5 Storage Tips to Make Lipstick Last Longer

Easily one of the most frustrating experiences when buying lip makeup is finding that lipstick has dried out or gone bad prematurely. Throwing away those perfect lipstick shades after wearing them just a few times feels like such a waste of money and means you need to buy a replacement. Long-lasting lipstick shouldn’t just refer to lipstick that stays on all day and night—long-lasting lipstick should also mean lipstick that won’t dry out or go bad, but believe it or not, it’s not always a formula issue. 

At Bésame, we've been perfecting our lipstick formula for years, and have picked up some excellent advice for making lipstick last along the way. Here, we’re sharing five simple storage tips to help keep your lipstick fresh for longer. 

1. Store Lipstick Tubes Right Side Up

Even though tube lipstick is a solid formula, it’s still not a good idea to store it upside down. Some people like to store their lipstick tubes upside down to be able to see the shade name, but this can eventually damage the lipstick and create a mess in the cap of the tube. 

Instead, it’s best to store lipstick tubes right side up. 

Red lipstick and cream rouge


2. Keep a Lipstick Organizer on Your Vanity

Using a simple lipstick holder can keep your lipsticks right side up, and make them readily accessible on your vanity! Our lipstick holder is vintage-inspired, a gorgeous crimson like our popular deep red lipstick shades, and embossed with a gold Bésame logo. Glamorous, minimalistic, and so practical, each 1960s-style lipstick display holds five tubes. 

lipstick holder

3. Don’t Leave Lipstick in Your Purse

It’s fine to carry a tube of lipstick in your purse when you go out, but it’s not a good idea to keep lipstick in your purse long term. Leaving lipstick in your purse puts it at risk of losing its cap, getting smashed, collecting germs and crumbs, and of course, ruining the inside of your purse.

We also put our purses in a lot of strange spots, some of which are extra warm (e.g. on top of a radiator) or extra cold. Temperature changes can affect the integrity of your lipstick, and help to shorten its usable lifespan, so it’s better to return the tube to your vanity after going out. 

Pink lipstick

4. Don’t Leave Lipstick in The Car

Will lipstick melt in the car? Yes, absolutely. Especially if the weather is hot, or the heat in your car is on high. While it might be tempting to leave a travel lipstick in your car for on-the-go touch ups, the inconsistent temperatures in a car aren’t good for your lipstick. Leaving lipstick in your car can also be messy since you’re risking melted lipstick getting all over your interior. 

But, what if it’s cold in the car? Can lipstick freeze? Yes, lipstick can freeze, and while it might not damage the lipstick, low temperatures can change the profile of the formula and the experience of applying the lipstick. 

5. Use a Lip Brush To Pick Up Pigment

To protect your lipstick from accumulating germs, try applying your lipstick with a lip brush. To avoid transferring any germs to your lipstick tube, collect the amount of lipstick you need using the lip brush, then apply it to your lips. If you need more, clean the brush before returning to the lipstick tube. 

If you’re concerned about spreading skin conditions like cold sores, this technique is especially useful and can help to make your lipstick last longer. 

hand holding red lipstick and lip brush

Lipstick Storage FAQ

Feeling like you have more questions than answers? Here are more of our answers to some of the most common questions about making lipstick last. 

Can lipstick expire?

Yes! All makeup products expire, and lipstick is no different. Lipstick expiration dates are typically found on the product packaging or the products themselves. Typically, lipstick has an expiration date of 1–2 years after opening, depending on how well it is taken care of. 

How long does a tube of lipstick last on average?

The average tube of lipstick contains about 300 swipes of product, but many people don’t end up using the full tube before it goes bad. 

hand holding red lipstick

Can lipstick cause cold sores

Yes, if a tube of lipstick has been used by someone with an active cold sore, it can pick up and transmit the virus responsible for cold sores. 

How long does lipstick last on lips?

The ingredients used by different lipstick brands vary greatly, which means that the longevity of lipstick formulas also varies greatly. How long lipstick will last on your lips also depends on how you apply it, what you do while you wear it, and whether you use a lip liner. In general, tube lipsticks last around 3-6 hours on the lips. 

Learn more about lipstick plus other vintage-inspired makeup and accessories on the Bésame Cosmetics blog!

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