Monday, 16 June 2014

How to Check if Your Makeup is Expired

One thing many people tend to forget is that makeup has an expiry date just like food and drinks do! Now I will admit that I do not always throw out my makeup on the ‘suggested’ expiry dates, but there are very good reasons as to why you should. Now you may think why should I throw away my makeup after the expiry date? Makeup is a breeding ground for bacteria which can cause eye infections such as pink eye and sties. Liquid makeup tends goes bad quicker than powder makeup as it gives the bacteria a home to live in. Keep your makeup in cool dry places because keeping your makeup in a warm place can also increase bacteria growth on the product.

Now on makeup products most of them do not have a Expire By date displayed on the makeup itself, but instead has a period after opening date which you should follow. The Period After Opening date can be seen by looking for a little container symbol with a number inside of it (eg. 6M). This means that after you open the makeup product the product will ‘expire’ after the number of months shown inside the container symbol, so if the symbol shows 6M this will mean 6 months after you open the product the product will ‘expire’ there for you should throw it out.

Product After Opening Symbol - Shows how many months you can keep the product after opening before it goes bad
Most times these Period After Opening symbols can be found on the label of the product. This can be found on many types of items including makeup, lotion, hair products, deodorant etc. If you cannot see it on the label, make sure that the label does not peel upwards (some labels peel up to reveal more information of the product). If you cannot find this symbol, the manufacturer may have used an actual expiry date on the product or even a use by date, but I have scoured my makeup collection and most of my products have the Period After Opening symbol, apart from lipsticks. I have noticed that many of my lipsticks that I have removed the label/didn't come with a label on the side do not contain a Period After Opening symbol. For lipsticks please follow the suggested expiry date shown below.
Product After Opening symbol on a bottle of lotion
Product After Opening symbol on a hair oil
Product After Opening symbol on a mascara
Product After Opening symbol on a roll on deodorant
Product After Opening symbol on a liquid eyeliner
Even though the Period After Opening symbol is on the product, the product could go bad before the expected expiry date. The common way to tell if a product has gone off is if anything changes with the product. This could mean that the product now has a weird smell, has gone clumpy and dry (mascara), the colour has changed, the texture has changed,  or you have had a recent eye infection then it is time to get rid of the product immediately!

Now if you cannot seem to find the Period After Opening symbol or an expiry date of any sort, there are some guidelines on how long certain makeup products should last in general before they go bad, which I will list below:

Expiry Date Guidelines
Liquid Foundation/Concealer: 6-12 months
Moisturizers/Skincare: 1-2 years
Cream Blush/Eyeshadow: 6-12 months
Liquid Eyeliner: Less than 6 months
Mascara: 3 months
Powder Blush/Eyeshadow: 1 year
Pencil Liners (lip/eye): Up to 2 years
Lipstick: 1 year

Now obviously if you do keep your makeup over the expiry date which many people do unknowingly, you aren't going to die but it really does reduce the risk of eye infections and spreading bacteria around. I would highly suggest throwing away the products that have at least changed colour, smell, texture, or the product used if you have gotten an eye infection. 


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks, Obviously you do not need to throw out all of your makeup on the exact 'expiry' date but it does give a guideline as to how long these products should last you before they start to change in any way. If they do start to change it is important to throw it out but if it is still the same as you have bought it then I would say it is fine to go over the expiry date :)

  2. Wow thank you! I did not know that


  3. This is really helpful, and I really like your blog! :)