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When it comes to beauty and skincare products, there are so many options and so little time. If your bathroom cabinet is filled with beauty products, it’s tough to get to all of them. Unearthing a forgotten beauty product, like facial toner, may make you wonder if you can still use the product or if it’s gone by the wayside. Because facial toner does expire, knowing how long your toner lasts ensures you aren’t going to put something on your face that won’t work or (much worse) is filled with bacteria.
When you buy a toner, it’s a good idea to put a little sticker on it that has the date you opened it. Since skincare manufacturers aren’t always required to put expiration dates on their products, don’t rely on the manufacturer to tell you how long toner will last (it’s not like a carton of milk). Most toners typically last about one year from the time you open them, according to CBS News. However, there may be a special exception if your toner has vitamin C as an ingredient. Because vitamin C breaks down faster than a lot of other beauty ingredients, your toner may not work quite as well in under a year.
Since toners are liquid and water-based, the moisture increases the likelihood that bacteria can come in. Bacteria thrive in moist environments and your facial toner is no exception. While you can limit the likelihood that bacteria will come in by keeping your fingers clean when you use the product and keeping the container tightly closed, bacteria can still sneak in. That’s why it’s best to toss your products after a year.
Watch for the Signs
Like Hollywood marriages, some toners don’t even make it to the one-year mark. Always watch for the signs that your toner is breaking down a little faster than it should. These include if your toner has changed color or if it smells a little funkier than it used t. Both are signs that it’s time to toss. Also, if it feels different than usual when applied to your skin, this is another sign you should throw the toner away.
While you may use toner in the bathroom, it may not always be the best place to store your toner. That’s because changes in temperature from your shower can heat up your toner, which makes it more likely to harbor bacteria. Store your toner in a cool, dry place to keep it safe from breaking down faster. You also want to avoid placing it in direct sunlight. The sun can break down active ingredients so all the special ingredients you pay for may not work as effectively.