All cosmetics have a shelf-life, including make-up cosmetics. Products should not be used beyond that, to avoid contamination and infection. This is certainly more important for make-up cosmetics for the eyes. Going past shelf-life date can affect the stability of the product. Our Ayurvedic skin and hair care cosmetics have a shelf life of 3 years from date of manufacture, while our make-up cosmetics have a shelf life of 2 years. Some make-up cosmetics have an even shorter shelf life.
In general, in the market you make find that many make-up items may not carry an expiry date, so you need an idea when it is time to change your make-up. Cosmetics are not only exposed to dust, but also mix with the natural oils of the skin through their applicators. The way you store your cosmetics can affect the shelf-life. The look and smell of the product is also important. If a lipstick smells rancid, it means that the oils may have separated. If your mascara is dry or too sticky, it means it’s time to get another one. It’s always better to practice strict rules of hygiene, not just with cosmetics, but also with applicators. The time to change your make-up is according to the item’s shelf-life, which is as follows:
Foundation: Change water based foundations after a year, while cream based foundations may last longer – for about 18 months.
Powder: Loose powder can last for two to three years, but compact powder lasts for two years and may sometimes become too dry even before that time. If compact powder cracks or crumbles, it’s time to change it.
Blushers and Eye Shadows have the same shelf life: Powder blushers and powder shadows last for two years, while cream blushers and shadows last for about 18 months. If you find the colour of the blusher or shadow has changed, it is time to change it. Mascara lasts for three to six months. Actually, the pumping action of the applicator brush of roll-on mascaras is said to make them more vulnerable to bacteria.
Eyeliners have a shelf life of two years. So do lip-liners. If you use eye pencils, sharpen them regularly. This keeps you safe from contamination.
Lipsticks also last for two years, but lip gloss lasts for less time – 12 to 18 months. As already mentioned, if there is any change in colour, look or fragrance of the product, the stability of the formulation may be affected. So it’s best to stop using them.
If you find your mascara has become dry even before the use-by date, do not add water or cream to soften it. If you have an eye infection, throw away your eyeliner, mascara and eye pencils, even if they are not past their shelf life date.