Why is it we women get sucked into buying every hair, skin, and makeup product that looks enticing? Then we get home and don’t like it when we use it. These products are often expensive, up to $15 a bottle, and even more expensive for department store skin regimens. So we use it once or twice and then we’re stuck with it. We spent money on the product and now feel high levels of guilt about tossing brand new bottles of product.
Over my years of organizing I find this to be super common among women and they always ask me what to do… So here are some thoughts. I don’t have all the answers, but think through these concepts.
- Break the cycle. If you stop spending the money and buying products, you won’t be put into a situation where “money is wasted” or guilt surfaces. I know the clearance sections at beauty product stores are tempting and every friend has a favorite product “you have to try.” I’d encourage you not to try it until you’ve used up what you have. Keep a wish list in the bathroom. Add to it the names of new creams and other products you’d like to try.
- Stick to the same product… for a while at least. If you like Revlon or Paul Mitchell, for example, don’t jump around trying other brands. Sometimes we second guess ourselves and our preferences. It’s okay to use the same product repeatedly.
- Create favorites and be loyal. I pride myself in my loyalty. I only use one brand for all my hair products and one brand for all my face cream and makeup. It makes life a lot simpler and I know how my skin and hair respond to the products so I never have to worry I won’t like the product.
- Swap with neighbors or girlfriends. If you’re looking to pass on instead of throw out products in your linen closet or bathroom, consider having some neighbors over or taking a bag full to work to pass onto ladies in your office. Women go wild getting almost new products that they’d like to try. I used to be a part of a Monday night Pilates group, and we’d occasionally bring things from our home that we really didn’t want anymore for others to try. Get creative with the groups of friends in your life and email the group to propose the idea.
- Contact local shelters. Call your local shelter or church outreach group to see if they’d take new or slightly used products.
- Be mindful of a product’s shelf life. Before you start passing your products onto others, think about when you bought it. If you really can’t remember, it might not be worth passing on. Be selective and be smart. Old make-up isn’t as safe as something like bars of soap. Anything with scent or perfume does turn. Take time to smell products if it helps you make decisions whether to toss or keep.
Are there any cosmetics in your bathroom that you’re not using? How long have you had them? What are you going to do with them?
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