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When Do Eyeshadow Palettes Expire? How to Tell if Your Palette is Underperforming Because It’s Expired


Though it may be news to some, eyeshadow palettes and other powder-based color cosmetics have an expiration date. Yes, they expire, and often they expire sooner than any of us may have finished them up. Especially for makeup junkies, getting to finish an eye palette before it expires seems impossible. That is why it is important to understand all the ins and outs of expired eyeshadow so that you can realize when it’s happening, address it, and then—the fun part—go shopping for new eye makeup.


When do shadows go bad?

The commonly held practice is that your eyeshadows, both singles and those included in eyeshadow palettes, will go bad around three to six months after you purchase them. They may actually have a longer shelf life, more similar to powder blushes and powder bronzers that can last around two years, but one should be more careful when dealing with eyeshadows due to their proximity to your eyeballs when applied.


Why should I care?

You should definitely care about whether your makeup is expired, especially all of your eye cosmetics. Eyeshadows, eye primers, mascaras, eyeliners, and even some foundations need to be dealt with very carefully because they are placed so close to your eyes, which are more vulnerable than other parts of your face, like your cheeks or forehead. Not only can expired makeup cause infections, acne, and other discomforts, it also just does not perform as well. If you do not care about your ophthalmologic health, at least care about this: an expired eyeshadow will no longer perform to its full rich, vivid capacity. Keep that in mind when you’re deciding what to throw away.


How can I tell that my eyeshadow has expired?

Many makeup items do not have proper expiry dates listed on their packaging, or they are at least very difficult to find. When an eyeshadow is expired, it may show different symptoms depending on how “far gone” it is. If the eyeshadow is long past due for tossing, it may smell bad or start growing mold or other growths on its surface. If it’s not quite there yet, you may notice other fishy aspects of your shadow, such as a look that is either drier than normal or far oilier. The shadows may also fade faster, skip more, or not show up on your lid to their full opacities.


What should I do when my eyeshadow expires?

The short answer to this question is simple: stop using it on your eyes and throw it away into the garbage. Avoid donating expired makeup or passing it on to a friend, since it’s just as dangerous to use on your own eyes as it would be to use on someone else’s.


What should I try next?

We’re so glad you asked. While an eyeshadow expiring can be a sad occasion, especially if it was a favorite shade or a shadow that was limited edition from a brand you love. So, after the appropriate period of mourning comes the fun part: hunting for a new go-to eyeshadow palette. If you’re looking for a neutral palette that is complimentary on many skin tones and eye shades, the DiTO Cosmetics Shiny Sun Shade Palette could be perfect for your needs. Or, if you want to venture outside the box and would like to try a number of different colors, consider the DiTO Cosmetics Brick Fun Owl Palette, which has nine colorful and bold shades that are still velvety and blendable enough for even beginners to play with.