You’ve likely noticed expiration dates on the labels of some of your favorite cosmetic and skin care products — but do these dates really matter?\nWe’ll discuss how to check if beauty products are expired and what to do if they are. We want every consumer to be informed and take the best possible care of their products, ensuring you maintain glowing, radiant, healthy skin.\nLearn about why your products expire and how to find beauty product expiration dates in this thorough guide. \n \nDo Beauty Products Expire?\nIf you’ve never thought about how long you should keep your beauty products, it’s important to do so. \nDo beauty products expire? The answer is yes. Any cosmetic product will expire within up to a few years after the date you open it. Clean beauty products usually expire more quickly because they have natural, plant-based ingredients. \nThe expiration date on a beauty product tells you a few important things. \nHow Opening Your Products Changes Their Life Spans\nFirst, expiration dates explain how long you should keep a product open and in use. \nOnce you open a cosmetic product, you’ve broken any airtight seal it might have had. This seal keeps bacteria or oxygen from reaching the product. \nMore exposure to air, hands, and skin equals more total bacteria that you’re putting on your skin each time you use a product. And bacteria from old beauty products can lead to acne, irritation, and clogged pores over time. \nSome beauty products go through chemical changes after they’re opened. Oxidation, a chemical reaction that occurs when beauty products are exposed to oxygen, can change the color and texture of your products. This is especially true of makeup. \nWater and Oil\nAny beauty products that contain both water and oil in some form can start to separate, leaving you with an undesirable texture. Once oil-based products have separated, it’s safe to say you should throw them out. \nScent and Moisture \nOver time, your beauty products may start to dry out and develop a funky smell. This is normal after a product’s expiration date has passed. \nMoisture has a complex effect on cosmetic products. Too much exposure to moisture can lead to mold and bacteria growth. Dryness, however, can make products crack and apply poorly. \nCosmetics are formulated for specific uses during specific time periods; ignoring the expiration date can lead to gross surprises.\n \nHow to Check Expiration Dates on Cosmetic Products\nMost high-quality cosmetics will have an expiration date somewhere on the packaging. Don’t throw out the box that your makeup or skin care product came in! Sometimes this is the only place an expiration date is listed. \nLook for a Small Jar Icon with a Number Inside\nCosmetics’ expiration periods are usually printed inside a small jar-and-lid icon on the packaging. For example, you might see the jar icon with “12M” printed inside. This means that the product in question expires 12 months after you open it. \n \n\n \nThis number is the key to determining how long to keep beauty products. Most eye products have shorter shelf lives because they’re exposed to more bacteria. Skin products, like foundation and concealer, typically have longer life spans. \nIf you are unable to find this icon or have thrown away the original packaging, don’t panic. Here are some other guidelines you can use to see if a product is expired. \n \nLost the Original Packaging? How to Check if Beauty Products Are Expired \nIf you don’t have access to your product’s original packaging, there are a few different ways to check if something is expired. \nTry to Remember When You Bought It\nWe understand that it’s easy to become attached to your favorite products, but your skin isn’t worth the risk. A good general rule is that if you can’t remember when you bought something, it’s best to toss it. \nSome people use the five-second rule to organize their beauty collections: If you can’t remember when or where you bought the item within five seconds, it goes to the trash. \nSmell the Product \n \n\n \nA product’s scent can tell you a lot about how old it is. If you notice any unpleasant smells that weren’t originally there, it’s time to throw it out. \nThe smells of mold and other fungi are usually pretty distinct. It’s hard not to notice weird aromas from expired products with fungal growth. \nBut depending on the type of cosmetic product you’re checking, you might not notice a funky smell at all, even if it’s way past expiration. That’s why it’s so important to follow this checklist and use multiple strategies to find out how old your product is. \nCheck Out the Texture\nExpired beauty products can develop weird, unpleasant textures. For example, if you use a liquid foundation and notice it has dried up or hardened, or if the oil has separated, you know it’s expired. \nPowder products are no exception. Many old, dried-up eye shadows and skin powders will start to crack and won’t spread smoothly on your skin anymore. It’s safe to get rid of these old parts of your cosmetics collection. \nEvaluate the Storage Area Around Your Product\nSome beauty products require specific conditions to remain fresh and safe for use. Storing a product in your bathroom or under direct sunlight could introduce problems. \nProducts stored in bathrooms tend to collect excess moisture and bacteria over time. Unless the packaging states otherwise, it’s best to store cosmetics in cool, dry, dark areas. \nSunlight can change the way a product performs and cause premature expiration. This is especially true of skin care products that contain vitamin C. You should always avoid direct sunlight exposure when you store your cosmetics. \n \nDon’t Try to Save Expired Products\nWe know that it can be hard to part with your favorite beauty products. However, trying to save or bring life back to an expired product can be really bad news for your skin and health. \nSome people try to refresh their dried-up mascara with water or oils. This is a terrible idea, as it can breed new bacteria that are super harmful to your eyes and skin. \nThe same is true of other liquid and powder products. Generally speaking, beauty products don’t react well to water or oil. They are formulated with just the right proportions of ingredients — don’t try to alter this on your own. \nInfections, Irritation, and More\nIf you find yourself with unusual acne breakouts, eye infections, or general skin irritation, it could be from an expired product you’re using. \nThis is why it’s so important to throw out old, expired cosmetics as soon as you recognize their life span is up. Make a note every time you buy a new product so that you don’t forget which products are expired and which are safe to use. \nIn severe cases, eye and skin infections from expired products can cause long-term damage. Don’t risk your health for the sake of convenience; it’s best to just buy new products when you run into expired cosmetics. \n \nAvoid Secondhand Cosmetics\nIt’s never a good idea to buy used or resold beauty products. Used products contain a wealth of bacteria from the person who used them before you. Applying this unfamiliar bacteria to your skin and eyes could spell bad news for your health. \nNever share skin care or makeup products with anyone, even if you’re close and trust each other. Your skin isn’t used to the bacteria on another person’s skin and vice versa. Contagious illnesses also thrive on shared lip, skin, and eye products. Just don’t do it. \nAnd even if a product is resold in its original packaging, you never know whether it was actually used. Some online resellers use special seals to make products look brand-new. Unfortunately, this misleading practice can lead to serious irritation and pain for secondhand users. \nWhen purchasing a new product online, make sure you check out the retailer who is selling it. If you don’t recognize the brand name, it’s safer to skip that listing and find the original retailer. \n \nClean Beauty Products Expire Faster \nIt might seem inconvenient, but beauty products with clean, natural ingredients tend to expire faster. Why is this?\nClean beauty products use botanicals and other naturally derived ingredients which are better for your skin health. Without harsh chemicals and preservatives, these ingredients break down more quickly.\nAs long as you follow the expiration date on the label, you can count on using your clean Whish Beauty products whenever you’d like!\n \n\n \nPurchase High-Quality Clean Beauty from Whish \nClean, cruelty-free products are just a click away. When you support Whish Beauty, you’re supporting ethical ingredients and manufacturing practices. \nShop Whish Beauty to find the best all-natural, clean beauty products for your skin!