Cosmetic products have a shelf life and should not be used beyond that, for protection from contamination and infection. This is certainly more important for make-up cosmetics for the eyes. Going past shelf-life dates can affect the stability of the product. Our Ayurvedic skin and hair care cosmetics have a shelf life of 3 years from the date of manufacture. Our make-up cosmetics have a shelf life of 2 years, but some make-up cosmetics have a shorter shelf life. Sometimes make-up items do not mention an expiry date, so you need an idea of how long your cosmetics should last. So read on for a quick low down. 

Cosmetics are not only exposed to dust but also mix with the natural oils of the skin through their applicators. This can affect the stability of the product. A good way of knowing that a cosmetic item is past its expiry date is by the look and smell of the product. If a moisturiser or lipstick smells rancid, it means that the oils may have separated.

If mascara is dry or too sticky, it means its time to get another one. Practice strict rules of hygiene, not just with cosmetics, but also with applicators. As a general rule, products that contain water may not last that long, as water encourages bacterial growth.

Plant extracts, or fresh fruits and vegetables in skin-care products do not last long. On the other hand, products that contain no water and are in a powder form last longer.

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The Shelf Life Of Make-Up Cosmetics Is As Follows:


Water-based foundations last for a year, while cream-based foundations may last longer – for about 18 months.


powder shahnaz

Loose powder can last for two to three years, but compact powder lasts for two years and may sometimes become dry even before that time.


These last for three to six months. Actually, the pumping action of the applicator brush of roll-on mascaras is said to make them more vulnerable to bacteria.


These have a shelf life of two years. So do lip liners. If you use eye pencils, sharpen them regularly. This keeps you safe from contamination.

Blushers and Eye Shadows

eyeshadow shahnaz

Powder blushers and powder shadows last for two years, while cream blushers and shadows last for about 18 months.

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Lip shades also last for two years, but lip gloss lasts for less time – 12 to 18 months.

Must-Follow Rules

  • If you find your mascara has become dry even before the use-by date, its time to get another one. Never add water or cream to soften it.
  • If you have an eye infection, throw away your eyeliner, mascara, and eye pencils, even if they are not past their shelf life date. In fact, if there is an eye infection, any redness or irritation, avoid using cosmetics till you have got over it.
  • Always wash your hands before applying make-up, because we often tend to use our fingertips to apply or blend.
  • Needless to say, avoid sharing make-up cosmetics.

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