A few rules of thumb when you want to test out products:
- Use the disposable wands/applicators: it keeps your germs to yourself. Also remember that these tools are one use only items, that means DO NOT DOUBLE DIP!!
- Wipe down the products: just in case the person who tested before you. Take either a cotton pad or a tissue and get some alcohol and wipe.
- To be nice to the next user, you should also wipe/sanitize after you use as well, so that if the next person isn't as hygienic, you won't be spreading germs to them.
- I don't like swatching/sampling on my own face. Most products you swatch/sample you're looking for color, or finish, so you can get a good feel out of the product from putting some on the back of your hand.
For the most part, I don't test mascaras at all. I get really grossed out because most of the customers at the counters or in the stores grab the tube and put it directly on their lashes without sanitizing and with the brush that's in the tube--NOT hygienic! For other products, I will swatch on the back of my hand. This includes eyeliner, eyeshadow, blush, and most skincare products. For foundation, most containers are clean people friendly, so I don't mind swatching on my jawline.
The one thing you should take from reading this is that you want to be very careful when testing products that you apply near any mucous membranes (eyes & lips) because these are very prone to germs. Just be careful!!