Makeup Expiration Guideline - Do you keep your makeup?

Three weeks ago I had a major clear out of my makeup and skincare. "Why", I hear you ask? Well, makeup and skincare products have an expiration. Even if they aren't required to put this on the label, it might be something for you to be aware of. Our products build up bacteria or lose there usability after a certain time.

I am known as the hoarder in my family and I am notorious for keeping the pretty packaging of my products too, so I decided to part with them ALL! Hubby gave me the push I needed for the clear out when he bought me storage for my birthday recently. Instead of just piling everything in to make it look like a big collection of makeup I decided to start anew.

It may not seem like a lot to some, but to me it is. I came across one thing I definitely kept for nostalgia sake, which was my first eye-shadow from when I was 16! Out of all of this it really was the mascaras that needed to go. I'm like a magpie when it comes to their pretty shiny packaging, but I do go by the 3 month rule so I was only keeping them because I liked the look of them. 

Oh look pretty outer packaging! I seriously could have thrown them out so long ago.

In general I do stop using products when the expiration date has gone as you would usually know by colour, smell or they don't work as well. I recently discovered that when I was randomly talking to someone that she didn't know that makeup went off and didn't know what this logo below meant. It is the expiration date from when first opened!

So if you see for example the above 12M that means it will last 12 months after you have opened it. I have some natural products which will actually have a stamp with the expiration date DD-MM-YY.

Here is a little guideline that I have learnt along the way to makeup expiration:

Mascara: 2-3 months
Eyeliner: 3 months
Foundation/BB Creams: 6-12 months
Lipgloss: 1 years
Lipstick: 1-2 years
Nail Varnish: 1-2 years
Powder/Blush/Eyes: 2-3 years

Do you keep your makeup just for the sake of it, or do you use it by the expiration date? Let me know what you do in the comments below.


  1. oh god I never throw stuff out. Usually I use a lot up, but if it looks ok n its not finished, i hang onto it. Mascaras r they only thing I dump

    1. I would hold onto makeup just for the sake of it but once it hits expiration I don't use it. My skin is really sensitive so will breakout in a heartbeat if it is dripping with bacteria etc. I feel so refreshed after clearing out all the makeup I was just keeping it because some were special edition packaging :) x

  2. I only ever really throw out mascara, I never throw out powder based products unless they get that oily look on the top of them. I can understand how liquid products can expire but I'm not convinced about powders if you use them hygenical

    1. I definitely think powders are the best to take care of in terms of makeup sanitisers and making sure makeup brushes are cleaned on a regular basis. When it comes to my powder eyeshadows I don't take the chance with my sensitive eyes :( x

  3. I take texture and smell of powder products (and admittedly lipsticks) into consideration more than I do the stamp on the back. I can't keep track of 'em anyways. Foundations get tossed when they change, as do other cream products - although I held on to one eyeliner for a long time, while waiting for a substitute to present itself.

    1. I admit that I find it hard to keep track too! So much makeup and always trying new things can make it difficult :) Lipsticks smell horrible when they go off or is it just me that noticed that, discovered that after keeping one for 3yrs just for the pretty packaging lol

  4. if i haven't used something in a while i pass them along to my sister or nieces. everything else i slowly use up. so i never feel like i have make up long enough for it to "go off". i have eyeshadow palettes that are about maybe 6 or 7 years old but even though i don't use them i want to keep them. they still look in great condition though, and i probably could still use them.

    1. I pass mine on to my mum or friends to try now. I have kept special edition packaging that is years and years old. I have one particular palette that is well out of date but their are 2 shades in it that I adore for special occasions and I still ashamedly use them haha x


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