If you have to wipe the clumps off the brush of your favorite mascara, it’s time to toss and replace. If you have to shake the tube of your liquid lipstick before application, it’s time to toss and replace. If your foundation has separated colors when you pump it onto your Beauty Blender, it’s time to toss and replace!

Fact: makeup has a shelf life. The biggest mistake most of us make is only replacing products once we’ve used them up. In reality, it can sometimes take years to do this, and by then our products are way past their expiration date. That lip color that sits in your bag 364 days out of the year can probably just get tossed. We need to get rid of the “but if I ever go to an event like this, then I can finally use this product” mindset. You’ll have to go to an awful lot of spring weddings to fully use that tube of peachy pink liquid lipstick. Truth is, you’ve probably been sitting on an expired product for a while. So here are the basics for tossing and replacing: when should you ideally replace your products, what are the signs your products are no longer working to their best ability, and what can you replace with if you’re looking to switch it up?


Powders: Blush, Bronzer, Foundation, Eyeshadow, Highlighter

Lifetime Expectancy: 2 Years

What Does an Expired Product Look Like?: The original color may start to darken and cake up, especially upon application. Product that is hard to pick up on a brush is a clear indicator that an expiration date is just around the corner. When the product ages it becomes harder, making it difficult to apply or blend. These products, despite being hard, are also much more likely to crumble and break, leaving you with a huge mess.

Your New Favorite Product: Bronzed Beauty Duo: The best of both worlds! This duo will give you a strategically sun-kissed glow and a healthy looking edge while smoothing and brightening the skin with a highlight.


Creams: Eyeshadow, Blush, Foundation

Lifetime Expectancy: 12-18 Months

What Does an Expired Product Look Like?: Cream products are breeding grounds for bacteria buildup, which can be a huge irritant for your skin. The older it is, the more bacteria may be present. Older products may begin to develop a residue, or a chalky layer on top. Cream products also have a tendency to dry out and harden, making it near impossible to grab any product on your brush. Good luck getting an expired cream product onto your face — time to replace!

Your New Favorite Product: Cream to Powder Foundation: This buildable foundation will give you a natural, even finish that softens the appearance of any fine lines or wrinkles, while transforming from a cream to a silky smooth powder.


Liquid Foundation

Lifetime Expectancy: 6 months (Pumpable Foundation: 1 Year)

What Does an Expired Product Look Like?: We’ll be honest — expired liquid foundation is pretty gross. It’s dry, clumpy, and often has separated colors. The biggest tell-tale sign if you can see inside your bottle or tube will be oil rising to the top. If you can’t see inside, you surely can’t miss it once you apply it. Expired foundation often leads to a streaky finish and uneven application.

Your New Favorite Product: Natural Foundation: Organic and Aloe-based, this foundation is infused with a number of natural herbs that will leave your skin begging for more. Besides improving texture and appearance, this foundation conceals any imperfections while conditioning your skin at the same time.


Lips: Lipstick, Lipgloss, Liquid Lipstick

Lifetime Expectancy: 2 Years

What Does an Expired Product Look Like?: You’ll begin to notice your lipstick isn’t in great condition anymore when it gets a hard surface. Expired lipsticks dry out and will no longer apply evenly. When you find yourself dragging your lipstick and getting a crayon-like texture, time to toss. Lipgloss and liquid lipstick will also have the telling sign of separating colors, that might not go away even with a solid shaking of your tube. Congealed, clumpy gloss or liquid even upon application may also indicate it’s time to toss.

Your New Favorite Product: Liquid Matte Lipstick in “Bar None”: We believe this is the color for everybody. Lightweight, long wearing, and pigmented. A comfortable matte lip with added moisture to prevent cracking is just what everybody needs, right?


Lip Liners and Pencil Eyeliner:

Lifetime Expectancy: 2 Years

What Does an Expired Product Look Like?: The good news is since these are relatively solid products, it takes longer for them to completely dry out. But with age, small beads will form on the tip of your liners. Sharpeners, however, may extend the life of your liners because they’ll remove the old, dried-up surface. Both of these products are usually wax-based and touch sensitive areas, which can breed bacteria, but this can also be solved by the use of a sharpener as well. (Takeaway: sharpeners are your friend.) However, once this trick no longer works to extend your shelf life and the product is completely dried, it’s time to toss and replace.

Your New Favorite Product: Pressed Cake: This pressed eyeliner will extend past the life of any gel or pencil eyeliners you own. Create an elongated cat eye or a thin natural line to fill the base line of your lashes!


Liquid or Gel Eyeliner:

Lifetime Expectancy: 3 Months

What Does an Expired Product Look Like?: Bacteria can build up in this wet environment, so you’ll want to be cautious of how you apply these products in order to extend their life — but you’ll still want to switch them out regularly. Expiration clues are a no-brainer: as soon as it becomes too hard to easily apply a straight line, it’s time to toss. Application will be thick, chunky, and congealed. Not a great look when you’re trying to perfect that slick cat eye, is it?

Your New Favorite Product: No Time Line Brush: This will be your best friend when applying gel eyeliner. The fine tip allows for ultimate precision, so you can achieve your desired wing or thickness.



Lifetime Expectancy: 3 Months

What Does an Expired Product Look Like?: 3 words: clumpy, dry, and flaky. If you find yourself adding a few drops of water just to apply your mascara better, it’s definitely time to toss it. When air gets pushed into your mascara tube, it speeds up the  drying and expiration process. Bacteria that transfers from your eye to your brush can also make your mascara go bad, and even cause infections. Avoid sharing to extend the shelf life of your mascara and stick to a strict 3 month replacement plan.

Your New Favorite Product: Volumizing Mascara: Since mascara is so frequently replaced, play around with different kinds! You may enjoy this one, proven to pump up the volume and lengthen those lashes with this intense black! Natural waxes and conditioning cotton extract creates fuller, bolder lashes.


Nail Polish:

Lifetime Expectancy: 2 Years

What Does an Expired Product Look Like?: Separating colors are a huge indicator that your nail polish might be done. Color tends to settle on the bottom when your product isn’t used for a while. If you shake the bottle and there’s still two different colors floating around, it’s time to toss and replace.

Your New Favorite Product: LuLu Nail Polish in “Secret Love”: This dusty blush pink will add a feminine touch to your nails, with an opaque, pigmented coat. It’ll match your Bar None-colored lips, too!


Tools: Beauty Blenders, Eyeshadow Brushes

Lifetime Expectancy: 3 Months

What Does an Expired Product Look Like?: You may find your Beauty Blender has some dark spots on it: that’s mold, ladies. As soon as you see these pop up, it’s time to replace. Makeup brushes should also be washed regularly of course, but once you find it your brushes are stained and it’s getting harder and harder to get the pigment off, it may be time to toss and replace.

Your New Favorite Product: Beauty Blender: Foundation application doesn’t get much better than a Beauty Blender. In this case, we recommend just regularly replacing your blender!

Products have an expiration date for a reason. Besides losing the ability to apply your products effectively, you also run the risk of worsening your skin or eyes due to bacteria buildup. Condense your makeup to products you know you’ll use regularly in order to avoid waste, and ensure that you’ll fully use your product before you replace it. Imagine how much money you’ve wasted on products you never use and have expired!
Although it may be difficult to part with some, the good news is tossing old products often gives you the opportunity to try something new and completely upgrade your beauty regimen! In the years you’ve stuck with that same old mascara, new products may have come out that you’ve been harshly ignoring in favor of your reliable go-to. Instead of simply replacing your favs with a fresh version, try to broaden your horizons a bit and take the chance on something new — you might just find your favorite product! So go ahead, it’s time to toss and replace!

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