Discarding Old Products When Spring Cleaning

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We all have hair and makeup products in our cabinets and under our sinks that have probably been there for far too long. As you’re thinking about doing some spring cleaning around your home, don’t forget to consider discarding old products as well.

It’s best to go through your product collection every six months or so to clear out space and get rid of items that are past their shelf life. How do you tell if products are expired, beyond their prime, and need to be discarded?

First, check the bottle. There is usually a little symbol on the back that looks like an open jar with a number and the letter m, maybe 6m, 12m, or 18m. This indicates how many months after you open your product it is recommended to keep and use and is considered the shelf life, not an expiration date. An expiration date is the exact date when it is no longer safe to use a product. Most beauty products do not have expiration dates.

What if the bottle doesn’t have a symbol, or you (understandably) don’t remember when the product was opened? There are a couple of ways you can test it.

Open the bottle and sniff. You’re checking to make sure the product still smells as it’s intended and is not offputting. Pour some of the product into your hand and check for separation or clumps and if it has a strange tint like yellowing or browning. Also, consider when you’re using theproduct if it’s still doing its job and retaining its effectiveness. If a product smells or feels off or it’s not working the way it used to, it’s probably time to discard it.

If, after you’re done with your product spring cleaning, you find yourself needing something new, don’t forget that you can shop for high-quality products from our salon online!