Don’t bring your old makeup and skincare into hot girl summer! Or hot man, or person, we’re inclusive. Whether you are still using a chapstick from 2015 or have enough toner for a lifetime - your beauty cabinet could use a clean-up.
If you’ve got piles and drawers of beauty products, it can feel pretty overwhelming to begin the sorting process - but we got you! Here are 5 steps to keep your skin and beauty cabinet clean.
1. Cut the nostalgia
The first eyeshadow you ever bought may bring you back to simpler, un-blended times, but it’s got to go (be honest - it’s old and belongs nowhere near your eyes). We attach a lot of sentimentality to our beauty products and all the value they’ve provided us, but in the circle of life, they have their time and place. If you’ve been holding onto it for that value but aren’t actually going to use it, it’s time to let it go.
Those nostalgic beauty products are taking up valuable real estate for better, newer things! You grow and change, as should your collection of lip balms.
2. Check expiry dates
Yes, all beauty products have an expiry. In the case of clean skincare, this might be a date, but usually it’s a length of time after opening.
For most makeup, it’s around 1-2 years. You can stretch a palette or eyeshadow past this if you take good care of it (a.k.a. cleaning your brushes more frequently) but other products like mascara start to dry up between 6-9 months.
Skincare is different as its expiry can range, so you should check the packaging for that indication or check online (the answers are out there, we promise).
The rule is, if it’s expired, it’s time to go. Using expired products can put you at greater risk of bacterial growth which can wreak havoc on your skin, eyes, nose and mouth. Getting an eye infection from your old eyeliner is NOT #hotgirlsummer.
3. Reduce duplicates
Alright, you got us, we have like twenty forms of lip balm in our beauty cabinet. And realistically, we need and regularly use maybe four or five. If you’re rocking a silly amount of duplicate products, it may be time to toss, gift, or donate.
Stockpiling beauty products happens to the best of us, but if you’ve got three different serums that do basically the same thing (or contain a similar ingredient profile) you should consider whether they all belong in your beauty cabinet. There’s no harm in putting it in storage, but you don’t need them all “on deck” for your beauty routine.
4. Pick an organization method
There are a lot of ways to organize your beauty cabinet, and picking the method that works for you might be overwhelming. We’ve identified a few methods you can consider:
Organize by type
Especially in the case of beauty products, it makes sense to assemble your collection by type; keeping cleansers together, face masks, makeup, etc. Keeping all of one type of product together makes it easier to choose as you go through your routine and so you focus on the bottles that are closer to empty before starting a new or nearly-full product.
Organize by step
If you’ve got a pretty consistent daily routine, keep the “varsity” products together where they’re easy to access and organize by step. From cleanser to setting spray, have ONE of each product you use regularly within reach, then keep your extras or less frequently used stored somewhere else for when you need it. This will reduce clutter and is efficient for the on-the-go beauty routine.
5. Marie Kondo it
You can’t talk about organization without mentioning Marie Kondo! As you go through this process of cleaning out your beauty cabinet, you can make it a little bit easier by a) identifying whether or not the product brings you joy and b) thanking it for its service when you decide to let it go.
Read more about the KonMari Method here.
It’s time to clean
Cleanliness doesn’t just make it easier to find the products you need, it actually helps you think more clearly and remain efficient - whether that’s in your beauty routine, office or home.
Cleaning isn’t always fun, but we have a few final tips to make it bearable.
- Play music, a podcast or some Netflix while you clean for entertainment
- Make a game of it by cleaning as fast as possible
- Set a timer: we’ve all started sorting and then looked up and realized hours have passed. Decide how long you want to spend cleaning, start your timer and if you’re not done when it ends, take a break then start another timer. It will keep you accountable and reduce the rabbit hole of nostalgia or boredom.
Now finish your spring cleaning so you can get to your glorious summer of self-care and self-love.