- Liquid Foundation, 3-6 months (Cream foundation can last 4-6 months)
- Foundation in a bottle should last 3-6 months
Wide mouthed jars can expose the product to more air and should be tossed sooner. You'll know it's time to purchase a new bottle, when the ingredients begin to settle or separate, the texture thickens or thins, or the smell changes.
- Concealer, 6-8 months
- Powders, 1 year
- Pressed powder, eye-shadows, blush, 2-3 years
- Mascara, 3 months
You should never keep mascara for any longer than 3 months (air pushes bacteria back into the tube). Never "pump" your mascara.
- Lip gloss & Lipstick, 1 year
- Eye/Lip Pencils, 1 year
Eye and lip pencils should last 1 year or more, but you should sharpen pencils at least once a week to prevent bacteria from being transferred to your eye area. You'll know the product has gone bad if it dries or crumbles.
- Facial Cleansers & Moisturizers, 6 months
- Facial Toners, 1 year
- Natural Cosmetics, 6 months
("all-natural body washes", etc.)
Among other cosmetics that are likely to have an unusually short shelf life are "all natural" products that contain plant-derived ingredients (which are conducive to bacterial growth), or products with no preservatives.
Oils and bacteria get trapped in the bristles of the brushes. Wash natural-bristled brushes once a month and synthetic brushes three to four times a month. Lay the brushes flat to dry so that the bristles don't break, and to maintain the shape of the brushes. There are brush cleansers out there, but you can also use mild soap. You may also use baby shampoo to wash your brushes.
Cosmetic makeup sponges are disposable tools. Wash after every use. Toss within 1 month, or when the sponge begins to tear.