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The makeup industry has become one of the most lucrative industries in the past decade. Gone are the days when talcum powder, lip gloss and a black eye pencil. The emergence of different makeup techniques, products and artists have added to the plethora in the industry. The desire to constantly have perfectly done makeup when attending events and functions is on a high. This has introduced new words and phrases such as ‘facebeat…
and ‘slay’ to our vocabulary. Ladies now invest in high-end brands or hire affordable artists for that professional touch.

Makeup products do carry expiration dates and stand the risk of contamination. And while it may be difficult to discard your very expensive foundation, you need to be wary of the damage it can do to your skin.  Here’s a general guide on how long you should keep your makeup.

Mascara and Eyeliner

Liquid-based makeup is more prone to letting in bacteria than the powder-based ones, so they have the shortest shelf life. Replace your eyeliner and mascara every 3 to 4 months. You don’t want to visit the doctors because of an eye infection.

Foundation and Concealers

When stored properly and away from heat, the foundation can last for a year. Ensure you use an applicator. Dipping your hands into your foundation bottle will introduce bacteria.

Eye Pencils

Eye pencils can last up to 2 years. Ensure you clean your pencils after sharpening and use.

Eye Shadows

Powder-based eye shadows can last up to 2 years while liquid ones last for 12 months. Store products properly to avoid breakage and creating a mess in your makeup purse.


Lipglosses have the tendency to store bacteria, so they should be used for 5 to 6 months. Avoid touching and sharing with different people.


Lipsticks are less likely to grow bacteria like lip glosses and can last for a year.


Powders are safe to use for 18 – 24 months and are less likely to store bacteria.

Although these products have various lifespans, once you notice a funny smell or the makeup gets sticky and begins to change colour, discard them. Also, always ensure your makeup is stored properly and your brushes and applicators are washed regularly.

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This article was first published on 16th April 2019


Koko Okpo is a creative media specialist and lover of the arts. She loves God, loves life and her family.

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