5 Alternative Uses For Beauty Products That Didn’t Work For You

by Gio

We always hope that the beauty products we buy we’ll work well for us, and most of them do, but sometimes we come across a dud that leaves us disappointed. That moisturizer broke you out, that foundation is too dark and that shampoo is just too gentle to wash all that product buildup out of your hair.

You thought about returning them to the store but waited too long or just felt too guilty to do so, or you wish you could but in your country it is just not possible to return cosmetics once they’ve been opened.

So now you’re stuck with products that you can’t use but don’t even want to throw away because that would be a waste of money. What can you do about it? Here are 5 ways to put them to good use:

Your moisturizer broke you out?

The skin of our body is thicker and less sensitive than that of our faces, so if a moisturizer has caused your face to break out, don’t throw it away but use it on your body instead. Do the same with all skincare products that, even if they didn’t break you out, didn’t even do anything for your skin. This way, they will at least keep your body soft and hydrated.

Is your foundation too dark?

If you’ve bought a foundation that’s too dark for your skin, turn into a tinted moisturizer. Simply pour a few drops of the foundation on your hand and add a little bit of your facial moisturizer at a time until you get a shade that matches your skintone. Tinted moisturizers are more lightweight than regular foundations, which makes them perfect for the hot summer months.

Is your foundation too dull?

If your foundation is too dull you can lighten it by mixing it with a pinch of pearly peachy blush. And if you want a subtle glow, try adding a few drops of highlighter to it. But be careful not too add too much! You want your skin to look glowy, not oily!

Your shampoo didn’t work well for you?

Do you have too many bottles of shampoo lying around you don’t know if you’ll ever be able to finish them all? Or simply are disappointed with how a shampoo performed on your locks? The try using it as a body wash or hand wash. It even works well as a laundry detergent!

Don’t like how a hair conditioner performs on your hair?

If you have a hair conditioner you don’t use much because you don’t like how it performs on your hair, then use it as a shaving cream. It’s an old and common trick but it works so well! I actually use conditioner this way often (especially when I travel), even if I’m pleased with how it performs on hair, because it leaves my skin so soft and smooth!

What do you do with beauty products that don’t work for you?


Take The Guesswork Out Of Skincare Shopping

Screenshot from 2017 04 30 11 51 35

Get access to the “Pro Skincare Library” for exclusive skincare routine “cheat sheets” and tricks to help you navigate the beauty aisles jungle like a pro and immediately know what to pick off the shelves to achieve the gorgeous skin of your dreams - even when you’re drowning in an endless sea of skincare products.

Powered by ConvertKit



Marina(Makeup4all) May 29, 2012 - 2:20 pm

Thanks for the tips, never thought of using a conditioner as a shaving cream. Also, when my creams go bad, I use them on my shoes 🙂

beautifulwithbrains May 29, 2012 - 7:45 pm

Marina, you’re welcome. You need to try shaving with your conditioner. It works much better than shaving creams and leaves skin so soft.

And I had never thought of using expired creams on shoes, thanks for the tip.

Trisha May 29, 2012 - 4:00 pm

Awesome ideas, Gio! It’s so much better than just throwing the stuff away.

beautifulwithbrains May 29, 2012 - 7:46 pm

Trisha, thanks and I agree. I hate throwing stuff away especially when it can be recycled and used in a different way. 🙂

Annabella Freeman May 29, 2012 - 9:26 pm

I’ve used conditioner as shave cream, shower gels as hand washes, and face creams as body creams too!

beautifulwithbrains May 30, 2012 - 6:03 am

Annabella, don’t they work well? And it’s good that you don’t have to throw stuff away but can use it in a different way instead. 🙂

Janessa May 30, 2012 - 2:49 am

Cute froggy! These are really great tips, thanks Giorgia. :] Some really random ones I came up with:
1. dry lipstick as a lip stain or for crazy brows or for eyeliner on the upper lid
2. non-moisturizing lipbalm as an eyebrow shaper or tamer (wear at night)
3. wrong color brow pencil as eyeliner (if it’s not too hard or just use a lighter to heat it up)
4. glitter eyeliner that irritates the eyes for a face drawer or crafts?
5. useless toner to set powder makeup and make it look less powdery or to wet eyeshadows and make them into eyeliner
6. soak twigs in conditioner and water and braid or weave a twig braid or wreath
7. dark foundation as a light wash of color on the lid for subtle definition
8. sticky gloss? apply and then blot off. Then apply your lipstick and it’ll stay on wonderfully
9. Dark lipstick? Mix it with a little bit of concealer.

beautifulwithbrains May 30, 2012 - 6:05 am

Janessa, what wonderful tips! I didn’t know most of them but will definitely try them next time I come across one of these products that doesn’t work for their intended use. 🙂

Janessa May 30, 2012 - 2:51 am

10. bad eyeshadow primer. Use it as a concealer primer or lipstick primer. Use only a little bit on the lips and your lipstick will adhere much better and not cake up.
11. Use bad mascara as eyeliner with an eyeliner brush after you take out the stopper (best taken out with a tweezer). Then save the brush and use it as a brow comb.
Oh I love makeup!

beautifulwithbrains May 30, 2012 - 6:07 am

Janessa, yay more tips! Thanks for sharing. I sometimes save mascara wands to use with other mascaras that come with a crappy applicator, but it works ok for brows too. 🙂

Fane Davis May 30, 2012 - 5:39 am

thanks for the very useful and amazing tips and tricks.Last week i bought a new facial moisturizer which i think would work on me.Unfortunately,it caused break outs.Urgh.luckily i did not throw it way.Thought first tips will do on me.i usually throw things away,cause i did not have the idea using it in other ways.poor me.

beautifulwithbrains May 30, 2012 - 6:08 am

Fane, you’re welcome. I’m sorry the moisturizer broke you out. Try using it on your body instead. That’s what I do in cases like this and has always worked well. 🙂

plue June 5, 2012 - 2:53 am

i have converted shower gels into a hand wash, conditioner/ mask into shaving creams, melted useless lipbalms with dry lipsticks to make a not so drying lipstick but in pot form, toner/ facial mist to clean mirrors and lash curler, moisturizer/ serums for hands and body… and for fragrances that I don’t use much, I usually spray a bit into the room/ toilet just for kicks!

but sometimes i get so irritated with things that don’t work i just throw them away lol.

beautifulwithbrains June 5, 2012 - 8:53 pm

Plue, some products are just so useless they aren’t good for anything, aren’t they? And thanks for sharing all these tips. I love the idea of creating a lipstick with lip balm. I will try that next time I get a not that good lip balm.

The Skincare Skinny: Great Skincare Blogs « Zaggora June 21, 2012 - 12:11 pm

[…] with Brains: Bought a product that you can’t use or just wasn’t right for you? Recycle it in one of these ingenious ways. (Using hair conditioner as shaving cream is a favorite […]


Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.