SELL BY DATES ON MAKEUP: THERE TO HELP OR JUST ANOTHER MARKETING PLOY?
, Beauty Treatment Specialist
We’ve all heard it – throw away your mascara after 6 months, while lipstick, eyeshadow and blusher needs to be destroyed after 2 years; but why? Does it really matter?
Who honestly throws out old make up? I certainly do not! If it runs out, I replace it, but until then, it stays put firmly in my make up box. I even confess to owning eyeshadows that are probably over 5 years old! And to be fair, I’ve never suffered an eye complaint, or random skin rash, ailments that the experts say we’ll suffer if we do not keep on top of our make up products.
Nearly all make up these days contains preservatives and anti-bacterial agents, enough of which to keep the lurgies at bay. Obviously things like your make up sponges or brushes do not, and so should be washed regularly and replaced often. So if our make up is actually quite safe, why are we encouraged to bin it?
In 2003, it became compulsory for manufacturers to give their products use-by dates, and largely this was due to fear. Fear that somebody somewhere would get a rash and then sue their make up brand 5 years after buying the offending product. Cosmetic companies are not going to complain, especially if it means we’ll replace our make up more often than necessary. I can understand the importance of use by dates on products that contain active ingredients; after all, active ingredients can only remain active for so long, but for general make up surely common sense should prevail?