When Is It Time To Toss Out My Makeup?


How do I know when it’s time to toss out my makeup? Makeup: The one vice we spend thousands each month. But while you’re busy eyeing Fenty’s latest drop or Lady Gaga’s new makeup line (Haus Labatories – yes she’s finally launching her own makeup collection), how often do you actually replace/dispose of your old makeup? Do you look at the expiration dates at all or do you continue using your fave lippie way past its use-by date? Here’s a quick refresher course of how long each beauty product actually lasts. 

Breakouts, who? 

Primer – It all starts with a flawless base and only primer will smoothen out fine lines, fill in creases and even out your skin tone. But primers on an average last up to two years once opened. If the texture runs more liquid-y than normal or hardens up a bit, it is time to say goodbye.

Pro Tip – Don’t use your fingers to apply primer. Squeeze it onto your beauty blender or sponge directly. That way it’ll stay germ-free for longer. 

Concealer – Depending on your formula; liquid or powder you’ll know when it’s time to retire that trusty tube/pan of concealer. Liquids will change colour and/or appear separated (colour pigment will split) under 365 days, while powders, on the other hand, last twice as long, meaning, they’ll stay for up to 1-2 years in their prime. 

Pro Tip – Invest in a BB Cream instead of a separate concealer to save big. 

Foundation – As with concealer, your choice of formulation plays a huge role. Liquid foundations will last for about two years, while their stick counterparts last even longer. But little did you know that each time you touched your foundation bottle or tube you’re transferring bacteria. So, to avoid pesky pimples, drip as much product as you’d like on the back of your hand. Then use a fluffy brush to spread it all over your face. 

Pro Tip – Always remember to screw the cap of your foundation back on tight. 

Blush – Hand on heart we won’t find an almost-hollow pan of your favourite blush at the bottom of your vanity kit? We thought so. If it’s over two years old, throw it out. You’ll thank us later. People tend to hoard blush, especially powder blush ‘coz the texture doesn’t change. But the longer it sits in your stash the more skin irritation it can cause. Pans are the biggest bacterial breeding grounds as you tend to use dirty brushes to dust on more product each time. 

Highlighter – Highlighters or bronzers only make their appearance in the summer. You know what that means – yearly makeup transitions. If you’re using the same powder highlighter for over two years, please, toss it. Chubby sticks will last longer but be sure to check for discolouration. 

Pro Tip – If you just can’t get yourself to empty that palette, mix a little in your favourite body oil. Who needs Kim K’s outrageously expensive body glitter, anyway?

Eye Shadow – Did you know that the most number of eye infections are due to expired eye shadow palettes? A startling revelation, right. But think about it, on average, even a makeup maestro won’t be able to finish each pan in the palette. But to be on the safe side, empty your pans once every two years. 

Pro Tip – Opt for reusable pans, instead of buying shiny new multi-panned palettes each time. That way you’re saving the planet and a trip to the eye specialist! 

Eye Pencils/Kajal – These are daily must-haves and will always have a soft spot in your beauty kit. But remember, eye pencils and Kajal, are being used around your eyes. Which only means they’ll need to be regularly wiped down to avoid redness. Use a clean tissue to rub off any excess around the tips before storing them in a dry place. 

Pro Tip – Avoid keeping eye pencils and Kajal in your bathroom as the steam will melt them. 

Liquid EyeLiner/ Mascara – These by far have the shortest shelf life and CANNOT be shared with your BFF. We mean that. As much as you’d like to flutter those lashes with bae’s hyped-up waterproof steal, mascara and liquid liners carry the most bacteria. And since you’re using them in and around your eyes it’s best to avoid eye contact (especially with someone else’s eyes). Steer clear of eye infections and inflammations by moving on at the three-month mark.

Lipsticks/Lip Gloss – Lastly, we’ve come to the most famed makeup product of all time – lipstick. Ask a girl what’s in her bag, and it’s got to feature at least one lippie, amirite? I mean are you even into beauty if you’re not wearing an iconic lip. Anyhoo, tubes aka lipstick bullets last for about two years while liquid lipsticks stay in check only for half of that – 1-year limit. But as soon as you notice the colour changing or a funky smell, or a different texture, it’s time is up. 


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