When should you throw away makeup?

by:Suprabeauty     2023-07-03

When should you throw away makeup?

Having a giant makeup collection is the dream of many beauty lovers, but it can quickly turn into a nightmare if you don't know when to throw away old makeup. While makeup doesn't have an official expiration date, it can still go bad, sometimes causing skin irritations, breakouts, or infections. In this article, we'll go over the signs that it's time to toss your makeup and give you some tips on how to make your makeup last longer.

Why does makeup go bad?

Makeup contains various ingredients, such as oils, emollients, and preservatives, that can break down and transform over time. When makeup goes bad, it can become a breeding ground for bacteria, mold, and fungi, leading to skin irritations, breakouts, or even infections. Many factors can affect makeup's shelf life, such as exposure to air, sunlight, heat, and moisture, as well as how often you use it and how you store it. Let's take a closer look at some of the most common types of makeup and when to throw them away.


Lipsticks usually last around two to three years, but their shelf life can vary depending on the formula and packaging. Liquid lipsticks, for instance, are more prone to drying out and separating than traditional tubes, making them expire quicker. Matte lipsticks tend to last longer than creamy or glossy ones since they contain fewer oils and emollients. When your lipstick starts to smell waxy, feel clumpy or gritty, or lose its pigmentation or shine, it's time to toss it. If you got a cold sore or any other lip infection, you should also dispose of any lip products you used during that time to prevent bacteria from lingering.


Mascara is one of the most prone to bacterial infection since the wand goes in and out of the tube, introducing air and germs every time. Mascara typically lasts three to six months, but you should toss it sooner if you notice it getting dry, flaky, clumpy, or smelly. Using old mascara can not only irritate your eyes but also lead to conjunctivitis, sties, or other eye infections. To make your mascara last longer, avoid pumping the wand in and out, which can introduce air and dry it faster, and store it in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight.


Foundation is a staple in most makeup routines, but it can also cause breakouts, clogged pores, or even skin infections if you use it past its prime. The shelf life of foundation can vary depending on the type, formula, and application method. For example, powder foundations tend to last longer than liquid or cream ones, while pump bottles are more hygienic than jars or compacts. Generally, foundation lasts around one to two years, but you should replace it sooner if it changes color, separates, smells sour or rancid, or causes skin irritation or redness. To prolong your foundation's lifespan, use a clean brush or sponge to apply it and keep it away from humidity or heat.


Eyeliner can add definition and drama to your eyes, but it can also harbor bacteria and irritate your eyelids if you don't replace it regularly. Pencil eyeliners last longer than liquid or gel ones, but you should sharpen them often to remove any accumulated bacteria or debris. Some eyeliners can last up to two years, while others might expire within six months, so it's crucial to check the label or the brand's website for specific recommendations. When your eyeliner becomes hard, dry, or crumbly, or when it starts to flake or smudge too easily, throw it away. If you get an eye infection, avoid wearing eyeliner until it clears up and replace any products you used during that time.

Blush and Powder

Blush and powder can brighten up your complexion and set your makeup in place, but they can also collect bacteria, oils, and impurities over time. Powder products generally last longer than cream or liquid ones since they are less prone to harbor moisture or break down. Blush and powder usually last around one to two years, but you should discard them sooner if they become hard, patchy, or discolored or if they develop an off smell or texture. To prolong the shelf life of your blush and powder, wash your brushes or sponges regularly and store them in a clean, dry place.


Knowing when to throw away makeup is essential for maintaining healthy skin and preventing infections or irritations. Always check the expiry date or the recommended lifespan of your makeup products, and pay attention to any changes in color, texture, smell, or performance. If you're unsure about a particular item, it's better to err on the side of caution and dispose of it. By following these simple tips, you can enjoy your makeup collection and stay safe and healthy at the same time.

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