Makeup is a part of many girls’ daily lives. Some routines come almost second nature, as if putting on eyeliner was a reflex. Our faces are very vulnerable, with delicate membranes on our eyes, noses and mouths. With health in mind, I interviewed actress and makeup artist EmilyRose Frasca from Seattle.
In my previous column, I discussed the perks of department store makeup brands. While these top shelf cosmetics are the highly recommended, according to Frasca there is nothing to fear from drugstore products.
“There is nothing wrong with most drugstore makeup,” she said. “There are products from there that I love. Then there are things you should never put on your face. If you’re expecting any kind of color pay off, I don’t suggest those dollar eye shadows that they sell. There’s almost no pigment in them.”
Frasca went on to further explain why some cheap products are a bad idea.
“A lot of them contain metals and you’re putting that near your eye,” she said. “That’s crazy. You think you’re paying a dollar and getting a good deal but you could hurt yourself over time.”
Frasca suggested that if you are willing to break the bank on one product, let it be foundation because it is on your skin every day.
Like food, makeup has a shelf life. These expiration dates should be heeded to ensure you are not exposing your face to harmful bacteria.
“I am so funny about expiration dates with makeup, especially with mascara,” Frasca said. “I know that after three months, I’m tossing it. It’s a breeding ground and disgusting. Don’t use something you’ve had for three years. There should be expiration dates on all that stuff. I don’t take chances with eye makeup.”
Sharing makeup is just asking for it and I try not to make that a habit. While sharing products such as foundation and blush may not be the worst things you can do, eye makeup is a different story. Things that come in daily contact with the eye can carry germs that cause infections such as pink eye.
“The only way I would share mascara is if it’s some I haven’t used and I only use disposable brushes on others,” Frasca said. “I have supplies that I loan out and use on people.”
Dangers not only lie in the products themselves but also on the brushes that are used to apply them. They come in contact with our skin every day, and bacteria and dead skin cells build up over time.
“I have shampoo and a spray…to clean my brushes,” Frasca said. “I like to shampoo my brushes at least once a week. If I use them on someone else I will wash them immediately because that’s just disgusting. I sanitize them with every use, especially foundation brushes. You have to get the gunk out.”
One thing I am nervous about while washing my makeup brushes is mildew accruing during the drying process. Frasca provided me a quick and easy solution.
“Something that I like to do if I have the time (is) put them in front of a heater but not too close because you could melt the inside of the brush,” she said. “Also, dry them flat, not straight up because moisture can seep into the brush and cause mold.”
Go home and examine your makeup bag. Throwing out expired products may seem like a money-waster, but you cannot put a price on your health and well-being. Being smart about the products you use and how they are used enables you to leave the mirror putting your best face forward.