3 Tips to Avoid Contaminating Your Skin Care Products: Are you Guilty of Being a Double Dipper?

How can we keep our skincare products safe? What causes skincare products to become contaminated and go bad? Is it harmful to use skincare products that have been contaminated or have gone bad? The short answer is no. It is not safe. There is a time to throw out questionable products and purchase new, safer ones. People can take steps to use their skincare products safely without contaminating them accidentally.

Why Do Skincare Products Go Bad?

There are a lot of reasons for skincare products to go bad, including time and contamination by improper use by the consumer. Dipping your fingers in a jar of face cream time after time can lead to contamination, especially if those fingers are not clean. Consider mascara with its wand that touches a person's eyelashes and then is shoved back into its dark, moist container to breed bacteria. The safe thing to do with mascara is to throw it out and replace it every two or three months. Keep it longer and risk eye infections.

It is wise to find out about products in jar and how to use them safely. Constantly dipping fingers in the jar can introduce bacteria. Then, if you use those same fingers to dip into another product, you spread the contamination from product to product. Thicker skincare products are packaged in jars. These can include face masks, cream-based products, moisturizers, facial scrubs, and other products.

Properly formulated products with safe preservatives or emulsifiers are less likely to be contaminated by fingers dipping into them. But, products without preservatives or emulsifiers can be contaminated and won't last longer than a few weeks before they need to be disposed of.

If a person wants to avoid any chance of contamination, they can use small plastic spatulas or cotton swabs to remove the product from the jar. But, if a person cleans their hands before using the product, contamination will not be a problem.

If a person dips fingers in the product, touches their face, and then dips their fingers into the product again (called double-dipping), the skincare product can be contaminated with bacteria, mold, or yeast from the face.

How to Stay Safe

To avoid contaminating skin care products, follow these three tips:

1. If using products in jars, wash your hands thoroughly before dipping them into the product. Your face should also be washed and clean.

2. Use those little spatulas or cotton swabs to remove a skincare product from the jar, and never double-dip.

3. Consider using products that come in containers that let you remove the product without dipping your fingers into the container. Tubes or bottles that let you squeeze the proper amount into your hands are good.

Don't Keep Products Too Long

Another cause of products going bad is keeping them too long. If a product begins to separate, change color, or smell funny, get rid of it. Purchase skin care products with use-by dates on them, and discard them after that date. Only using safe, fresh products on your skin is an important consideration. Keeping products only until their use-by date and avoiding dipping dirty fingers into them will go a long way toward avoiding contamination of the skincare products.

Purchasing good-quality products with the correct formulas and safe preservatives also help to have safe skincare products.

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