How long can make up and brushes/tools be kept??

A lot of us hate tossing things away, especially make up! So, how long can you keep your make up and the brushes and tools you use to put on your make up? This is a very important issue, especially if you have sensitive skin and eyes!

Liquid Foundation
Lasts: One year 
Toss it when: The formula thickens and smells different or separates.
To make the most of it: Keep glass bottles away from sunlight and put on the cap right away each time after you're done with it. Having a bottle with a pump, so that the air can't contaminate your foundation, can make your foundation last longer!

Lasts: Two years 
Toss it when: It doesn't go on as smoothly as it used to or the smell/look is off. 
To make the most of it: After a month's use, chop off the tip and dip into the untouched lipstick with a brush. You can also put your lipsticks in the refrigerator when it's hot, so that they won't melt!

Lasts: 18-24 months 
Toss it when: It starts separating or the smell is off. 
To make the most of it: Always apply it on clean lips! Wipe off your lips after lunch/dinner and then apply your lipgloss! Otherwise you'll get all that gross stuff that's left on your lips inside your lipgloss tube through the applicator.

Lasts: 3-6 months 
Toss it when: It takes 10 swipes to get anything on your lashes or it's clumpy looking or it starts flaking on you.
To make the most of it: Close the tube tight to prevent dry-out and don't pump the brush inside the tube, this allows air to enter the tube and dry out your mascara much quicker.

Lasts: One year 
Toss it when: The texture changes, or there's a mildew-y smell coming from the brush. 
To make the most of it: Wipe brush applicators dry after every use.

Cream Blush
Lasts: One year 
Toss it when: You get a flush look that looks oily, not dewy or the product in the pan looks disgusting, oily. 
To make the most of it: Swipe a new sponge over the surface so you get a clean layer of color each time.

Pencil Eyeliner
Lasts: 12 to 18 months 
Toss it when: The tip becomes waxy and it doesn't apply smoothly anymore. 
To make the most of it: Sharpen the pencil after every use. You can also put your eyeliners in the refrigerator when it's hot, so that they won't melt!

Liquid Eyeliner
Lasts: 3 to 6 months 
Toss it when: It stops applying smoothly and the product on the brush looks goopy and disgusting.
To make the most of it: Keep the product away from the sun and make sure you close the packaging really tight each time.

Powder Eyeshadow
Lasts: More than two years 
Toss it when: The shimmer no longer sparkles or the matte finish just looks chalky. 
To make the most of it: Buy a smaller pan — instead of a suitcaseful of shadow — for a more manageable amount.

Lasts: 2 years 
Toss it when: It doesn't provide a nice, silky, matte finish anymore and it looks chalky.
To make the most of it: Wash very frequently those powder puffs included in the packaging that you use to freshen up your face when you're outside, because the oils from your face that you transfer to the powder with these puffs will make your powder go bad quicker.

Last: It depends on the quality of the brush and the way you treat the brush.
Toss them when: They start falling apart, shedding a lot, becoming stratchy or when they don't apply the products smoothly anymore.
To make the most of them: Gently wash them with a mild shampoo (e.g. baby shampoo) and lukewarm water every 1-2 weeks (depending on how often you use them) and spot clean them with a brush cleaner after each use, especially brushes used with cream products (foundation, concealer etc) to avoid build-up ! 

Blending Wedges
Last: 1 month
Toss them when: They start falling apart or looking dirty, even though you've just washed them.
To make the most of them: Wash them immediately after using them to minimize staining.

Source (I've added lots of stuff to this article myself though) : Lifestyle

You should always follow the manufacturer's shelf life expectancy date for each product (it's usually on the packaging of the product with a number and the letter M next to that number), these are just some general tips! :)


  1. makes you wonder why people stock up so much when products go bad. I keep things for as long as I see fit (buyer beware type thing) if you don't open it too the life is longer. And if it still works, it should be okay.

  2. I frequently clean up my drawers! :) Yeah I got a couple of brand new mascaras now that I haven't opened yet, because I got other mascaras open now and I don't want the 2 brand new mascaras to go bad, before I get to use them! ;) Something might go bad before or after expiration date, so if it still looks/smells/works ok, then it should be ok! :)

  3. Good post Stav! I treat make up the same way I treat food....if it looks or smells funny, bin it! Xxx

  4. Nice post! But I don't understand why everybody think that mascaras last 3 months. I have tried many mascaras and they say they last for 6 months. You can see how long a product lasts if you look under the ingredients, there is usually an image like an opened round box and a number followed by the letter M. This nymber is the months that lasts.

  5. Thank you! :) I know the M thing, I got a Rimmel mascara that says 12M! I've heard anything from 3-6 months for mascara! I personally toss them when they become clumpy and start flaking on me,whether it's 4 months or 10 months after I've opened them! ;)

  6. So, maybe I should change it from 3 months to 3-6 months! Thanks for the heads up! :)