Welcome to another edition of Know Your Skin Care 😀
I was suppose to blog about this moons ago and as usual, I’ve forgotten about it 🙁 . Previously I talk about the colored square box that was found on the top edge crimp behind most skin care or product tubes. If you’ve missed it you can click on the link here to read more on it.
On a typical skin care bottle you will find a few symbol at the back of the bottle, usually at the most bottom of the bottle or jar. One distinctive symbol that most people mislook is the interesting looking jar with a lid half opened. This little jar is called Period After Opening (PAO) symbol.
Before I go deep into PAO, let’s get to know more about the meaning of it shall we 🙂
Period After Opening or PAO is a new requirement for cosmetic manufacturer with a minimum durability of at least 30 months whereas the date of durability “best used before” or “expiry date” is no longer a must. At such, an indication of the period of time after opening on the product is mandatory to indicate to consumer that these product can be used without any harm. In layman term, PAO is a symbol that identifies the useful lifetime of a skin care or cosmetic product after its package has been opened for the first time. The symbol is in a form of an open-jar with a written number of months or years on the jar itself, but it’s usually indicated in number of months followed by a “M” at the end. For example 6M simply means the product can be used for 6 months after opening.
Determining Product Expiry For You
Most of the beauty products now comes with either manufacturing date or if you’re lucky, expiry date. There is two way on how you can determine product expiry. Both way works but I’ll tell you which I follow at the end. I’m not going into the common shelf life question as I believe you already know the different by now.
Expiry Date Reached
Like I said earlier some product do comes with expiry date stated. If let’s say the newly opened product expiry is stated Dec-13, by all mean you should stop using this product when the date reached. What if you only opened the product on Jun-13 and the PAO stated is 18 months? It means you still need to stop using BY Dec-13. The easiest to remember is “whichever comes first”.
Expiry Date Not Reached, But PAO Did
Same scenario but different situation. Let’s say you bought a product on Jan-12 and you find the expiry date is stated by Dec-13 with PAO 6M. Usually eye cream comes with 6M PAO so don’t be shock 🙂 . You opened the new product on Feb-12, which means your PAO expiry will be achieved on Aug-12. It is recommended to stop using after Aug-12 although the expiry date is still another few more months to go.
To be really honest, I never really give all this Period After Opening a thought because my skin care usually last for three months with daily day and night usage. I don’t like to waste skin care by using them for a month or less and push them aside. Usually I’ll finish it before moving on to a new one. Even if I don’t use it all due to unforeseen reasons like smelly skin care, I still don’t follow PAO lol. But I’m so guilty when it comes to cosmetic, which most of the short PAO product *cough* *mascara* *cough* should been in the rubbish bin already. I’ll talk about that in another edition of Know Your Skin Care 😀
What about you? Do you follow expiry date stated on the bottle, or do you calculate yourself based on manufactured date or even obligating to Period Of Opening which is also known as PAO in short? Either way, it is good to know what the small symbols on your beauty product means. It’s interesting that most of my friends told me they didn’t even notice the open-jar symbol all these while!