Thursday, December 13, 2012

Cosmetic Hygiene

By Amanda Bown

"The cosmetic symbols on your beauty products indicate shelf life, ingredients and what you need to know to keep your skin safe. Since our make-up and skin care goods can harbour some pretty nasty bacteria, it's about time you got the lowdown on what cosmetic labeling means.

Make-Up Hygiene
We're a grubby lot when it comes to looking after our make-up. According to a survey carrie
d out by Debenhams in 2010, some women keep their cosmetics up to 15 years past their sell-by date. So, even if you are not sure what the symbols mean (read our glossary below for the details), if you haven't cleaned out your handbag for a while and your eyes, skin or lips start to itch, ditch that make-up quick!

The recommended lifespan of a mascara is six months but on average we use them for up to a year. Mascara wands are breeding grounds for the bacteria that cause conjunctivitis.
Dirty make-up brushes and sponges are ripe with the micro-organisms that cause herpes, ringworm and impetigo (an infectious skin disease that causes scabs and blisters). Yet 71% of women say they never clean them. Wash your brushes and sponges in a mild soapy solution once every two to three weeks and leave to dry completely.
Eyeshadow and blusher have a recommended lifespan of 18 to 24 months but they are kept on average for 180 months - that's 15 years.

60% of us regularly share make-up with our friends - multiplying the chances of infection.
If your make-up looks or smells strange, has dried out or has changed in texture, it's bad. Throw it out!

Cosmetic Symbols:

The 'lid' symbol indicates the recommended number of months within which the product should be used after it's first opened. Cosmetic products that have a lifespan of less than 30 months must show a 'best before end of' date - this may be shown as the 'egg timer' symbol, followed by the date. Some products, such as aerosol and perfumes, don't require any dates to be shown as they don't deteriorate in the same way, due to their high alcohol content."

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