How long can you keep it and when can it be thrown out?


We’ve all got it. Shelves, racks and cupboards filled with perfectly matched lipsticks, nail polishes for every occasion and an overdose of hair products. I tend to keep everything I buy, resulting in waaay too many products of which half I don’t even use. But here’s the million dollar question; WHEN do you throw all of these products out? Bobbi Brown’s Pro-Makeup artist tells you how to keep your makeup kit clean and when it really is time to finally trash it.

What’s the shelf life of makeup?

“Most products have a guide line on the packaging as a general rule. But it’s also important to know what kind of product it is. Most creams and liquid products have to be used within a year. Powdery items can be used up to two years. Mascara is the only exception. Make sure to apply generously, because it dries up after only two months and it’s an absolute no go after three months. You’ll be more prone to eye infections after this time.”

Can’t we keep it just a little teeny tiny bit longer?

“Well, putting your beauty products in the fridge doesn’t help at all. It’s great for vegetables and other foods, but not for beauty products. The only beauty products a fridge is good for is eye cream, because it works better when it’s cooled. I would recommend to keep your beauty products away from the window where it lies in the sun in order to protect it. I even keep my foundation in the packaging so it doesn’t lose color. It’s just a couple of little things, but they do work in order to get keep your products as intact as possible.”

How often should be we buy new products?

“Foundations should be restocked every 12 months. You can keep lipsticks until they start melting, which shows that the end is near. You can say the same for a cream blusher. Long wear eye shadows and eyeliners are in best condition during the first six months, after which they tend to dry out a little. A liquid products has a longer durability. Mascara has a short life span, so be really careful with it. Furthermore, mascara works a lot better when it’s still fresh.”

Which products can I afford to use a little bit longer?

“Any powder product such as transparent powder, bronzers and eye shadows can be used longer than liquid products. The colors won’t fade as fast and their shelf life is a lot longer as well. So, you can afford to use these products a little longer than their expiration date. It also wouldn’t hurt to clean out your makeup bag every now and then.”