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The 2-step solution to spring clean your makeup bag

by Anna De Souza /  / Updated  / Source: TODAY

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Did you know that spring cleaning your makeup bag could actually make you look years younger? Hear us out!

For example, does applying your makeup remind you of icing a cake?

"Depending on the makeup and how old it is, the product [can start] looking thick and pasty on the skin as the water evaporates out of it,” explains Dr. Doris Day, RealSelf dermatologist advisor. Once it starts to evaporate, your makeup can make you look way older than you are.

In addition to beauty snafus, expired cosmetics can have potentially harmful health effects. Here's how to look and feel better by spring cleaning your makeup bag in two easy steps.

Various makeup products on wooden background
Various makeup products on wooden background; Shutterstock ID 222809626; PO: TODAY.comIryna Tiumentseva / Shutterstock

Step 1: Cleanse

Guess what? You're just a cosmetics cleanse away from younger-looking skin.

Mascara

Every time you pump your mascara brush into the tube, you’re injecting germs straight into your formula. As it thickens, your lashes appear more and more spidery until it’s nearly impossible to coat lashes uniformly. A good rule of thumb is to trash your mascara every 2-3 months. To keep it simple, toss it when you throw out your toothbrush.

Lipsticks and glosses

Lipsticks last for about two years. If it’s a seasonal shade and you’re looking to store it for later, wipe the top layer with a tissue and stash it in a cool, dry drawer. Glosses have an expiration date of one year. If it’s extra sticky, like the consistency of a caramel latte, it’s time to let it go.

Foundation

Liquid foundation is at its peak for six months and will keep for up to 12. If it separates, changes color or smells funny, toss it. Always, always keep it out of UV light.

Powders

Three cheers! Bronzers, blushes, eyeshadows and powder foundations can last upwards of two years, but if it’s dry and flakes on your skin after a few hours, it’s definitely gone bad. If eyeshadow lands on the apple of the cheeks, consider this your head’s up.

Setting sprays

Most makeup-setting sprays have been tested to last about two years. If you find that it’s not as potent as when you first purchased it, replace it and make sure you’re agitating the bottle before using. The mattifying powders often settle on the bottom and after a few weeks of use, all you’re left with is the equivalent of a water spray!

Makeup brushes

Whether you apply makeup sporadically or everyday, brushes should take a dive into soapy water once a week. That's right, once a week! Don't know where to start? Try massaging cleanser to the base of each brush with the Sigma Spa Brush Cleaning Mat ($32). This silicone mat was designed with seven patented texture grooves to properly cleanse all different types of brushes. And with suction cups on the bottom, the mat stays secures in the sink.

Step 2: Lighten up

Try new textures and technology to streamline your routine.

Pencils up

You can now find all different categories of makeup in pencil form for easy toting when you're on the go. The best part? These won’t break, melt or crumble inside your makeup bag.

Freshening up after a long work day is a necessity, but touch-ups can be a drag — literally. Your skin is tight and dry by the end of the day and this can emphasize fine lines. Your on-the-go solution is Urban Decay's Ultimate Ozone Multipurpose Primer Pencil ($16). Use it on lips to prevent feathering and around the eyes for perfect concealer after 5 pm.

As another option, Circa Beauty Studio Edit Full Coverage Concealer ($12) boasts a foundation and concealer boost in a sleek pencil. No more leaks and spills!

Brush smarter

From your makeup to your teeth, the type of brush you use matters.

Hygiene is most crucial around the delicate eye area and this silicone liner brush from Real Techniques ($5.99) is non-porous, cleans easily between uses and gives you precise results for gel and liquid liner.

Finally, there’s a good chance you’re depositing more germs into your mouth than you’re actually removing when you brush — 10 billion microbes are said to live on a toothbrush at any given time! FOREO Issa ($199) is the newest design disruptor on the market. This ergonomic silicone toothbrush is ultra-hygienic with each head lasting a full year — and one charge is good for 365 uses!

Now you can say that you've finished your spring-cleaning checklist.

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