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Why Beauty Product Expiration Dates Matter

Why Beauty Product Expiration Dates Matter

No one wants to use anything that is no longer any good. Think about what could happen if you eat food that is past its prime. It is no long...
Fulfillment And Distribution
October 15, 2019

No one wants to use anything that is no longer any good. Think about what could happen if you eat food that is past its prime. It is no longer appetizing. Now think about a beauty product expiration and what this could mean. Using that tube of lipstick, mascara or sunscreen no longer seems exciting, does it? It could potentially be damaging if the product is out of date. In other words, why beauty product expiration dates matter is to prevent harm from a product that is past its prime and not in use.

Using expired beauty products can cause irritation to the skin. Customers are relying on companies to make beauty product expiration a priority whenever shipping items to fulfill customer orders. Beauty products that have expired are no good to the customer and the company will take a financial hit if inventory on the shelf has to be thrown out. It’s the main reason why beauty product expiration dates matter.

Cosmetic companies that utilize a warehouse management system or WMS find it easier to track cosmetics so orders can be fulfilled efficiently. In making sure to ship before a beauty product expiration date, the company is maximizing the use of the product so the customer gets what they paid for.

Importance of Beauty Product Expiration DatesImportance of Beauty Product Expiration Dates

The list of reasons why beauty product expiration dates matter is a numerous one. However, let’s start with a couple like eye infections and skin rashes. That’s enough to stop anyone in their tracks, especially when talking about a product for use in a sensitive area like your eyes or skin care products like lotions or sunscreens.

Items like mascara can be a breeding ground for bacteria and should be thrown out every few months after opening. In addition, if a tube of mascara reaches its expiration date while on the shelf in a cosmetic warehouse or on shelf at the beauty counter, it will be disposed.

So, yes beauty product expiration dates matter because the chemicals in the item tend to breakdown over time. It’s easy to tell if a beauty product expiration date is in question. If the product has changed colors, appears dry or extra oily or smells bad, that’s a good indicator it has expired. The date also serves as a guide of the effectiveness of the product for the intended use.

Other products this applies to include:

  • Shampoo
  • Soap
  • Moisturizer
  • Organic beauty products

While things like shampoo and soap may seem like they can last forever, don’t be so sure about that. Both of these products have a long shelf life, however, they too hit an expiration date and the time comes to toss them out. Specifically, when it comes to organic beauty products, many have even more strict guidelines regarding expiration dates because they are void of preservatives to extend shelf life.

Organic beauty products, in most cases are of high priority to get shipped to avoid expiration while stocked in a warehouse awaiting order fulfillment or on a store shelf.

Warehouse Protocol for Beauty Product Expiration

It is important to understand that all beauty products have expiration dates. Some may be for two or three months, while others may be good for up to a year or more. Customers want to get the most out of a product they are purchasing so the goal is to get items in their hands quickly.

The warehouse protocol of first in, first out will definitely come into play here to ensure the remaining product of certain lot numbers are pulled if the expiration date has elapsed. It gives the warehouse staff and manufacturer an idea of what is left and what needs to be restocked.

One way to get beauty products in the hands of consumers is to track it either:

  • FIFO – first in, first out inventory
  • FEFO – first expired, first out inventory

The warehouse protocol of first in, first out ensures products are pulled if the expiration date has elapsed. It updates warehouse staff and the manufacturer of what is left on the shelf and what needs to be restocked.

Tracking beauty products in this fashion ensures that they are shipped during maximum effectiveness for consumer use. Companies shipping cosmetic subscription boxes or fulfilling skin care orders keep a close check on beauty product expiration dates.

For instance, sunscreen is required by the FDA to have an expiration date printed on the package. The product cannot be sold after this printed date. So the warehouse will work to get beauty products shipped out so there is no danger of expired items on the shelf.

As another example sunscreen is required by the FDA to have an expiration date printed on the packaging. Therefore, the product cannot be sold after that date. It is inventory such as this that businesses will want to keep a close eye on in the warehouse.

Beauty Products On the ShelfBeauty Products On The Shelf

Once on the shelf at a retailer, waiting to fulfill an order in the warehouse or even on the vanity of a consumer, the beauty product expiration date still matters. The manufacturer wants to get that product out the door on the way to customers for use as soon as possible. Sometimes that happens within hours of leaving the production floor, while others may sit on the shelf for a few weeks before purchased. Either way, the goal is to have maximum usage.

Beauty products are designed for use in whatever capacity needed from anti-aging, personal hygiene to beauty enhancement. Regardless of the intended use, the consumer wants the product to be the freshest and best when it arrives. So warehouse staff must be diligent about rotating product to keep up with expiration dates. The sooner it is shipped to fulfill an order, the less likely the product will expire before use.

And a tip, just because it looks good in the bottle or other container, does not mean everything is good. Working with a warehouse partner like Fulfillment and Distribution, powered by R+L Global Logistics, the focus will be on the details like expiration dates to make sure your freight makes the best impression.

If you are a manufacturer of many beauty products that all have different expiration dates, we have the latest technology in place in our network of warehouses to help companies like you manage it all. By utilizing a WMS inventory, or a warehouse management system, it keeps track of products and is an added benefit of working with R+L Global Logistics. We work closely with clients to make sure beauty product expiration is not an issue.

However, reverse logistics for beauty products also comes into play when dealing with expiration dates. R+L Global Logistics can also provide a reverse logistics solution for manufacturers or retailers who want to have expired beauty products transported to a centralized location for disposal. Handling reverse logistics for beauty products is one of the many services we can offer for a seamless process in the overall supply chain.

Product Packaging

Many cosmetic companies and skin care manufacturers have started to add an expiration date to all packaging. A tube of foundation will often have a date stamped on the actual tube and that same date will be reflected on the exterior packaging. It helps the manufacturer keep track of products and also makes the consumer aware of how long the item will be effective.

The batch code or lot code may also be stamped on the packaging. This code identifies for the manufacturer when it was produced and if there is a problem it can be isolated per this code. It also helps keep track of expiration dates for beauty products. A close look at the fine print on the packaging of beauty products may reveal an expiration date along with a lot number. And remember, it may be on the external package.

Again this is one more step in making sure beauty product expiration dates don’t elapse while in the warehouse and the company has to write it off as a loss. And customers have come to rely on all their creams, blushes, lotions and other products. So as soon as it arrives at their door or nearby retailer, they are ready to get the maximum use before the expiration date rolls around.

R+L Global Logistics

R+L Global Logistics offers warehousing service solutions for a variety of product fulfillment needs. We are capable of handling a variety of fulfillment and distribution needs including shipping to avoid beauty product expiration.

R+L Global Logistics allows fulfillment and distribution services that includes:

  • Order Fulfillment
  • E-Commerce/Marketplace
  • Pack/Repack/ Crating Services
  • Reverse Logistics
  • Expiring product fulfillment
  • Cross docking
  • Transloading

Our goal is to be a one stop source for warehousing services. We are fully equipped to handle the load or provide beauty product order fulfillment. When you are ready to ship beauty products to the market or direct to consumers, our team will ensure the process is seamless.

R+L Global Logistics relies on a vast network of secure sites around the country able to assist in a quick turnaround process of when an order comes in to when it’s shipped to the customer.

The professional team at R+L Global Logistics is ready to assist in finding the right fulfillment service to avoid beauty product expiration. We realize your customers rely on you to get orders fulfilled and to their door; we are ready to help get the job done.

Beauty product expiration matters. Give us a call at 866-989-3082 to talk to an agent on the R+L Global Logistics team about warehouse fulfillment options to suit your needs. 

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