Time for a rampage?

In my last post I mentioned expiry dates in passing. They deserve a post of their own because expiry dates are great for kick starting a decluttering rampage in the beauty products arena.

At the beginning of the year, I used a lipstick and was quite unsatisfied because it seemed to have lost its vibrancy since the last time I used it. This made me curious about the life span of lipsticks and other cosmetics. Searching online, I found several articles that gave me guidance around the expiration dates of products. I felt liberated. I felt as though permission to throw stuff out had been granted. I felt dangerous. A rampage ensued and I threw out a lot of products with glee that I could finally admit that they weren’t making me happy. I realised that I’d been holding on to many of these products because:

a) I’d spent money on them;

b) I hadn’t really used them all that much; and

c) maybe I’d use them one day.wooden-690762_1280

The following guidelines steered my rampage:

  • Acne treatments: Three months to a year.
  • Body lotion: One year.
  • Shampoo, conditioner and shower gel: About three years.
  • Mascara and liquid eyeliner: Three to four months.
  • Eye and lip pencils: Three to five years.
  • Lipstick and gloss: Eighteen months after first use.
  • Foundation and concealer: About a year.
  • Eye shadow: About two years.
  • Blush and bronzer: About 18 months after first use.
  • Perfume: About two years.
  • Nail polish: One year.
  • Hairstyling products: Three to five years.
  • Lip balm: One to three years after first use.

I found the experience quite fun as a memory lane exercise as well. I enjoyed stretching
my brain to remember back to when I’d bought an item. This also illustrated quite clearly just how long I had held on to something (like said lipstick) and how justifiable it was to throw it out. Once I was on a roll, it felt amazing to keep clearing out my draws and by the end, when I was down to the bare minimum, the feeling of a simplified and clutter free vanity was worth more to me than holding on to products to see if I could justify having spent money on them to begin with.

As a treat to myself for having cleared out so much, including many eye shadow single pots and samples that were as old as Clinique itself, I purchased one beautiful eye shadow palette. My plan is to enjoy this palette for two years before replacing, this will give me plenty of time to fully explore all its combinations and perfect a few looks. This plan fills me with as much joy as seeing my tidy and minimalist vanity everyday. But funnily enough, going on a rampage was so much fun that I actually feel sad that I have nothing left to purge!

The Magic Makeup Brush Tree

Washing my makeup brushes is something I know I should probably do more often as it’s better for my face and overall hygiene. And although I’ve watched several videos on YouTube in attempts to find a method that streamlines the process and inspires me (or scares me) to do it more regularly, I still find it all quite tedious.

A part of the process that especially takes up way too much of my head space is the drying component. While waiting for the brushes to dry it’s at the back of my mind that they may be suffering sun damage, or that they’ve fallen to the ground, the bristles snapping and getting contaminated, or that dogs are using them as chew toys. To avoid these scenarios, I’ve tried different methods such as laying the brushes out on towels near windows (annoying because one side of the brush ends up getting misshaped) and I’ve used hair ties to hang each one upside down on towel rails (VERY time consuming).

But my days of stressing are over because this brilliant contraption. I found it on eBay by accident when I was looking for a makeup brush roll/bag and instead this caught my eye – a Makeup Brush Tree. I took a chance, ordered one and to date I have used it three times. And so far so wpid-20150524_195425-1.jpgwpid-20150524_190317-1.jpggood, the brushes are fully supported, they feel as though they aren’t going to fall on the ground and they are able to dry completely up ended. This ensures that no water can run into the brush and destroy the glue holding the bristles together. The tree also comes apart for easy storage when not in use, so my bathroom remains tidy and uncluttered. Just how I like it.

This experience also reminded me as to why I like eBay so much. You just never know what a word phrase will lead you to discover. So thank you, eBay, for reducing my first world problems by one more notch!

You know you’re an organising geek when…

Your guilty pleasure is to stroll the aisles of OfficeWorks on your way home from work.

I adore it. I feel inspired and there is no aisle I don’t like. I like looking at the new products and new colour ranges of notebooks and writing utensils. I also like the way the store rearranges the aisles every so often, which suddenly make items reveal new potential when seen in a different light.

My most recent OfficeWorks stroll paid off and solved a problem I’d been percolating over for weeks. The feeling of achievement just made me so happy I was running off of it for several days.

A while ago, I made a makeshift shelf out of a plastic food container to make better use of my bathroom shelf. It does the job but the crudeness of my cutting job has annoyed me and I’ve been trying to find an alternative ever since.

BEFORE

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I’d contemplated options in the dollar stores and I’d spent time in Big W. I was thinking about in trays, small kitchen wire shelves, things that I could turn up side down to create a shelf. But it was OfficeWorks’ latest arrangement that brought a brochure holder to my attention. I picked it up and I started to get that feeling. That feeling that lets me know that I am on to something. I turned it over, I got my measuring tape out with eager hyper fingers and it was perfect. What I love about it too is that it creates two smaller sections on either side for smaller items.

AFTER

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An even better solution may present itself at some point but for now, this makes me smile every time I see it.