Five Reasons Why You Should Never Ever Share Makeup

When it comes to makeup, there are 50 shades of everything

4 min read
Hindi Female

I’m just a girl who loves her makeup. After all, it’s an art to look naturally beautiful. Makeup is magical.

We all love it, we all need it.

Because no one really wakes up like this.

When it comes to makeup, there are 50 shades of everything
Makeup, because nobody’s perfect, and sometimes it’s good to not be a nobody (Photo: Yogen Shah)

But there’s one thing you should be stingy about, even with your BFF - sharing cosmetics. You (hopefully) wash your face every day, faithfully cleanse and moisturise, but the sticky, dusty powder brush might be painting your face with a week’s worth of dirt and germs right back on your face.

So if you never share your toothbrush or loofah, here’s why you should say “no” to sharing a lipper or a mascara.


1. Eye Infections

When it comes to makeup, there are 50 shades of everything
Your eyes are the most vulnerable to infections, sharing eye makeup can be dangerous (Photo: iStock)

We’re talking irritation, inflammation in the eyelid or a stye.

Worst-case scenario: Conjunctivitis.

Why? So the damp mucous membrane of your eye is like a VIP entrance for bacteria. It just doesn’t have the same layers of protection that the skin does, making transmission easy for infections like conjunctivitis.

And it’s even worse if you wear contact lenses because the germs get trapped beneath the lens and it’s difficult to wash them out.


2. Makeup Testers Are Disgusting & Incredibly Unhygienic

When it comes to makeup, there are 50 shades of everything
Germs on makeup testers isn’t a cause for public panic, but it is totally icky and worth avoiding if you can (Photo: iStock)

Worst-case scenario: Cold sores, all kinds of skin infection

Should you buy that firehouse red or petal pink lip gloss? Does the bronzer suit your skin tone? Makeup is notoriously hard to match and hence the testers. But these totally free and high-end products might not be worth the risk.

Dermatologists in New York did a study and have found bacteria such as staph, strep, and e.coli on the surface of these testers (barf!).

So many people are coming in an out of the store, it’s almost impossible to know who washed their hands after using the loo or what they’ve done before with those fingers. So, don’t use testers for the sake of trying on free products.

But if you can’t resist the testers, follow these steps:

  • Ask the store for single-use samples
  • Wipe off lipsticks with a tissue
  • Don’t put liners or lipsticks directly on your face; unless you want to lick a chickenpox lolli.

3. Sharing Brushes = Sharing Germs

When it comes to makeup, there are 50 shades of everything
You probably do it all the time, you’re getting ready to go out with friends, and you swap cosmetics and borrow brushes. This seemingly harmless sharing means your also trading germs (Photo: iStock)

Worst-case scenario: A breakout of acne, skin infection.

Why? We carry fungi, viruses and bacteria on our skin and transfer them directly to our makeup brushes.

And all you beauty junkies, please pack your makeup products and keep them in an airtight container in your bedroom. Cosmetics, brushes and sponges kept in the bathroom have all the germs from your porcelain throne floating in the air, infesting everything in sight and ending up on your face!

Read: instant toilet-induced breakout.

Sidenote: If this is what happens to your makeup sponges and spoolies, can you imagine what’s going on with your toothbrush? (Dun dun duunnn)


4. Anything in a Jar Can Be Contaminated After Just One Application

When it comes to makeup, there are 50 shades of everything
To minimize the odds of spreading germs, stick to your own stuff and always apply with clean hands (Photo: iStock)

I’ve always felt uneasy about makeup in a jar.

One use with a dirty hand or a brush and you’ve infected the whole jar. And you don’t even need to share these jars of makeup to get an infection - your own fingers and sponges can transfer germs and you mix it back in the jar for it to multiply and you put it on your skin again.

So if tubes or pump bottles ain’t your thing then buy a spatula for cosmetics in jars and wash it after every use.


5. Watch the Clock

When it comes to makeup, there are 50 shades of everything
Germs multiply over time, so old makeup puts you at serious risk (Photo: iStock)

Some things, like wine, get better with age. Makeup isn’t one of them.

The FDA doesn’t require cosmetics companies to print expiration dates on makeup. So keep a track yourself. As soon as you open a new tube, program a “toss my mascara” reminder onto your smartphone for three months later. Then do it, even if it hasn’t dried up yet.

And make sure makeup is sealed tightly after use to keep out the moisture. Clean and sanitise your makeup more than you already do and here’s hoping the wings of your liner stay even.


(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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Topics:  Lipstick   Makeup   Cosmetics 

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