Mascara: How to Appropriately Get Rid of Old Mascara Wands and Tubes

A key element in your make-up routine, if you wear make-up, is your mascara. Mascara can make your eyes pop and pull a whole look together. However, a tube of mascara only lasts a few months. So, what should you do once your tube runs out? If you are a make-up guru, or haven’t found what types of make-up you like yet, then you probably have more types of mascara than you know what to do with. If you’re ready to get rid of those tubes of make-up, then you’re in luck. There are multiple ways for you to appropriately get rid of these tubes and help the environment in the process.

How to Replenish Your Mascara

Usually, when you get down to the end of a tube, it can be difficult to use those final strokes of mascara. Or, you might have taken a hiatus from using make-up and your tubes have tried out. If you’re in either of those boats, then I have a few solutions for you. First, you can put the tube in a cup of warm water and let it sit for about 5 minutes. This will loosen up the dried up mascara so that you can use it. Second, add a drop of vegetable or olive oil to the tube. Next, mix it into the product with the wand. If you’re successful, it should loosen up the dried bits of mascara and allow you to get the last of it out. Lastly, the dried wand can be great for coating your lower lashes and separating clumps.

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Recycle Tubes and Wands

You can easily recycle old make-up tubes and make-up wands. It’s important that you recycle these tubes separately from plastic bottles and aluminum cans. If possible, you can contact your local recycling plant and ask them how they prefer you to recycle your make-up tubes. The tubes aren’t recycled in the same way that plastic bottles and other items are. Therefore, the recycling plant has to use a different process to appropriately recycle them. A second option that you have to recycle your make-up tubes are to send them to certain cosmetic companies. For example, MAC has an exchange program where you can send them 6 empty MAC containers and get a free lipstick. This allows the company to either reuse them or recycle them. Also, there are other types of recycling locations that you can take your empty tubes to, like Origins.   

Reuse Old Wands

If your tube of make-up runs out, then there are ways to reuse the old wands. First, you’ll need to clean the make-up wand. Once you’ve done that, then you can use the wand for just about anything. You can use it to clean hard to reach places or water bottles. Or, you can use the wand to help groom your eyebrows. Really, if you can think of a way to use the wand, then it might be worth saving them!

Donate and Help the Environment

There are programs that ask you to donate your clean mascara wands. These wands are then used to clean off baby animals. It’s called Wands for Wildlife and it uses old wands to help the environment and animals. This is a great way to both recycle your make-up wands and help baby animals. Simply, clean the wand, print out a form from their website, and mail them in. It’s an easy way to do some good for the planet! If you’re looking for other ways to help the environment, then you should look into using natural make-up brands.


It’s easier than you might have thought to appropriately get rid of mascara tubes. There’s a variety of ways to do so, and all of which don’t take much time. If you’re surrounded by almost empty or completely empty tubes, then you might want to think about using some of these tips!

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Bailey Longhurst

I am amazed every day by the beauty that this world provides for us and think it is important to preserve it! Taking care of ourselves and our earth is crucial and I want to help people discover new ways to do both. Publishing for Green and Growing is a unique way that I can get my message across, and I hope you all enjoy what we write about!

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