How to Declutter your Makeup Collection

As someone with a makeup collection that could give my local Superdrug a run for its money, declutters are something I have to do fairly regularly. But it’s never easy parting with products I’ve spent my hard-earned cash on, so I’ve had to come up with some tips to get myself through these sad times.

Travel 02

Take everything out

Sometimes focusing on single products like a lipstick declutter is a sensible option if you have an overwhelming collection, but I find getting everything out allows me to see where I need to focus my decluttering efforts. Rescue lipsticks from handbags and travel makeup bags as well as your main collection and look at everything together.

When did you last use it?

The principal of not needing something if you haven’t used it in the last twelve months is sped up for products that have expiry dates. With makeup, six months of non-use qualifies for a free pass straight into the declutter pile. If you have seasonal products such as foundations in winter and summer shades, consider if you’re going to use something in the next six months and get rid if not.

Check those expiry dates

We’re all guilty of ignoring this one and sometimes I feel like it’s okay to do that as long as the product still performs as it should, however keeping makeup shelflife in mind when I’m decluttering is helpful for deciding if I should keep something or not. Most products have their own symbols that tell you how long they’re designed to last after opening, but I’ve listed a reference guide below:

Makeup Shelflife

Powders – around 2 years

Foundations – 6-12 months

Creams – 12-18 months

Concealer – 6-12 months

Pencils – 12 months

Mascara – 3-6 months

Lipsticks – 12-18 months

Forget about price

I’m guilty of holding onto products that I don’t like or don’t use because they were expensive and I feel like I’m wasting a product if I’ve paid a lot for it. When it comes to declutters, try not to think about price and instead consider whether that product really belongs in your collection. If you’re not going to use it, leaving it to die in your makeup bag is not going to get you your money back

Would you repurchase?

The question most of us ask ourselves when writing up a product empties post can also apply to declutters. If you have a makeup collection full of products that aren’t getting used, ask yourself if you would go out and buy that product again knowing now how you feel about it. Anything that doesn’t pass this test gets a nudge one step closer to the declutter pile.

Get swatching

I never notice how similar some products are until I swatch them side by side. Do you have multiple lipsticks in nearly identical shades? Or are all your eyeshadow palettes looking a bit repetitive? If you have doubles in your collection, this is the time to eliminate them and only keep one of each shade.

Ditch the ‘for now’ excuse

If you’re not sure about a product, getting rid of it seems like the harder option when you could just toss it back into your drawer. But ask yourself what you’re really keeping it for. Sure, there have been times when I’ve picked up an untouched product and actually ended up loving it, but most of the time hanging onto something ‘for now’ only leads to letting perfectly usable makeup expire and have to be thrown out anyway.

Don’t assume that single products are safe

If you only have one of something, don’t automatically give it a free pass. Unless it’s an essential, everyday item for you, does it actually have value in your collection or is the reason you only have one because you don’t really like that product type? For me, I have this problem with liquid highlight and aways try to keep one in my collection even though I never use it!

That’s all my tips for decluttering your makeup collection. Let me know in the comments if you can think of any other tips and don’t forget to post it on your blog if you do a declutter- I love reading them!

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