While getting the latest eyeshadow palette is always a euphoric moment, trying to stuff your beauty buys around every nook and cranny of your space can make your room resemble an episode of Hoarders. So, if you’re anything like me, than you may want to ignite your spring cleaning early — starting with your vanity. But, we know tidying up is much easier said than done, so we went to Professional Organizer Laura Cattano for some guidance. Below, check out some of the top tips for keeping your makeup stash as on-point as your #MOTD.
Sort By Occasion
Let’s be real: there are only a few of us who excessively contour on a daily basis. To keep things organized, Cattano suggests sorting out your products for every occasion. “Some people have a daily makeup routine and then have certain products they wear in the evenings, and then others they wear for special occasions,” she says. “I suggest storing things separately. There’s no reason your special occasion makeup should inhibit you from accessing your everyday makeup.”
Quick Sort By Product
Make your vanity look as organized as a Sephora by sorting out your stash by product. Cattano recommends putting your products into categories, so all of your favorite lipsticks stay together. Sort them out by face (primers, foundations, concealers, and powders), lips, cheeks, eyes, and tools.
The Hard Edit
This may be the hardest part of them all: tossing out some of your products. When it comes to axing out some of your beauty products, Cattano recommends going through each category and being brutally honest with yourself and only keep products you actually use. “Think about your look and what you would actually wear,” she says. “Not everyone wears blue eyeshadow and that’s ok! Be honest and brutal, especially about products that have already been opened.”
Also, remember that cosmetics do expire, so toss anything away that is long past its expiration date. Cattano advises keeping these key distinctions in mind when sorting out your products: “Bacteria tends to build up on makeup, colors and liquids can go off, and oils go rancid,” she says. “You don’t want any of that on your face unknowingly! Examine lipsticks and powders to see if they’ve gone off: smell, look, color. When in doubt, toss it.”
FYI: most cosmetics have an expiration indicator on their label, so keep that in mind when sorting through your things. If you can’t find it, then Cattano says that most eye products (eyeliners, mascaras, etc.) last for 3 months, while face products (liquid foundations, concealers, and cream blush) last 8-12 months. Eyeshadow palettes and powder blushes, on the other hand, last for 1-2 years.
Clean Your Stash
Organizing is only half of the battle, and cleaning your beloved products is always key to making them last without any fear of collecting acne-causing bacteria. Cattano suggests using a wet cloth to wipe down everything: products, drawers, makeup bags, and anything you use to store your cosmetics. Use rubbing alcohol to spruce up any metal tools, and wash your brushes with warm water and a gentle brush cleaner, allowing them to air dry overnight.
Tuck Them Away
And lastly, now you can tuck your precious products away. When packing your things away, keep the three R’s in mind: reduce, reuse, recycle. “Cleaned out candle glasses, small vases, shot glasses are all great to sort and store brushes, lip liners, lip gloss, and small tools,” says Cattano. ”I keep lids and small boxes that come with things like jewelry and stationary to use in drawers as dividers to save a trip to the store.”
If you want to splurge on your vanity, then Cattano suggests stocking up on some clear acrylic drawers. Check out a few of our favorites, below.