If you're obsessed with staying neat like us, there's almost nothing more immediately gratifying than cleaning something out. Here's some good news for you: It's likely high time you sort through your bathroom beauty and grooming items. Expired makeup and products do more harm than good, so saying goodbye might mean saying hello to clearer skin and healthier habits.
HuffPost Style turned to a few experts to get their takes on what products to toss and when -- among them, Dr. Pamela Dalton, a member of Monell Chemical Senses Center, Dr. Amy Wechsler, renowned dermatologist, and makeup artist Kari Bauce. To get motivated, Bauce offered us some pretty wise words. "You wouldn't feed your family something that came out of a can in 2011, so why would you put something on your face that's been sitting in a cabinet for that long?"
A reminder: This isn't some phony attempt to get you to buy more makeup or products, but rather a callout to, as Bauce says, "use what you buy." Without further ado, here are the 14 products you will (most likely) need to throw out right now:
Expires after: Bauce says six to eight weeks; most say 3 months
Throw out because: "When it starts to dry out," says Bauce. It's also because you could easily get pink eye from old mascara, or contract a serious infection. Adds Bauce: "If it is flaking onto your face or your eyes itch, throw it out."
2. Nail polish
Expires after: One to two years
Throw out because: In an interview with Fitness Magazine, Annette Soboleski, a nail technician for OPI Products Inc., said that once nail polish is opened, "some ingredients will evaporate, causing the nail polish to thicken and separate." Once it separates and starts to clump, throw it out.
3. Face masks
Expires after: "One to two years, or if the consistency, dryness or color has changed," says Bauce.
Throw out because: Over time, the masks can become irritating to your face as the chemicals and ingredients within them begin to break down.
4. Perfume, cologne
Expires after: Your nose says it's gone bad
Throw out because: "There really isn't any danger in using a perfume that may have changed character, [but] it's best to just let your nose be the judge of when it's time to throw it out!" says Dr. Dalton.
Expires after: One year
Throw out because: While concealer generally expires within the year, it could get dry before that, too, says Bauce.
6. Facial wipes or medicated pads
Expires after: The expiration date, typically two months
Throw out because: They've probably dried out anyway.
Expires after: Two to maybe three years, though Bauce notes that cream blush is more like emollient and you should toss it after about a year.
Throw out because: "It just stops working after a while, which is what you'll find with powder products in time," says Bauce. "They get drier, they get flatter. It if starts to get a film over it, toss it, because that film is mold."
Expires after: Six months for liquid eyeliner, two years for pencil eyeliner
Throw out because: Liquid eyeliner starts to gather bacteria over time, but pencils keep longer because you constantly sharpen it. A white or grey tip is a sign of mold, adds Bauce.
Expires after: Three years
Throw out because: According to the Mayo Clinic, sunscreen over three years old or past its expiration date is "no longer effective." They also recommend throwing out sunscreen that "has been exposed to high temperatures or has obvious changes in color or consistency."
10. Lipstick, lip gloss
Expires after: One to two years for lipstick, 18 months for lip gloss
Throw out because: Celebrity makeup artist Jamie Greenberg told HuffPost's OWN that "change in color, texture or smell are all big warning signs that your lipstick has expired."
11. Powder shadows
Expires after: Two to three years
Throw out because: "If you notice a film or if the color stops working very well, then it's aged out. If the color doesn't blend on in the way that it once did, don't try harder, that it means that it has expired," says Bauce.
12. Cream or powder foundation
Expires after: 12 to 18 months if cream, two years if powder
Throw out because: Like other emollient products, toss cream foundation after a year or if it starts to change color before that, says Bauce. Powder foundation is similar to powder blush, as mentioned above, in that if you see a film or if the color stops working, it's expired.
Expires after: One year
Throw out because: "If it's a matte primer then you might be able to get some time," says Bauce. "But again, remember this has been sitting around in a plastic bottle, and it's been separating. The general rule is chuck it after a year."
Expires after: The bristles in your brush start to fray or fall out, or if you haven't cleaned them in a while.
Throw out because: Dirty brushes can irritate skin, so it's best to keep them clean or replace them every so often. Try washing or cleaning your brushes every two weeks with shampoo, or household items like bar soap and olive oil. Gently massage in the product, rinse it out and lay your brush flat on its side to dry.
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