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Old Cosmetics, Skin Care Present Health Concerns for Clients

Posted: February 25, 2010

The following news story should present information that is nothing new to spa professionals, but perhaps can serve as a reminder that when working with clients, it's always a good idea to remind them about how long a product is healthy to use and when it should be thrown away.

The average British woman's cosmetic bag is out of date by a worrying four years, according to a recent study.

Women are using cosmetics well past the use-by date, unaware that some products could be magnets for germs that could damage their health and looks, said Sara Stern, director of cosmetics at retail chain Debenhams. "British women are famously loyal to makeup brands and products, however, their reluctance to throw away old products is a risky business," Stern said in a statement.

"We wouldn't hesitate to chuck out moldy or bacteria-ridden food, and the same standards should apply to the lotions and potions that we put on our skin. Beauty is timeless but unfortunately, products are not."

Favorite beauty essentials, such as foundation, concealer, blusher, eye shadow, eyeliner, mascara, lipstick and perfume all include a "period after opening" indicator, denoted by an open pot with the number of months of safe use written inside. Debenhams asked 1,000 women aged 18 to 70 about the contents of their cosmetic bags and their understanding of the health considerations.