Wondering how long makeup products like foundation, lipstick, and eyeshadow is good for? Today I’m sharing a super helpful expiration guide for beauty products that will help you know exactly when to save or toss all your makeup products and tips on how to tell when products are expired.
Happy Wednesday loves! Here lately, I’ve been working like gangbusters to de-clutter, downsize, and organize throughout my home in order to create a cleaner, more simplified space. I’ve been taking it slowly, one area at a time, and most recently I went through all of my makeup and beauty products, which is an area that is sometimes easily forgotten.
Many people wonder if beauty products and cosmetics have an expiration date, and the answer is most definitely yes! Items like foundation, mascara, eyeshadow, skin creams, and lipstick can expire without you even realizing it and as a result stop wearing as well.
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It can sometimes be tricky to tell if a product is expired, so today I’m sharing my best tips on how to clean out your makeup and beauty stash and ways that you can tell if a product is expired or not. To help make it easy, I also created a handy expiration guide for beauty products that you can save in order to know exactly when to save or toss certain beauty items.
Expiration Guide for Beauty Products
Gather All Your Items
First things first, gather up all of your makeup and beauty products and put them in one area so that you can go through them in one go. If you’re like me and keep makeup in several different areas, this might be tedious, but trust me it’s worth it in the end, so that you’re not overlooking anything.
Get Rid of Unwanted Items
Once you have it all in one place, get rid of any beauty products you don’t want. Yes, I said want. We all have those makeup items that end up in our collection and for whatever reason they stay unused. Maybe it was a friend’s recommendation or a bad impulse buy, or something that you truly can never see yourself using. Whatever the reason may be, don’t hold onto it any longer, and simply let it go. No reason holding onto something you’ll never use or wear.
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Toss Out the Expired
Next, throw out any makeup that’s broken or expired. While it may be tempting to want to keep something a little longer because it was expensive, as with anything beauty products and makeup have an expiration date and eventually stop performing as they should.
Broken lipstick, cracked eyeshadow palettes, and dried out products should be immediately tossed. If you liked a product and just ran out of it, be sure and write it down for future reference in case you want to re-purchase it.
Keep or Toss?
In case you’re curious of how to tell when it’s time to toss something, here are a few things to look for:
- Dried out formula or appearance
- Separation of product
- Unusual or foul odor
- Chalky consistency
If any products fall under any of the above mentioned categories, toss it immediately. There’s absolutely no reason to keep something when it could be potentially irritating or infecting to the eyes or skin.
Always store your beauty products and makeup in a dry, cool area in the home, and always remember to wash and dry your hands thoroughly before using products. Heat, humidity, and moisture can quickly cause mold or yeast to form (yuck, I know), so take extra care in these areas to ensure your products last their full lifetime.
Using the beauty expiration guide above, you’ll avoid getting a potential infection and will ensure you’re only putting the best quality makeup products on your face and eyes. As a good rule of thumb, I suggest going through your beauty products every 6 months to make sure you’re not using anything that is past expiration, and when in doubt- toss it! I personally set reminders on my iphone’s calendar of when to toss high use products like mascara and face sponges, and it really helps keep me on track!
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I hope you enjoyed today’s Expiration Guide on Beauty Products and I hope you’ll find the above guide helpful when cleaning out your makeup stash! How often do you clean out your beauty collection? Let me know in the comments and be sure and share this post with others!
Thanks for stopping by!- Cara
Great guide! The quickly expiring products are one reason I keep my makeup collection to a minimum, especially with mascara! Some products seem to talk a while to get through while others go quickly, but I never feel that I waste a product due to expiration. However, I used to be so bad at keeping products until they were gone, no matter how long I had them. Eye shadows were the worst!
Thanks! They just stop performing as well after awhile. I find eyeshadow gets muted and chalky after the expiration, which doesn’t look good.
I go through mascara so fast it doesn’t get a chance, haha. I def don’t follow the rules on the shadows! I’ve tested mine for bacteria and they’ve all been fine as long as I regularly disinfect them.
Haha I do too with mascara. I usually keep eyeshadow until I notice it isn’t performing as well anymore. Like if the consistency changes or the colors are muted, I usually can tell it’s time to toss.
This is so helpful! I’m terrible about getting rid of old beauty products 😛
I used to be bad about wanting to keep things too, but I’m getting better thankfully! 🙂
What a great way to remind me to wash my makeup brushes!!!
xo, Jessica || The Petite Diaries
Haha, you’re welcome! 🙂
Thank you so much for sharing this! I remember the first time I realized that makeup had an expiration date — I’d still had makeup from high school! Which, at the time, was six years ago. Yikes!
That’s too funny, McKenzie. I think we all have had those moments haha.
OK I realllyyyy need to go through some of my old makeup! lol.
It’s good to set reminders and to stay proactive with it! 🙂
100% pinned this for later. I always forget and keep makeup items way longer than I should.
Thanks Taylor! I hate tossing barely used products too, but that’s why I’m trying not to buy stuff I won’t use up.
This is so helpful! I am so bad about this..oops!
Glad you enjoyed it!
I hate throwing out makeup that is still “good” so this is a great reminder that we do NEED to throw stuff out because it’s better for us! <3
I’m trying to be more mindful of not buying products I won’t use up. There’s only so many eyeshadow palettes and blushes a person needs. lol
This is such a great post! I don’t have a ton of makeup, but I also don’t go through it that quickly so I know I have some that is way too old!
Thanks Justine! It’s important to go through it every so often! 🙂
Thanks for the reminder to check my makeup. My problem is that my mascara gets clumpy so often. I should probably start buying a better brand.
Hmm, how do you store your makeup? Sometimes if they’re stored in a warm area or in a bathroom near dampness, it can cause funky stuff to start to happen with makeup. Also, if you get any type of moisture in your mascara tube that can have an impact as well.
I definitely keep my products around for far too long, especially the sponges! I did just replace them though so that’s good 🙂 Gonna try and clean everything out soon, thanks for the tips!
Yes! If anything to clean/change out regularly it’s brushes and sponges! 🙂
Definitely saving this! What a good guide to go off of!
I cleaned out recently too! but gosh the guilt! I gave away everything that was good to my friends but I still felt bad. Maybe we should coordinate some kind of blogger exchange haha
I love that image! I’m bad about throwing away things like blush and eye shadow. Pinning right now!
What a great post! I needed this motivation to, first, get rid of a bunch of the things I don’t use! Glad to have the expiration info as a guide!
Glad you found it helpful Patricia!
It looks like I need to do some decluttering haha.
It’s so important to avoid using expired products!
I’m the biggest culprit of using mascara past its use-by date. Oops. I did a huge clean out last week, actually and got rid of old, unwanted, or extremely out-of-date products, so I’ve sort of redeemed myself, right? Haha.
This is so handy – I’m saving your guide and keeping it near my stash. Thanks for sharing! 🙂
Christie’s Take on Life. xx
Thank-you! Awesome job cleaning out your products!
I actually JUST did this! I was tired of digging through all my makeup for the 3 products I use on a daily basis. It was SO nice when I finally got rid of all the unused and unneeded. I can’t believe I had so many products from YEARS ago! Sharing this on Pinterest. <3
Thank-you, and that’s awesome! I agree, there’s no point in digging through piles of product when you use just a few of them on the daily lol.
Admittedly I throw out my eye makeup as soon as it expires but I totally keep some lipsticks, haha!
There’s a little more wiggle room with lipsticks, lol.
When I first started wearing makeup, I had no idea that products had expiration dates! I’m a little bummed that one of my favorite summer foundations (that is too dark for me now) expires before I’ll ever get the chance to wear it again.
Aw, that’s a bummer! It’s important not to wear expired products, though because it can lead to breakouts or infection.
This is great! I wrote a similar post not too long ago. It felt so good to clean out all of the old and unused makeup I was hoarding. Thanks for all the tips!
It’s definitely an important task everyone should plan for! 🙂
This is a great reminder. I collect makeup and I can GUARANTEE there are many expired products. Time to do some spring cleaning!
Yes! It’s definitely good to do it every 6 months!
I had to throw out a bunch of eyeshadows not too long ago because they were SO old. It broke my heart a little bit because I didn’t use it as much as I would have liked to, but the quality was so terrible by the 1.5 year mark.
I know what you mean! That’s why I’m trying to stick to only a few key palettes now, instead of buying like 10 that I’ll barely use lol.
It is so hard sometimes to throw out makeup products, etc but it has to be done! I did that recently (though I have a ton more to go through). I would much rather throw something out then get an infection,breakouts, etc. This is a great reminder!
Yes, exactly! Eye infections are no bueno!
Oh Man, I really need to throw out of few things! It’s not my fault though. When I was a kid, my mom had an old lipstick from the sixties called “Grape Yum Yum.” It was like 20 years old.
Wow! Is it bad that I’d love to see that? lol I love vintage makeup!
I’ve been on a huge decluttering kick lately, so this guide is perfect! Simplifying my beauty stash is definitely a goal of mine this year.
That’s great! I have too and decluttering is making my life so much more simplified!
One of my first posts — a LONG time ago — was on this topic. It’s SO important to take inventory and check the dates of products.
Beauty With Lily
Oh that’s awesome, girl! Definitely an important task for sure!
Isn’t it crazy to find this out? I recently looked a bunch of these up and was shocked!
Definitely! I’m sure we’re all guilty of keeping items too long!
I need to go through my makeup, I did a cleanout last year and I still have stuff that I havent worn or used so I probably need to toss that as well.
I’m like that to- I’ll keep it thinking I’ll suddenly begin using bright blue eyeshadow on the regular, and then of course don’t lol.
I have got to do better with my makeup. I go months and months before throwing away mascara which cannot be good for my eyes!
No, and speaking from experience, eye infections are NO joke! Definitely recommend tossing mascaras regularly above all other products.
This guide was so helpful! I’ll need to double check my lipstick collection, haha!
That’s the one area I struggle with lol, when you have 300 or so lipsticks, it’s easy to overlook expirations.
Just done this, purging makeup and this sheet is such a fab reminder. Fab post as ever!
Thank-you Kate! Sweet as ever! 🙂
Thanks for the reminder to go through my makeup and clean my brushes- I’m the worst at it!
I try to change out my mascara often, but everything else I haven’t done a great job about! I definitely need to clean out my makeup!
That’s great that you’re doing that with mascara. It’s probably the most susceptible to giving you an eye infection!
Oh man do I have a tonnnn of expired makeup. I hold on to super old palettes for sentimental reasons. I also have a ton of MAC lipsticks and shadows that I don’t use but I don’t wanna throw them away either. I’m pretty good with eyeliner and mascara but I also use them all the time. I have a huge bag of makeup I’m giving away but most of it its on the newer side.
I got rid of a lot of stuff that hadn’t even been used a couple times, which I hated doing. Now I’m trying to be more mindful of only buying things I will use on a regular basis.
Great tips. I keep my make up forever, it takes an act of God to get me to throw it out, even if it is old.
Thanks! haha, it is hard to part with it when you pay so much for it, but eye infections are no joke, so I always toss my stuff after awhile.
I probably toss out my sponges a lot sooner than I should. I use them on a daily basis so they start getting wear a lot. I probably go through one a month!
Meghan | beyondbasicblog.com
If you use them religiously that’s probably a good idea to toss them sooner, if they start tearing. So many people don’t wash their brushes and sponges, which is so bad!
This is so great! Thanks for breaking it down! Now I need to go clean out all my makeup storage!
Thanks! Glad you liked it, and good luck!
Good reminder that I need to go through my supply and get rid of some stuff! Can we see how you store you make up next?
Thanks! What a great idea, Sarah! Yes, I’ll work on a post for that! 🙂
OMG GiRL!!! Thank you for putting this together! I love the graphic bc for ADHD peeps like me, it’s easy to look at. Totally pinning!!! Gah I love this. Except I’m not happy learning that I have to replace my Beauty Blender sponge in 6 months!!! lol that thing was like $20! haha
Thanks, and I’m glad you found it helpful! I don’t know if you’ve ever tried them but the Real Techniques sponges are like 2 for $10.99 at Ulta or Target and are even better than the beauty blender (in my opinion). Definitely a cost saver in that arena! 🙂
Its probably scary of how old some of my make up is. I really need to take some time & go through it. This is my kick in the butt I needed.
I’m usually pretty good about getting rid of stuff, but there were some items in my collection that were about 5 years old that I had forgotten about and hadn’t even used! Now I’m really trying to only buy what I’ll use.
Great guide. I always make sure to toss stuff after a while. I usually replace my mascara every 3 months. I used to work as an optometric assistant and let me tell you after seeing eye infections you just want to get into that habit.
Yes! I unfortunately had an eye infection years ago (like when I was 16) and the eye doctor advised to change out mascara often, and ever since then I’ve made sure to!
I just went through my makeuo for this reason! I like the idea to do this every six months to declutter. I tend to be sent stuff I don’t need and end up not using.
I’m trying to be more mindful of not buying items that I won’t use. It’s easy to get caught up in makeup purchase crazes but I like actually getting use of everything. 🙂
I need to do a make-up detox. I just have boxes of things I never use which I’m sure all are expired now. Thanks for the great tips and expiration dates.
You’re welcome! I like doing it every once in awhile to make sure I’m not using something I shouldn’t be lol.
I NEEDED this! I’m using a set of MK eyeshadow that is 6 years old, lol. Thank you!
You’re welcome! It’s easy to want to hold onto items, especially when you pay so much for them, but eventually they start to lose their quality, so it’s best to toss after a couple years.
I recently did this with some my make up (always pains me to throw away expensive mascara) but I still need to tackle my powder foundations and nail polishes. I’m trying to buy less so I use it up before I get to this point.
That’s a great tip, Sarah. Buying less so you don’t waste product is always a good idea. 🙂
I am guilty of holding on to makeup for way longer than I should. Hello eye shadows from 4 or 5 years ago. Oops.
Yeah I used to be that way too- I mean when you pay so much for them it seems like they should last longer, buut I also reason with myself that you do use them on a daily basis so it’s best to part ways eventually lol.
I just got rid of a bunch of expired stuff, but I felt so guilty! One of the worst offenders for me is lip products.
I’m bad for keeping those forever too, but eventually it loses it’s color power and quality, so it’s best to part with them. 🙂
Thanks for sharing this. I have a clear out planned for this weekend – this will come in handy.
You’re welcome! Good luck with the clean-out!
i’m deathly afraid of mold/mildew and catching something weird from expired products so i toss stuff when it hits the expiration date.
Agreed! It’s not worth risking!
Thanks for this. It looks like I have some products to toss.
thanks for the info!! I’m glad eyeshadow is okay for 2 years, because I know I have some in my make up bag that is coming close to that!!
Yes, generally eyeshadows last quite awhile, and as long as you don’t notice the quality disappearing, you’re okay! 🙂
I love cleaning as weird as that sounds! I do it often to make sure I’m not holding on to unused or unwanted things. Great tips!
I think that’s great, Emelia! That makes you avoid having to do one big cleaning session when you’re proactive like that! 🙂
Cara this is a great reminder to check out my make up and brushes and get rid of some of the old stuff.
Thanks Candy! It’s good to go through all that periodically. 🙂