On most containers will be a small container symbol with a number and a letter m or y, this will stand for how many months or years it will last after opening :smileyhappy:

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    • kalex
    • katie1724
    • prettyinpa
    • sephoramusthave
    • sephoralovex
    • marydiva
    • poemelyric
    • denden798
    • MoreGun89
    • starletta8
    • wingatprsct