After several years working on the retail side of the beauty industry, I have witnessed more then a few things that have made me cringe and the scary part is it happens on a daily basis. Here are a few friendly tips to help you navigate the beauty isle all the while protecting yourself from unhygienic practices.
1. Please ask someone to sanitize that lipstick before you put it on…
The number one thing to remember when trying on makeup is, you don’t know who touched it last, if it wasn’t cleaned prior to your use you might as well walk up to the last person who used it and give them a big sloppy kiss. Even though that lipstick looks untouched the last person to use it may have had a cold sore, someone could have just sneezed all over the tester stand, or a unsavoury individual may have just done there makeup using that very lipstick as a finishing touch. Proper sanitation of lipsticks include spraying with 99% alcohol or a sanitizing spray. Ideally the lipstick should be applied with a brush and never directly on the lips.
2. Use Disposable wands for mascara and lipgloss.
The beauty of a disposable wand means that the product inside the tube is never touched by someone else, that being said don’t double dip!
When asking for a sample of that new foundation or fabulous new moisturizer there are a few key things to remember.
– If it comes in a pump there is very little risk of cross contamination and you are likely safe asking for a sample.
– No pump? Personally I would avoid taking a sample, I would try it on the back of my hand to feel the texture. There is no guarantee that someone else hasn’t stuck their finger in it. Creams are a breeding ground for bacteria, so when using them it is best to use a q-tip or spatula to dispense them to avoid contamination. You can ask for a sample from a jar kept behind the counter or if they have pre packaged samples.
For the same reason you wouldn’t directly apply a lip liner on your lips don’t apply eyeliner or lip liner without proper sanitization. To properly sanitize an eye/lip liner first sharpen it and, then sanitize it with 99% alcohol or a sanitizing spray. The reason it is done in this order is to remove the top layer that may have been exposed to contaminates. Cleaning after sharpening also ensures that any contaminates that are left on the sharpener are removed.
Keep in mind most people who work in your favourite beauty retailer have been trained to protect your safety and practice proper hygiene. So when you are looking for new makeup or would like to try something always ask a sales associate.