How to Declutter Makeup and Why it’s Important!

Are you one of those people who can't bear to part with your old makeup products? Or maybe you've collected so many items over the years that the thought of decluttering feels overwhelming? Fear not; you're not alone!

Makeup can be a real challenge to declutter, but it's essential to tackle this task regularly. Not only will decluttering make your makeup routine more manageable, but it's also vital for your skin's health. In this article, we'll delve into the reasons why decluttering makeup is so important and provide you with some practical tips on how to do it effectively.

The Importance of Decluttering Your Makeup

If you are an avid buyer of new makeup products, you may not realize the importance of decluttering those items. Let's dive into why you need to declutter your makeup:

The Dangers of Expired Products

One of the top reasons for decluttering your makeup is that expired products can be harmful to your skin. Every product has a shelf life, and using it beyond that period can lead to irritation, inflammation, and even infections.

For instance, mascara should be tossed after three months, while lipstick can last up to two years. It's essential to regularly check the expiry dates on your makeup products and discard them when they've reached their limit.

Brushes and makeup cluttered on a countertop

Bid Farewell to Clutter

Ever found yourself in a mad rush to get ready, only to be unable to find the product you need because it's buried beneath a mountain of other items? Cluttered makeup can be frustrating and time-consuming. Decluttering your makeup gives you a more organized and efficient beauty routine.

Even if you don't have a lot of expired makeup to discard, you can still fix the clutter by separating your products by type and storing them that way. I use the same makeup products every day because I just have one look for the most part, but if you like to switch up your look, you should have a storage solution for each type of product you use.

Time for the eyes? Check your mascara, eye shadow, and eyeliner storage area. Time to spruce up the lips? You have a lipstick storage solution for that!

Enhance Your Product Quality

When your makeup collection is overflowing, it's less likely that you'll use all your products regularly. Decluttering helps you focus on the items you adore and use them more frequently. As a result, you'll enjoy better product quality since you can use them before they expire.

How to Declutter Your Makeup Like a Pro

Decluttering your makeup might seem daunting, but it doesn't have to be. We will use the standard Boot Camp Mom decluttering process to tackle your makeup. Same process, different area. And remember, we are decluttering and putting back neatly, not fully organizing. Yet.

Block out Time

The first step is to set aside some time to declutter. Depending on the size of your collection, this can take anywhere from 30 minutes to a few hours. Find a time when you can concentrate on the task without any distractions. Add it to your calendar, put a sticky note on your mirror, but make sure you dedicate time for the decluttering process.

An alarm to stand for blocking out time

Grab Your Supplies

Before starting any decluttering project, I recommend gathering your supplies. The standard supplies that I recommend are:

  • Trash Bags – The main goal for decluttering is to eliminate anything that is no longer necessary. All those old and expired products must be tossed, so have your trash bags ready!
  • Empty Boxes or Bins – If you need to gather all of your makeup or disperse some to donate at the end of the process, you will need a way to transport them. Grab empty boxes or bins, and be prepared!
  • Possible Storage Solutions – As part of the decluttering process, you will put the keepers back neatly. Do not purchase an organizational storage option yet! Rather, gather empty makeup bags, unused trays, or anything like that from around your house. We do not want to buy organizational items until the decluttering process is complete. You don't know what you need to store until you eliminate the unnecessary items.
  • Ziploc Baggies – If you couldn't find any unused storage solutions, I recommend having Ziploc bags handy for a quick option until it's time to organize the makeup.
  • Cleaning Supplies – I suggest grabbing some Clorox wipes and your vacuum for makeup decluttering. You'll want to wipe down all any storage containers or makeup bags as you get them emptied. You know they are gonna be gross! Use the vacuum to clean up any hair or dust from your products.
  • Water – Hydration station! Super important to have your water handy when decluttering!
  • Music I find it easiest to declutter to my favorite tunes! So grab your phone, your headphones, or turn on your Alexa to get into the decluttering rhythm!

Gather Your Makeup

We are decluttering ALL of your makeup. Not just the items in the bathroom. So, put those boxes and bins to use and gather all of the makeup in your home. Check the kitchen, the car, and your purse. Open closets and drawers. But make sure you are decluttering your entire collection and not just the ones in the bathroom.

Cluttered makeup on a countertop

Sort Your Makeup by Type

Begin the decluttering process by sorting your makeup by type. This means a pile for mascara, another for lipstick, and another for eyeliner, and so on. As you empty out a storage container, like a makeup bag, use your cleaning supplies to wipe it down. You will likely reuse it, so let's ensure it's clean and good to go!

Play Keep or Toss

Keep or toss is a game I usually use with my kiddos when I want them to declutter their clothes or toys. However, you can play this game, too! Once all of the makeup is sorted by type into piles, go through each pile and start checking the expiration dates. All expired products need to be tossed. For any items that are not expired, ask yourself in a rapid-fire-style “keep or toss?” If it's a toss, set it aside; if it's a keep, make a new pile. Continue this process for all of your makeup piles.

Check the dates and play keep or toss

Discard Expired Products

Get rid of all the products that have expired or are no longer in good condition. Don't hold onto items that have changed in color or texture, as they may no longer be safe to use. Don't try to donate these. If they are expired, they are expired and need to be tossed!

Donate or Gift Unused Products

Next, you will want to decide what to do with the items you decided to “toss” but are still in good condition. You can consider donating them to a local charity or giving them away to friends or family. This way, you're not only decluttering your makeup but also helping others.

Put the Keepers Back Neatly

Once decluttered, it's time to put the keepers back neatly. Use those possible storage solutions you gathered and the now empty makeup bags to quickly organize your makeup. If you still have multiples of the same product, I recommend storing by type. If you've managed to declutter down to just a few options, you can store them in a traditional “makeup bag” way.

If you already had storage solutions, you can put the makeup back in those as well. Make sure to wipe them down first, and put the keepers back in a logical way. You need to be able to grab everything with ease and not have to dig for what you need. Also, please ensure your products are stored in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight.


The number one, the absolute most important thing you can do to maintain your newly decluttered makeup is to put things back where you got them. If you can not get into that habit, I recommend implementing a 10-second tidy each morning and night to reset your makeup collection. This little bit of effort will make a huge difference!

Now, if you caught the decluttering bug, you may want to continue your journey by adding a bathroom decluttering session. Keep that momentum going!

And that's that…

Decluttering your makeup is essential for your skin's health and overall beauty routine. By getting rid of expired products and reducing clutter, you can improve the quality of your makeup and make your routine more efficient. Follow the Boot Camp Mom Decluttering Process and finally get that makeup collection back in shape!

If you need more decluttering ideas, or if you have questions, join me in the Declutter and Organize with the Boot Camp Mom Facebook group! I'm in there daily, ready to help. You can also check out the Declutter Boot Camp to hit all of those commonly cluttered areas of your home. You've got this! Woop Woop!

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