Make Up Time Bomb? Pah!

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So last night I received an email entitled ‘The Make Up Time Bomb’ from a guy at Debenhams, about makeup expiry dates and the terrible habits of UK women. The first thing that sprang to mind was this post by Lipglossiping, check that out if you want!

Anyway, the general gist of this email was that the average UK female’s makeup bag is approximately 4 years past it’s use by date. There were some interesting facts and quotes in there, actually..

Sara Stern, Director of Cosmetics at Debenhams said, “We wouldn’t hesitate to chuck out mouldy or bacteria-ridden food and the same standards should apply to the lotions and potions and that we put on our skin. Beauty is timeless but unfortunately, products are not.” Well, food isn’t as ridiculously sodding expensive as makeup, is it? *Grumble*

We all know about the little open pot symbol with a number on it, on the packaging of all our makeup which denotes the shelf life, right? Apparently, 89% of women don’t. But us 11% who do know, don’t tend to pay much attention to it, right? I know it’s not just me. I pay a freaking bucketload of money for my cosmetics and I’ll be damned if I’m gonna throw out a mascara after 6 months because some legal guidelines to state a use-by date say so. If it hasn’t dried up and still smells okay and works the same, I’ll use it, thanks!

60% of women admitted they shared make-up with friends and family. Okay, that’s something I DON’T do. If only for the reason that it’s MINE. Haha, and on the odd occasion that I do my sister’s makeup or something it’s fine since I always use clean brushes.

68% of women only replace make-up and skincare when they run out, however long that might take. TOO RIGHT!

72% of women never wash their make-up sponges or brushes. Seriously, never? Okay I’m pretty lazy with my brushes but that’s kinda gross. And even worse…

81% of British women also regularly (at least once a week) go to sleep without removing make up. I don’t think I’ve EVER done that!

Bevis Man of the British Skin Foundation seems to have a vague understanding of our position: “Cost is probably a major factor in why people do not replace out-of-date cosmetics. However, products can dry out and become less effective as they age.” We know that, spazz. We all know that if something changes texture or starts smelling a bit off, it’s time to bin it. But I’ll be damned if I’m throwing anything away that still functions properly.

Perhaps my stubbornness will lead to me one day having to learn the hard way about expiry dates on cosmetics. But until that day comes and I get a lovely case of pinkeye or something, I will continue to hoard and keep.

The last line of the email made me laugh. Check it:

Sarah Stern concludes, “Hopefully this call to action will encourage women to have a ruthless spring clean of their cosmetics collections. All our Beauty Hall staff members are on hand to advise customers of the use-by dates of their current items and help replenish any empty cosmetic bags.

OHHH, so that’s what this is about! Sod off Debenhams. ‘Replenishing’ any self respecting makeup addict’s makeup bag would probably end up in three figures within the first few items. I don’t know about you lot, but I think I’m capable of judging for myself whether or not a product is usable. They’re all chocka with preservatives anyway! Although, that raises another point – health nuts using organic, preservative free products would obviously need to be more vigilant. But I like my chemicals and my preservatives. I don’t like throwing out perfectly good makeup that cost me a lot of money! That’s all.

15 thoughts on “Make Up Time Bomb? Pah!

  1. Totally!
    I have lipsticks that predate Noah. And the problem is…?
    Mascara I DO chuck away after 3 months or so as I have very sensitive peepers. But that’s easy because I generally buy minis. Even Lancome Definicils are about £1.99 on ebay and I like the small brushes anyway. If I could be bothered I’d just go to the shop and blag some free minis from the permatan-person on the counter…..
    Throw stuff away? Not a chance.
    I don’t honour food sell-by dates either. I can tell if food is off or inedible by touch, sight and smell without having some poxy label telling me to waste things.
    And waste is not just uneconomical. It’s criminal! So there.

  2. Whats this little open pot symbol that you speak about??? haha.. joking. Meh… I never pay attention, although I do actually follow the mascara rule, for some unknown reason. As guess its because my eyes are always my focal point and I would be devo’d if I ever got a sty or summat, breakouts and such I can live with and just cover up, but not being able to wear eye make up… god I’d hibernate!


  3. Haha great post. I’m totally with you, if it works and smells/looks ok then its staying in my collection until I’ve used the last little bit. For some reason that reminded me of the I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter ad where some woman was sat scraping butter out of the tub with a cocktail stick for her crackers! Seriously though, I can’t afford to throw things away just because the use by date passes. If Debenhams, however would like to donate to my collection so I don’t go blind or something from out of date mascara, then please feel free! xox

  4. Love this post — I totally agree with you! But for a while there I thought it was just me. Thanks for having the guts to smack ‘em in the face, they shouldn’t get away with such a blatant ploy to make more money by treating customers like idiots.

  5. I was wondering what people were tweeting about yesterday. Now I know. Even if they’re accurate – that people do need to regularly take a look at their makeup to see if any of it’s expired, check it to see if it looks or smells off, and chuck what doesn’t mass the sniff- or texture-test – it sounds more like a screaming call for “buy more products to help us stave off another economic slump plz!!”

    Yeah…right. Beh.

    This is one of the biggest reasons I switched to using loose-powder mineral makeup with no preservatives. As long as it has no liquid in it, as long as it’s inert, and as long as I keep the environment that way, it won’t “go bad”.

  6. I totally agree with you. I have never followed these “rules” anyway and I have never had any problems. I spend a lot of money on my makeup and the only time I throw something away is if it smells dodgy or looks/feels off. Plus I have so much make up its not as if I’m going to remember exactly how long everything has been open.
    Its just companies covering their own arses in case you do end up with an infection or reaction and other companies trying to get you to fork out more money for more products.
    Just my thoughts on it anyway, great post xx

  7. I agree, makeup really is far too expensive to throw away within two seconds of owning it! really great post, agreed with everything you said. loved it xox

  8. I agree 100% when it can not be used because it dries up smells brakes any good reason like that then it can go in the bin until then its staying in that make up drawer and will be used when I please no matter how long I have had it for. Thats all a money making gimic anyway xx

  9. I agree. If it smells and looks fine I will use it. Fuck chucking out perfectly good makeup. I’ve had my concealer for a year and a half. (MAC StudioFix?) and it’s perfectly fine. Apparently cream products go off after 6 months or something. Mhm …

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