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Makeup for ever

While we might be experts at picking up the latest makeup must-haves, we pay scant attention to how we store them. Smita Mitra tells us more...

fashion and trends Updated: Mar 16, 2009 18:00 IST
Smita Mitra

While we might be experts at picking up the latest makeup must-haves, we pay scant attention to how we store them. This is a big mistake – all makeup, if not stored properly, starts deteriorating. This is especially true when it comes to super-expensive, all-natural or organic skin care products and cosmetics with no preservatives.

The key to storing cosmetics correctly is to keep them away from humidity, moisture, heat and sudden temperature changes. Also, if you organise your makeup properly, your sessions before the mirror get so much simpler since you know exactly where to reach for each product. Not to mention, your products won’t be able to ‘fraternise’. Colours won’t bleed into each other and you won’t have to deal with unsightly goop in your makeup drawer or bag. Here are some things you need to know about makeup maintenance.

A good area for storage is the dressing table. Get a small plastic or wooden set of drawers for the top of the table. Use each drawer to stock a different kind of cosmetic. The first drawer can hold eyeshadows, the second lip glosses and lipsticks, while the third can hold blushers, concealers and bronzers. If there is a fourth drawer, store makeup aids like Q-tips, tweezers, wet wipes, makeup remover, etc. Once your makeup is organised, getting your face on for a party is a breeze.

If you want to keep all your makeup in the first drawer of your dressing table, get drawer dividers. These are usually sold in modular kitchen shops, but there is no reason why you can’t use them to organise your makeup drawer. You can play around with these dividers to create compartments of varying sizes to fit everything in.

You can also use small cane baskets or boxes to store your makeup – one basket for every category. Never stock cosmetics in the bathroom. Moisture and humidity causes the chemicals in powder cosmetics to break down, making them unusable. Lipsticks, concealer sticks and eye pencils can be affected by the high humidity. Creams separate into their base ingredients in such an improper environment.

The fridge is a good place to store your makeup. Get an airtight plastic box with compartments to store all your creamy products like lipsticks, creams, concealer sticks, eye pencils and cream blushers in the fridge. This will prolong their shelf life and you’ll be able to hold on to your favourite shades for longer. Don’t put the box into the freezer since extreme cold, like extreme heat, can cause changes in the chemical composition of your makeup.

Remember to keep products tightly capped when not in use.

Keep the more non-essential cosmetics like nail polishes, acetone, cotton balls, face mask packs, etc in your closet or a bottom drawer in your dressing table unit. Reserve the tabletop area only for items that you use frequently.

When you store essentials in your handbag, skip fancy makeup bags for Ziploc bags. This way you can see exactly what you need instead of fumbling around. Also you can throw the bag out the minute it gets too dirty with makeup smears. Ziploc bags also protect your bag when lotions or creams spill during transit.

If you carry makeup brushes in your bag, keep them in an empty compartment where they won’t be squashed. If your brush loses its shape, it is as good as useless.

If you are packing for a vacation, bubble wrap items that could break before putting them in a Ziploc bag.

Or you could opt for professional makeup storage boxes. The price for such boxes starts around Rs 1,500. These have several compartments, so that you can categorise your products.

They typically have more than one tier, and the compartments slide open so that you can easily reach items stored at the bottom. The hard exteriors protect the contents from moisture and bad handling, especially on trips.