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Eyeshadow: 24 months

If your eyeshadow texture has changed from a buttery consistency to a chalky variation, it’s time to toss it. A good rule is if you haven’t worn the colour in two years, it’s time to let go – if the ’90s taught us anything it’s that blue eyeshadow really isn’t forever.

From mascara to lipstick: Your complete guide to makeup expiry dates

We’re all guilty of finding items in our fridges that are well past their best before date. While some people abide by the stamped dates like the gospel, others have no fear chowing down on that week-old yogurt — but what about your beauty products? Did you know mascara, moisturizer and your favourite shampoo all expire? While the side effects of using your most-loved products after their expiry aren’t exactly life-threatening, it’s something to consider when you’re applying that eyeliner six months after purchase.

A little-known fact that most beauty lovers don’t realize is that all beauty products are marked with expiry dates. You’ve seen the symbol countless times, but may not know what exactly it’s telling you. The symbol looks like a moisturizer container and has a number in the middle which represents how many months the product is good after opened. It can be hard to keep track of expiration if you collect beauty products so a pro tip is to mark the abbreviation of the month the product was opened alongside this symbol as a reminder to swap out products once their expiry month has passed.

If you aren’t sure whether a product is expired and the symbol is no longer legible, you can often tell by the product’s application. If the colour is fading, the texture has changed or its application is clumpy/chalky, these are all telltale signs that your products are past their prime.

Another thing to be mindful of in your beauty routine is bacteria growth on your favourite beauty products. While a product may have only been opened three months earlier it could be contaminated based on how its handled and used. It’s important to wash your hands before handling beauty products to avoid bacteria growth, and if you use brushes, make sure to regularly clean them, helping avoid contamination. Powder products have a better shelf life as they are less likely to promote contamination because bacteria can’t grow without water.

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