Will you try to use up products you don’t like?

I’m fortunate that my life revolves around a constant inflow of new beauty products so there’s no reason to use up something I don’t like because 1) I rarely finish anything (and it’s not a goal), 2) I have so much that I might as well use something I LOVE and try to finish that! If I put on my pretend non-blogger hat, I feel like I’d have to still like it, even if it wasn’t 100% perfect – maybe it needed extra work or faded a little faster than ideal – but it couldn’t be frustrating to use or look terrible on me.

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

Compare Any Two Swatches

Curious how two shades compare to each other? Type in the shades below to get instant side-by-side swatches!

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


Comments that do not adhere to our comment policy may be removed. Discussion and debate are highly encouraged but we expect community members to participate respectfully. Please keep discussion on-topic, and if you have general feedback, a product review request, an off-topic question, or need technical support, please contact us!

Please help us streamline the comments' section and be more efficient: double-check the post above for more basic information like pricing, availability, and so on to make sure your question wasn't answered already. Comments alerting us to typos or small errors in the post are appreciated (!) but will typically be removed after errors are fixed (unless a response is needed).

We appreciate enthusiasm for new releases but ask readers to please hold questions regarding if/when a review will be posted as we can't commit to or guarantee product reviews. We don't want to set expectations and then disappoint readers as even products that are swatched don't always end up being reviewed due to time constraints and changes in priorities! Thank you for understanding!

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

I tried with a few things but eventually it just made me resent the whole process of using makeup. I’ve gotten better at passing on or getting rid of products I don’t love, thankfully!

If it’s something like the wrong colour for me, I just put it aside to use later. Maybe it’d look better with a different outfit or something. If I hate the product because it’s too messy or hard to work with, that generally goes in the trash. Life is too short for bad makeup. I just make a note never to buy that brand again. The money is gone regardless if I use the product up or not.

I make an effort to use up a product I don’t love when there’s something better I want to buy. But if it’s something I really don’t like, I don’t use it. If I can return it, I do. Sometimes I’ve been able to give products I don’t like away to people who don’t mind slightly used makeup. I have so much makeup that if I don’t like a product, it usually gathers dust.

First off, most products I like or I’m just meh but that’s bc I don’t buy everything and I tend to stick w what I know I will like. I rarely hate a product or have some terrible reaction to a product. With that said, if I use up a product I’m just “meh” about depends on how much I spent on it and if a return wasn’t possible. I’ll use up just ok products esp if I spent some coin on it but I’m less likely (or not at all) to use up something I hate or causes a bad reaction…not worth it!

I try to work with things, particularly as returns aren’t a thing here. It’ll have to make me half dead and unable to be salvaged by layering for me to just toss it. That being said, I’m not sure I’ve ever fully used up makeup apart from foundation or primer, just tossed it when it’s gone off or if it’s truly unworkable.

That’s true. I toss products when they are bad. I guess I try to use up products and have been rather conscious of it at least with things that go bad quicker like foundation, mascaras, concealers etc bc it’s so wasteful and bad for the environment to consume consume , consume and then toss bc oh it didn’t work for me. I mean to each her own but it’s silly imo to care about cruelty free, organic ingredients blah blah but then just be so oh I’ll just return what I don’t like. You know what they do w that returned item? They put it in the garbage. So selfish and wasteful, bad for the environment. Sorry end of rant. Lol

I regularly use up foundation, concealer, moisturizer, mascara, brow sticks and favored lipsticks and glosses. I have used up most of my Naked OG twice and my UD Space Cowboy as a topper twice. I’ve almost used up Oasis and Sin NARS blush.

I’m like others, life is too short. I am really favoring my CT Pillow Talk eyeshadows, ND camel 5 pan, and my PM shadows. The CT Pillow Talk blush is very nice too. But the other stuff in my stash…I do love some others that are great performers but right now, during the work week, I go for the tried and true. I don’t expect to use up.

I will trash mascaras, foundations and lipsticks if they don’t work for me. Usually these are travel sizes and I stick to particular brands. I refuse to spend time struggling with a needle to separate my lashes with mascaras that don’t work for me. Or lipsticks that the color washes me out or colors that oxoidize ( horrible nudes, reds that pull orange or pull fuscia) or mattes that dry me out. I’m grateful that I only wasted money on only a few tubes of lippies lik this. And I know it’s not the points of mattes, but if I like the color, I can add glass to get rid of that dried look. I expect to use up the majority of lippies and mascaras…because bacteria. So I try to be more discerning when purchasing.

Really the only things I will tolerate and not expect to use up is eyeshadows. I don’t expect to use up because if I never bought another, I’d need at least 30 years to use them up. I like adding color along the lash lines for a pop of color, mostly on the weekends. For those, I don’t expect them to be rockstars. I don’t expect extreme dark pigmentation because I like blendability.

I think people need to be careful about you must use up and not waste. My stepdaughter just told me about a young woman, in her request to “hit pan” was hospitalized for a very bad infection from using older cosmetics. If you have more than 5 palettes, unless you do make up on your friends or others all the time, not ideal at all. I think no buy for time periods is a better attitude.

If I can’t pass the product along, I will try to keep using it provided that it is not harming me, has not gone bad, and looks good. I might not go so far as finishing it but I will try to get good use out of it. However, making it work cannot require the purchase of another product. I had a foundation that was a bit orange and I got it to the right shade by mixing in a green color corrector but I had the corrector on hand already. I would not have purchased it specially

A definitive and loud “No” for me. I have to do/put up with a lot of things that I don’t like in the other spheres of my life (professional and social). Personal life (and therefore makeup), is not one of them.
As others have said, life is too short for that.

Not anymore but there was a time when I did, vowing never to repurchase. I likened it to penance for overspending or impulse buying. Anymore though I just pass on to my kids or friends who don’t mind slightly used. I don’t like returning because it just goes in the trash.

Nah. I’ve got SO MUCH stuff, I end up decluttering and giving away stuff I do actually like but don’t love enough to keep.

I few really dire products (texture/performance/scent) I have just binned.

If I really don’t like them, no. If they’re ok — color is fine, I can wear in public, etc — but I just like something else I own better, maybe.

Definitely not. If something doesn’t work for me the first time, I’ll examine why, and if I think it could be something that could work better with a different primer/application process/whatever, I’ll give it a few more tries to see if I can make it work. But if something just plain doesn’t work for me, I’m not going to force myself to use it up. I mean, I rarely even use up the products I DO like, so why would I ignore them in favor of something I didn’t like?

Most likely not. I usually put it aside to return, it sits there for awhile and then I throw it away or put it in my donation bin. Recently, since my daughter graduated, I don’t have a ready pool of people wanting makeup. However, she does have one friend who likes makeup so she is generally the recipient of my “donation” box. When it comes to foundations I will try them several times to see if I can make them work but after a week or so, I give up. Other products such as e/s I will try a couple of times, changing application techniques, primers etc but if that doesn’t work then they are gone. I do have two e/s palettes that I have broken my own practice and those are the Charlotte Tilbury Vintage Vamp palette and the Tom Ford Honeymoon palette. I am not sure why I have held on to them because I don’t use either. I was able to make them work but they were more trouble than they were worth. Some of it probably has to do with the expense of these little 4 pan palettes but I think a good piece of it is sentiment related to when I purchased them. I did learn my lesson however, and haven’t bought a single e/s from either brand since then.

Depends on why I don’t like it. If it’s a skincare item that I’m sensitive to, then no, unless it’s possible to use it on less sensitive areas of my body.

Shampoos and conditioner I try to use up, but they aren’t usually a problem unless I get tired of the fragrance and just don’t feel like dealing with it anymore, in which case I’ll usually try to give them away at work (a “wrong” fragrance that hover about my head all day can be headache-inducing, or at the very least, mood-wrecking).

Cosmetics are trickier. Foundations that don’t work … don’t work, so I don’t bother trying to use them up (this is assuming I’ve attempted a few different ways of using them — have given it a real go). Same with powders. I don’t think I’ll ever use up most of my color cosmetics, so realistically I’m not even going to try for items I like.

Depends on the type of product, I suppose? Like foundation, for instance. It’s a more expensive product that if one uses it all up, proves to be an investment. That said, as long as it doesn’t *look* terrible and isn’t breaking me out, I will tweak it, if necessary, and use it all up. But, if it’s a lost cause, I’ll return it.
As for skincare, I will use that up, too. Providing that it is doing no harm or causing issues.
Color cosmetics are another story, though. I have enough that my not using up all the things just doesn’t seem as wrong to me.

Absolutely not! Since makeup is an enhancement, I don’t know why anyone would feel compelled to use something that they don’t like—something that is difficult to work with, that doesn’t give them any pleasure or make them feel their most beautiful and confident best. I think that as we come into our own and become more discerning, the number of mistakes we make when selecting cosmetics become fewer and fewer—at least that has been the case for me. It’s very rare that I purchase something that doesn’t meet my expectations. When that does happen, I have no qualms about tossing it.

These days it generally a foundation that hasn’t worked as well as I thought, in which case I may leave it for a little while and then try it again later. If it is still a problem, I will toss it.
A lipstick shade that turns pink on me, or breaks – again I will toss.
With some of my eye quads that I purchased, perhaps on impulse, I will try to make it work and perhaps either give it away or toss.
These days I am fairly confident about what I like, what works and rarely have to toss a product because it is too tricky to use or is the wrong shade on me.

It depends on what type of product it is and how much I don’t like it. If it’s an eye shadow, I’ll usually keep it in my stash hoping I’ll somehow find a use for it and then sterilize it and ask my friends if they want to take it. I have three friends who always take used makeup I hated. If it’s a lipstick I didn’t like, I’ll try to use it a couple more times and if I still feel the same, I’ll toss it. Otherwise, I’ll keep using the product until it runs out and be glad it’s done lol.

If I really can’t make it work, I will return it, or if that is not possible I will ask if anyone would like it, otherwise I will toss it.

Products I really don‘t like I give to a friend or throw away. If they are easy to use for another purpose, then I will try to do that. For example anot so good conditioner will get used up as a shaving cream 🙂
I am struggling with meh or okay products of which I own too many…
Lipsticks are my pitfall. I monitored my usage last year and my collection is gonna last me for a whopping 27! years – if I would not buy more that is. The shame is I basically just have nudes and reds and don‘t even rotate. The majority is sitting unused and perhaps even unopened in my drawer rotting. But I fear they would spoil faster if I would rotate. And there is no real need to rotate, because it would be just another nude or red. To ease my mind I use the most expensive and my favorite ones at first. But I can‘t justify to throw the other ones away when they are perfectly fine. Sometimes I feel the urge to just throw the meh products out to free me of all the stuff but on the other hand I don‘t want to waste the money and I fear I would just buy new ones. I tried to be gentle to myself and allow me to call it quit if I used up 2/3 of a lipstick and I just want it to be gone or as Kondo would say, it gives me no more joy. Perhaps I should rotate then…. maybe for opened lipsticks are ok and I will rediscover it after a break…

Foundation for sure as I can mix them. Everything else I just don’t. It is either give to someone or trash as we can’t take them back in my country. Not going to use something I don’t like.

Usually not. I take them back if the products aren’t living up to claims or are poor quality. If the quality is fine, but I just don’t like it, I either throw it out of give it to a friend.

Sometimes, there is a color product with great quality, but something about it just doesn’t quite suit me…then I’ll play with it more. Usually, that item is a lip color, and I find adding a little gloss or shimmer does the trick. An example of this would be SugarPill Kim Chi Liquid Lip Color. It’s a gorgeous shade, but it isn’t as shimmery as promo pics lead me to believe. It doesn’t look terrible on me. But also doesn’t look good on me…until I add a shimmery lipgloss or powder over it. Gorgeous eyeshadows that don’t look good in my crease or on my lid (say a sky blue) usually are fine on my lower lash line or inner corner. I’m perfectly fine with wetting or using a glitter glue primer to make a beautiful shimmer or duo-chrome work for me.

Makeup, no.
If I hate it, I know right away, and would rather return it so it can be used as a tester, at least.

Hair products I tend to want to empty, unless I feel like they really weigh down or are drying to my hair. That’s been a rare time.

Face products, I like to use to zero, again as long as I don’t think they’re causing issues. If I don’t like, I just don’t buy it again. I’m fortunate to have normal skin (just a slightly oily nose) with no real sensitivities I’ve come across, so I like to use it up, before I open a new package.

Generally I do buy things with the full intent of finishing them up at some point. When it comes to products I don’t like, it depends. If I can make it work somehow, then yes, I’ll try using it up or at least half way. If the product still sucks after trying everything possible, I do usually give it away to a friend or one of my sisters. But if it truly sucks, off to the trash can it goes.

if i just bought it and I have decided that I don’t like it I pack it up and quickly return it. If it is a product that I have used for a while and have decided that I don’t like it I try to find other uses for it because I really don’t like wasting my money. For example I have realized that purple blush just looks like a big bruise on my face but if I mix it with a hot pink blush I get a really pretty unique spring looking blush. Right now I am working with a concealer that I bought that is a bit too dark so I add a drop of Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector Liquid Highlighter to warm it up and brighten it. It now looks fantastic under my eyes and I can use it alone to contour if I ever get around to it.

Nope. If I don’t like it, I stop using it (although will give it several tries to make sure I wasn’t just having a bad day) and trash it or give it away. Using products you don’t like is like eating when you’re not hungry and you don’t even like the taste of the food. Ugh.

No. LIfe is too short to wear makeup you hate. My life too, revolves around a constant influx of new beauty products. It’s just (unfortunately) not my career.

We try to approve comments within 24 hours (and reply to them within 72 hours) but can sometimes get behind and appreciate your patience! 🙂 If you have general feedback, product review requests, off-topic questions, or need technical support, please contact us directly. Thank you for your patience!