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Beauty Shelf Life, Keep it, or Toss it?


by Dawn McCarthy

Beauty Shelf Life, Keep it, or Toss it?

As a Beauty and Lifestyle expert for It’s a Glam Thing, one of the top questions I am frequently asked is, when should I replace my beauty products?  The following guidelines are typical, but especially during the summer months, take heed. For those of you who wear all natural and organic cosmetics that contain plant–derived ingredients, and no preservatives, these products should be used within six months of purchasing or check the date on the container. Also, Perfume – every year, but properly stored, could last 5 years.

Keep in mind:

·         Never share cosmetic products

·         Use a beauty spatula to remove make up from the container: The Every Drop Beauty Spatula for under $5.00 works great, and you can purchase locally…

·         Do not touch eyeshadow with your fingers, always use a brush

·         When possible, use permanent markers to note the purchase date of the product on the container

·         Store make-up in a cool, dry spot.  I have a designated shelf in my refrigerator …

·         Wash your make up brushes and sponges. I simply use Dawn Dish soap and it works great.


Toss it or Replace . . .

Mascara Every three months
Foundation One year
Concealer 12-18 months
Powder 18 months
Blush/bronzer 18 months
Cream blush 12-18 months
Eye shadow 18 months
Eyeliner 18 months
Liquid eyeliner Six months
Lipstick/lip gloss 18 months
Lip liner One year
Nail polish One year
Makeup sponges Wash after each use, then throw away after a month.


This last one was hard for me, but Perfume – every year, but properly stores, could last longer.  The above are guidelines and if you are like me, you’ll be actually surprised how long you have kept some f your make-up products.   I am actually too embarrassed to let you know how long I have had some nail polishes and lip glosses I found in clutch bags and in my make-up drawer.

Your skin is the largest organ in  your body and just as you wouldn’t drink expired milk that smelled bad, don’t put expired products on your eyes or face.


Dawn McCarthy
Beauty & Lifestyle Expert

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