5 Tips for Downsizing & Maintaining Your Makeup Collection from a Recovering Makeup Hoarder

Hello, my name is Erica and I'm a recovering makeup hoarder. But, I've been doing some major downsizing of my makeup collection. Here's some tips.

Hello, my name is Erica and I am a recovering makeup hoarder. As a beauty enthusiast I am always dragged in by the latest must have product, even if only to review for the blog. Speaking of the blog, as a beauty blogger all of the PR samples coming in alone can easily spin your makeup collection out of control. I am pretty sure a lot of you guys can relate. Over the past year I’ve been doing some major downsizing of my collection and regular maintenance to make sure that it stays in check and here are some tips to help you do the same.

1. Toss expired products


Believe it or not but cosmetics does have expiry dates and some products can get pretty gross if left sitting too long (ahem lipgloss), but some products you can get away with keeping for much longer. Look for the symbol above on your products, the number inside lets you know how long the product is good after it’s been opened. If you don’t see this symbol here are some expiry dates for some essentials…

Mascara 3 months

Liquid Foundation/Concealer 6 months -1 year

Lipstick 2 years

Lipgloss 1 year

Powder Foundation/ Blush Eyeshadow 2 years

Nail Polish 2 years

I have to admit that I don’t stick hard and fast to these rules as trust me I have some eyeshadows that I’ve had for YEARS but one that I always stick to is mascara. The wand is touching your eyes everyday and gets loaded with bacteria. Throw it out at the 3 month mark. If you stick to drugstore brands or sample sizes you won’t feel so bad doing so. Another one that I am starting to follow more is lipgloss. I picked out a few of my old lip glosses to check them out and not only were they separated but there were particles inside of maybe food? lip skin? I don’t know and I don’t care, I tossed them or put them to the side for Back-2- MAC. These are also items that you should never share as they are very personal, your germs are bad enough and you don’t need to be adding other peoples into the mix. You can get away with keeping powder products longer if you do not wet them and if you sanitize them on the regular. Nail polish can be brought back to life with some thinner. Keep in mind that all natural products may have an even shorter shelf life as there are no preservatives. Old or not if a product smells funny or has changed in texture toss it.


2. If you haven’t used it in 6 months toss it, sell it or give it away

downsizing makeup collection
I get sucked up into the hype of limited edition items all of the time, especially from MAC. I’ll swatch it or use it once and never look back. Some items sit in my collection unopened and untouched. These products are taking up valuable space. If you haven’t used it in the last 6-12 months you most likely won’t. Give it away or put in a blog sale. Someone may be coveting an item that you’re letting collect dust. You can make some extra money to buy new gems (or not, remember we are downsizing folks.) As a last resort toss it.


3. Get rid of dupes

"MAC RiRi Boy Lipstick compared to Up the Amp"
You don’t need 5 tubes of the same shade of red lipstick. Maybe two if they are different finishes. If it’s a limited edition item one backup is okay but you don’t need five unless you wear that same shade every single day, and if you’re a hoarder like myself than I highly doubt that.


4. Shop your collection

Before you run out and buy that new eyeshadow that all of the blogs are raving over check your stash, you may already have a similar shade. Try to rotate your items weekly so that you’ll use up more products. This will also force you to be a little more creative with your looks. Set a rule that you won’t buy certain product types until you finish or get rid of one, foundation for example.

5. If you don’t love it, Don’t buy it

If you know that new nude lipstick that everyone is talking about will make you look like Tyrone Biggums don’t buy it. If you don’t love a product or it doesn’t work for you leave it at the store. I’m pretty sure the next new thing will be out next week or even the next day. Stop falling for the hype and this will help you to easily avoid #2 and 3.

Congratulations you are now on the road to becoming a recovering Makeup Hoarder yourself. I know it’s hard with so much peer pressure and cravings for the latest and greatest goodies but if you stick to these tips you will end up with the perfect collection, filled with products that you love and actually use!

Do you have any tips to add?

7 Responses

  1. def a great post, i stopped with the whole makeup buying, I went insane in six months, 100 lippies and def recovering and happier.

  2. I have a friend who is also a blogger, and regularly we host meet ups with our readers and we exchange makeup, clothes, jewelry, etc. Everyone gets rid of nearly everything they don’t need and in exchange they get things they need/want.

  3. This is a good topic. I remember rushing out to get Mac’s Lavender whip lipstick. There was so much hype over it. It looked awful on me and i never used it. I’ve also had lipgloss go bad, i’m talking about a previously unopened brand new lip gloss, that was sitting for 3 years. smh. Once a year i give away makeup that i never use, i think i need to bump it up to twice a year.

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