What is the oldest skin care product in your arsenal? A year old? Two years old? How about five? Do you still use those products even after all this time? Admittedly, many of us keep tubs and tubes of beauty goods long after we've stopped using them, without any regards for whether or not they have expired. Many brands do not include expiration dates on their products, so you may not even know that your anti-wrinkle cream has gone bad! How can you determine when a product should expire, and how often should you replace your products?

Even if that anti aging wrinkle cream has a date on its container, it may be more of a suggestion than a hard-and-fast expiration date. Most skin care products can last a year or two, though natural skin care products may have a shelf shelf life because of the non-chemical preservatives they contain. You can extend the shelf-life of all your beauty products and cosmetics by storing them properly. However, to truly determine when to keep your products and when to toss' em, you'll want to rely on two of your senses.

When you first use an anti aging cream or other beauty product, you may notice it has a particular smell. Over time, as bacteria and humidity creep in, the smell may change. You may notice that a smells rancid, or even just different from the way it did when it was new. When a product's smell starts to change, it's time for that bottle to hit the bin.

When you're looking for products for how to look younger, you want to use fresh ingredients on your skin for maximum effectiveness. There may be a few visual clues that your anti-wrinkle cream is not as fresh as it once was. Does your once-smooth anti aging wrinkle cream now contain lumps? Is it still the same color it was when it was new? Changes in consistency and color can be indicative that bacteria has gotten into the container, and you certainly do not want to apply that cream to your skin. Pitch it.

To make your products last longer, there are a few ways you can protect and store them for an extended shelf-life. The first is to avoid keeping your natural skin care containers in the bathroom, where they're exposed to moisture, heat and humidity. This encourages bacteria growth. Instead, store them in a cool, dry place outside the bathroom. Storing products in the fridge can make them last even longer. In addition, you should wash your hands before applying anything, or else avoid dipping your fingers directly into product tubs. Your fingers are the perfect way for bacteria to get into your beauty products, so use an applicator to decrease the risk of germs.