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BEAUTY STATION! Bid adieu to expired cosmetics

More often than not we tend to cling on to our favourite lip colour or eyeliner. But the fact is that makeup products also have expiry dates. Instep gives you a lowdown on when to update your makeup b

BEAUTY STATION! Bid adieu to expired cosmetics

More often than not we tend to cling on to our favourite lip colour or eyeliner. But the fact is that makeup products also have expiry dates. Instep gives you a lowdown on when to update your makeup bag…

Instep Desk

Nothing beats the feeling of applying a new lipstick or trying out the eye shadow palette that you just bought. But then when you’re not using it enough, it tends to just sit there in your cupboard, waiting for occasional airing and subsequently, ages. What many of us tend to ignore is the fact that beauty products also have an expiry date. If your makeup has been sitting around for too long then yes, it might be time to part with your favourite lipstick, mascara or your set of brushes.

A recent study shows that some women keep their makeup for up to six years after their expiry date, and 70 per cent of women never clean their makeup brushes. Keeping old products can expose your skin to harmful toxins and cause serious skin problems like itching, dark patches, rashes and acne. Instep gives you a lowdown on when to say goodbye to your beauty products.

Foundation & concealers

Backpage1444When it comes to the expiry date of base/foundation and concealer, be careful. The life of your foundation depends on its ingredients. A water-based product will last up to 12 months, while oil-based foundations will make it to 18 months because oil is a natural preservative. The signs are quite visible – when the oils rise to the top and the consistency thickens, it means it is time to bid farewell to your foundation.  Another sign that your base/concealer has expired is the uneven application. You can prevent your foundation from separating by stashing it somewhere cool and regularly shaking the liquid to mix the oils, purified water and make-up particles together.

Blush, eye shades & face powder

Powder based cosmetics have a longer shelf life. Because the products don’t contain water it’s harder for bacteria to infest in them. If you notice a hard rim on your powder, then it is time to dispose it off. Moreover, experts suggest not to use powder shadows or blushers for more than 2 years. Want to make your shadows and powders last a little longer? Make sure not to use an emollient or greasy concealer before the application. Plus, use a clean brush to limit the amount of oil that ends up in your powder. To avoid oxidation (which can change the colour of powders), don’t forget to twist the lid shut after use.

Lipsticks & lip gloss

Backpage1555Lipsticks last more than 2 to 3 years. Although lipstick and gloss are packed with preservatives and essential oils and vitamins to ward off germs, these ingredients naturally start to break down after two years. The best way to know if your lipstick or lip gloss has expired is to smell and see if there is a weird stench. Besides the smell, beading of moisture or chalky texture means it’s time to toss it away.

Experts suggest keeping lipstick and gloss away from heat. Also, don’t apply lipstick straight after eating – it cultivates bacteria.


Backpage111Mascaras last up to three months with everyday use and six months with occasional use. Wet environments harbor bacteria, which is why our most-loved beauty product has such a short expiration period. The expiry signs include weird smell and it tends to become extra clumpy when you apply it. Experts advise not to pump the wand very frequently, as it pushes air into the tube, causing it to dry out.


Backpage333Wondering when to toss the eyeliner away? Beauty experts suggest that eyeliners last for three to six months. Liquid eyeliners have the same bacteria-prone formula and packaging as mascaras, whereas pencil eyeliners have greater lasting power because as you sharpen them you remove bacteria that you pick up from using it on your eyes. The best way to know if your eye pencil has expired is to look for a white film that can’t be sharpened off. Replace it with a brand new one.


Backpage222If well looked after, brushes can last a long time. When the bristles start falling out, that’s when you know it is time to replace your beloved brushes. The thing is that we don’t take proper care of the stuff we use. It is important to wash your brushes at least once every two weeks, and try to spot-clean your eye brushes after each use to avoid infections. All you need is warm water, mild soap and a dash of olive oil; give your brush a swirl (the olive oil breaks down the oil in makeup) and rinse thoroughly.


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