For plenty of women, putting on makeup is part of their daily routine.
But, cosmetics can be pricey, and while they come with an expiration date, some people choose to ignore it and use the product anyway.
However, it's important to take their recommended lifespan into account, because as one woman knows, it can lead to disastrous consequences.
The Expired Mascara
Shirley Potter decided to use a tube of mascara she found in her drawer after 20 years. Unbeknownst to her, its shelf life had long since expired.
The grandmother from Adelaide, Australia then developed an eye infection, and was told by her doctors that she'd lose her eyesight within three years.
New Idea magazine’s fashion and beauty director Sally Nolan said it's crucial to be aware of the expiration date.
"A general rule of thumb is that [products] that you put around your eyes, they generally last about three to six months," she told Yahoo!7.
"Foundations and things like that, you can get about a year to 18 months out of them," Nolan continued.
According to dermatologist Dr. Warren Weightman, while these cases are rare, the makeup industry needs to have better regulations in place.
"I think part of the problem is that if you look at a lot of cosmetics they don’t have expiry dates on them or they’re not clear or they’ve been rubbed off, so you may not know when the product expires,” he told Yahoo!7.
"A lot of products come from overseas where there’s no need to put expiry dates on and it’s very hard to police products from overseas," Weightman said.
How Long Will My Makeup Last?
While one makeup brand may have different expiration dates on their various products compared to similar cosmetics, they typically average around the same timespan.
While each item must label their lifespan on its packaging, here is a guide to follow on the most popular products:
- Mascara – 3 to 6 months
- Liquid Foundation and Concealer – 6 to 12 months
- Cream Blush and Eyeshadow – 6 to 12 months
- Powder Blush and Eyeshadow – 1 year
- Eyeliner and Lipliner Pencils – Up to 2 years
- Liquid Eyeliner – 6 months or less
- Lipstick – 1 year
- Moisturizers and Skin Care – 1 to 2 years
But, if you properly take care of your cosmetics, keeping them in your makeup bag for an extra few months won't be the end of the world.
“If you take care of your products, using them for just a few extra months beyond the expiry date will most likely be safe," Dr. Jason Rivers, a clinical professor at the University of British Columbia said in an interview with Women's Health.
To prolong the lifespan of your makeup, Health Canada recommends you always wash your hands before you apply your products, don't share them with anyone, don't add water or saliva to dilute your makeup, and keep them away from direct heat or sunlight.
But, if you notice your makeup starts to smell or there is an obvious texture change, you need to toss it out.
Expired mascara isn't the only health risk you should keep your eyes out for. Here are more hazards you should be aware of:
- Multiple Heart And Blood Pressure Meds Recalled For Cancer Risk
- Father Warns About The Risks Of Drinking Cold Water When You're Overheated
- Your Tea Towels Might Be Making You Sick But Here's How To Prevent It