Opened foundation has an average shelf life of one year. No exceptions. Liquids are prone to storing acne-causing bacteria over an extended period of time. To keep your foundation germ free, use a clean sponge for each application. If you don’t remember when you bought your foundation, it’s recommended you toss out any discolored or foul-smelling items.
Remember that cobalt blue eye shadow you just had to have (but never use) or that look-at-me-now silver eye shadow you were saving for a special occasion? If you haven’t used them in two years, it’s time to toss them out. While these shadow colors may still look the same, it’s not worth the risk of applying old powder to your delicate eye area.
Don’t forget to throw out the mascara every three months. Again, if you forget when you purchased your mascara, do a smell check. Bad odor? Pitch it.
Lipstick can last up to two years. Similar to other makeup, you’ll know to get rid of it when it starts to smell. Pro tip: If you’ve recently splurged on an investment lipstick, keep it in the fridge to extend its shelf life.
Eyeliners can also stay in your cosmetic case for up to two years. Try to avoid getting your eyeliner wet and be sure to sharpen and clean with alcohol as needed.
Wondering how to dispose of cosmetics safely and without harming the environment? Check out our guide to eco-friendly makeup disposal.