Tuesday, 17 March 2009

Spring Clean Your Makeup Kit

Spring is definitely in the air today so what better time to give your kit a spring clean!

The best place to start with a spring clean is to have a clear out and get rid of any old or damaged products. If you have makeup in your kit that is past its expiry date its no longer going to be safe, clean or effective so there is no point holding on to something if its past its prime.

Nearly all cosmetics have an open jar symbol with the number of months you can safely use the product for once opened. If a products smell, colour or texture appears to have changed its definitely a sign a product should be tossed.

Unless otherwise stated on the product use these makeup expiry dates as a guide to how long you should keep a product once opened.

3 months
6 months
Eye Cream
6-12 months
1 year
1-2 years
Lipstick/Lip Pencils/Eye Pencils
2 years
Powders/Eye Shadow/Blush/Cream Blush

Give everything that's left a good wipe down. Cosmetic wipes and some paper towel are great for this plus you can spray palettes with alcohol to make sure they are clean and sanitary. Replace any travel bags that are worse for wear or have broken zips and give your main case or bag a really good scrub.

If you have any cracked or broken eye shadows or blushes that you just cant bare to part with check out this tutorial for re-pressing broken shadows from Enkore here...

Although you should be cleaning your brushes between each use to keep them sanitary a regular deep clean will help keep your brushes in good condition.

  • Gently rinse your brush under the tap being careful not to let water run up into the handle.
  • You can then use a tiny drop of shampoo in your hand and swirl the brush round until you have a nice lather.
  • Rinse again making sure the water runs clear.
  • Reshape the bristles and leave to dry hanging over the table edge so air can circulate all round the brush.
  • Tip: For lip and eye liner brushes which can be harder to remove product from try rubbing a drop of olive oil into the bristles and wiping on a paper towel until most of the colour has come out before shampooing.

Finally replace any sponges and puffs in your kit that have seen better days and stock up on disposables as you will get a better deal if you buy in bulk at a beauty supply store every few months.

Throw your personal makeup bag in the wash or treat yourself to a nice new bag. I prefer clear travel bags as you can see what you have which saves time rummaging in the morning. They are also good as they can be wiped clean.

As a guide you should clean your personal brushes monthly and wash reusable sponges and powder puffs on a weekly basis so there is not a big build up of product or dirt.

To clean sponges and puffs rub an anti bacterial hand wash into the sponge whilst still dry and really work it into the areas that are stained with product. You can then rinse until the water runs clear and leave to air dry. If that seems like too much hard work most quality sponges can be put through a gentle cycle in your washing machine. You can get mesh sponge bags for use in machines from PAM

Although its good to have a blitz of your kit every few months to deep clean, restock and replace items in your kit it is essential that you keep on top of cleaning between jobs so your kit is sanitary. No one wants to work with an artist who's kit is dirty and disorganised. Take a look at my Top 5 Tips for Keeping Your Makeup Kit Clean and Sanitary.

Do you have any tips for keeping clean and organised? Share your thoughts in the comments section.

Related Post:
Go Green With Refillable Makeup Palettes
10 Things Every Makeup Artist Should...Have in their handbag!
Label Your Kit: Free Labels for Download

Picture Source: The beautiful spring blossom picture is from the Abby Try Again blog and can be bought as a print here.


  1. I rarely spring clean my make-up bag :(
    I have a 5 year old eyebrow shadow which I still use EEEK, time to get rid of it.

  2. Great tip about pressing eyeshadow. I'm pretty good about going through my makeup every 3 months...but I might have to hold some eyeshadows back to try repressing them!

  3. Oh man! This is great! I knew about the mascara tip, but I didn't know about some of this other stuff. Thanks so much for posting this. So handy!

  4. capitolagirl, re-pressing is a life saver if something happens to a favourite shadow or blush that you cant get anymore but beware it can get messy :D

    Beka, Lisa, Glad you found the post helpful! Thanks for leaving a comment.

  5. Oh my gosh! I am going to refer to this ALL the time! Thanks for posting the make up expiration dates. It's really good to know!

  6. Ashe Mishief, Trendkat - Thanks for posting! Im glad everyone is finding the post useful :)

  7. Once Opened Beauty Expiration Kit can be found at www.onceopened.com . Helps protect your good looks from make-up gone bad! Kit comes with 24 SELF LAMINATING labels to protect date from oil and water (common permanent markers alone are NOT resistant to oils found in creams and make-up); Life Expectancy Guide for Beauty Products and Nifty Mini Ultra Fine Point Permanent Marker.

    Join Us for Our Spring Cleaning Days- FREE SHIPPING!