According to a new study, it has been found that the majority of opened, in-use makeup products like lip gloss, mascara and blending sponges are contaminated with bacteria like E.coli and Staphylococci.
The research published revealed that 9 out of 10 products tested contained bacteria capable of causing illnesses such as skin infections and even blood poisoning if used near the eyes, mouth or cut or grazed skin.
Those who are immunocompromised have a higher risk of contracting the infections but that being said, the presence of the potentially dangerous bacteria in the makeup does not necessarily mean people will get sick.
According to the research, a variety of makeup products were looked at including 467 individual items, such as blending sponges, which are used to apply foundation to the face.
These particular sponges were found to obtain the highest levels of potential harmful microbes — most likely due to often being left damp after use.
In addition, the study found that two-thirds of users had dropped their sponges on the floor at some point and 93% of them had never been cleaned by their owners.
“Consumers’ poor hygiene practices when it comes to using make-up, especially beauty blenders, is very worrying when you consider that we found bacteria such as E.coli – which is linked with fecal contamination – breeding on the products we tested,” revealed lead author of the study from Aston University’s School of Life and Health Sciences, Dr. Amreen Bashir.
In the U.S. there are no laws or regulations that require cosmetics to have specific shelf life according to the FDA.
Thankfully, the FDA has a few steps you can take to ensure you are not getting sick from your treasured investments.