How to declutter your beauty stash

If you are obsessed with making resolutions and prepping for the year ahead like I am, you’ve probably already started decluttering your stuff. As the cleaning frenzy sweeps through your home, don’t forget to pay some much needed attention to your beloved beauty stash! Here are some quick clean-up tips to help you curate a cosmetics collection you'll love to use!

Check for expiry dates

This is one thing I keep forgetting to do. Those numbers are there for a reason, yeah? When it comes to keeping your skin clear and free from irritations and blemishes, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Take stock of what you have and refer to this cheat sheet on makeup shelf life.

Graphic by ELLE and Bobbi Brown

Graphic by ELLE and Bobbi Brown

Remember, the expected shelf life of beauty products are just recommendations! Make sure to check the actual product if it has an expiry date. Also, pay attention to any changes in the formulation. If the product has changed consistency or odor, better chuck it!

Out of sight, out of mind

Makeup items that have found their way to the back of your stash are most likely to be forgotten. Get creative with your vanity area and try to arrange everything so that they’re all visible and within easy reach. You just might find that missing lip liner fave or that must-have mascara once everything is set in place!

You can invest in clear acrylic drawers like the ones from MUJI. For a DIY route, check out Daiso or National Bookstore for makeshift drawer dividers to better allocate space.

First in, first out

Who can resist stocking up on makeup favorites, especially when they’re on sale or limited edition releases? When it comes to your backups and makeup stock, try to label each item with a sticky note or cutesy washi tape so you can remember which came first. This will help you avoid having items go bad before they’re used. Also, take the products out of their original packaging and put similar items in clearly labelled boxes to save on storage.

Search for the Holy Grail

If it’s not HG makeup, it’s not meant to be (on our shelves)! Makeup lovers know just how hard it is to find products that we would take to a deserted island, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t keep trying. Until you find The One, let go of anything that doesn't suit you or is "meh" at best. Don't buy anything unless it's something you KNOW you'll use until the last drop. It's hard, but it'll save you money and time in the long run!

Go the Konmari way

In case you still haven’t read Marie Kondo’s best-selling book, give The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up a go and learn all about “the Japanese art of decluttering and organizing”. It may seem like a huge undertaking at first, but the process is simple and mercifully quick. Once done, you will hopefully be able to let go of the clutter and keep only those items that spark joy.

Clean as you go

These are just some tips to help you get started on cleaning up your beauty products. A routine check-up from time to time helps in maintaining an organized stash that keeps you from using expired makeup and skincare. It can also help you in using up the products you own because you know what they are and where you have placed them. Your favorites will also be remembered for future repurchase.

How about you? How do you keep your beauty stash organized?