The Shelf Life Of Your Makeup

When we invest as much as we do in our makeup, we kind of want it to last forever, don’t we. But the unfortunate reality is that is has an expiration date just like everything else we consume. How often you should be disposing and replacing your makeup products depends on what they are. Liquids, powders and creams all have different shelf lives, so we are here to give you tips on when to pitch them.


Even if you haven’t “hit the pan” yet on your powder products, you should be disposing of your powder blushes, eyeshadows, foundations and bronzers by the two-year mark.


For lip products like lipstick and lip glosses, replace them between six months to a year.


Your liquid foundation typically is safe to use for six months, and if it is oil-free than it can be used up to a year, but if it is a compact foundation then it is safe for up to a year and a half.


Cream products are similar to the foundation; all cream eyeshadows, blushes and concealers have an average shelf life of one year.


Eye products are more sensitive (remember we shouldn’t be sharing eye products!) and should be changed more regularly. Even if you haven’t finished it, you should replace your eyeliner and mascara every three months!


But remember, this is a general guideline. If you are unsure how long your specific product is safe to use, there is a symbol on the package used by manufacturers to convey this information. Look for the PAO (period after opening) symbol, which looks like a little round container with an unscrewed lid, and on it will be a number and the letter “m”. This refers to the amount of months the product can be safely used for once you open it.


Life Hack: When you purchase the product, check the symbol and calculate what the date is that many months from now, and then write that expiration date on the bottle so you know exactly when to pitch it!