Q & A with Miss Bliss

Q: Dear Miss Bliss,

Thanks for the tips! If possible, can you elaborate on how long of a shelf life each type of product would have? I know generally the shelf lives of makeup, but wasn’t too sure about moisturizers, face washes, and the like. Thanks!

Sincerely,
Self Life Savy

A: Dear Shelf Life Savy,

Great question! This is an easy answer. The period after opening symbol or PAO symbol is a graphic symbol that identifies the useful lifetime of a cosmetics product after its package has been opened for the first time. It depicts an open cosmetics pot and is used together with a written number of months or years.

In the European Union, cosmetics products with a shelf-life of at least 30 months are not required to carry a “best used before end of …” date. Instead, there has to be “an indication of the period of time after opening for which the product can be used without any harm to the consumer”. The EU Cosmetics Directive defines in Annex VIIIa the language-neutral open-jar symbol, which manufacturers should use to indicate this period.

The time period is most often represented compactly as a number of months, followed by the letter “M”, as in “36M” for a period of three years, written either onto the front side of the depicted pot, or to the right of it. The letter “M” is the initial for the word month not only in English, but also in many other languages.

If you flip your lovely skin care around, you’ll see something that looks like this:
poa

This particular product would be good for 30 months after opening. So if you opened that product today 4/10/2009, it would be good until 10/10/11 *checking my mental math*

The POA (period after opening) varies by product, so I recommend checking it when you open it to ensure freshness. Hope this helps!

Bliss Kisses
Karen
mirror_girl4

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About karenglidden

My name is Karen Glidden and I’m the web content coordinator for Bliss. I will be the primary author of Bliss n Tell. For all your beautification needs, please refer to blissworld.com My background is not beauty related at all. I graduated from Boston University and worked at Starbucks for many years climbing their corporate ladder. Pre-Bliss, my idea of a milky cleanser was the residue left on my face after making cappuccinos all day. I’ve been with Bliss since October 2007 and have been converted into a product worshipper. I’m the MacGyver of skincare. I love inventing new uses to beauty products. You’ll find me putting toner on my legs to help with dry skin, wearing my glamour gloves on the subway to smooth my hands, and using skincare in my hair to tame flyaways. Oh, did I mention that I’m totally frugal. Yes, this little Bliss girl is a ‘recessionista’ for sure (hey, I still have student loans to pay off!) My skin type is normal. I’m not particularly breakout prone unless it’s stress related or hormonal. I’m not too oily, but sometimes dry all over depending on the weather. I’ve got an even skin tone and not too many fine lines, wrinkles, or hyperpigmentation. I have some sun damage from years of sun-worshipping sans SPF, my greatest skincare regret in life. My biggest skin concern are fine lines/wrinkles around my eyes and laugh lines around my mouth. Oh, and some uh….cellulite on my bum/thighs. Yes, I am human (you can stop pointing and laughing now, thanks!). My Favorite Bliss Product: I can’t choose just one. It’s a tie between Triple Oxygen Instant Energizing Mask and A Tan For All Seasons Triple Oxygen Instant Energizing Mask is my five minute beauty fix for just about everything (breakouts, dull/tired skin, dryness). A Tan For All Seasons is my best friend. It’s a stink-free tan in a can. I cannot live without a sun-kissed glow all year (without the UV damage, of course!)
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