Trying to figure out if your makeup has gone bad can be confusing. You go to the Internet to find an answer, and different websites are giving you different dates.
The FDA has guidelines. Many US companies are printing an expiration date on the product. The expiration date looks like a jar with the lid open and inside the jar is a number with an M next to it. So 6M means throw away the makeup six months after opening.
People still think they should toss mascara after 90 days. The actual recommendation is six months. I found guides saying you should only keep mascara for six months if you wear mascara a few times a week. However, if you use the same mascara every single day, the mascara would not last you six months.
Nine months is the time to keep an opened eyeliner. Eyeliner will dry out when it goes bad.
Many people question what I should keep? What should I toss? What should I pass along?
If the colors changed, is hard to blend, or the texture has changed, or smells the makeup expired. Expired makeup may look different and/or the scent will change.
Many expiration dates exist for makeup. My Lorac and Juvia's Place palettes have no dates. My Tarte shadows expire after a year. Urban Decay is two. All these different dates are confusing right?
I got Kat Von D Shadow and Light palette for Christmas 2 years ago. The packaging said the shadows expired after six months. I passed the palette onto my daughter. The shadows swatched perfectly and did not have an odor. Because I keep my hands, face, and brushes clean, I was fine giving that palette to her.
I did not want to use the palette anymore. The palette still looked brand new. It was expensive. That is the problem with palettes many “expire” 6-12 months after you open it. When something costs $35-50 and has several pans of shadow most people cannot use eye shadow up that fast. Many makeup expiration guides put shadows at two years. The same goes for blushes and powders.
My bronzer from Wet N’ Wild has a date of expiration for the sunscreen in the bronzer next year. Since the bronzer still looks good and does not smell I have no reason to throw the bronzer away.
Lipsticks are tricky. When you wear lipstick, a few times a week the tube will last forever. Plenty of women keep lipstick over a year. That one is a judgment call. I don't perceive keeping lipstick past a year as gross if applies well and has no odor.
Foundation is a year, but it depends on the formula. Sunscreen can affect the best by date. Pump foundation is more hygienic and I would hang onto pump foundation if possible.
You shouldn’t pass on makeup if you don’t know how long the makeup has been sitting in your makeup collection. Sometimes we find a single eyeshadow shadow, mascara, or a lipstick we opened and never used. If you cannot recall when you bought something I would toss the makeup out.
I recommend cleaning out your makeup every three months. Double check that everything looks ok.
I also put makeup I neglected or want to use up in a bin. If you never use up makeup, then consider looking for drugstore dupes. We spend our hard earned money on makeup. Sometimes wasting money makes it hard to throw makeup out.
I hope this helped. What is your oldest makeup item? I found makeup from when I sold Avon in the early 2000's.