Hand & body lotion can go bad. The expiration date of hand lotion will depend on a few different factors. It will mostly depend on if a preservative was added and how the lotion was stored. Depending on the kind of hand & body lotion the expiration date can be anywhere from a few days all the way up to a few years or more.



Preservative In Hand & Body Lotion:

A preservative in lotion prevents mold and other living organisms from invading your hand & body lotion. Some lotions are made without a preservative. This can be very dangerous. Mold and bacteria can grow inside your lotion if you don’t have a preservative. This can make the product go bad quickly.

Always look for one that has a preservative to save yourself a headache. Most of the lotion you buy in a store will have a preservative in them for liability reasons. If you buy yours from a vendor who makes it themselves, ask if it has a preservative in it.

Some without a preservative will only last a few days before bacteria or mold starts. Can you imagine spreading mold spores over your skin? Mold spores are very small and they cannot be seen with the naked eye. Therefore, just by looking at your hand lotion and not seeing any mold could be dangerous.


Here are some tips that your hand lotion may not have a preservative:

If the hand lotion was homemade
If the hand lotion has a very short expiration date
If the hand lotion needs to be refrigerated



How To Dispose Of Old Hand & Body Lotion:

You notice that you can no longer use your hand lotion. What should you do?

Take the hand lotion out of the container and dispose of the extra product. I wouldn’t recommend dumping it down the drain. Ask your recycle center what you do with the unused product. Since some could be left in the container, recycling companies may have different rules that you need to follow before recycling the container.

Always follow your local laws and regulations when disposing of old hand lotion.

After you get the bottle emptied out you can look for a recycle symbol on the container. If the container is plastic, a recycle symbol will be on the container with a number in it. The symbol will look like a triangle with a number in the middle of it. The number says what type of plastic the container is made of.

Here Are The Different Plastic Numbers:

Plastic Number
5 PP
6 PS
7 Other

Each of these plastics is recyclable. To find a recycling center near you for plastics I recommend this website.



How To Tell If You Hand & Body Lotion Is Bad:

Sometimes hand & body lotion will go bad before the expiration date. This can be for a variety of reasons but check the product over good to make sure your hand lotion is good.


How is the look of the product? It is the same original color as you bought it? Do you see any spots or spots in it? Does it look like it was watered down any?



Does the product still smell the same? Is there a musty smell coming from it? Some people don’t even think to smell the product yet this can be a big indicator that there is a problem.



If everything else looks good, take a little lotion in your hand and rub it around? How does it feel? Are any lumps present in the lotion? Is the texture the same?

If you have any concerns about the product, contact the manufacturer or where you purchased the product. If you still are concerned just throw the product out. Hand & body lotion is very cheap compared to getting sick or using a lotion that is not good anymore.


Tips To Prevent Hand & Body Lotion From Going Bad:

1 Store you hand lotion in a cool dark place
2 Never add any ingredients to your hand lotion
3 Keep it out of a humid environment
4 Use a clean pump if you have to replace it
5 Don’t store your hand lotion in a humid environment



Side Effects From Bad Hand & Body Lotion:

People can get sick from using hand & body lotion that has expired or gone bad. Mold and bacteria are the two main things that you want to watch out for when using lotion. You need a microscope to see mold and bacteria when it first starts out and can’t see it with the naked eye.

If your product is bad you could be spreading mold spores all across your body. Having mold on your body can cause some serious respiratory problems such as coughing, skin irritation, and respiratory problems. People who have asthma, weakened immune systems, and children should be extremely careful around mold.

Other bacteria can also become a problem in hand & body lotion that is expired. People can become sick from these bacteria as well. They could include an illness, dizziness, skin irritation, and skin redness.

If you have a weakened immune system it is best to keep an eye on the expiration date on your hand lotion.



Should You Use Hand & Body Lotion After The Expiration Date?

No, using hand & body after the expiration date can be dangerous to your health. It could have traces of mold, fungi, bacteria, and germs in the lotion. These bacteria could enter your body through your skin when you apply the lotion.

Don’t worry, most lotions you can buy in a store could be protected from these. It’s the handmade or homemade hand lotions that you have to worry about. Some of these lotions are made without a preservative. Some people just like to leave them out.

A .5-3% of a preservative to your hand & body lotion could prevent all of this.

Just think of it this way, adding 1/2 of a percent of an ingredient could prevent yourself a doctor visit or illness from using bad hand lotion.



Why Does Hand & Body Lotion Go Bad?

Hand & body lotion can go bad for many reasons all the way from and expired hand lotion to just storing the product out in the wrong kind of environment. The reason hand lotion can go bad is that mold, fungi, bacteria can all grow in environments that contain water.

Since lotion contains 60-80% water depending on the formula, this creates the perfect place environment.



When To Replace Hand & Body Lotion:

Lotion should be replaced after the expiration date no matter what. It doesn’t matter if you even opened the product, it can still go bad. If you ever see anything different with the hand lotion replace it as well.

As we said above, if something doesn’t look, smell, or feel right throw it away. Sometimes you may just get a bad batch of lotion that didn’t mix right or something else happened while manufacturing. This is why you should only choose a trusted brand of hand lotion.

If you believe that you got a bad batch of hand lotion it’s best to call the manufacturer and take their advice. You could also return the item to the store for a refund.

Lotion is very cheap compared to getting sick or seeing a doctor.



Can Hand & Body Lotion Go Bad If I Add More Ingredients?

Some people like to buy a cheaper unscented hand & body lotion and add their own essential oils or other ingredients to it. As long as you are not adding any water to the mixture, it should be good. You don’t want to add more than 1% of the total weight of any ingredients to the hand & body lotion.

This is because the preservative won’t work as good and bacteria and germs will have a safe environment.

If you are adding water or any ingredient has has water, you are changing the entire formula and diluting the preservative in the hand lotion