Here’s mud in your eye…or is that bacteria?

By on June 1, 2011

By Jackie Silver, AgingBackwards.com –

The amount of money spent annually on cosmetics in the United States is more than $8 billion, so it stands to reason that one might be a little reluctant to throw away half-full bottles of mascara or an almost-full eye shadow, but experts say outdated makeup could make you sick. “Most women do have a drawer full of cosmetics that have been partially used,” says Angela Bowers, M.D., dermatologist on the medical staff at Baylor Regional Medical Center at Grapevine. Since cosmetics usually don’t include expiration dates, it’s difficult to know when to discard them, but experts say you should start keeping track from the day you first open the makeup. Mascara and eye liner last the least amount of time and should be thrown out after only three months. “The bacteria can get in there and the preservatives might not be working quite as well as they were when you first opened it. If you get some of that in your eye you may develop conjuctivitis which we know as ‘pink-eye,’” explains Dr. Bowers. In addition to causing breakouts, outdated cosmetics could also lead to more serious skin problems. Sharing certain cosmetics, such as lipstick, can even spread a strain of herpes that could give you cold sores.

Here are some expiration dates according to Marie Claire Magazine and Dr. David Schlessinger, a board-certified oculoplastic surgeon and ophthalmologist, and medical director of Schlessinger Eye & Face:

Powders and shadows: 2 years

Cream shadows: 12 to 18 months

Foundation: 1 year

Lipstick & lip liner: 1 year

Mascara & eyeliners: 3 months

Makeup brushes: Clean weekly using a mild detergent – I like Dawn dishwashing detergent for getting the oils out.

Makeup sponges: Replace weekly, or when sponge becomes soiled.

Jackie Silver is Aging Backwards and she shares her secrets, tips and shortcuts in her book, Aging Backwards: Secrets to Staying Young, on her Web site (http://agingbackwards.com/), on TV, on radio, in print and in person. She is the anti-aging expert on the syndicated television show, Daytime, one half of The Ageless Sisters radio show, a weekly columnist with The Tampa Tribune, the Aging Backwards expert for TheHollywoodHotspot.com and contributor to numerous Web sites. In addition, she is the National Anti-Aging Beauty Examiner, New York Beauty Products Examiner and NY Charity Examiner for Examiner.com. Silver is a speaker and coach and is sought-after as an anti-aging and beauty expert by the media. Sign up for her free newsletter at: http://agingbackwards.com/ and follow her on Twitter, @AgingBackwards.

About Jackie Silver

Jackie Silver is Aging Backwards and she shares her secrets, tips and shortcuts in her book, Aging Backwards: Secrets to Staying Young, on her Web site (http://agingbackwards.com/), on TV, on radio, in print and in person. She is the anti-aging expert on the syndicated television show, Daytime, one half of The Ageless Sisters radio show, a weekly columnist with The Tampa Tribune, the Aging Backwards expert for TheHollywoodHotspot.com and contributor to numerous Web sites. In addition, she is the National Anti-Aging Beauty Examiner, New York Beauty Products Examiner and NY Charity Examiner for Examiner.com. Silver is a speaker and coach and is sought-after as an anti-aging and beauty expert by the media. Sign up for her free newsletter at: http://agingbackwards.com/ and follow her on Twitter, @AgingBackwards.

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Here’s mud in your eye…or is that bacteria?