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The warm, sunny spring weather is when most people take advantage of the sunshine, open up their windows and clean their house from top to bottom. It feels good to air out your home after a long, cold winter and to purge and organize everything for a fresh start. If you’re in spring cleaning mode don’t forget to clean out your beauty supplies. Not only will it clear out some room in your bathroom cabinets, but it will also ensure that the products you’re using as part of your routine are effective and aren’t expired. We have some tips to get your beauty supplies organized and cleaned out.

Did you know most beauty products have a “period after opening” (PAO) symbol somewhere on their packaging? This is similar to an expiration date and lets you know how long the product will be good for. A good rule of thumb is to take a fine tip Sharpie and write the PAO date on the container of the product before you throw away the packaging so you don’t forget when it’s time to replace it. If you’ve already thrown the packaging away, take a look at the product. Does it smell or have a strange texture? If it does, then it’s probably outlived its shelf life. As a general rule, here are some guidelines to follow:

Eye Shadows

    Powder: 2 years

    Cream: 1 year


    Liquid: 3 months

    Pencils: 2 years


    Every 3 months


    Liquid: 6 months

    Powder: 2 years

    Bronzer: 6 months


    Every 18 months (or after any illness)

Along with cosmetic products, don’t forget about other hygiene products such as soaps, shampoos and facial cleansers and moisturizers.  Most of these products will have expiration dates on the bottles but, as a rule, have a shelf life of about 2-3 years.

After you’ve purged everything that’s expired, take stock of what you have. Find a solid colored towel or sheet and spread out everything you have left. If you haven’t touched a product in a year or longer, toss it. Chances are if you haven’t used it in at least a year, you likely never will. Next, check the quality of the items you have left. Even if they’re not expired, check for products that are cracked or crumbling. These won’t apply as well as they should and should be thrown away. Finally, try to purge what’s left. If you have multiple shades of the same lipstick or nail polish pick 1 or 2 of your favorites and get rid of the rest. When it comes to beauty products, more isn’t necessarily better. Stick with a few quality products and get rid of the rest. The products that remain will not only be better for your skin but also easier to organize in the space you have.  

Now that you’ve purged, it’s time to focus on the cleaning portion of your spring-cleaning tasks. If you have an electronic face cleanser or exfoliator you need to clean it almost daily. Leaving all of the dead cells and bacteria on the bristles negates the point of having an electronic cleanser. Every day after you use it, rub the bristles against a dry washcloth to rid the bristles of any dead skin cells and oil. Then, every few days use a skin cleanser to wash the bristles to give them a deep clean. Always use warm water and be sure to let it air dry. The same goes for any makeup brushes you use. There have been several documented cases of staph infections and even pink eye from people who use dirty brushes. Don’t let this happen to you. Similar to your facial cleanser brush, be sure to rub your makeup brushes against a dry paper towel or washcloth every day to get rid of the first layer of makeup and oil. About once a week, use warm water and either a bar of soap and some sort of rough surface to thoroughly scrub the brushes until the water runs clear. Let them air dry.

Doing these few simple steps will keep your cabinets organized and your face clean and free of bacteria.


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