For some people, wearing make up is an 'every day' experience. For others, it's just saved for a special occasion. So how long does natural mascara last? It's not as long as mainstream alternatives. For those who just pull out their beauty products for a special occasion, it's really important to be careful about the eye makeup you're using, especially your natural mascara.

Why? Our bodies are covered with bacteria. They're supposed to be. When you put a mascara wand brush on to your eye, there's a good chance some bacteria will get transferred from the brush back in to the mascara bottle. While it's not exactly a perfect breeding ground in there, given enough time, bacteria will grow, and it's time that's the factor here.

How long does natural mascara last with no preservative? 3 months.

Once you open your mascara, ideally, you will use it and dispose of it within 3 months. If you don't think you will use one within 3 months, here's our tip:-

• buy disposable mascara brushes
• don't double dip, ever
• you may go through 4-6 wands per application, but you can wash them out and re-use them

Eventually, any opened mascara is going to dry out, whether you have transferred bacteria in to the container or not, so those 'sometimes' makeup wearers are going to have to live with a bit of mascara wastage. We are still on the lookout for a brand smart enough to make a mini version to reduce wastage.

How long does natural mascara last with a preservative? 6 months.

There are a small selection of natural mascara options that have a trace amount of a lab derived preservative in them. This preservative literally doubles the shelf life to 6 months and significantly reduces your chance of an eye infection by using a mascara that has bacteria growing in it.

Originally when we wrote this blog, we had ONE in store that fits this bill, the Raww Moringa mascara* at $24.99. Eye of Horus is coming in the second half of 2019. It is a high performance brand formulated specifically for delicate eyes and uses a small amount of lab derived preservative to avoid waste and give you a full 6 months shelf life. We will update this post when it becomes available. Update Oct 23 and all our natural mascaras are preservative free. We are doing some research and testing to find another one with preservatives in it that we are happy with.

*Raww mascara has a small amount of the chemical preservative phenoxyethanol in it.

Eye Pencils

If you're a 'sometimes' user of natural eye pencils, we also recommend you take the end off by giving it a sharpen when you haven't used it for a while.

Easiest way to remove natural mascara

You will get the best results with a dedicated natural or organic makeup remover. Cleansers and facial wipes (and even pure coconut oil or jojoba) can do a pretty good job, but mascara needs a little extra oomph. Micellar water is also a good option to choose for removal.

Remember, to get the longest and safest use out of anything from your natural makeup kit, store them outside the bathroom so they're not subjected to daily changes in temperature & humidity. Make a note of when you start using liquids and mascaras and replace at end of life. Don't let powders get or stay damp, mould will grow in them. Pencils that only get used periodically should be freshened with a sharpener before using. Wash makeup brushes in warm soapy water and allow to completely dry.

This post was updated in June 2019