Friday, December 30, 2011

Organize for the New Year {Shelf life for Beauty Items}

So the first room that I have decided to start with is the bathroom, well bathrooms!! I chose this one honestly because being sick this past week and trying to find the Nyquil and Vapor Rub and I could not, it made me realize that I needed to get this room done ASAP. While in my digging around and going through items it made me wonder how long you should keep some of the items that you might have in your bathroom, medicine cabinet and makeup bag, etc.

I have done some research for you guys and here is a list of what I can find. Also what I will tell you, if you did not know this already, is that some brands for example Clinque actually puts on the back of the packing the length of time you should keep the item once you have started using it. On my foaming face cleanser it has a little picture that says 24 in it. So I have 24 months to use it!

Lip & Eye Pencils

Shelf life: One year, with good care. They're wax-based (as opposed to water- or oil-based), which makes them less friendly to bacteria.
When to toss: If the pencil becomes dry or crumbly. 

Lipstick & Lip Gloss

Shelf life: Eight months to a year.
When to toss: If your gloss has changed consistency, or if your lipstick has a funny smell or is hard, waxy, or too difficult to apply.

Pressed & Loose Powders

Shelf life: Pressed powders will last between three and six months; loose powders (even eye shadows) are good for a year.
When to toss: If the color has changed, or if the powder has gotten wet (and it's not a formula that can be used wet or dry).

Creams & Liquids

Shelf life: Liquid foundations generally last between three and six months; cream formulas, four to six.
When to toss: If you see a change in the shade or consistency.
[Note] Keep an eye on your cream concealer -- if you're using it to cover up acne, chances are it's full of bacteria. Shave off the top layer occasionally to keep it clean.


Shelf life: Every five weeks -- mascara is the weakest link in your beauty arsenal.
When to toss: If it's dried out or clumpy, or when you notice a change from the original smell (usually a strong, chemical odor).

Brushes & Tools

Shelf life: If you take care of them, brushes made from natural hair can last five years or more.
When to toss: For natural brushes, get a new one when the hairs are breaking away at the base or fall out onto your face as you use it. Synthetic brushes should be tossed when they fray or lose shape.
[Note] Why keep your brushes clean? Because it helps extend the life of your other products. Diligent cleaning will slow down the growth of bacteria.


Shelf life: Cleansers are effective for 6 to 12 months; toner, for one year.
[Note] You can prolong the life of your jarred goods by using a disposable plastic spoon instead of your fingers to grab a gob.

Lotions & Moisturizers

Shelf life: Facial moisturizers are good for 6 to 12 months after being opened but will survive for two years unopened. Facial moisturizers that have added ingredients -- like antioxidants or vitamins A, C, or E -- expire more quickly because they're sensitive to light. Body lotions last up to three years.
When to toss: If you see a change in color, consistency, or smell, or if you have no memory of purchasing the item.

Hair Products

Shelf life: Even opened, conditioner will be good for two years; all other hair products (shampoo, gel, spray, etc.) will last for up to three.

Loofahs & Puffs

Shelf life: Because bacteria builds up in all of those nooks and crannies, you have less than a month for a loofah and about eight weeks for a puff. The good news: Bath gel and body wash are good for three years.


Shelf life: Check the expiration date (usually on the back of the bottle). If there is none, toss it after a year, because exposure to extreme heat (say, at the beach or in the glove compartment of your car) will degrade the active ingredients.
When to toss: To make sure your SPF is in full effect, buy a new bottle every summer. Same goes for self-tanning products, whether or not they contain SPF.


Shelf life: Your bottle of Eau de Expensive will last indefinitely, but be aware that the fragrance might change over time. 

When to toss: If you do not like the scent anymore as the exposure to the air will actually change the composition of the perfume!

Nail Polish

Shelf life: Unopened, it can last indefinitely, but opened bottles will get funky after about two years.
When to toss: Once the texture gets too mucky or the polish starts to separate, creating a clear liquid layer visible on top.

Beauty 911

Three ways to extend the life of your products:
1. Wash your hands before applying makeup.
2. Keep your beauty booty away from heat and moisture. Instead of storing your stuff in the bathroom (where these factors can be constants), keep your makeup in a dresser drawer. Yes, you'll have to move everything over to the mirror when you need to get pretty, but the cool, dry, dark space is ideal.
3. Take a look at all of your loot every four to five weeks, even if you purchased your cosmetics at different times. Smell everything and be aware of any changes in texture, color, or consistency. And if you're fretting about having to throw out a bunch at once, think of it this way: You'll have made room for some cool new beauty tools.
 If there are things that are in your cabinet, that just did not work for you or you did not like and it is something that is in a pump bottle or the items in the containers have not actually been touched by you then you can always give them to someone else. My babysitter is about to get a basket full of stuff from me! :)  I will be finishing up the bathrooms this weekend and then I will post my before and after pictures, as I might be doing a little changing up of the decorations a bit as well!!


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