The life expectancy of makeup

Nothing lasts forever. Well, maybe Twinkies do. But makeup doesn’t, and sometimes you need to replace it even if you haven’t used it up.

How long does makeup last?

The answer varies, depending on many conditions, including temperature, light, and humidity. And also on whom you ask!

Many of you know this, but I’ll bet some of you don’t: Most makeup packaging includes a small symbol that tells you how long it will last after opening. It looks like a jar with the lid open. It’s very tiny, and you might have to use a magnifier to read it.

That information is useful to a point. Who remembers exactly when they bought that lipstick, that foundation, that mascara? A year can seem like only a few months!

Here are guidelines on how long makeup lasts, and how to tell it’s time to replace it.

Foundation
About a year.
How to tell when it’s bad: Change in color or consistency

Lipstick
Two or three years.
How to tell when it’s bad: Change in consistency.

Mascara
About four months.
How to tell when it’s bad: Change in consistency.

Nail polish
One to two years.
How to tell if it’s bad: It won’t fully mix when you shake it.

Powder, blush, eye shadow
Two to three years.
How to tell if it’s bad: Color change.

Your mileage may vary. I’m not looking for an argument!

Disclamer: My coworker Kim suggested this topic for the Beauty Hints section of our website. I decided to put it here on our blog first. Please don’t mention this to Kim. I’ll tell her when the time is right. Thanks.

Check out our Beauty Hints section for ideas, instructions, and product recommendations!

  • Nancy

    October 15th, 2010

    Reply

    That’s why I always stay with Twinkies! If you leave the frosting on your face long enough it makes a great skin tightener and hides all the flaws. Ha ha.
    They can also be used for a Halloween costume. Glue them on your shirt and pants and you have “Twinkie Man” which can be used year after year!
    I love the information. I am sure I have tons of outdated makeup. Thanks

  • William

    October 19th, 2010

    Reply

    : – )

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