It’s a classic situation. You’re doing a lash lift like the lash star you are. Your technique is on point! As you work, you imagine the flawless results you’re surely creating – but when it’s reveal-time, the lashes look no different. What happened?
You replay the procedure in your mind, trying to find where you slipped up… and it hits you: you’ve had your lash lift products forever. Could they have expired?
Lash lift products do expire. The adhesive, softening, and fixing solution have two expiry dates: one for the unopened product and another for the product has been opened. However, incorrectly storing and using the products can make them expire before these dates.
If you’ve been hoarding products for ages, they’re likely the hidden reason your lash lift was a letdown. How annoying to spend all that time and effort doing the procedure perfectly, only to get no results! Luckily you can stop expired products from making your lash lifts fall flat.
Keep reading for the lowdown on how long lash lift products are good to use, what can make them go bad too soon, and how to store and use them to keep them fresh for longer.
Do Lash Lift Products Go Bad?
Lash lift products don’t stay ever fresh.
Everything expires. The glue you use to stick lashes to the silicone pad, the softening solution that lets you reshape the lashes, and the fixing solution that sets the new shape.
In order to achieve the best results, you need to make sure you are using only unexpired products.
When Do Lash Lift Products Expire?
A few factors are at play when we look at how long you’ve got until your lash lift products go bad:
- Factor #1: Unopened products have an expiry date
- Factor #2: Opened products have an expiry date
- Factor #3: Incorrectly storing products makes them expire faster
- Factor #4: Using products incorrectly makes them expire faster
Understanding these 4 factors can help you keep track of your lash lift products’ freshness. Let’s break them down!
Factor #1: Unopened Products Have an Expiry Date
All your lash lift products should have an expiry date printed on their box and packaging.
This date is usually given as a month and year, and it specifies until when the unopened products are good to use.
Different products and brands have different expiry dates depending on their ingredients. Most unopened lash glues stay good for about a year after being made, and unopened softening and setting solutions generally last 2 or 3 years.
The catch: The date printed on the product only counts if you store it properly (more about this in a sec).
Factor #2: Opened Products Have an Expiry Date
Another date you need to know is until when a product stays fresh after you open it.
Check your products for an image that looks like a little jar with an open lid. There should be a number inside the jar. This number tells you how many months you’ve got to use the product after you open it. Suppose the little jar on your softening solution has “2M” printed inside. That means you should use up the solution within 2 months of opening.
You can expect your glue to stay good for about 3 months after opening. And opened softening and setting solutions can stay fresh from 2 to 6 months, depending on what they’re made from.
Products that come in sachets need to be used quickly after opening. You’ve usually got about a day to finish what’s in the sachet before you need to bin it.
Again, you can only trust these dates if you store and use the products right.
Alert: Always listen to your eyes and nose. If a product starts to look or smell weird (say, its color, texture, or odor goes off or its ingredients suddenly separate), toss it!
Factor #3: Incorrectly Storing Products Makes Them Expire Faster
Storing your products under certain conditions can make them spoil too soon.
If it’s hot, brightly lit, or humid, it’s not a good spot to keep your lash lift products.
Factor #4: Using Products Incorrectly Makes Them Expire Faster
Do you leave your products open while you work, ignore instructions telling you to shake them before you use them, or mix water with almost-finished products to get out every drop?
These are common mistakes that make products go bad too soon.
What Happens If You Use Expired Lash Lift Products?
When lash lift products expire, their ingredients change or start breaking down. The products then don’t work properly or can harm the skin and eyes.1
Spoiled unopened products can be ineffective or do something they’re not supposed to.
Opened products past their prime can become contaminated by nasty microorganisms that might irritate eyes or skin or trigger infections.
How to Make Lash Lift Products Last Longer
The key here lies in how you store and use your lash lift products. It includes every tool and solution you use for the appointment whether it is the perm solution, settling solution, nourishing oil, shields, rods, etc.
#1 Store Your Products the Right Way
You should store most lash lift products somewhere cool, dry, and away from direct light – before and after opening. However, some products (like certain sachets) must go into the fridge.
Read your product’s specific storage instructions to help you find its perfect home.
#2: Use Your Products The Right Way
You’ve kept your products under the right conditions and noted their expiry dates. Now, what’s the first thing you must do after opening something? Write the date somewhere on the product using a permanent marker! Then it will be easy to track how long you have left to use the product before it spoils.
Here are a few more things to remember:
- Limit the number of times you open products while you work and close them quickly after you’re done with them. Plus, check that you’ve closed the lid tightly. When you open products, you let in air, making them perish faster.
- Read products’ usage instructions – and follow them! If the instructions tell you to shake, stir, or squish the product before using it, do this.
- Always wash your hands before handling your products (of course, your hands should already be clean, seeing as you’ll be touching someone’s eye area).
Do Lash Lift Tools Expire?
All the other goodies you use to do lash lifts, like silicone pads, also eventually expire.
How long lash lift tools last depends on how much you use them. Check if the manufacturer gives you only a certain number of uses for each product. Plus, watch for wear and tear and invest in new tools when your old ones look too old.
Look after your tools (and whomever you use them on) by cleaning and sanitizing them after every use. And don’t even think about reusing disposables!
Lash lift products expire, and when they do, they can mess up your results or cause side effects.
It’s easy to avoid using spoiled products, though. Note the expiry dates for unopened and opened products and throw them away when these dates have passed. And always store and use the products according to their instructions. Now that you know these simple rules, you’ll never have a lash lift gone wrong because of products gone bad!
- Susan Massick, MD (2022). Is it OK to use expired makeup? Retrieved from https://health.osu.edu/health/skin-and-body/is-it-ok-to-use-expired-makeup (Accessed on 26 August 2022)
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Asako Ito is the Co-Founder of Divine Lashes and a certified eyelash stylist. She has garnered acclaim for her cutting-edge techniques in the lash industry.
Holding multiple certifications and licenses, including Luxury Eye, THE LASH SHOP, World Microblading, and The Lash Bible, she has a constant thirst for knowledge. These credentials reflect her commitment to excellence and staying at the forefront of lash and brow artistry.
With over 10 years of experience, Asako continuously increases her knowledge both as a technician and educator by collaborating with top lash artists worldwide. You can read her full bio here.