How long does foundation last? |No matter

Using expired makeup products can cause you more harm than good.

For example, liquid foundation expires after 2 years while cream foundations last only for 6 months.

For that reason, always check the expiry date of makeup products before buying. 

Aside from checking the expiry date, there are a few things you need to know.

Eyes makeup products will last longer than any other makeup.

Water-based products also lasts longer than oil-based products.

Most brands will state that their products can achieve a life span of 2 years from the first-time use. 

This however does not apply for all makeup products.

Since foundation is one of the essential makeup products, we will discuss how to know if your foundation is expired in details.

Keep reading to know when you should dump your foundation. 

How long does liquid foundation last?

No matter how expensive your foundation is, at one point it is going to reach its expiry.

Once a foundation is expired, it is very dangerous to put it on your face as it might cause breakouts and other skin infections.

So, ensure you check the expiry date on your foundation before buying. 

Aside from the manufacturer’s expiry date, there are other factors and tips that will be helpful when determining when your foundation is viable for use.

Other factors that determine the life span of foundations are discussed below. 

Quality of the foundation

Quality foundation is made using quality ingredients.

Most of these ingredients play a big part in repairing damaged skin. 

However, once the foundation expires, the ingredients react to form harmful chemical components.

Although quality products take longer to expire, do not attempt to use them once they expire. 

Most cheap foundations have low quality ingredients and therefore they go bad faster than quality foundations. 

Storage condition

If you store your foundation is uncovered and above room temperature, bacteria might start growing in your foundation causing it become bad faster. 

Ensure you store your makeup products in a closed environment and below room temperature.

Always secure the makeup products cover after every use. 

How long the foundation has spent on the shelf

Most brands indicate that their foundations expire after 2 years.

However, once you start using the foundation it’s life span will automatically reduce. 

Foundations go bad 6 months after being opened.

Therefore, ensure that you check the expiry date of the foundation before buying.

It would be best if you bought a foundation that is less than 6 months in the shelves. 

We will discuss why opened foundation will expire faster than an unopened foundation even when their expiry details are the same. 

How long does unopened foundation last? 

How long does foundation last
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Most foundations have gone through intensive testing and found to expire within two years of manufacturing.

This however changes once the foundation is opened.

Opened foundation attracts bacteria build up.

As a result, the foundation cannot last for more than 12 months after it is opened.

Water-based foundations attract bacteria.

It is very common to find a foundation that has grown mold in it after being opened for 6 months.

Dermatologists’ advice you to only use foundation for 6-12 months.

After that you can ditch them.

This also applies to expensive high-quality foundations. 

Check that the expiry date of the foundation you are buying is 12 moths away.

Otherwise, your foundation might lose its efficiency before it reaches the expiry date. 

Using expired foundation for a few times after its expiry might not have those serious repercussions.

However, if foundation starts to rot while you are still using it might lead to serious skin infections

If you haven’t checked the expiry date of your foundation, it is hard to tell if your foundation is expired.

I will therefore give you some tips on how you can tell when a foundation is expired or almost expired. 

How do I know if my foundation is expired?

The foundation is expired?

One way you can tell if your foundation is expired is checking the manufacturers expiry date.

If you are buying your foundation online, you can check the description to see if they mention the expiry date. 

In order to use the foundation for long, ensure that the concealer has not been shelved for more than 6 months.

Foundations that have been shelved for more than 6 months might lose the foundation efficiency before reaching the expiry date. 

Are there any signs of reactions?

Expired foundation might start irritating your face.

So, if you have been using a foundation and it didn’t have any effect then from no where you start feeling irritated, the foundation might be expired. 

Check the expiry date and if the date is still viable, consult a dermatologist.

Refrain from using any foundation or makeup product that irritates your skin. 

Is there any foul smell?

Expired makeup products will produce a certain foul smell.

So, one way to tell if your foundation is expired is to smell it and notice any change in smell. 

Check for presence of molds 

Check for presence of molds 

When makeup products expire, the ingredients start to react with each other creating harmful substances.

The harmful substance might manifest in form of molds.

This mold might cause serious skin conditions when they come in contact with your skin. 

Do not use a foundation if you notice any molds.

What happens if I use an expired foundation?

When foundation expires, there is formation of new substances in your foundation.

These substances are mostly toxic and can cause serious skin diseases and breakouts. 

This however is if you use an expired foundation for a long period.

Nothing happens if you use an expired foundation a few times. 

How often should I replace foundation?

It is advisable to replace your foundation after 6 months of use.

You can replace after 12 months if you are using a high-quality foundation. 

Remember no matter how expensive a foundation is, once it expires it has no more usage. 


No matter what coverage is offered by a foundation, once it is expired, it has no help for your skin.

Expired foundation will irritate your skin and cause a serious breakouts. 

Our guide on ‘How long does foundation last’, has all the information you need to know when to ditch your foundation. 

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