How important is it to you to finish your beauty products?

Not at all but I live in a world where that’s not feasible for the majority of what I have, so it would be unnecessarily stressful if I made it a priority! What I do try to avoid is buying backups and the like unless it’s of something I expect to actually finish (say, a cleanser).

— Christine
We hope you'll consider supporting Temptalia by shopping through our links below. Thanks!

46 Comments

Discussion and debate are highly encouraged, and we expect community members to participate respectfully. When asking a question, please check the post above for information regarding pricing, availability, dupes, and availability, and keep discussion on-topic.

Please do not ask if/when a review will be posted as we cannot review everything and often change priorities from day-to-day. If you have general feedback, a product review request, an off-topic question, or need technical support, please contact us. Thank you!

Comments that include advertisements, self-promotion, insults, etc. may be in violation of our comment policy and subject to deletion. Please see our comment policy for more information.

Comments on this post are closed.
We hope you'll consider supporting Temptalia by shopping through our links below. Thanks!

Its becoming more important as I realize how many dupes I have in my collection and how easily I can find dupes of new releases. For things like foundation / concealer / mascara etc. I am trying to finish what I have in my collection before trying new things. I’ll probably never finish my eyeshadow or highlighter collection though.

Theoretically, it’s very important. In reality, it’s impossible!!!

However, there are three products that I’ve used up and re-bought several times over the years: Clinique Brow Shaper, Cover Girl Clump Crusher Mascara, and Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation. I have a few other products that I will probably use up and rebuy, but I doubt I’ll ever run out of any one lipstick or eyeshadow palette. I simply have too many!!!

(I forgot to include skin care in my reply.) I am a lot better at using up skin care products than I am with makeup. I’ve used the same Clinique cleanser and moisturizer every day for years. I am getting near the end of my first tub of Kiehl’s Avocado Eye Cream. Though it’s expensive, I will probably buy it again because I really love it and the little tub actually lasted a long time.

More important than is probably feasible. I don’t like to waste yet I buy way more than I need or would be able to use in a timely manner. I am miindful of creams and liquids and don’t overbuy but I do have an excess of lipsticks right now and am trying to go through a few before they turn. I get anxious in thinking I will waste or not use what I’ve bought but then running out of something makes me anxious so I tend to “stock up” or buy like products.🙄

It’s important to me that I finish my skincare items. I hate giving up on skincare midway and then buying something to replace it. Even though I have done it, it seems the most wasteful to me. I’m trying to stop the habit of shopping for skincare when my current bottles and tubes aren’t empty yet.

For color cosmetics, it is not important that I finish them but it is important that I make a good go of them. Say I buy a $50 eyeshadow palette and I’ve used it twice a week for a year–that’s about 100 uses, which is $.50 per use. So the palette surely won’t be “panned,” but hey, that’s pretty good use I’ve gotten out of it. If it’s a $30 lipstick and I’ve only worn it twice in a year… that wasn’t a wise purchase.

i like how you rationalised your purchases lol. i have many blushes and lord knows we need so little of them at each use. i’ve been rotating between my blushes weekly and yet there’s little pan-age happening and truth is, it will never happen. at least i’ve been rotating them faithfully!

I aim to finish makeup products as a discipline measure: making myself use up something that is just ok encourages me to think twice next time I’m on verge of an impulse buy. I do toss something if it is really just outright wrong, like a terrible color, it makes me break out, etc. As far as skin care — if it doesn’t work, it’s out; I don’t force myself to use it up.

I’ve made it more of a priority lately on products that CAN be finished! Basically anything besides pressed powders and eyeshadows. And lip products take a long time to use up, unfortunately.

But I’ve been making good progress on finishing skin care and hair care products up before shopping for new ones! It helps me keep my stash manageable (for me, which is still a lot). I’ve also been trying to declutter anything I don’t reach for before buying new stuff. It’s tough for me!

Nope. The idea of possibly finishing a product I like is terrifying to me. I want everything to last forever, or at least last until I’m no longer in love.

I’ve got a few palettes and a few singles in my makeup bag that I consider my “quick grabs” for when I’m being indecisive or don’t have anything particular that I want to play with and are also the only ones I take for travel–I keep telling myself I’m going to pan those but my collection is too big for that to happen.

I’m referring to color cosmetics only (eyeshadow, highlighter/blush/contour, lips). I really only use 1 or 2 base products and replace those as I use them up (foundation, powder, eyeliner, mascara, etc.). I’m loyal to my skincare line only trying a new mask or some other wash-off product now and then, so I replace those items as needed.

The only liquid/cream products I own for color cosmetics are lips so I try not to have too many on hand. It does bother me when I don’t finish those because I feel like there’s no way of disinfecting those, unlike scrapping off the top layer of your powders/spraying with a light mist of isopropyl alcohol…although I did watch one YouTube video where the person cut off the tip and dipped the bullet in isopropyl alcohol and let dry. She said it didn’t change the formula at all. She also washed the wands for lip gloss and let dry, covering the tube until she could put the wand back in–that seems like too much work to me. Hehe/

Disinfecting bullet lipsticks in isopropyl alcohol should be pretty effective. I would think because of the density of the product, germs and bacteria are not penetrating and living deep inside the bullet or anything too gross like that. It’s all on the surface so you can wipe it down once a month or something if you want. Alcohol does nothing to the formula.

I don’t really care if I finish everything (that would be almost literally impossible), but I do want to make sure that everything I own is used and appreciated. I’m trying to pan some of staple, single eyeshadows, and I’d love to hit pan in blush/contour/highlight. Not because I relish the idea of running out, but I want to train myself to be gratified by doing makeup rather than buying makeup.

It’s only important if it’s a product that I worry about going bad: Mascaras, skincare, foundation, etc. Otherwise, I know it’s not going to happen.

I love the idea but unfortunately my collection is way too large to realistically finish most of my makeup. At my age I think of what’s going to happen when I die and everybody sees my massive makeup. I already told my daughter how I want it distributed if I kick the bucket , lol . I get so happy when I see pan on a eye shadow or blush, lol. It’s hard to finish a lip stick, occasionally I’ll finish a lip gloss or face powder.

Lol! I hear you! My daughter sees my collection and she exclaimed it makes her dissy. Although is mostly drugstore but I’m hextremely happy with my colors. So no one I guess will want me to kick the bucket for my stash. 🤦🏻‍♀️ I love trying new things and like you i think I should do a celebration of some kind when I hit pan if ever. 😂

I try to be very conscious about waste in general so for me is important to finish a beauty product. I like make-up, but except color products (lipstick, eyeshadows, blushes) which are still kept on a `capsule wardrobe level` I mostly own one product of each. So for me is feasible and desirable to finish a product. Still, even with all the research I do prior to buying, some products just don’t work for me. So I’m not going to finish them just to finish them.

I don’t really care at all. I probably should given the amount of product I buy and how little I use, relatively. I am so much more worried about the amount of plastic in the products I buy and how that is affecting our planet. What is inside is likely to return to dust when I am gone but that plastic packaging will be here forever. I am not on a soapbox here. I freely admit that I continue to buy these products but I guess I am sensitive to it as I just watched a television program about how plastic is affecting our planet and the long term effect of continuing to produce the containers that our makeup is packaged in.
In response to the actual question, I think I feel like I should be concerned but would be lying if I said I was. I don’t buy products to “use them up” but rather to enjoy them and to satisfy a certain artistic outlet.

Makeup: I am on a much better trajectory for making the two lines at least appear on the same graph. While, I have zero chance of finishing what I have in this lifetime I do go through my stash every six months and purge or give away products which are no longer getting love and largely sit unused. Still, I am guilty of having specific nostalgia only stashes. I finally tossed a whole pile of NARS permanent line (a drawer of NARS eyeshadow duos and blushes) which I’ve had hanging around because I couldn’t part with them. It was bloody difficult tbh, but necessary. This is makeup which, in many cases, is more than a decade old and was never going to be used on my face again anyway.

Skincare: I am very good at finishing skin care. While not on a strict no buy, I have been busy over the last 8 to 12 months chipping away at my large skincare stash and only replacing products I truly love and use routinely.

I try to use up most of what I buy before getting something new for budgetary reasons as well as not wanting to waste products, but I make an exception for powders like eyeshadow, blush, or highlighter.

I do try to use up my lipsticks before they go off or I end up decluttering them, but haven’t succeeded once. Oh well.

This is a good question and one I reconsider every few months especially when I started realizing that I have too many lip products and often two or three dupes of the same color. It made me at least want to stop buying more lip products, but then I ended up buying too much of blushes or eye shades.

So overall right now my plan is to stick with skin care because that at least finishes on a timely basis. I keep switching my lip colors trying to wear most of them on a regular basis, but it does take forever for a lip product to finish and as it is my weakness I am sure I’ll be buying again soon instead of finishing any.

When it comes to color cosmetics, I like changing my look to suit the occasion or my mood. That means I keep a variety of products in my stash from which to choose so I never seem to “hit pan” on anything before tiring of it and tossing it out. Also, I adhere to “get rid of” guidelines as I once had a really nasty eye infection that was linked back to an old cosmetic product. Used a lot or barely used at all, I purge my stash on a regular basis.

I finish skin care and sunscreen. I don’t tend to accumulate more until I use stuff up. I’m using up three items right now. Same with mascara. I have about five concealers/correctors on rotation. The eye brow stuff is bad. I have a few favorites. But I try to use up the other stuff out of guilt. I have one backup of my favorite eye brow product. In my stash, I recently came across an Armani brow dip that I loathed when I got it. Now I like it because its olive-y shade makes it work as an anchor for a brow powder I like. As for eye shadows, I have one five pan palette that it is such a neutral basic that I am actually going to pan on it. If I am traveling in a very streamlined way, I can take that item, a concealer, mascara and a few lipsticks and I am good to go. Normally I use that as a base and then add a more colorful look from other palettes to that base. It’s extremely unlikely I would ever use up another eye shadow. Blushes I have to constantly talk myself out of buying. Lipsticks I really try to avoid buying because it’s hard to keep track of what I have. Eyeliners I do buy. And eye palettes are my weakness.

That would depend on the type of product. Things that get used all the time like foundation, mascara, eyeliner, skincare, I absolutely would love to use up until it either runs out or starts to dry up. Other items that I’d want to use to the very last would have to be anything very expensive, ie; ND Lila, Chanel Empriente du Desert quad, TF Seadragon Lipstick.

But, realistically, I have a ton of lipsticks (200+), many e/s palettes and cheek products that will likely never be completely used up. Believe it or not, this actually gives me some anxiety and makes me feel kinda sad.

Well, I’m glad to hear someone else has as many lip products as I do. And I too will never use all my eye or cheek palettes, this is why I’m on a no buy.

You can look into Project Beauty Share if you’re interested in passing along some of the items that aren’t your absolute favorites 🙂

I wish it were more important to me. I feel like I’m always dancing along the line of wanting to save nice things for special occasions but also wanting to use products up before they go bad. I have so many at this point that I know I won’t use them up before they expire, and yet I still want to buy new items when they launch. It’s a bit of an internal conflict for me, so I’m trying now to focus on buying more skincare (which I don’t have a lot of) and “shop my stash” for makeup. I’ve been good so far (for the most part), but the Sephora VIB sale has other plans for my makeup collection…

VIB is an excuse to take all those marginally exciting items out of your wishlist and turn them into purchases.

And if you didn’t buy something on the first day and it is actually still in stock, you will probably weaken your resolve by the second.

The one product you truly wanted will be sold out before they get to your order..

I’m psyching myself up for Friday by typing this.

I have been making an effort to use up all my minis and foil samples because corralling them is such a pain and the clutter drives me crazy. Most other products get finished over time without me making a special effort but I don’t feel compelled to finish something I don’t like.

It’s a yes and no answer to this question.
Yes – it is important to finish my skincare products, because they have a shorter shelf life once opened and I do use them all every day. I only open one at a time.
Same goes for foundations, mascara, setting powder and blushes.

But I will never, in several lifetimes, get through my eyeshadow collection. However I don’t buy as many as I use to and am now very selective.

I often finish skincare products but have only used mascara, brow gel and pencil completely. I pitch items that have gone bad and mascara opened after 3-6 months.

Apparently not too important, because I rarely finish stuff. I’m especially bad about eyeshadows. And lipsticks. Products I have finished & repurchased: IT cosmetics bye-bye undereye, Laura Mercier loose translucent powder, Dr Jart beauty balm (black tube). Mascaras are generally pitched every 3 months whether empty or not. Sooner if they get clumpy and dry.

Yes to skincare, and do pretty well. Massively for food, esp spices and refrigerated flavorings. Hell no to color cos. In fact, since some of my OG Nars lips are dying, esp the rubberized tubes, planning on replacing them through the fall sales. Cannot part with the oldies until they are replaced. And I do resort to resuscitation methods for non-powder products whose colors I cannot replace. Thank God I got a fair dupe for Sephore Marsala mascara, by Peripera. The S one’s container was broken, it was refrigerated, and I had to use isododecane. OMG. Most definitely do not destash surprising dupes, like the Besame Snow White One Bite that is eerily similar to Bobbi Brown Bond. No way. Keep ’em till they rot. refrigerate them when I have suspicions, to delay the process. And yes, I have over 200 as well; planning to dump some unnecessary DS lips soon. There are few HG regular products, like FAB triple duty eye and Paula TM that I also finish and replace regularly. When I was younger, panned a lot and finished occasionally. After 40 and overstashed (remember I’ve had nearly 30 years since then and have been with many of our current brands since they started) I can get some decent dips, but never finish.

It’s important to me as I now like to feel I’m getting value from them. Actively panning items has helped me to appreciate that I don’t need more. At the rate that a blush can take up to a year and an eyeshadow (from palette) a good 2-3 months I know I don’t need anymore.

I generally like to finish a product up before I buy a new one. The one category I don’t bother with is eyeshadow because they just seem endless lol. For example, I’ve had an Urban Decay single in a matte brown shade that I’ve used as an eyeshadow, brow powder, and even bronzer at various times…still haven’t even hit pan.

Seraphine expressed it perfectly:

“Theoretically, it’s very important. In reality, it’s impossible!!!”

I have far too much stuff to ever finish it all. I re-buy lip balm and mascara, but that’s about it. Everything else I have multiples of, and usually find something new to try well before I finish half of my current product. The situation used to bother me a lot more, but I’m getting mellower in my old age! 🙂

I don’t make using things up any sort of priority, but it happens with certain items. I have replaced my Shape Tape, and my Wet n Wild Contour palette (only 2 shades, but they call it a palette) more than once. I do go through foundations, but I usually have others waiting to take their place. There’s only one I loved so much more than the others that I replaced it. If I don’t like how something looks on me, and combining it with other products doesn’t fix that (Fenty foundation, Wet n Wild Photo Focus foundation).

It is important to me that things get used though, if not used up.

With colors as in makeup eyeshadows, blushes, lipsticks singles as well as palettes it really doesn’t matter to me cause I love to experiment and try/rotate things daily it keeps it fun. For skin care I’m more careful so I do tend to finish things quicker in that area.

Not important. I do find used/panned makeup super satisfying, but I’m just not someone who wears the same look or products everyday. I buy makeup to have variety, so I never expect to finish anything but the basics (foundation, concealer, etc).

If you don't see your comment yet, it's still in our moderation queue. We try our best to approve comments within 24 hours (and reply to them within 72 hours) but can sometimes get behind. Thank you for your patience!