Friday, December 9, 2011

Ask Ink!

I have heard that you need to toss your makeup out yearly. 1) is this true and 2) how true is it for someone that wears said makeup once or twice a year? I tend to buy Origins or higher priced items and 1 tube of mascara can last me several years. I use mascara, maybe an eye liner and eye shadow if I am being really fancy. And blush. Maybe lipstick, but usually a tinted lip balm. That’s it. Please believe that I am not trying to suggest I don’t NEED makeup. I am simply far too lazy to apply it. I do use a moisturizer daily.

It is true that makeup does have an expiration date. Below is a list of the different types of makeup and how long it is considered safe to use them.

Mascara - Three to six months from date of opening. Mascara has the
shortest shelf life of any cosmetic. The eyes are very sensitive and
care should be taken to avoid eye infections. Mascara becomes
contaminated with bacteria from the moment they are opened, especially
if you pump the mascara wand (pushing it up and down in the tube to
make sure the brush is coated) prior to application. Bacteria
flourish in moist environments, and can cause eye infections if they
infect your mascara and you apply it to your eyes. If your mascara is
dried out, NEVER rewet it. Throw it out. Better safe than sorry.

Liners (liquid and pencil) - Liquid liners have a similar shelf life
(three to six months) to mascara for the same reasons. Pencil liners
are different. Pencils can be retained for a much longer period of
time, given that they are sharpened prior to usage, unlike a liquid
liner. Length of time to keep a pencil liner is generally thought to
be 1-2 years.

Powders (eye shadows, blush, powder) - Powders can be kept for a
longer period of time that liquid products. In general, powders can
be retained for two years. If the composition of the item changes
(color, scent, texture, etc) and the item isn't quite two years old,
toss it as changes like those signal that the makeup has gone bad.

Lip products (gloss and lipstick) - Eighteen to 24 months is a common
time frame. If changes in composition, color, texture, or scent are
identified, it's time to throw the item away. If you have a cold
sore, any item that came in contact with the cold sore will also need
to be tossed.

Lotions - Lotions do not have a given time frame for retention. The
general rule is similar to that for most makeup items in that they
should be tossed when changes (texture, composition, scent, color,
etc) are detected.

Creams (eye shadow) - The time frames given for retaining a cream
shadow vary greatly (2 months - one year). Check with the
manufacturer to determine how long to keep these as there is variation
between brands. Always make sure to apply creams with a clean
applicator to avoid contaminating the container. If any changes to
the product are spotted, toss it.

Brushes and applicators - Wash your makeup brushes often (ideally,
every week or two weeks). All you need to wash a makeup brush is a
mild soap (I use liquid hand soap) and warm water. Rinse thoroughly
and allow the brush to air-dry (I use a pretty glass to hold my
brushes upside down to allow them to air dry after washing).

You can visit Stila cosmetics regarding the shelf life of most makeup and this site to help you determine how old your makeup is and if you should keep it or toss it. The
final link is a L.A. Times article discussing retention length for all
kinds of cosmetics. Another point to keep in mind is if you have any
kind of infection (eye infection, styes, cold sores, etc), discard all
makeup that came in contact with the site of the infection. Reusing
those items can cause a recurrence of the infection. The bottom line
with cosmetics is to toss them if they change color, smell, texture,
or consistency; TOSS THEM no matter what age they are.

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