6 Realistic Ways to Spring-Clean Your Makeup Bag
When we say it’s time to spring-clean your makeup bag, we’re not trying to be kitschy. The thing is, when warmer weather rolls around, most of the products you’ve been holding onto since the Christmas holidays or—gasp!—even earlier need to be given the boot. And that’s not only because heavier winter formulas aren’t doing your skin any favours in warm temperatures, but also because expired makeup is just asking to create an infection. So to help make the process of cleaning, so to speak, your cosmetic bag a bit easier, we turned to a few top makeup artists and skincare experts to ensure that your beauty look this season is both on trend and health conscious.
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The Daily Edited Cosmetic Case ($90)
“When storing the makeup inside, zip it up and keep it in a drawer. Makeup and brushes are much less likely to get contaminated when closed and not left open on the bathroom counter,” says Dr. Elizabeth Tanzi, founder and director of Capital Laser & Skin Care. However, beware of placing your makeup sponge in a sealed area; moist, dark areas are a breeding ground for bacteria—not exactly something we’d want to press into our skin.
Manicare Travel Cosmetic Jars ($6)
“Are you using your nail to scoop out the last bits of your favourite lip balm? Treat yourself to a new one ASAP,” says celebrity makeup artist Fiona Stiles. However, if it’s a beloved product and you’re not willing to part with it just yet, Stiles suggests purchasing an airtight plastic jar and scooping the rest product into it.
Instanatural Pro-Radiant Skin Brightening Lotion ($24)
Even if your skin rebounds from dryness once the weather warms up, don’t forget to continue moisturising in the spring. This creates a smooth base for your makeup and provides a healthy dose of anti-ageing benefits. However, those thick, heavy creams you used in the wintertime should be left behind with the cold weather. Says Heather Wilson, director of brand development at InstaNatural, “Swap your heavier cream based moisturiser for a hyaluronic acid infused lotion or gel. Hyaluronic acid adds hydration to your skin, without the heavier oils that creams can contain.”
Same goes for foundations. Wilson suggests transitioning into BB creams and light, water-based formulas. Just be sure not to continue using the same water-based formula you bought in the winter, says Sonia Kashuk: “Due to their liquid base, water-based products tend to have a shorter use span, which after time can become a breeding ground for bacteria. Check the ingredient list if you are unsure if the product contains water.”
W3ll People Expressionist Mascara ($40)
Sonia Kashuk says that mascara is only good for six months. This should be taken into consideration not just because of flaking and dryness but also because of bacteria. Not sure if it’s time to toss it? Having reservations is probably a good indication that it’s time for it to go, but just to be extra sure, give the tube a sniff. Expired mascara has a distinctly foul smell.
Some other makeup expiration dates to keep in mind are as follows; concealer: six months, lipstick: two years, eye shadow: three years, pressed powder and blush: three years, foundation: six months to one year, and eyeliner: three years.
Clinique Stay-Matte Sheer Pressed Powder ($55)
While makeup may have expiration dates, if it’s visibly broken/separated/gloppy, it may be time to get rid of it sooner, especially if you carry your makeup bag everywhere with you. Says Stiles, “If any pressed powder product has a chip in the powder and lives in your purse, get rid of it immediately. You can relocate it to your makeup area at home, but get it out of your purse. The surface has been compromised, and it will crack more and break in your bag. Save yourself the hassle, clean up, and get a new one.”
Abode Natural Dishwashing Liquid Fragrance Free ($7)
Dr. Tanzi suggests washing your makeup brushes every three weeks: “Most women would never dream of putting on foundation with dirty hands, so why put it on with a brush that has never been cleaned?” You don’t have to go crazy, either. Stiles says she prefers using an inexpensive dish soap that targets oil and grime to get her brushes squeaky clean. After washing, she lays them over the edge of her counter to dry them overnight.
However, makeup sponges are another story. Romy Soleimani, celebrity makeup artist and Beauty.com’s beauty director at large, says that these need to be washed after every use, and if you notice it’s begun to deteriorate, “out with it!”
Tarte Cheek Stain ($42)
Celebrity makeup artist Jamie Greenberg says to take a cue from nature when swapping in new products: “Thing are changing, flowers are blooming—it’s time to switch out the darker and moodier colours. Start using your fuschias and your corals and your ‘hotter colours,’ so to speak. Don’t be afraid to put a flush on the cheek and embrace colour.”
Greenberg is also a big fan of using creamy formulas for spring because they “melt into the skin” and give that dewy fresh look. (Take a look at some of our favourite cream replacements for powders.)
Lastly, Laura Gellar suggests one easy eye-opening, fresh-faced tip for spring: “By ditching eyeliner on the lower lash line and only using liner across the lid, you create a fresh look.” Easy peasy.
Ed. note: Quotes have been edited for content.
What spring product launch is your favourite so far? Sound off below!
Opening Image: Citrine Natural Skin