Your Makeup Lifetime Guide

You wouldn't put out of date products in your body so why would you apply them to your skin?

Almost every beauty product you buy, makeup and skincare, will have an expiry period on them which you should definitely take note of! You can recognize this by either a month/year printed on the product or by looking for a small symbol of a jar with an open lid and a number and letter written inside.


This is called the Period After Opening Symbol (P.A.O Symbol) and it represents the lifetime of a cosmetics product once it has been opened and the seal removed for the first time. The number represents the time period and the letter whether it be for a month (M) or for a year (Y). This symbol is usually found on the product packaging near the list of ingredients, barcode or origin of the product.

In the example above the lifetime of the product would be 6 months from the day the product was opened.

It is easy to forget the day you have opened a product so a good way to keep track of when your skincare and cosmetics are due to expire is to get a small sticker and write the month/year it will expire (eg. 08/2015) and stick it on the product. Put this on when you start using the product to easily keep track of its lifetime.

These lifetime periods are recommended by the manufacturer but some products (e.g. Eyeshadow) may last a little longer than the suggested expiry period. However if you notice your product is starting to change consistency, colour or smell these are sure signs that it's time to replace.

Using out of date products may cause outbreaks, irritation or worse if the chemicals in the product have expired they could become very harmful. PLUS cosmetics outside of their lifetime might not give the best results, outcome or finish the product is meant to!

Here is a guide for some common beauty products and their recommended lifetime but be sure to check your products for an accurate expiry date/period:


 Lipstick - 12-18 months


Liquid Eyeliner - 3 months


Mascara - 3 - 6 months


Foundations - 6-12 months


Powders - 24 months


Remember not to share your makeup with others. 

Sharing mascara passes on germs and can easily lead to conjunctivitis and infection. If you ever need to share a mascara always use disposable wands (available from Manicare, Priceline) and no double dipping!

Loaning lipstick can also lead to infection and the passing on of cold sores. Remember just because you can't see a cold sore on someone, doesn't mean they don't have one!