How important is finishing a makeup product?

For me, my goal is to try and photograph/swatch/review what I buy, because in the past, I’d get overambitious and purchase way, way more than I could feasibly get to. It’s rare that I have a meaningful chunk of time to catch up on my backlog (it’s more like, hey, here’s a day or two every six to eight weeks), which makes it harder and harder when I am always behind. I finish some products like brow gel, mascara, loose powder, skincare, and haircare, but I’m fortunate enough to have lots of products to choose from so if I don’t like something, I’ll just move onto something else.

— Christine
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Well, judging from the huge amount of makeup I own, it’s obvious that finishing a product is not nearly as important as I’d like to think it is!

Actually, there are a few products I try to use up before opening a new one: concealer, foundation, setting powder, and eyebrow pencil. Although I have backups of most of these, I use the same one until it’s empty. I try to do this with mascara, but I get sidetracked whenever I get one of those little trial size versions.

Sometimes I want my makeup to last and so try and postpone using it up as much as possible so I don’t have to buy more. If it is a product that I like, but don’t love then sometimes I just want to get through it. If I don’t like it I pass it on. Hitting pan just means I have to get another so usually I’m not trying too hard to finish up products. Only reason I would try to use it up is if it were to truly start going bad soon and in that case I want to use it before I feel bad about having to toss it.

If it is an eyeshadow, h/l, contour/bronzer, blush, not likely so I don’t stress about it.

Skincare, mascara, liners, I do tend to use up.

Not at all. I have some that are decades old. I have so many shadows and my one-and-done is the only one I’ve used more than one pan on. Liquid eyeliner and mascara I’ve had HGs so long I’ve finished tons of those, I’ve never finished a blush and maybe one or two foundations because I’m always looking for an HG there!

I’m trying to put in the effort to at least get through a handful of products that are either nearing their end (ie, things I’ve hit significant pan on), and products I don’t tend to use regularly, but somehow have quite alot of (ie, concealer, powders, primer, etc…), and don’t plan to purchase anymore of for a while. I don’t buy into expiration dates on anything other than mascara & liquid liner, unless there’s a change in smell, texture, or composition, so that means most powder products will last quite some time.

I don’t have that expectation w most powder products (I do finish setting powders). However, with more liquid products like foundation, mascara, concealer I for one try not to have more than one or two and I do work my way through them and won’t rebuy until they are done. Makeup is expensive and although I have a lot I won’t use up in my lifetime, I try to be mindful of what I buy and not be wasteful!

If it’s my HG “basics”, I will use those up. Things like skincare, foundation, concealer, finishing and setting powders, brow products, MAC Orb for my browbone, primers, including my lip primer by MAC. I also try to get the absolute most out of my mascaras and eye liners before they expire or dry up.

Color cosmetics are a whole other story! At least most of the ones I have already will probably never get completely used up before either turning (cream products, lipstick and lipgloss) or they’ll just hang around in my drawer, getting used when the mood hits.

I’ve used up and repurchased eye primers, concealers, color correcters, mascara, brow growth products, skin cleansing products, eye creams, moisturizers and sun screen. Right now, I am getting to the end of a bunch of skin care products and I am not allowed to purchase anything else until this whole group is finished. I just dug out an older Chanel blush in a warm peach for summer and it suits my current makeup mood more than when I got it, so excited to use that. There’s just one lipstick in my stash that I not only use quite often, but that I am regularly drawn to when visiting a Sephora, as well as that I see when checking dupe lists for colors Christine shows that I like. It’s TF Wild Ginger. Apart from a few vintage Chanel lip pies that are getting down there, there is no other lipstick I could imagine using up. And debating whether I get a back at the Rouge sale.

I can’t seem to finish eye primers… even with owning just one and using it every day… after a year I toss it even if I have half of product (it’s just my choice to listen to use the date form opening as guideline always with make-up). For me just a tiny bit works a long way… granted, my `type` of eye primer is something like Too Faced Shadow Insurance, Smashbox 24 Hour Photo Finish, Urban Decay Primer Potion (aka. thick silicon primers); and I do find that after a year of regular (almost daily use) the formula kind of dries out too much for my liking. I might have gotten a good use of a mini Urban Decay Primer Potion, but with that type of packaging is hard to tell if you actually finished the product.

Not that important to me. I go through concealers, BB cream, mascara, eyebrow products, lipgloss and Colourpop super shock highlighters. And of course skin and hair care.

It’s not at all important. I purge my collection and adhere closely–but not slavishly–to expiration guidelines. If I’ve finished the product, great. If I haven’t finished the product, I really don’t care. Besides, there is always something new coming down the pike.

Finishing powder products isn’t overly important to me. Despite the warnings of expiration, nothing grows in powders (as a general rule, be responsible for your own safety). But I’d like to at least finish half of each of my cream products (blushes, lipsticks, highlighters) before they go bad. I’m kind of a fiend for buying new products, lipstick in particular, but it has a life span and it feels so wasteful to throw out items that should have been used almost up.

Mascaras are easy as I only ever have 1-2 open at the same time and just use it until it’s done. Eyeliners I try to use up….but some have dried out before I could, like Marc Jacobs and some old UD.

If it’s at least decent, I’ll use up skincare, foundation, concealer, eyebrow pencil and primers. If mascara flakes/smudges I reluctantly throw out after trying valiantly to make it work. Everything else I keep forever, and try to keep in rotation until it smells/looks/tastes/applies suspiciously. Slight change recently – if I have a dupe and the newer item performs much better, I’ve gotten rid of old shadows/blushes (giving to friends if I can.) My desire to not waste is somewhat outpaced by my love of variety, but I try. I do. Even if no one but me can tell…

As a person who aims to be a minimalist with make-up, for me it is somewhat important to finish a make-up product. Except color (e.g. eyeshadows, lipstick, blushes) I only own one item of each. So, for example, I’ll have a foundation opened, used it up, than move to the next one or bottle.
For me finishing up a product means I get all my money worth and I’m not generating more waste, I’m not cluttering my life with more things I don’t need.
But I don’t make a purpose from finishing items. I hate when I see project panners simply wasting product just for the sake of saying they finished something. If I can’t finish an eyeshadow or blush 3 years from the manufacturing date, it’s OK. I just throw it away and move to the next item. I’m not going to mine dig an eyeshadow just to say I finished it.

I think with skincare I like to use it up the most, since I use it more or like my foundation. Those are things I use Eyeshadow palettes not as much because I try to rotate what I have, it’s how I feel mood wise.

It really isn’t too important to me. I do have certain types of products that I will use up before opening another but they are usually HG products. I like to use my mascara up before opening a new one and that generally takes me a while since most days I mix 2 or 3 mascara’s to get the look I want from my puny lashes. Once I open a foundation I like to use it before it goes bad. Particularly if it is an expensive foundation. For most other products, I don’t really care. I have accepted that with the number of finishing powders I have, I will never finish them. Same for e/s, blushes and lipsticks. I do use up skin care before purchasing new unless the product is really doing something nasty to my skin or alternatively, not doing anything. I almost always use it until it is gone and then either try something else or go back to an old stand by. The Sephora sale was a time for me to purchase new skin care as I had been eeking by with what I had. The skin care routine I have been using is one I started in the first week of November and although there were products that I really love there were just as many that didn’t work great for me but they weren’t damaging my skin so I used them up. With most skin care being so pricey, it is hard to contemplate throwing out an $80 product. Plus, since skin care takes so long to show whether it is working or not, I like to give it the benefit of the doubt. I added 3 new products and took away 2 so we will see when they get here whether I initially like them or not.

It’s not really important to me, but I do feel ‘sad’ when I finish a favourite lipstick because it has usually become discontinued.
Lipsticks, mascaras, blushes, brow pencils and foundations are the makeup items I routinely finish. I have never recently finished an eye shadow palette…

The reason I am on a low/no-buy is because I will never finish up the products that I have and I feel that is maybe a little excessive and wasteful. I use up my facial creams and washes and serums etc. It’s just the eye shadow palettes, lipsticks, blush palettes and highlighters. So it is important to me to be mindful and realistic and know I will not use my powder products fully.

Cream and liquid foundations — important to use up before the ingredients go bad.
Mascara — no; they get thrown out after 3 months regardless.
Color cosmetics — no; I own way too much for that to ever happen.

I’m trying to be good this year-on a relatively low buy. Also trying to empty 19 things in 2019 (doing well as I’m already at 18). Eyeshadow palettes are the one thing that I have problems going through completely, but I’ve hit pan in 13 shadows so far this year (so there’s hope). I still have more makeup than I’ll probably get through in my lifetime.

I’m trying valiantly this year to purchase less makeup and use up what I already have. By using this website I am able to avoid purchasing dupes of things I already own. I just purchased a BYOP from Colour Pop, and was very careful to avoid choosing any colours that I already own in my vast collection of UD palettes. In the past I’ve wasted skin care products because I’ve purchased them, stashed them away somewhere, and forgotten about them until so much time has passed that I don’t even remember when or where I bought it! So I’m definitely on a mission to use up existing products before re-buying even in the face of temptation due to a sale!

Skin and hair products, I always finish.
Mascara, foundation, concealer, and brow gel pretty much, unless they dry up on me. My Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Contour Wand is almost done.

Sadly, makeup (especially eyeshadows) I can’t image finishing the majority of. I’ve hit pan on powder contour and one or two highlighters before, and now I’m dreading finishing my Nars Free Soul blush (SO pretty), which has an expanding pan each time I use it.
However, thanks to you, I know I can buy ND Rayo as an dupe/alternative!

Not. Though having said that, if the reason I’m not finishing it is because I don’t like it or have moved on to something I like a lot better, I don’t let it hang around either.

I don’t care about finishing products at all. Like most makeup enthusiasts, I own more at any given moment than I can finish in a lifetime. I only ever finish foundations, pressed or loose powders, occasional single eyeshadow and lip gloss.

I have more product than necessary right now. Partly because palettes were so interesting. But mostly because my hair and skin tone changed. I turned silver early and decided to embrace it. But now that I’ve got a better handle on what looks good, (and eyeshadow palettes seem to be dipable by my stash) I’m not buying them anymore. I’m working on finishing up some products while at the same time trying different color combinations.

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