Once you find the mascara of your dreams, you probably flick it on every single morning without hesitation. But babe, when was the last time you replaced it?
All beauty products, including mascara, need to be replaced every so often. In fact, using old mascara can result in some… well, very unpleasant side effects. Let’s talk about when to replace your mascara and what could happen if you use expired products so that you can keep your lashes poppin’ and your eyes safe all year round.
The Two to Three Month Rule
The rule of thumb for mascara is that it needs to be replaced every two to three months, starting from when you open the mascara. If you’re storing unopened mascara, it will remain stable for a couple of years, so no need to worry about your makeup stockpile.
Each time you pull the wand out of the mascara tube, air enters the tube and can cause bacteria to grow. This air also alters the formula of the mascara and dries it out, which can lead to clumpy, chunky lashes which are decidedly not the lashes of your dreams.
We want our lashes to look longer and fuller when we use mascara, not clumpy and dry. Stay on top of your period after opening dates to keep your lashes looking their best!
To help remember to toss your mascara, use a dry erase marker to write the period after opening date on your bathroom mirror. You can also add a reminder to your calendar or your phone to reorder. It’s all about planning ahead, babe.
Am I Wasting Makeup?
We get why you’re worried, but no! If you’re using the same mascara every day, you won’t have much left after two to three months anyway. It’s just the natural lifecycle of your mascara.
If you’re just an occasional mascara wearer, consider buying smaller tubes or travel-sized tubes to create less waste. Kaja Beauty’s Wink Lash Trio comes with three full-sized mascaras, so you could use them wisely to make sure you’re not wasting any.
#Kutie Tip: Once you find a mascara you like, pay attention to sales! If your fave mascara goes on sale, stock up. Keeping an extra tube or two will allow you to easily replace an old tube without being tempted to use expired mascara.
The Dark Side of Mascara
No one wants clumpy or ineffective mascara, but that’s not the biggest problem that expired mascara can cause. The bacteria in old mascara can result in eye infections and health problems.
Various microorganisms live on our faces and our eyelids, each time we use mascara, these organisms transfer from our face to the wand and back into the mascara tube. It can lead to some pretty gross side effects, like styes and infections.
If you notice anything weird with your eyes, make an appointment with your eye doctor immediately and take a little break from wearing makeup.
Replace any eye makeup after an eye infection, regardless of how long it has been opened. Reusing makeup after an eye infection can reinfect your eye again.
Signs It’s Time To Move On
Take a deep breath—no need to panic about your makeup! However, now that you know all the scary things that could happen, you might be feeling a little nervous about your fave mascara.
Luckily, there are a few signs you can look out for that indicate your mascara’s gone bad.
As a general rule, nothing with a funky smell should go on your face. This rule extends to mascara, so if the smell seems off, stop using it.
If your mascara seems sticky or clumpy, it’s time to open a new tube. The mascara should glide one smoothly and give you long, stunning lashes.
Your mascara might be black or blue, and your primer might be clear or white. If the color changes from the original color, it’s time to grab a new bottle.
What About the Rest of My Makeup?
Mascara has one of the shortest shelf-lives of makeup. Due to its proximity to your eye, it needs to be replaced more often than other makeup. Pay attention to expiration dates and replace your makeup on the following dates:
- Replace eyeliner every two to three months.
- Eyeshadow and blush can last for up to two years.
- Foundation and face primer can last for up to two years.
- Replace lipstick after a year.
Like mascara, you can store other unopened makeup at room temperature for a couple of years, so it’s okay to stock up and keep extras on hand. Once you open a new piece of makeup, note the date and when it needs to be replaced.
Go Clean Out Your Makeup Bag!
Mascara needs to be replaced every two to three months. You should also stop using mascara if the smell or texture seems off. Using expired mascara will ruin its effectiveness, as well as potentially cause eye infections.
What does that mean for you? Go clean out your makeup bag and toss that old makeup now!