Yes, shampoo does expire.
However, figuring out if your shampoo has expired can be a little tricky.
Currently, the FDA (the Food and Drug Administration) does not require products to provide consumers with the expiration date of a product. From the FDA's website:
"There are no U.S. laws or regulations that require cosmetics to have specific shelf lives or have expiration dates on their labels. However, manufacturers are responsible for making sure their products are safe. FDA considers determining a product's shelf life to be part of the manufacturer's responsibility."
Because the cosmetics industry is moving away from including preservatives in consumer products, it is important to know if your products have expired. Unfortunately, many companies do not voluntarily provide a manufacturing date on their products.
⭐At Formulate, we provide full transparency on our products manufacturing date. Each of our individually mixed products includes a date of manufacture on the bottle and in the pamphlet.
Courtesy of @everydayemilyg
Some manufacturers may include a lot code, which provides information about when and where that product was manufactured. However, depending on the company, it can be a difficult process to find out what the lot code actually means. Websites like Check Fresh and Check Cosmetic can help you learn specifics of when some of your older name-brand products were manufactured, and if it might be time to throw them away.
If you are unable to look up the lot code on your shampoo, a common rule of thumb is that shampoos should no longer be used after they have been opened for 18 months, or if they were manufactured over 3 years ago.
If you are still uncertain if your shampoo is usable, we've created this infographic to give you the info you need.