We've all done it before. Getting ready at a friend's house and realizing you've forgotten to bring your eyeliner, so you ask to borrow one. No biggie, right? Well it turns out there are certain beauty products you should never share with others, no matter how close you are. But while it is most hygienic to keep your makeup and beauty tools all to yourself, there are still some products that are OK to borrow or share in a pinch. To gain a better understanding of what cosmetics are and are not OK to share with your family and friends, I emailed with a couple of experts.
Dr. Elizabeth Tanzi, founder and director of Capital Laser & Skin Care and Assistant Clinical Professor for the Department of Dermatology at the George Washington University Medical Center, and Sonia Kashuk, makeup artist and founder of Sonia Kashuk Beauty, both weighed in on the items you can feel safer sharing and which items you should never share. But even for the products that are OK to borrow and lend, Kashuk recommends making a habit of wiping them down with an alcohol swab before and after sharing, just in case. So the next time you primp with a friend or even a family member, be sure to keep some of these items to yourself, and sanitize whatever you share.
Clarisonics can be an investment. So if you decide to share one with your SO or a roommate, make sure you're only sharing the actual device and not the brush heads. According to Dr. Tanzi, Clarisonic brush heads could possibly transmit "bacteria like staph or viruses like the ones that cause cold sores and warts." To be safe, always use your own brush head, and be sure to switch it for a new one about every three months.
2. Lip Products
Dr. Tanzi and Kashuk both agree that it's much safer to simply not share lip products such as lipsticks, glosses, and lip liners as they could potentially spread the cold sore virus or other infections.
3. Foundation & Concealer
While it can be difficult to properly sanitize potted and cushion foundations, Dr. Tanzi says it's OK to share liquid foundation, especially formulas that come in a pump or squeeze tube as there is minimal transfer of bacteria with these types of packaging. Concealer that comes in a squeeze tube is also generally OK to share, but pots that require a finger to use or tubes with doe-foot applicators will harbor bacteria and should not be shared.
4. Powder Products
According to Dr Tanzi, face and cheek powders are generally OK to share as long as you use your own brush. For loose powders, simply tap some out into your hand instead of using it straight from the jar, and for pressed powders, try to sanitize before and after usage with something like a makeup sanitizing spray.
5. Eye Products
Both Dr. Tanzi and Kashuk warn against sharing any products that are used around the eyes such as eyeshadow, mascara, and eyeliner. As Dr. Tanzi explains, "there are bacteria and viruses that cause pink eye that are easily transferred from any eye makeup to the eyes."
6. Makeup Brushes and Sponges
The experts also agree that brushes easily transmit bacteria and should not be shared with others. But because brushes can harbor so much dirt and bacteria, they further recommend to wash your own brushes regularly— "you should always work with clean brushes, so make sure you are cleaning your sponges and brushes before application whether you shared them or not," says Kashuk.
While Dr. Tanzi confirms that bar soap is actually sanitary enough to be shared if needed, she says that loofahs should never be shared. "[Loofahs] can harbor bacteria, mold, yeast, and a host of other nasty things," she explains. Even if you only use your own, Dr. Tanzi recommends allowing them to completely dry every day, and replacing them frequently.
8. Hair Brushes
"Lice is more common than ever before," says Tanzi. So she stresses to keep your hair brush to yourself. After all, it's better to be safe than sorry.