Why You Should Clean Out Your Makeup Bag ASAP (Your Skin Will Thank You For It)

Designed by Kristine Romano.
At the start of a new year, we often become overzealous about compiling a never-ending list of goals. While setting ourselves objectives is a good thing, it can mean that smaller, everyday tasks fall by the wayside: the broken lampshade you said you were going to fix, the dentist appointment that’s massively overdue, the grotty makeup bag that you promised you would clear out.
With nowhere but your bedroom to rock a cat-eye right now, it can feel like a mood-dampening task but routinely clearing out your makeup collection is important. Not only is it a thoroughly cathartic experience (finally getting rid of that broken mascara wand which always pokes you in the eye is a gift you didn't know you needed) but it is wholly necessary for your skin, too. How? A disorganised makeup bag is likely also a dirty one – not good when we're all trying to be as hygienic as possible.
According to Dr Kemi Fabusiwa, medical doctor and director of Joyful Skin, our warm, moist makeup bags are the perfect environment for bacterial growth, which could transfer onto your products, brushes and eventually your skin. Thankfully, there are plenty of things you can do to combat this. But how do you know when it’s time to clear out your stash?
From binning expired products to hoarding empties, here are seven signs that you need to clean out your kit ASAP. Your skin will thank you for it.
Refinery29's selection is purely editorial and independently chosen – we only feature items we love! As part of our business model we do work with affiliates; if you directly purchase something from a link on this article, we may earn a small amount of commission. Transparency is important to us at Refinery29, if you have any questions please reach out to us.