If you’re a product junkie like myself, sometimes the amount of products on hand is SO overwhelming that you don’t use them in a timely manner. Don’t get me wrong, I literally add to my collection every other week, but storage and use of products is important; they may not have an expiration date written on the container, but after a while, they aren’t good for your hair.
With summer quickly approaching, it’s important to keep products stored in a cool and dry area; hair products that are left out in the heat (I’m guilty of leaving things out all the time) could start to deteriorate. That’s a waste of a good product and nobody wants that!
While products that haven’t been opened could have a shelf life of at least 2 years, once they’re opened, the longest we should go is at most, 1 year. Being mindful of your product’s shelf life is essential; changes in smell, color, or consistency of a product could mean that it’s time to let it go. I know, you paid “x” amount of dollars for it, and want to use every last drop, but baby when it’s time to let it go, let it go!
I learned the hard way; I found a curl moisturizer that was, literally, sent from the Gods and tried to hold on it to for months – low and behold, as it got warmer, it began to curdle and pretty soon that delightful smell became, well, rancid! Remembering to rotate your products and being mindful of where they’re stored could possibly extend their shelf life. If you can’t rotate through your products, at least share the wealth and give them away to friends and family that would find them useful.
As a general rule of thumb, products in tubes and bottles with pumps will last longer, because your hands do not have to come into contact with the product that is sitting inside of the container. Jars are the least optimal (but practically everything comes in a jar), so the best way to try and counteract or delay your products from “turning” is to use a clean plastic spoon or knife, or some sort of utensil to scoop product from the jar and into your hand as opposed to digging around.
In the meantime, take the time to look over your products; using old or “outdated” products could be harmful to your hair (and leave it smelling weird – yes, that happened to me as well)! Store your products in a cool and dry place – keep an eye over them in the summer!
Alana Patrick is a writer and natural hair fanatic for Reset Magazine in Virginia Beach, VA. To keep up with her tips, tricks, and daily life, connect with her on Instagram at Bee_Shore, as well as www.theuntamednatural.com