There’s nothing worse than realizing that a skincare product you bought is no longer working. Or maybe you’re just no longer into it, have found something better or it was kind of a fail from the beginning. What to do? Barring the possibility of returning it, I found some ways to repurpose unloved, yet pricey products you can’t stomach to just bin.

How to repurpose skincare products


So, you still use foaming face washes? But don’t like the stripping ones you once bought? This is maybe the easiest product to repurpose. No matter why you don’t like to use it anymore, just use it as a body wash. (I started to ditch my foaming cleansers when I broke a rib and couldn’t bend over the sink to wash my face. In came the micellar waters. True story!). I find that the skin on my body is much less sensitive than my face, so I shower with my now unloved gel cleansers.


All those toners that are full of fragrance and alcohol that play havoc with the skin on your face are actually heaven sent in hot summers. I’m always a bit hesitant to splash out for body mists, but here’s your solution if you’re like me: Just use your unloved facial toners as a quick pick-me-up body spray when it’s scorching outside and you don’t want to drench yourself in your pricey bottle of Evian or LRP facial mist.

Unloved skincare products
There’re a lot of other options if you don’t like a skincare product any longer but don’t want to bin it! Here’s how to repurpose skincare products.


I told you recently that I can’t stand my The Ordinary Vitamin C serum due to its unpleasant texture that doesn’t layer well. Solution? I use it as a treatment mask that I wash off after a while. That way, I get a boost of Vit C while not having to cope with my foundation pilling up. You could also pimp other masks you have like this. Try putting a bit of  serum in your sheet mask essence, for example.

My second method of repurposing facial serums is to use them on my hands, throat, neck and décolletage. Why not give those areas some TLC too? They’re out and in plain view like your face, so why not treat them like that? On the plus side, you likely won’t run into any layering issues there like I did with the TO Vit C serum.

Face oils

So you’re left with half a bottle of your expensive face oil after winter and realise that you very likely won’t use it in summer. Meaning it’ll very likely be rancid when the next winter comes. A few options here: You could either mix it with your facial moisturiser for an extra boost of nourishment. That way, you’ll get all the good stuff in your oil, but mixing it with a light moisturiser make it sink in quickly. You could also pimp a light body or hand cream with it.

Or maybe you’re feeling extra fancy and in the mood for a pampering session? Why not use it as either a massage oil or a treatment oil for your hands, nails and cuticles? Get some cheap cotton gloves (available at the drugstore), slather your hands in oil, put on the gloves and go to bed. (Or have a nice nap.)

repurposing skincare products
Best option for unloved skincare products: repurpose them!

Moisturisers/ Sunscreen

This is hurting me right now. I loved this super expensive fancy moisturiser with added sunscreen when I read about it. I liked it still when I used a sample satchet. But it’s actually the absolute worst right now that the weather has gotten unreasonably warm and muggy over here. Foundation doesn’t sit right on it, and I hate the rich feeling when I’m hot and sweaty. I can’t return it (that ship sailed a while ago, oops), so now what? I’ve reverted to using it on my throat and décolletage while I use another moisturizer and a different sunscreen on my face.

If you don’t use a multipurpose product and use moisturiser and sunscreen individually, it’s even easier. You can easily use moisturiser as a body cream. Sunscreen that doesn’t work on your face might very well just the thing for your body!

Did you ever use products for different purposes than their intended ones? Do share, I’m curious!

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Beauty junkie with about 20 years of beauty experience under her belt. Editor, writer and twindly's PR heroine. Has an unbelievably large nail polish stash and a passion for skincare. Gets a kick out of pretty powders.


  1. This is a very useful post Dorit with some ideas I hadn’t thought about! I’ve got some oils I don’t know what to do with and was crying over the expense, but will try to use them as a mask. Thanks for sharing!

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