How To: Make Your Products Last Longer

So you just splurged on the super-fancy-have-to-have-it mascara you’ve been eyeing FOREVER. And now you want to make your new purchase last as long as possible, right? Here you go: seven ways to extend the shelf life of your most prized beauty possessions.

1. Make Your Scent Stick Around

Never store fragrance in the bathroom, where steam from hot showers can quickly degrade aroma. For a longterm relationship, choose a concentrated fragrance (a classic: Atelier Cologne Vanille Insensee Petite Cologne Absolue), which will last longer than an eau de toilette or body spray. Bonus tip: Apply unscented lotion before spritzing—oily skin retains fragrance longer.

2. Enjoy to the (Very) Last Drop

Favorite lipstick almost all gone? There’s more left than you think: Scoop it out with a little plastic spatula or cotton swab and make your own lip pot with an empty container (available at any beauty supply store) and a brush. Use stila’s portrait of a perfect pout – vibrant lip for inspiration.

3. Save the Pumping for Free Weights

We've all been there: Faced with last-legs mascara, you start pumping the wand to get every last bit. Halt! “With each pump, you are allowing air bubbles as well as bacteria into the tube,” says makeup artist Stefanie Syat, owner of makeup party business Pre-Dame. Instead, use this trick to revive dried-out mascara: Sprinkle a tiny bit of water on the wand, place it back in the tube, and roll it around inside. Pull the wand back out in one clean swipe—and stop your bad habits for good. Try Mally Beauty Volumizing Mascara for seriously fat lashes.

4. Give Products the Cold Shoulder

Cream or liquid products + heat and sunlight = disaster. To keep products from deteriorating or prematurely drying out, store them away from direct sunlight, radiators, or other heating elements. During summer, we keep products most susceptible to heat damage, like foundation, concealer, and cream blush, in the fridge. And year-round, we love the way chilled StriVectin-SD™ Eye Concentrate and Havvn Night Cream feel on our face before bedtime.

5. Keep It Clean

Bacteria-filled makeup brushes are bad news: They can cause breakouts and contaminate any product you dip them into. Plus, your brushes also won’t last as long if they’re not properly cared for. Once a week, dip them into warm, soapy water. Use a mild shampoo or hand soap, or try beautyblender® blendercleanser—the gentle, soy-based wash works well on both the beautyblender sponge and brushes.

6. Embrace the Healing Power of Oil

Pot o' cream shadow starting to cake up? Makeup artist Sophie Haig has this genius tip: “Warm up a couple of drops of a very good quality oil (like Argan, coconut, or Buriti oil) and mix it in with the dried-out cream.” This trick also works wonders on other cream-based makeup, like blush and concealer.

7. Don’t Cry over Spilled Product

Dropping one of our favorite compacts—like Jouer Mineral Powder Blush—on the bathroom floor and watching it shatter is a heartbreaking experience. But it doesn’t have to be. “Place a few drops of rubbing alcohol onto the broken shadow and press down with the back of a clean spoon until the shadow is leveled out,” Haig recommends. “Then leave to dry and hooray! Back to normal.”

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