*This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my full disclosure policy for more information.*
Ok, admit it, how long have you had that tube of fancy lipstick? The answer is probably a scary one. Have you really thought – how long can makeup be stored? With a new year comes a chance to assess the abundance of the past year. Perhaps you’ve been fortunate to receive or have treated yourself to a few new pieces of makeup – a Dior blush here, a Maybelline mascara there, and a few Urban Decay palettes just because there are so many lovely colors! But what about the rest of your makeup? You know what I’m talking about…those random lipsticks, foundation samples, and other beauty products that are more than a few months old (ahem, try a few years!) It led me to think – how long exactly can makeup be kept before it has really turned to the dark and germy side? I’ve taken a glance through my bathroom shelves and have been casting a suspicious eye on a few of my favorite beauty items (seriously it’s a bad thing when I can’t remember how many years something has been around!) A general rule of thumb is one that is applicable to food too – the wetter it is, the shorter it’s shelf life before it become a breeding ground for bacteria.
Makeup Storage Tips
- Unopened makeup can last a few years. It’s only when a product is exposed to oxygen and ingredients may break down
- Keep makeup in a cool, dry place
- Repeated contact with a used brush or your fingers will promote bacterial growth
- Sanitize fingers, makeup brushes and pencil sharpeners regularly (I use rubbing alcohol, coconut oil)
- Immediately toss products if you have an infection and came into contact with the product
So I did a little digging to see how long popular pieces of makeup can be kept.
How long can makeup be stored:
Lipstick One year to two years Lip gloss 6 months to one year Mascara 3 months Liquid foundation 6 months to One year Powder based products 18 months – 2 years Liquid eyeliners 12 months
Nail polish One to two years