It’s tempting to watch your best friend pull her favorite pinkish nude lipstick out of her bag and want to ask to use it when she’s done. But the truth is, you just shouldn’t — unless, of course, you have some alcohol-based wipes at the ready to sanitize it.
It appears to be “harmless” and it doesn’t always start badly. But, it’s better to keep others from using your make up so they don’t contaminate it. They can share germs that can be harmful.
With this in mind, we want to share the nine main ones with you in detail and what their risks are.
1. Mascara. Your favorite mascara can harbor bacteria and viruses that are easily transmissible, like conjunctivitis. And since your eyes don’t have the same layers of protection that your skin does, it’s more susceptible to infections like pink eye. Plus, each time you pull the wand out and push it back in to lube up the brush head, you push air into the dark bottle’s base, feeding the aerobic bacteria that can survive in an oxygenated area. Basically, the only safe way to share your mascara, if you so desire, is to practice what pro makeup artists do and never let the wand that comes with it be used; use only disposable wands to apply it, and never double dip.
2. Eyeliner. Pencils or liquid liners are products that can be contaminated, like mascara, after application. This means that if your friend has a virus or bacteria in their eyes, there is a huge chance that you’ll suffer from an eye infection.
One of the problems that you can experience is known as keratitis. This inflames your cornea.
3. Lipstick or balm. Lipstick and balms are a hard no to sharing unless you stash an alcohol spray or wipe in your purse to sanitize them. A large percentage of people carry HSV-1, but just because it’s in your system doesn’t mean you ever show signs of it externally. This is referred to as asymptomatic shedding, where you have the virus but you don’t show any symptoms; it’s all based on your immunity and whether or not something like stress can trigger an outbreak.” That’s why it’s so important to use your own lip products, because if you pass your favorite lipstick around from girl to girl and you or your friend has the virus, you could be transferring bacteria or HSV-1 and never know it. And then you won’t know if you have the capability to develop a cold sore of fever blister until you have it, which is unfortunately too late..
4. Make-up brushes. They’re the tools of blending dreams and also one of the worse things for cross-contamination. If your friend has a spot and uses your make-up brush, the likelihood of you getting a spot too is extremely high. The only way to share them is to spray them with an alcohol based product to kill bacteria or shampoo them in between use.
5. Deodorants. Deodorants, either bars or roll-on, are items that you should never share. This is because, instead of protecting you, this can make you smell bad and give you infections. Using them by yourself is healthy and effective. But, when you share them, you expose yourself to bacteria, sweat, and particles that stick to their surface.
Then, when you apply them, you can suffer the consequences.
6. Razors and electric razors. Razors are designed to make it easier to get rid of unwanted hair on any part of your body. These are an easy and hygienic way to do this. But, you shouldn’t share them with anyone. This is because they pose a risk of accidents, like cutting yourself. This increases your risk of getting an infection later.
Also, they can store dead skin cells. These can block your pores.
7. Pressed powders. We’ve all heard that bacteria doesn’t multiply on powders like it does in wet formulas, but that doesn’t mean there’s no transfer of bacteria if you and your friend use the same powder. If you’ve ever been to a make-up counter, you’ll notice they spray the surface with an anti-bacterial makeup spray and that’s the reason why.
Safe to share: liquid foundation from a pump or squeeze tube, so long as you don’t touch your skin to the end of either. Also, powders that have been sprayed with alcohol before use.
8. Any lotions or creams in a pot. If you have to dip your fingers in, you shouldn’t be sharing. According to a study done at the University of Colorado and posted on Bacteriality, there are nearly 332,000 genetically distinct bacteria on the human hand, which belong to 4,742 different species. Enough said.
Safe to share: Anything in a pump because you never come into contact with the product.
9. Nail Clippers. Did you know nail fungus is a thing? Well, it is, and it can be spread easily by sharing clippers or nail tools with someone. It’s best to just get your own!