It’s time to start thinking about your beauty cabinet as being like the ocean, as in, it may look beautiful on the surface but there are hidden dangers lurking beneath the depths.
In this case those dangers are all kinds of nasty germs and bacteria just waiting to ruin your perfect skin.
When it comes to turning over our beauty and hygiene products with organised regularity, we’re all guilty of letting this responsibility slide. After all, what’s the worst thing that can happen if you overuse your toothbrush, dip into the same make-up pallet for years or scrub your skin with your trusty loofah day in or day out?
Well, quite a lot, it seems.
The hard truth is that if your make-up is old enough to buy itself a drink, it’s too old to be in your beauty bag.
Here are the five products you probably need to replace as soon as you finish reading this.
This is perhaps the beauty product that is most guilty of overstaying its welcome way past its use by date. Probably because every woman knows you can always force a little more out if you just repeatedly jab the brush back into the tube with a little extra force.
In reality, you should be treating yourself to a new mascara every three months. If you don’t, you could be in danger of giving yourself an eye infection as bacteria builds up inside the tube.
To make your mascara last longer, you should twirl the brush inside the tube to pick up the colour instead of pumping it in order to decrease the amount of air that gets in. This will buy you a bit of time, but the three-month rule still stands.
When it comes to replacing your hygiene products, regularly getting a brand new toothbrush is of the utmost importance. After all, it goes in your mouth twice a day. It should be as pristine as an Angel's cheek.
If you overuse your toothbrush, the bristle shape changes and often bends in different directions. The toothbrush loses its effectiveness to clean your teeth. Dentists recommend that you should get yourself a brand new toothbrush every three months.
So if you've been eyeing off a fancy new Colgate Optic White Toothbrush or whitening toothpaste, you'll definitely be doing yourself a favour by picking them up. Hot tip: Colgate Optic White's toothbrush has a built-in whitening pen to help apply the gel after brushing. Once the gel runs out (around the six-week mark), it's a good reminder it's time to get a new toothbrush.
It is also vitally important to change your toothbrush regularly, because chances are you store it in your bathroom - which, needless to say, is a hotbed of germs. All those germs coming from the toilet, along with keeping your toothbrush right next to where you clean your hands, can lead to a lot of bacteria going directly into your mouth.
3. Nail polish.
One bottle of nail polish can probably last you a few years (especially if you're just using it on your toes) but that doesn't mean you should be keeping it around for that long.
In fact, the chemicals in your nail polish will start to degrade quite quickly after one year and the formula will not have the same staying strength as it used to. To keep track of your polishes, because a year is a long time, try writing the date on the side of the bottle so you know when a year has passed and it's time to make like Elsa and let it goooooooo.
4. Lip gloss.
OK, confession time, I have a lip gloss addiction that has turned into a bit of a hoarding problem. I figured if the consistency of the gloss looked OK, it was all good to go for years on end.
But I was wrong.
It turns out that lip gloss can only be used for a maximum of one year, but you should probably replace it a lot sooner just to be safe (at least ever six months). This is because a lip gloss gets a whole lot of handling, because we carry them with us everywhere and often dip our germ-ridden fingers into the pots when we apply it.
Not replacing them regularly can lead to cold sores and skin breakouts which are both highly contagious, even when the blisters aren’t present. The virus can easily spread between people. So make sure you're picking up a few new tubes regularly.
Have you ever experienced a break-out of acne across your chest and back? Continually washing yourself with a loofah that's just covered in bacteria and germs is not recommended. In fact, if you have acne, scrubbing or exfoliating with an old loofah can irritate the skin, making it look and feel sore.
Your shower can be a breeding ground for germs, which is why you shouldn't allow your loofah to live there. Store it in a dry, clean place but still make sure you toss it after about five weeks. You don't need that kind of germy negativity in your life.
Cleaning your beauty cabinet out is just as important as cleaning your face, and you'll feel just as good afterwards.
What do you replace often in your beauty cabinet? Tell us below!
This content was created with thanks to our brand partner Colgate Optic White®.
Colgate Optic White® is Australia’s #1 whitening brand.
The range features a breakthrough in whitening, Colgate Optic White® Toothbrush with built-in whitening pen. Now you can have whiter teeth in just two days with the whitening ingredient that dentists use*.
Available in the toothbrush section of all leading supermarkets and pharmacies.
*Lower strength formula for regular use.