Spring Cleaning is a familiar ritual to many of us while transitioning from Winter into Spring. We may drag our feet when it comes to thinning out bed linens, flipping mattresses, and dusting off ceiling fan blades. Yet, one task we at Sally B’s look forward to every year is cleaning out our makeup bags. It may not be a traditional spring cleaning endeavor, but it is a necessary one for our skin's health. Plus, when it’s all said and done, it gives us reason to go shopping, and there’s nothing we love buying more than makeup!
- Out With the Old. Just like food, makeup can go bad. Products past their prime run the risk of going stale, going rancid, losing effectiveness, and at worst, growing mold and/or harboring bacteria, all of which can negatively influence your skin’s health. Unlike food products, makeup products are not required to print an expiration date on their packaging. It’s our opinion you should toss* liquid makeup after 6 months, powder makeup after a year, lip products after a year, and eye makeup (think mascara, eyeliner, and shadows) after 3 months. Airless pump packaging like our serum pumps, however, can help extend a product’s life by a few months.
- Think Seasonally. When spring ushers in warmer temperatures, our look dramatically changes. Our sun-kissed skin will need a darker shade of foundation, and the color palette of our eye and lip makeup will more than likely become lighter and brighter. So, while it will be very, very tough to do, get rid of your wintery shades of makeup. By the time fall rolls around again, it will be expired. If it is lying around, you may just be tempted to use it.
- In With the New. Now that you have slimmed down your makeup bag start replacing your products with healthier versions. If you need a new foundation, look for one without parabens or bismuth oxychloride. And if you need a new lipstick, make sure you pick one without lead, mineral oil, talc, carmine, parabens, or formaldehyde.
- Shop Smart. It’s easy to get into a routine when it comes to makeup, but again, consider the season before you shop. In the summer you may not need a moisturizer as you do in the winter, but you will need extra sun protection. Also, remember that there are only a couple carefree summer months on the calendar, so think before you buy that expensive, every-neon-color-of-the-rainbow eye shadow palate or 6th shade of bright pink lipstick. Will you get around to wearing it all before it expires? Take your vacation schedule into consideration when you answer this question. If you have several trips to the beach planned, you may not need much glam makeup at all. There is no need to fill your makeup bag with products you won’t use.
- Clean Your Brushes. With proper maintenance, your makeup brushes can have long, healthy lives. We recommend cleaning them once a month or when you start using a new product. First, rinse your brush out with warm water. Once you have rinsed out the bulk of the residual makeup, apply a drop or two of non-toxic, gentle shampoo and more warm water to give your brush a thorough clean. Continue with these two steps until the water runs clear when you rinse the brush. Then, let your brush air dry overnight.
- Think Outside Your Makeup Bag. Even though we put “makeup bag” on your spring cleaning to-do list, don’t limit yourself to just products in that bag. Take inventory of the products in your shower, on bathroom shelves, and especially those lurking at the bottom of your purse or gym bag. Often, there is no telling how long something has been in there, so it’s best to err on the side of “too long.” Exposing products to extreme temperatures (remember your purse goes everywhere with you, like to the park or a hot yoga class) can compromise the integrity of a product and shorten its life span.
We hope the exhilaration of completing this fun spring cleaning task will keep the momentum going through the rest of your list, though we realize vacuuming under the bed might not be near as fun as auditioning a new foundation shade.
*According the EPA, cosmetics and nail polish are considered household hazardous waste. Instead of throwing your products in the trash or sending them down the drain, collect them and take them to your local Household Hazardous Waste collection spot. Find one here: www.earth911.com.