Who hasn’t got a drawer that’s absolutely bursting with makeup – some of which has probably been in there for years? Of course, there’s nothing wrong with being thrifty. After all, some of those colours and shades might come back in style. But makeup, like most things, does not last forever. So when do you need to bite the bullet and throw it away?
The shelf-life of a foundation all depends on what it’s made of. With powders, you can expect them to last up to two years, making them a great investment purchase. However, liquids contain oils which means they will degrade quicker, with most products being past their best at around 18 months.
Generally speaking, most lipsticks last around 12 months – but there are some exceptions. Glosses, for example, typically contain more preservatives, which can extend their shelf-life for an additional six months. So if you’re planning on saving your shades for a year or more, you might need to rethink your approach.
You might be surprised to learn that the vast majority of mascaras ought to be tossed out after just 2-3 months. And it’s not just because they can get clumpy – or even smelly – if you leave them any longer. According to experts, there’s a real risk of eye infections associated with using mascara that’s past its best.
At the other end of the spectrum, some blushes can last as long as two years – although only if they’re powders. Liquids, of course, will expire faster, typically in around 18 months. If you want to eke out your blusher, make sure you always clean your brushes and replace them at regular intervals.
Although it varies slightly depending on the formula used, the shelf-life for eyeshadow tends to be between 6 and 12 months. Like mascara, expired products can cause eye infections, so it’s important to follow guidelines and throw out any products that have seen better days.