Today I have a guest post for you from Gwen Lewis, a writer who has been in the makeup and fashion industry for years. Gwen did another guest post back in 2015 with some tips for getting your makeup to last longer throughout the day. Now she's bringing you a guide for spring cleaning your beauty products - and if you're like me, you have more than a few things in your makeup collection that probably need to be tossed! So enjoy the post, and I'll be back after I clear out my makeup stash...
The Complete Guide to Spring Cleaning Your Beauty Products
by Gwen Lewis
The other day I opened my makeup drawer - rummaging around to find a hair elastic - and kind of realized that a few of my products have been living in that drawer for a little too long. As a contact lens wearer, I am way too familiar with the germs and bacteria that make-up can harbor...and, I’ll admit, I learned my germ lesson the hard way.
I began plucking out eye shadow palettes, mirrors, old mascara. Some of it, I couldn’t believe I still had in my possession…like dated old hues of purples and plums. And then there was my old favorite shadow palette. It was a holiday gift. I felt so in style with my Stila. The plastic shadow trio once held my nearest, dearest eye shadow color Kitten. The sweet pale pink Kitten was long gone. It purred no more. All that was left was a muted mauve and a pan of sparkly brown shadow that I never wear. Still, I couldn’t toss it. I know. I know.
However, I managed to toss many yucky, crusty old worn out products. It was a productive cleaning session, although I still need to work up the strength to toss out that Stila.
While I have purged my beauty drawer, many of you dear readers need to do the same. Those old palettes, mascaras, lippies and creams aren’t doing your skin any favors and could be leading to skin issues. Or worse—eye issues.
I’ll make the beauty spring cleaning session a bit easier. Here is a list of the most popular beauty products and when they should be cleaned, purged or replaced.
Eyeshadow: According to Good Housekeeping, powder eyeshadow can be used for two years before tossing. However, throw away cream shadows after six months. If you suffer from eye irritation or an eye infection, you need to toss those items NOW.
Mascara: The experts everywhere say to buy a new tube at least after three months. Again, though, if the product is irritating the eyes or if you have an eye infection…TOSS IT!
Powder: Obviously, file powder in the round file if it’s crumbling or broken. Otherwise, replace it after two years. Cream powders only last 18 months.
Blush: Powder blushes can hang out in the drawer for up to two years. Replace creams after 18 months.
Lipstick: The magic age is a year. This pains me! Goodbye, sweet tubes of tinted lip balm and matte lip pencils. Darn it, Cruella, I just can’t quit you!
Nail polish: Like lipstick, the experts advise to toss bottles after a year. I, however, still have a bottle of Chanel’s navy blue Ciel de Nuit circa 1997. And you can pry it from my cold dead hands!
Make-up Brushes: Yes, please clean make-up brushes. Lauren Conrad advises using baby shampoo and warm water to give brushes a new life. If you’re suffering from any skin issues, clean brushes frequently. Otherwise, try to give make-up brushes a good wash at least once a month.
Hairbrush: Keep hairbrushes and combs clean by using a toothbrush to help nudge out the little hairs and then scrub with a gentle shampoo...or grab a dollop of your normal shampoo. Clean brushes weekly or monthly, depending on use.
Jewelry: Think the only beauty items you need to clean are the items that go on your face? Think again! Earrings and even rings can harbor yucky skin irritants. Clean earrings (and those piercing holes) with witch hazel or peroxide. For rings, use a cleaner formulated for rings or jewelry or have the ring professionally cleaned. Please avoid ultrasonic cleaners, however, as they aren’t recommended by most jewelers. Want a simple safe everyday solution? I use toothpaste on my not-so-valuable rings, and, yes, it works well!
Daylight Savings Time isn’t too far off. On the day we spring forward, set a reminder to do a little spring beauty cleaning. Just don’t be surprised if a few of those old items tug at your beauty heartstrings a bit. Maybe I’ll even finish my beauty drawer clean-up by tossing out my beloved Kitten-less eye shadow palette. Or maybe not.
Gwen Lewis is a writer who lives in California. She has been in the makeup and fashion industry for years and loves writing on the topic to give tips from experience. In her free time she loves to stay active and has just taken on learning how to surf.
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