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@dumpsterdivingmama/TikTok Mike Mozart/Flickr (CC-BY-SA)

‘LOOK AT THE GOOD STUFF’: TikToker finds ‘full’ beauty products while dumpster-diving at Ulta

'Looks can be deceiving.'


Gavia Baker-Whitelaw

Internet Culture

Posted on Feb 22, 2022   Updated on Feb 22, 2022, 9:54 am CST

Would you wear makeup that you found in the trash? This dumpster-diving TikToker would—and she’s not alone.

TikToker Tiffany She’ree (aka @dumpsterdivingmama) has racked up 2.4 million followers with her revealing videos about dumpster-diving, including this viral TikTok showing a haul of products she found in an Ulta Beauty dumpster.

At first, the dumpster cosmetics look pretty disgusting, smeared with foundation. But after She’ree washes them off in the sink, she’s left with a bag full of shampoo bottles, makeup, and skincare products.

The question is, are these products safe to use? This TikToker makes it clear that she throws away anything that might be contaminated, such as mascara wands that were already opened as testers. But she decided that the shampoo and a collection of unopened cosmetics were fine.

It’s a similar situation to dumpster-diving for food, where some stores throw away products that have passed their expiration date but are still perfectly safe to eat.

There’s actually a whole community of cosmetics dumpster-divers out there, and according to this report from Refinery29, Ulta Beauty is one of their favorite stores. So much so that Ulta responded with a statement saying they “strongly discourage” removing old products from Ulta dumpsters, expressing concern about people using “damaged, used, expired or otherwise unsaleable” items.

But that clearly hasn’t stopped most people—both because beauty products are expensive and because there’s apparently so much going to waste. Many beauty stores try to defeat dumpster-divers by destroying products before throwing them away, but they evidently don’t catch everything. Elsewhere on TikTok, you’ll find videos with millions of views, showing all the expensive products that people find in Ulta’s trash.

The Daily Dot has reached out to both @dumpsterdivingmama and Ulta Beauty for comment via email.

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*First Published: Feb 22, 2022, 8:51 am CST