Skincare Products- When Do They Expire

12 Oct


So much talk about going green with healthier options and ingredients in our Beauty products might mean replacing them sooner.  I get asked by so many “how do I know when to throw it out”- well, if you’re one of those who uses a product a couple days, then toss it to the back of the medicine cabinet and bring it out 9-12 months later for a brief use, then hide it again, you may want to rethink your routine.


  • Sunscreens typically expire a year after opening.  UNLESS, the sunscreen has been left out on a hot beach, or in your car and allowed to heat up.  If this is the case, toss it and buy a fresh one.  My general rule of thumb is every Memorial Day, I re-stock the sunscreen.  Keep it in a cool dark place and it will last the entire year.  Of course, if you’re applying it daily [as you should be- even in Winter] you’ll replace it long before it expires.
  • Anti-aging Retinol creams– last approx 9-12 months.  IF you’re using it daily, as you should, it should be gone long before it goes bad.  Keep in mind, once it is opened oxygen exposure starts to break down the power it has. 
  • Peels and Masks– 2-3 months.  Believe it or not, once they are opened their buffering agents start to evaporate and any acids [glycolic, alpha-hydroxy etc] can become stronger and more irritating to the skin.  Buy these in smaller sizes to get the most out of them.     
  • Moisturizers- this is a tricky one!  IF it is a plain ol moisturizer, with no sunscreen and no anti aging ingredients and is in a tube or airtight pump style bottle it can last 12-18 months.  HOWEVER, if it has sunscreen in it- use the sunscreen guideline- 1 year.  AND if it has anti-aging ingredients in it [Vit. A, Vit. E, Retinol etc] 9-12 months.
  • Eye Creams– Most of these nowadays have special ingredients to help fight wrinkles.  Which means, they will also start to break down quicker.  Try to choose a product in a a TUBE which will keep your product airtight.  If your favorite cream is in a jar, NEVER EVER dip your finger in it.  Use a small spatula or q-tip to remove enough product and make sure to keep the lid tight.  Store in your fridge to extend the life of the product.  If you use it daily, your eye cream should be gone long before it expires in 9-12 months.
  • Organic Skincare-Keep in mind if you have recently switched to healthier Eco friendly products that have little to no preservatives, don’t buy until you are ready to be a faithful user.  These will last 2-4 months.


  • Keep eye creams and anti-fading creams that contain Hydroquinone in the fridge to extend their shelf life. 
  • Use a sugar scrub to exfoliate your skin at least twice a week.  This will allow your treatment creams to get into the pores of your skin and actually WORK!
  • Always use Retinoid products at bedtime.  These make skin more sensitive to sunlight, so they actually work best in the dark while you’re sleeping. Store them in a dark place never near a window or bright light.
  • And a general rule of thumb- WHEN IN DOUBT, TOSS IT OUT!

Stay Gorgeous Girls!



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