When to Discard Skincare Products and Cosmetics?

Many of us are guilty of hoarding beauty and makeup products. The glitzy aisles at our favorite shopping destinations call to us, and we can absolutely never resist sales or discounts. It feels right to have multiple options for every kind of product, but sadly we don’t have the time or place to use them all. It is hard to let go of things that you invested a lot of money on, yet barely touched by the time it has reached its expiration date. If your drawers and cabinets are brimming with cosmetics and skincare stuff from years ago, it is time to say goodbye. If you never put them to use in the past few years, they were useless anyway.

Applying expired products to your precious skin is disgusting and dangerous. Beauty products contain a variety of chemicals that deteriorate over time and develop harmful properties. If you put spoiled products on your face, you may experience irritation, skin breakouts, rashes, burns, and other skin problems.

The shelf life of wet or liquid cosmetics and skincare products is usually about 2-3 years, but they only last up to a year once they are opened. Dry products last up to 5 years, as microorganisms thrive better in moisture. Most of the time you can tell by appearance or odor that a product has gone bad. If the contents of a cream/concoction have started to separate, change color, and/or smell funny, it is only worthy of your trash can. Dry products may look and smell fine, but if the expiration date on the package says otherwise, believe it.

Liquid foundations, lipsticks, lip glosses, mascara, and liquid eyeliners are most susceptible to bacteria and fungi. Every time you apply any of these with your finger or directly to the designated part of your face, contaminants are accumulating in the container. When scooping out a molten cosmetic from its jar/bottle, use a small spoon or spatula instead of your finger. The least you can do is wash or sanitize your hands before you put your bare finger into the container of a skincare product.

Your mouth is among those parts of the body that are most concentrated with germs. The reason is that your mouth repeatedly opens to let in bacteria from the outside and the moist atmosphere helps them thrive. Moreover food and drinks throughout the day leave residues as well. Therefore, every time you apply lipstick or gloss to your lips, germs and remnants are transferred to that cosmetic container. The same goes for the eyes, as they are most sensitive to external particles.

Lipsticks, liners, and mascara are every girl’s staples, which is why it is commonplace to buy one too many. Unfortunately, this is not a great idea as these products should be replaced after six months of usage; if you have been holding on to them for years, you are truly putting yourself at risk of a grave infection. If you prefer all-natural skincare products and cosmetics, know that their life is even shorter. Commercial beauty products contain preservatives and chemicals that increase their shelf life. Organic ones will perish quickly when exposed to heat and humidity, thus it is recommended to store them in the refrigerator.

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