Beauty products have expiry dates too, and now we feel gross

3 min read

The lifespan of your favourite lipsticks, lashes and liners isn’t forever *sniff*

We’ve all got those beauty products that we’ve had since, forever. The reliable mascara we picked up three – or was it four? – years ago, that Dior lip that’s way too expensive to wear to anything but date night and the shadow palette that’s probably older than your dog.  

But sadly for us (and our concealer collection) even the most prestige of make-up can get heaps old and gross over time. Using an out-of-date anything on your face can have serious side effects (conjunctivitis, anyone?), not to mention the fact that it’s probably not doing its job anymore.

Because we don’t want you to break out in a rash anytime soon, here’s our guide of expiration dates you should probably keep in mind.

Concealer, one year

To get the perfect buildable coverage these guy have to be silky-as, which is why using one that’s looking a little cakey or dried out might just aggravate the breakout you were trying to conceal in the first place. A year is a pretty long life for something that you use every day though, right?


Foundation, one year

Same deal with concealer – texture is everything – which is why keeping your foundation fresh is up there with air, H20 and colour matching (read: essential to life). Most liquid bases contain a bunch of oils and hydrating agents that tend to expire after a year, however you could get away with using a good quality power product for another 12 months. Just do us (and your skin) a favour though, and wash your brushes monthly.


Brow pencil, two years

Sharpening these guys regularly will keep them around for longer, because the act of shaving a layer off removes any bacteria sitting on the tip. If yours comes with a lid, keep it on, always.


Eyeshadow, six months (creams) to two years (powders)

The hydrating agents hanging out in your favourite cream-based shadows provides moisture for nasty bacteria to thrive on, which is why their lifespan is a lot less than your powdery palettes. Six months for creams and two years for everything else.


Mascara, six months   

To avoid eye infections/clumpy coverage you really do need to invest in a new wand every six months. Hot tip: prolong your mascara’s lifespan by NEVER pumping the wand ­– this dries it out and exposes it to bacteria in the air.


Lipstick, two years

Even though your favourite lippie probably contains a bunch of moisturisers and hydrating agents, it’s lifespan is considerably longer than a lot of other products – as long as you look after it. Always popping its lid on, using a cotton bud to apply it when you can and occasionally cleaning the top layer with a make-up wipe will minimise any nasties.


We feel a big make-up bag clean up coming on.

Images: Getty, Giphy

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Written By Cassie Steel

That’s a lot of binge-watching.

They’ve discovered our weakness. 

The actor was 41 years old.