Aug 03, 2015


How to Know When Your Old Makeup Has Gone Bad

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old makeup

I’ll be the first to admit, that if you peeked through my makeup bags you might find lipsticks and eye shadows from 3 or 4 years ago. We all tend to hang on to our favorite beauty products longer than we’re supposed to. The truth is, makeup isn’t meant to last forever and can harbor bacteria, causing irritation or infections.

When to dispose of your old makeup

It’s important to toss away old makeup when anything has changed color, consistency or has a bad odor.  Check out my guidelines on figuring out the lifespan of your makeup products and  learn how to keep the ones you love germ free!

Your liquid foundations and concealers can last you up to 6 months (that is with minimal hand contact). Your fingers can introduce bacteria, so try using a sponge instead to apply.  As liquid foundation ages the consistency changes, causing it to go unevenly when applied. Powder foundation can last you a little longer, a year or more, because it’s harder for bacteria to grow where there’s no water.

Lip Gloss and Lipstick
Lip glosses and lipsticks can easily last you over a year. But if you notice a strange odor or taste, make sure to toss it! Because lipsticks and glosses have some water content, they can hoard loads of bacteria. Yuck!

Blush and Bronzer
Powdered blushes and bronzers can last up to nine months. The trick to persevering these babies, is keeping your brushes and applicators clean. Make sure to wash them every 4 to 6 weeks.

There’s no doubt that mascara is the perfect breeding ground for bacteria, due to its dark and wet nature. After a while mascara can only work for so long, causing it to become chalky and clumpy.  If you use it daily, you should toss yours every three months. If you want to extend the life of your mascara just a little longer, never pump the wand, that brings air into the tube allowing it to dry quicker. Instead, try to slowly pull out the wand before applying.

Eye Shadows
If you use powder eye shadow, you can keep it for up to two years, as long as you replace your brushes. Powdered shadows tend to age longer because they are less prone to contamination, due to their lack of water. Bacteria grows faster in cream shadows. So you should swap them every 10 months.

As do mascara, liquid eyeliner should be replaced every three months. Eyeliner pencils can last up to two years, if you keep them sharpened and clean.  Make sure to regularly sanitize your sharpener with rubbing alcohol.

Nail polish
If your polish is properly sealed and stored it can last you up to one year. After a few months check to see if there is any color fading, separation or change in consistency.  Add a little bit of nail polish remover to extend the life of your polish and make it smoother.


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Johanna Ferreira

Johanna Ferreira

Johanna Ferreira is the Beauty Blogger at New Latina. She is a freelance writer from Queens and in love with all things beauty. She has interned in the beauty and editorial departments of Self, InStyle and Latina Magazine. Johanna has also contributed to numerous other beauty sites.

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