That eyeliner has been sitting on your dresser for two years. But you just can’t let it go. A trip to the store for a reload is tedious and potentially costly, and nothing else gives you that perfect cat’s-eye. You know it’s wrong, but you love it. Besides, if you’ve already spent a fortune on your foundation or shadow, do you really have to throw it out after just a few months? Yeah, yeah … old make-up is bad for you, but just how bad? As it turns out, there can be some nasty, even dangerous consequences when some types of make-up have exhausted their shelf life, but that doesn’t mean you can’t make it last a little longer.
Three months. That’s the general throw-out rule for eyeliners and mascaras. They touch the sensitive and damp inner eyelid, which is susceptible to infection. Pencil liner could last you a bit longer. As a makeup artist at work, I use alcohol spray on pencil liners, and then I shave them down, then I spray them again. Please know that such extreme care and sanitary practices are essential when working on set with so many different people.
A meticulous cleaning technique is a good idea for anyone using pencils, makeup artist or not. The consistency of the pencil plays a part, too, in how well it may age and safely last.
I’ve kept pencils up to a year. But after that time, they may lose their creaminess and dry out. The creamier it was to begin with, the shorter lifespan it has, DONT take any chances be sanitary!
Mascara goes off very quickly anyway, but anytime somebody has an irritation in their eye of any kind, I recommended they throw away all of their eye makeup.
But how can you tell it’s gone bad? Just like that milk in the fridge, it needs to pass the smell test.
I don’t put dates on my makeup. I really use my nose more than anything. And if a product is starting to smell off or dries out, then I know it’s time for it to go, whether or not it seems unsanitary to use anymore.
With foundation, you’ll notice either an off smell or the formula begins to separate when it’s getting old. When you shake it up, it doesn’t really mix well.
I recommend keeping foundation for six months to a year, depending on how you use and apply it. Pump dispensers can extend a foundation’s lifespan.
Indeed, beyond knowing if it’s bad, you should also try to control when it goes bad. Those pump dispensers are one trick. And palettes are a handy way of drawing out the life of creamy products. For makeup such as cream shadows and cake eyeliner, the palette allows the use of clean brushes.
If you have eyeliner in a pot, scoop a little bit out and put it on a palette.Then use a brush. Never double-dip a brush from your eye back into the product.
Don’t use your fingers, though. As manicured as they may be, those digits can be dirty. And once exposed to bacteria, the product will start to degrade more quickly. You can always use CLEAN FINGERS to blend once the product is applied to the skin. And once you’ve dispensed the foundation from the bottle, using your fingers can be an economical move, allowing you to use the product sparingly.
When you use a sponge or brush, they soak up the product, and some of it goes to waste, whereas using your fingers doesn’t waste any of the foundation. If you do use a sponge, though, You should be using a new one every time. Most people don’t because they figure, Oh, it’s my own face.
Dry products such as pressed powder or powder blush aren’t quite as big a concern. You can get a year out of them, particularly if you’re not sharing. Their age may not be as obvious, though. Expiration may show its face simply when the products don’t blend well or stop performing. Still of all makeup, powder products last the longest. If you choose to ignore all the advice in pursuit of your cat’s-eye, can it be that bad? Actually it can. Many products make claims of organic or natural qualities, which could lead you to think you’re safer, longer. But think again. It may cause your skin to become red, itchy, swollen or even develop an infection. This is especially true for your eyelids, which have thinner and more sensitive skin. Pustules, anyone?
With this in mind, it’s best to err on the side of caution with eye products in particular. If you’re in any doubt, throw it out. Stick to the three-month rule for liquid eyeliner and mascara, and sterilize and sharpen pencils between each use. And remember Rule One of the golden rules: Don’t share.
Old makeup can become a breeding ground for bacteria!