What You Need to Know About Storing Your Stash of Beauty Products

28 March 2017
 Categories: , Articles

As a beauty blogger or YouTuber, building up a horde of cosmetic products is essential to your craft and business. While it may be fun to play with the different palettes of eye shadows and lip glosses, safely storing these items can be a challenge, especially if you have to do so for a long period of time. Here's what you need to know about putting your beauty stash in self-storage.

How Long Makeup Can Be Stored

Cosmetics generally don't have expiration dates printed on them, but they do go bad after awhile just like food and medication. Expired cosmetics can cause skin problems, such as rashes, acne, and hives. Therefore, it's important to understand how long you can actually keep cosmetics around before you have to toss them.

The primary thing that affects how long makeup stays good is whether you've opened the package and used the item. Even using the product once introduces bacteria into it that can cause infection and other issues later on. For instance, unopened tubes of mascara can be safely stored for up to two years, but should be thrown away after three to six months due to the buildup of bacteria from daily use.

In general, though, you can safely use the following cosmetics for these time periods after they've been opened:

  • Powder-based makeup (e.g. eye shadow, face powder)—2 years
  • Pencil eyeliner—2 years
  • Lip gloss—1.5 to 2 years
  • Cream-based makeup—1 to 1.5 years
  • Concealers—1 to 1.5 years
  • Cream foundation—1.5 years
  • Oil-free foundation—1 year
  • Lipstick and lip liner—1 year
  • Liquid/gel eyeliner—3 months
  • Mascara—3 months

Products that have never been opened or used can typically be kept around for 2 to 5 years depending on the quality. Higher end brands usually keep for longer, while lower end products breakdown sooner due to lower quality ingredients.

The first thing you should do is separate your makeup stash into products you've used versus those that have never been opened and store them in different containers to minimize confusion. Throw out any cosmetic you've used on your face when you've had an active eye or lip infection; otherwise, you're just asking for a reinfection.

Additionally, use a marker to put the date you purchased/opened the item on it to help you keep track whether it is still good when it comes time to get it out of storage.

Store in a Cool, Dry Place

Another thing that can affect the longevity of your cosmetics is temperature. Almost all manufacturers recommend customers store their makeup in cool places away from direct sunlight, because the heat can cause the oils in the product to breakdown faster or the water it contains to dry out quicker.

When putting your cosmetics in storage, store them as close to the floor as possible where it tends to be cooler. Heat rises, so putting the bins and bags containing your makeup high up put them at greater risk of getting overly warm and melting or spoiling.

For best results, consider getting a climate-controlled unit. The temperatures in regular storage units—especially exterior ones—can fluctuate, depending on what the weather and time of year. This may subject your cosmetics to swings between extreme heat and cold.

Additionally, temperature fluctuations increases the risk of condensation forming on the products, and moisture can destroy makeup faster than heat. Climate-controlled units keep the space at a steady temperature and humidity level year round (usually between 55 and 85 degrees and 55 percent humidity), reducing this risk.

For more information about storing cosmetics or to secure a unit for your belongings, contact a local self storage facility in your area.