Beauty mavens, makeup bloggers and hoarders are always on the hunt for the next big thing. Once they get their hands on the product, they'll use for a couple of days and then the obsession dies off and it goes back into the drawer for good. Instead of letting the products rot away in there, some smarties have started selling their old and used makeup online to make a few bucks.
Glambot is one of the popular websites which promotes purchasing and selling old, used products, provided they have 50% or more of the original product in them. If there's more than 50% in there, the retail value jumps higher. In fact, a popular Indian Instagram reseller of imported beauty products, International Makeup has also started selling used makeup for a lower price. This seems to be a hot new trend in the beauty industry.
Before we answer this, it's important to know who is the target audience? Who are the people contributing to these online businesses? Budding MUAs, customers who have their favourite products discontinued by brands and find them for a cheaper rate online, small-time beauty companies who want to do away with their old stalk, beauty writers/bloggers who get plenty of makeup thanks to PR, beauty mavens who love living the trendsetter life, Instagrammers who have fun with makeup - these are a few who make the most out of this business.
While all of this is fun and games and this is great for bargain hunters, there two important questions to think about (in general) keeping the COVID-19 situation in mind.
Yes, you finally get a chance to get your hands on that limited edition Colourpop eyeshadow pallette and Fenty Beauty lipstick, but if its previous owner had a skin infection or sneezed maybe not once, but multiple times into the palette, you could fall ill too. Herpes, eye infections and lots of other diseases are transmitted through makeup and we wouldn't even know it!
The point that I'm making here is, there is a risk you are taking when you buy used makeup. There are also shady sellers online and on Instagram that sell used makeup for a cheaper price, but how do you know if they're safe or even scarier, genuine? That's a call you will have to take. A suggestion would be to avoid buying used products that make direct contact with the human body - but again, there is no concrete way of being sure of this. You would have to take the person's word at face value.
Lip glosses, mascaras, moisturisers, body butter. These attract the most bacteria. Let's say if you do manage to sanitize the mascara wand or the lip gloss applicator, you can't sanitize the product in the bottle. Contaminated beauty products can cause an allergic reaction to your skin and cause your lips to swell. Hence, purchase at your own risk.
The answer to the second question is that you pay attention to the detailing. Has the product started to smell? Has its formula separated? Is its texture dry and clumpy? Are you noticing discolouration? Has mould started to appear on the surface of the product? If you're worried about whether the product is a fake or not, you can tell by the colouring and font design on the packaging, colour payoff, weight and incorrect spelling. These are tiny tips to help you make safe purchases.
Used makeup needs to go under heat therapy and UV radiation to kill germs and bacteria on them. Use isopropyl alcohol to sanitize makeup kits and tools. Also, during the coronavirus crisis, it is definitely better to stay away from any kind used makeup. Do not use other people's makeup or offer your own to them. Definitely don't use product testers in malls.
Stay clean, stay safe and make sure that your products are social distancing with you too.
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