At some point of our life, we might be living under a rock, assuming that makeup has no expiry date. But while that sounds like a fairy tale you’d want to definitely live in, the truth is always bitter. Your makeup expires, period.

That did sound like a harsh truth punched straight in your face but everything has an end date and separation is inevitable. To help to tone down the mini-attack that you might have just felt, let’s back evidence with facts and clear all misconceptions.

Marie Claire stated, “According to a British study some women keep their make-up for up to six years after their expiry date, and 70% of women never clean their makeup brushes.”

Before you dive deeper into this investigation though, know that the culprit is a simple criminal that goes with the name tag of ‘bacteria.’ Because you use makeup all over your face and keep reusing it, it is only a matter of time before bacteria start colonizing over the makeup. This is due to the bacterial nature of growing everywhere and anywhere and jumping across boundaries so that they are omnipresent on all of the makeup items.

Some of the most significant signs that can help you in detecting makeup expiry are:

  • Change in the color of the makeup item
  • Alteration in the texture of the item under inspection
  • Foul smell raising the ante of its game
  • Chalky layers
  • Clumps alert
  • Appearance of white spots

The first time you notice any of these signs on your makeup items, you’ll have to encourage yourself into believing that it is the end of the product. Some of the makeup expiry signs on the basic makeup essentials are presented below:


The rule of thumb shrieks to get your attention: no same mascara tube after three months. This is the standard time you can rely on a single tube of mascara or liquid eyeliner. Since these products are applied on your eyelid, there is no way that you should take risks, as that’s the first step to eye infections.

The maximum you can gamble with this due death date is a month more but after that, you will have to throw away the mascara. Other signs of expiry include foul smell and drying-up liquid. If the liquid starts clumping and drying before three months of purchase, you can always place the tube in warm water and make it work. But over the three months threshold, you shouldn’t try to resuscitate the mascara back to life.


For the lipstick lovers out there, there is good news. Lipsticks tend to have a long life of about 2 years. So you can fall deeply in love with a lip color and depend your life on it. However, make sure to not give your heart away in the process. This is because lipsticks make contact with your lips so bacteria are bound to dance into the surface of the lip shade too. Eventually, it’s a bang and an expiry data strikes.

Lipsticks can also expire earlier then 2 years if you obsessively worship them and use them a number of times during the day. Telltale signs of lipstick expiry include a shady texture, waxy or foul smell, or dry spells taking over the product.

Eye Shadows, Blush-on and Other Face Powders

These products also have a lifeline of 2 years. But you shouldn’t by any means try to hang out with the same blush or powder after the dreadful time because these are applied on sensitive zones like the t-zone (cheeks) and eyelids respectively.

You don’t want to be suicidal with skin infection so toss these products away when you find them getting dry, turning caky, smell strange, or have a grey layering form atop of them.

Nail Polish

There’s no rocket science in this one. Expiry signs for nail shades include a change in texture, color or the liquid starts separating. When shaking the product won’t solve the problem, you should be able to guess that you are past its usage period.

Additionally, you can’t use nail polish longer than 2 years otherwise chemicals from the paint can dry your nail and damage them.