It may seem small, but paying attention to the shelf life and expiration date of your cosmetic and personal care products is important.
The shelf life of a personal care product is the period of time a manufacturer recommends their product is best to use. Like the food in your refrigerator, it’s important to take certain precautions in order to keep your cosmetics from degrading faster.
Here are a few helpful tips to keep in mind as you spring clean your make-up bag and personal care products collection:
- Throw away products that smell bad or have changed color
- Don’t dilute products with water or re-use applicators without washing them, because those actions could allow potentially harmful microorganisms to contaminate your products
- Don’t share cosmetics
- Tightly close containers and jars after use
- Don’t sample cosmetic products unless clean applicators are used
- Replace applicators frequently or use disposable make up applicators
Shelf life should be taken as a general rule of thumb, so don’t ignore signs of spoilage in your cosmetic just because it has not reached its expiration date yet. When deciding whether or not your cosmetics are still safe to use, be sure to read the instructions on the packaging and look for signs of potential contamination to help keep your products safe to use.
However, your products likely won’t spoil right away either, as cosmetics often have helpful preservatives which can keep certain bacteria and other potentially harmful microorganisms out of your products.
Want more tips on cosmetic safety? Here’s a helpful infographic about The Do's and Don’ts of Cosmetic Care.