When and why to throw away makeup

Analysts note that American are starting to cut their spending and switch to a more reasonable mode of consumption. Kommersant Style talked to experts and found out whether it is worth saving on cosmetics and whether there are products that can be stored for years.

Recently, there have been changes in the cosmetic world: the well-known “red lipstick index” (when, regardless of the economic situation, women continue to buy bright lipstick from luxury brands), introduced by Leonard Lauder, has grown into a “niche index”. Since the beginning of the year, a jump in the consumption of expensive fragrances has been noted by analysts from various chains, and, for example, in the Golden Apple, the dynamics of growth in niche perfumery amounted to 250% (in March and April). However, the trend of the first half of the year is changing again: lipstick is still actively bought, as before, perfumes – depending on the occasion, mood and wallet condition. And what happens to creams and other cosmetics? Savings mode encourages the use of products with an expiration date, but it is obvious that there are many reasons why one or another product should stop using it in time.

The type of product has the least effect on how quickly or slowly it can expire. Regardless of whether it is a cream, serum or gel for washing, its quality is influenced primarily by factors such as temperature, humidity and other environmental parameters. Proper packaging can help a product last longer, and in general one thing is clear: once a product is unpacked and opened, its days are numbered. How to find out which cosmetics after opening can no longer be safe and effective, and when it comes time to part with it so as not to harm yourself, experts say.

“Oil foods and foods with a high concentration of vitamins spoil the fastest. Oils and vitamins oxidize rapidly when exposed to heat or light. Therefore, it is better to store serums with vitamins C and A not on a shelf in the bathroom, but on the side shelf of the refrigerator. The optimum storage temperature is around +10°C.

It is possible to understand that the product has deteriorated by several signs: the consistency / rheology has changed (flakes have fallen out, lumps have formed, oil or water has peeled off, discoloration has occurred), a change in smell, swelling of the package (which may indicate microbiological contamination).

You can not use the product after the expiration date. The manufacturer is responsible for the expiration dates indicated on the packaging, testing the products before introducing the recipe into industrial production.

Cosmetics with an infinite shelf life in terms of preserving consumer properties do not exist. Any product loses its properties over time and changes its consistency.”

“Products containing unsaturated fatty acids (for example, rosehip oil) and other easily oxidized substances: unstabilized vitamin C, retinol and others deteriorate the fastest. Then we can talk about “natural cosmetics”, which is experimenting with dubious preservatives – I personally saw several products with fresh expiration dates, but already with mold on the surface.

The product has deteriorated if: a rancid smell has appeared (using oxidized products, to put it mildly, is not very useful), if the product has changed texture, color or exfoliated – this can either be a poor work of the technologist to stabilize the formula, or the product has disappeared. In this case, it is better not to take risks and throw away the product. Visible mold spots on the surface are definitely immediately discarded. The principle of “remove the mold from the surface and use what is below” does not work. In most cases, the product is also affected in depth, and on the surface we see only spore-bearing “fruits”. Mucous or jelly-like clumps in the cosmetic mass – these can be bacterial or symbiotic colonies. It’s better to get rid of it too.

After the expiration date, you can use a bar soap or an alcohol-based perfume. But if the product contains vegetable oils or active ingredients like retinol, vitamin C or sunscreens, it is better to get rid of it.

The refrigerator extends the shelf life of products, as it slows down chemical and biological processes. But, unfortunately, some types of cosmetics can exfoliate from being in the refrigerator and become not so pleasant to use. For example, if a product contains cocoa butter, coconut, waxes, and other thick emollients, the product may become grainy in texture or simply harden.

Solid soap can be called a tool with an almost infinite shelf life: it can be stored and retain its properties for exactly ten years. It will only lose the original aroma and shade, but the value or cleansing properties will not be affected.”

“The most perishable products are those products that consist of natural ingredients. The more natural the composition of the ingredients, the shorter the shelf life of cosmetics, especially after opening the package. The reason for the short shelf life is in natural preservatives, which retain their properties for a short time.

An expired remedy does not benefit the skin, but harms it. Toxins, hydrocyanic substances are formed in the product, which begin to irritate the epidermis. Thus, the skin activates protective resources to limit the impact of these adverse components, and an inadequate reaction is triggered, which entails an inflammatory process.

In cases where the product contains active ingredients such as vitamin C, retinol, probiotics, it must be stored in the cold so that the oxidation process does not occur (thus increasing the shelf life of the product). In other cases, the manufacturer usually indicates storage information on the packaging or in the instructions (if there is a need to store cosmetics in the refrigerator) – this mainly applies to cooling creams or eyelids with a decongestant effect: they act faster when chilled. I will share a life hack: if you want to extend the shelf life of your favorite products, store cosmetics in a dark place, without changes in humidity, with a temperature of +12°C to +22°C.

Professional cosmetics differ from ordinary cosmetics in the composition and concentration of biologically active substances (cosmetics for home care contain no more than 30% of active ingredients, while professional cosmetics can contain up to 50-70%). But in general, professional cosmetics can retain their useful properties for a long time – subject to the storage rules.

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