What do you do with your empty essential oil bottles? Do you toss them?
Essential Oil is so expensive. Even when you can’t get another physical drop out of the bottle, there is still oil in there you can get therapeutic value from. You just have to get to it!
Ideas for Reusing Your Empty Essential Oil Bottles
Make your own blend that includes the same oil as the bottle you are reusing. This way you won’t need to clean the bottle. For example, if your Lavender essential oil is empty and now you want to make a “breathe blend” of Lavender, Peppermint, and Lemon, just use this bottle as your base and add all three oils into this bottle.
If you don’t want to clean the bottle out, but want to get all the oil out, then open the bottle and place it in a jar with Epsom salts and there you go~ you have bath salts. It’s that easy! Let it sit for a couple days. When you are ready for a bath, remove the salts and leave the bottle in the jar. Continue to add bath salts until all the aroma has been taken from the bottle. This is great for calming oils such as lavender, orange, or frankincense.
Open the oil bottle and let the aroma fully disperse in an area that needs a natural deodorizer. Such as a child’s sock drawer, laundry room, lingerie drawer, the bottom of a trash can, or closet. This is good for lemon or purification.
Or try making stringing them onto your Christmas lights!
When I’m traveling, I use the 15ml size bottle for my carrier oil. I take the orifice reducer off and I’m careful about pouring it out but this is much easier than having a large bottle of grapeseed oil or coconut oil when traveling.
How Not to Clean Your Empty Essential Oil Bottles
If you want to reuse your bottles and make your own blends that don’t contain the current oil, then you’ll need to clean the bottle first.
First a cautionary tale about what not to do:
I saw some great graphics on Pinterest that showed boiling your bottles with castile soap. I was fooled by a picture, thinking that just because something was pinned a lot it must work. Umm, no. This was a huge mess and I had to throw away all my bottles. The oil and soap congealed inside the bottle and no matter what I put inside the bottle to clean it, it would not come out. I spent so much time and effort for a small little bottle.
It does not need to be that difficult. Do not add soap to clean your bottles.
I wait until the bottom of my oil rack is full of empty bottles then I do a batch of them at a time. I have the kids help me, they think it’s fun and as you’ll see we get some nicely scented Epsom salts for our baths as a result! If you’ve never had an Epsom salt bath then it’s definitely time!
How to effectively clean your empty essential oil bottles
- Peel the labels – don’t worry right now if they don’t come off completely.
- Take the white ring off from the cap if it comes off easily – sometimes extra residue hangs out underneath this spot, throw the little white ring away.
- Take the orifice inducers apart from the bottle.
- Put all of the bottle parts into a big bowl of Epsom salts. (Note: make sure you get plain Epsom salts since you will be making your own scented bath salts. You do not need or want, to buy the Epsom salts that come pre-scented. You are naturally scenting your salts!) Fill each bottle up with salt and cover all the bottles and each cap. Let the salt soak up all the oil for at least 24 hours.
5. Fill up a sink with super-hot water – I make it so hot I can barely touch it. Do not add soap! At this point, you can add some alcohol to the water or to the bottle if you are really concerned about getting all the oil out. Just as we clean our diffusers with alcohol you can clean your bottle with it.
6. Begin emptying all the bottles of the salt. It is fine for residue to stay attached, it will come off in the water. Put the bottles and parts in the water.
7. Put the Epsom salt in a container for future baths. Now you have oil infused Epsom salts! It will be the most relaxing bath! This is so wonderful because it is a mix of different oils.
8. Once the water cools down, take them out to air dry. If any have labels still partially attached, you can rub a tiny amount of baking soda and lemon oil on the outside and it will come off easily, making sure not to get any on the inside. Once dry, your bottles are ready to reuse.
I especially love reusing my 5ml bottles to make my own blends and to pop on a rollerball. I don’t reuse the 15ml bottles much. They are too big for blends I may make, but I’m always looking for ideas. If nothing else I still pop the bottles into the Epsom salts to get some nice bath salts!
What do you do with your empty essential oil bottles?