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Can you sterilize lipstick?

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
So there's a lot of swapping going on MUA that I've been checking out and people seemed to be exchanging lipsticks.

Is there anyway to sterilize these? Maybe sterilize isn't the word, but protect yourself from any harmful bacteria or viruses?


Just read this:

Rubbing alcohol as an antiseptic
Rubbing alcohol is usually isopropyl alcohol not ethyl alcohol. Drinking alcohol is usually ethyl alcohol. Rubbing alcohol is not a good antiseptic because it contains only 40% alcohol. To be a good antiseptic Isopropyl Alcohol must contain at least 70% alcohol. Seventy percent Isopropyl or ethyl alcohol will kill bacteria, virus and fungus in 15 to 30 seconds.
Please visit Wikipedia "alcohol rubs" or "hand antiseptic" for an extensive discussion on the antiseptic (germ killing) properties of ethyl and isopropyl alcohols.
post #2 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

Originally Posted by LUVINBEAUTY View Post
So there's a lot of swapping going on MUA that I've been checking out and people seemed to be exchanging lipsticks.

Is there anyway to sterilize these? Maybe sterilize isn't the word, but protect yourself from any harmful bacteria or viruses?
Yup. Just don't do it.
post #3 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

I dont swap lippies unless from a mua or someone I know (HERPES HELLO!!) I do have a sterilization process, but it is very long......it is very safe, and best to do if you want a product that you genuinely want, not to preserve packaging. I will try to blog it and post it here tommorrow
post #4 of 21
Thread Starter 

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

I KNOW girl! Who the heck wants herpes?!!! AHHHHH!!!

Just read this:

Rubbing alcohol is usually isopropyl alcohol not ethyl alcohol. Drinking alcohol is usually ethyl alcohol. Rubbing alcohol is not a good antiseptic because it contains only 40% alcohol. To be a good antiseptic Isopropyl Alcohol must contain at least 70% alcohol. Seventy percent Isopropyl or ethyl alcohol will kill bacteria, virus and fungus in 15 to 30 seconds.
Please visit Wikipedia "alcohol rubs" or "hand antiseptic" for an extensive discussion on the antiseptic (germ killing) properties of ethyl and isopropyl alcohols.
post #5 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

I only swap lippies if i have not used them, or if they are the type in a tube where the product comes out through the top (think blistex style) so that i can easily disinfect everything.

also just so you know when it say in 15-30 seconds they actually mean you have to keep it in the alchol that long, and even though it does destroy the dna of the bacteria if it is a gram negative bactera (one with a protien shell) the shell does remain.

lets say you had the flu, one that had the protien coating and you steralize the lipstick. it would still have the shell. Now lets pretend you swap it and the person for some reason is putting on makeup while they have the flu. they will get those shells and the DNA from there strain of the flu will enter those protien coats and form a more virulient form of the FLU. The only way to get rid of these protien coatings is to run the matterial over a flame... which if it is an open lipstick would melt it sadly.

if you really want to swap lipstick you would prob have to scrape off like 50% of it to get it nice and clean and safe. So either save that for swapping with your family and friends that you allready share germs with or just dont swap them
post #6 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

That's the same reason why I won't buy lipstick from drugstores unless they have a plastic seal around it. I caught some girl "sampling" a few lippies in Walgreens once-- ew!
post #7 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

i've always wondered about this!
post #8 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

ive heard people say that they sterilized lipsticks but i just dont know how they'd do that...
post #9 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

I thought it was just dipping the lipstick in 70% alcohol then wiping off the surface layer? I think MissChievous on youtube has a video on that
post #10 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

I only swap things that are safe used. i swap accessories like books, CD's/DVD's etc which are harmless to swap
post #11 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

This is kind of new to me to sterilize the lipstick. i perfer not to swap the lipstick in the first hand.
post #12 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

i use 90% alcohol and a tissue
post #13 of 21
Thread Starter 

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

Originally Posted by skarvika View Post
i use 90% alcohol and a tissue
So this has worked for you so far? No weird iffy things going on?
post #14 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

even with the 90 percent alchol it is not steralized... just sanatized you need the flame or an ultra violet light to steralize

Seems to be some confusion between the 2 terms. So, in an effort to
clear it up, here are a couple of definitions to keep in mind:

Sanitize - to render sanitary, or free from elements, such as filth or
pathogens, that endanger health. This does not mean ALL possible
microorganisms, etc, but MOST. Sanitizing does not remove ALL bacteria,
microorganisms, etc.

Sterilize - to render sterile, or to make free from ALL live bacteria or
other microorganisms. Kind of a "total kill" of everything.

Something that is sterilized can also be considered sanitary, but
something that is sanitized is not sterile.

from some beer brewing site
post #15 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

When I worked as a nurses aid, we were required to soak thermometers and any thing that could not be auto claved in a 70% solution of alcohol for six hours to sterilize them. I do not know if this is over kill or not, only that was the requirement to sterilize them. I do not believe you can guarantee a sterilized lipstick even if it is new and never used. Only that it has never been on another persons lips. I never use store samplers unless they are sealed samplers as well. I have young girls so if I like the color, I buy it. If I don't like it after I buy it I give it to them.
post #16 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

I sanitize my own lipsticks (good old alcohol, 90%), but i wouldn't swap them, not even with my family. I'm not a huge lipstick fan so if i really want a lipstick i'll just buy it.
post #17 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

Sorry i don't have more idea about this.Thanks...........
post #18 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

Totally agreed with this. There's a big difference between sterilizing something and just sanitizing it.

I've swapped lipsticks before, but never glosses - those are harder to sanitize. So far I use alcohol and tissue, and have never had a problem, but I am careful to swap with swappers I know relatively well.

Usually however, I prefer to swap for powder products, like eyeshadows, blushes and things like that, which harbour less bacteria because they are powder. I also swap for nail polishes. I try not to swap for things that are gel/liquid/fluid in consistency in general, although I do swap for lipsticks, eyeliners and things like that if they are sanitizable.

You can sanitize things and be pretty safe, but as always there is some sort of risk.

Originally Posted by Orangeeyecrayon View Post
even with the 90 percent alchol it is not steralized... just sanatized you need the flame or an ultra violet light to steralize

Seems to be some confusion between the 2 terms. So, in an effort to
clear it up, here are a couple of definitions to keep in mind:

Sanitize - to render sanitary, or free from elements, such as filth or
pathogens, that endanger health. This does not mean ALL possible
microorganisms, etc, but MOST. Sanitizing does not remove ALL bacteria,
microorganisms, etc.

Sterilize - to render sterile, or to make free from ALL live bacteria or
other microorganisms. Kind of a "total kill" of everything.

Something that is sterilized can also be considered sanitary, but
something that is sanitized is not sterile.

from some beer brewing site
post #19 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

I agree with musical houses (i love your blog btw).

If i want something that is a gel/ liquid that is not normally housed in a pump bottle (aka if i want something like a gel eye liner) i prefer to get it brand new (which you can find via swapping) or if it is used i need to see a picture of it before hand so i can determine if i think it will be sufficently cleaned.
post #20 of 21

Re: Can you sterilize lipstick?

I'd say apart from sanitising them, talk to the person you're swapping with. I know it's not 100% but it would probably ease your mind if they seemed trustworthy. A person would have to be pretty sick to swap a lipstick with someone if they knew they had cold sores etc.
post #21 of 21

In a word, no. The proper way to use lipstick from a tube is to cut off a portion of the lipstick, put it in a tray and apply it with a disposable applicator. I am a licensed cosmetologist. Most people who do makeup, are not. The problem with this is that most do not learn how disinfection works. There are 3 levels of decontamination. The highest level is sterilization. This is done usually by autoclave (your dentists office for example). Sterilizing is complicated and time consuming but it kills all bacteria and their spores. It is only necessary on instruments that will be cutting into skin. The second level of decontamination is disinfection. Disinfection kills all bacteria but not spores. You can only disinfect hard, nonporous surfaces. This means that things such as lipstick cannot be disinfected. Common items that can be disinfected are cuticle nippers, stainless cuticle pushers, nail clippers, combs, brushes. Barbicide, which is the blue stuff you will usually see combs soaking in at a salon, is a common disinfectant. Bleach is also a disinfection. The final level of decontamination is sanitation. Sanitization is simply lessening the amount of bacteria. Common sanitizers are soap and water and alcohol. ALCOHOL IS ONLY a sanitizer NOT a disintectant. So if a person who has herpes applies a lipstick on their lips and you wipe it off with even 91 percent alcohol, you may still end up with herpes. Remember lipstick is porous and cannot be disinfected. Also, lipliners and eyeliners cannot be disinfected. The only truly sanitary way to use a pencil liner is to use a new one for each person.

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