When Should You Throw Away Your Makeup?

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Throwing away makeup may seem like a sin, but it's a necessary evil of the beauty world. No matter how much you may love a product and all those memories you've been through together, your fave tube of mascara or lipstick will have to find the trash bin one day for the sake of your health. Allowing makeup to stay in your kit for years on end not only means that they won't work as well, it also increases the risk of bacteria growing inside of your products and causing break outs or infections. To prevent your makeup from killing your look rather than enhancing it, here is the definitive guide of when you should be tossing each type of makeup you use.

1. Mascara

Out of all the products you use, mascara probably has the shortest shelf life. Good Housekeeping suggests that you ditch your go-to tube after three months because the dark, wet environment promotes the growth of bacteria pretty quickly. If you keep your mascara long after that, you're increasing your chances of getting eye infections like Pink Eye, and ain't no body got time for that.
Young Woman Applying Mascara

2. Foundations and Face Makeup

Because you're always dipping your fingers, brushes and sponges into foundations or concealers, liquid and powder face makeup don't last as long as you may like. If you're using a liquid formula, toss it after about six months or else bacteria will grow and the formula will begin to separate, leaving most of the oil on top. This means you're more likely to break out, or experience a streaky, uneven finish. Powder lasts a little longer, with a shelf life of about two years. After that time, the trace amounts of moisture inside of the powders begin to evaporate, making them harder to blend into skin.

3. Eyeliners and Eye Shadows

As you probably guessed, liquid eyeliners are also dark, wet places so those babies need to be thrown away after three months or else bacteria will grow. Pencil eyeliners, on the other hand, can last up to two years because resharpening them means you're creating a new, bacteria-free surface. Powder shadows will also last you up to two years because they lack water, which means bacteria will not grow. But once you hit the two year mark, shadows become more packed in, making it harder to pick up pigment.
Rows of lipstick

4. Lipsticks and Lip Liners

You may think with constant contact to your lips, lipsticks would have a limited shelf life too but these products are good for two years. Your fave lipstick or lip gloss is susceptible to bacteria growth, but not as quickly as mascara. These products also have a tendency to dry out after two years. Lip liner, on the other hand, will last you beyond two years because like eyeliner, sharpened pencils means new, fresh surfaces. The same goes for lipstick pencils, which can also last you more than two years.

5. Nail Polish

You may have some nail polish bottles hanging out for years in your kit, but you should really only keep them around for one to two years. After a while, nail polish formulas begin to thicken and get stringy, which makes them impossible to put on. Also, nail polish is very vulnerable when it comes to humidity, so keep it out of wet, hot areas in your house if you want it to last longer.


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