|Photo from pul.se|
I was completely mortified when I read an article about makeup contamination in counters. I knew they're not as clean as we'd like them to be but I never realized how much bacteria is looming in those testers. We're talking about staph, strep and E. coli (which basically equates to feces or poop) bacteria. So we have to be extra careful when trying makeup in counters. Chances are, they are contaminated. I strongly suggest you try them at the back of your hand which you can easily wipe off with tissue and alcohol right away. But if you really must put them on your face (especially when buying foundation), here are things you have to remember, do and avoid.
Eye and Lip Pencils
Sharpen the pencil. Disinfect the sharpener first with alcohol before doing so. Any contamination will be just on the surface, so a few twists will do the job.
Foundation Sticks and Lipsticks
Ask if the saleswoman can dip the stick in alcohol and then wipe off the surface with tissue to remove the contaminated layer. Use a disposable applicator (sadly, majority of makeup counters do not have them) or use a brush sprayed with alcohol. Do not use your finger. * Applies to all other makeup in stick form.
Powder Foundation and Powder Blush
Wipe the surface of the pan with a tissue with alcohol. Then with a clean tissue, gently scrape off the top layer. * Applies to all other makeup in a compact powder form.
Lip-Gloss Pots and Loose Powder
Anything that is in an open jar should be avoided altogether. If you can dip a finger or two in it, the whole thing is most probably contaminated and there is no way to clean it.
If it is in a tube or has a pump, just wipe off the tip with alcohol. If the opening is big enough to stick in a finger, forget it.
Now I can't help but wonder if makeup counters here in Manila practice regular cleaning of their testers. I'm a bit doubtful especially those counters that give you a mere piece of one-ply toilet paper, folded into a small square, when you ask for tissue. I hope they cut, separated and folded those tissues with clean hands. Scary.
So next time you go makeup shopping, bring anti-bacterial wipes, alcohol and your own tissue. Better be careful than sorry.
Source: Allure Magazine April 2011