June Jacobs' Product Freshness Crash Course

June Jacobs shares her tips to determining product freshness. // Photo Credit: jenifoto/iStock/Getty Images Plus

The holiday season is always a busy time for the cosmetic case. Whether you picked yourself up something during that Black Friday sale, or yu got a new moisturizer in the office gift exchange, it's easy to lose track of what's going on in our beauty bags. Too often we find ourselves using our cult classics and favorite beauty products, letting our lesser used goodies fall to the wayside. Now that the holiday season is over and the new year is here, it's the perfect time to perform a freshness check.

Expired beauty and skincare products can be ineffective and even pose health risks, from the pesky breakout to serious infections. That's why June Jacobs, co-creator of June Jacobs Spa Collection, is taking us on a crash course on how to identify which products are worth hanging on to and which products should get the boot in 2018.

Rule # 1 – Keep an eye on the PAO: Always look for the PAO (period after opening) symbol on your beauty products. The little symbol is provided by manufacturers based on individual stability testing. Jacobs recommends keeping a Sharpie in your makeup bag to mark your products with the dates you opened them.

Rule # 2 – Keep your brushes clean: Jacobs recommends washing your makeup brushes once a week, or at least every other week, to minimize oil and germ transfer. Applying makeup with dirty brushes will just create a negative cycle of having to apply more makeup over skin flaws.

Rule # 3 – If you can't remember the last time you used it, let it go: Product lifespans often depend on the area of application; mascara and skincare applied around the eyes should be changed frequently, while lotions with an airless pump are protected from the elements and last longer.

Jacobs suggests following this cheat sheet for toss dates following your first use:

  • Skincare:
    • Moisturizer – within one year.
    • Face wash – within one year.
    • Serums – between six months and one year.
  • Makeup:
    • Mascara – within six months.
    • Lipstick – after one year.
    • Foundation and concealer – within one to two years.
    • Blush and bronzer – within one to two years.


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