Learn how to clean essential oil bottles with ease + 6 ways to reuse them – including perfume bottles, travel essentials, mini kit on the go and more!
Do you have a stash of essential oil bottles? Don’t throw them away! Reuse, recycle and upcycle them. I’ve got a tutorial to show you how to remove the sticky labels from the essential oil bottles, and suggested uses on how to reuse the bottles to make oil blends, travel kits and much more.
If you aren’t already, start saving your empty essential oil bottles (along with the plastic dropper and cap). Store in a container until you have a few of them saved up to make it easier. I usually save up at least 5-6, but I can easily process 20 bottles at the same time.
How to Clean Essential Oil Bottles
- Peel as much of the label off the bottle as possible.
- Remove the plastic dropper and cap from each bottle.
- Soak all parts (bottle, plastic dropper and cap) in a bowl or sink full of warm water for about 5 minutes.
- Remove one bottle and add 1-2 drops of Lemon essential oil. Rub the bottle vigorously to remove the sticky label. Repeat for all bottles.
- Place all bottles, plastic droppers and caps in a separate large bowl of warm water with a half capful of Thieves Household Cleaner to remove the remnants of the previous oil in the bottle and plastic dropper to remove any remaining sticky residue.
- Let all bottle parts air dry.
- Reuse as needed.
6 Ways to Reuse Essential Oil Bottles
Now that your essential oil bottles are clean and no longer have those sticky labels, you can reuse them in a number of different ways. Be creative. Here are 5 of my favorite ways to reuse essential oil bottles.
1. Create your own DIY signature perfume or cologne
The 5 ml and 15 ml essential oil bottles are the perfect size to make your own DIY signature perfume or cologne. I have a tutorial on how to create a DIY perfume with base, middle and top note scents and other tips. A few favorite scents are Lemon and Lavender, Lime and Vanilla, and Lavender and Peppermint. Just be sure to use a carrier oil, such as sweet almond or jojoba).
2. Make your own essential oil blends
Keep empty essential oil bottles on hand to make your own oil blends. A favorite in my home is my relaxing blend of Lavender, Cedarwood and Peace & Calming (about 5 drops each in a 5 ml bottle and fill the rest with a carrier oil, such as sweet almond or jojoba).
3. Create a set of oils for kids
Kids benefit from essential oils too, but in most cases oils should be diluted before use. An easy way to do this without having to measure dilution for each use is to reuse old essential oil bottles to make pre-made blends just for kids. You could even create a mini Everyday Oils kit diluted for kids – for example, fill 5 ml bottles with essential oils of your choice and dilute with a carrier oil, such as sweet almond or jojoba. Learn how to dilute oils for kids.
4. Keep a spare set of your favorite oils
Keep a spare set of oils in your purse, backpack, work, grandparents’ home, etc. The 5 ml essential oil bottles are the perfect size to store a spare set of oils so you’ll never be without them.
5. Make a travel kit
This is one of my favorite uses for old essential oil bottles. I keep a small bag with the 5 ml and 15 ml essential oil bottles filled with my beauty and personal care products. It’s better than storing in plastic containers that may leech toxic chemicals.
A few favorite things I store in my travel kit are my DIY facial oil moisturizer, DIY facial wash (normally I use a foam bottle but a small glass bottle works too) and homemade facial toner. Other travel kit items you can use in old essential oil bottles include: eye cream, serums, body oils or lotions, bath salts, body scrubs, toothpaste, mouthwash, etc. For most of these items, I don’t use the plastic dropper. Use what you need to customize a travel kit that works for you. Check out my top essential oils for travel.
6. Share your favorite oils and oil blends with friends and family
Love your oils? Share them with family and friends. The 5 ml essential oil bottles are the perfect size to share your favorite oils and oil blends with family members.
How to Get Started with Essential Oils
- Sign up for my FREE essential oil email course in order to learn the basics.
- Check out my FREE masterclass all about essential oils and this beginner’s guide to essential oils.
- Get my essential oils online course – complete with video tutorials, e-book and everything you need to get started with essential oils.
- Find out how to buy essential oils at wholesale, and get a starter kit for 60% off retail prices. It’s the best deal around and a great way to get started with essential oils. Plus lots of freebies just for you.
More Posts You Might Like
- Beginner’s Guide to Essential Oils
- How to Make DIY Lotion Bars
- Backpack Essentials: Top Essential Oils for Back to School
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Is there a way to clean them without that particular cleaner? Both my mother and my aunt are allergic to eucalyptus and I can’t use it.
Tracey Black says
Lemon or Orange essential oil would be great too. They are natural cleaners.
I enjoyed this article but could you tell me how to make the Thieves household cleaner.
Tracey Black says
It’s a product you can buy retail from Young Living, or you can get a wholesale membership to get 24% off retail prices. Here’s more info on how to become a wholesale member: https://dontmesswithmama.com/oils.
NhatAnh Le says
Thank you for your great article! I have a emty bottle of facial serum and I want to use it for my DIY serum made with aloe gel, vitamine E and argan oil. But I don’t know if I have to clean the bottle before every time I refill it with the same serum. Do you have any advice for me?
Tracey Black says
I would personally clean it so you have a fresh bottle to work with. Try cleaning it with Thieves Household Cleaner.
Tamara Milner says
Hi there, I am so happy to find you! I am becoming a nn essential oil seller by accident – long story. Anyhoo, I have purchased large containers of 100% Pure theraputic grade essential oils, now I must put those oils in 4 mL bottles, which I have also purchased, along with the correct tops. My question is this: I purchased the bottles from a container company, do I need to clean the bottles before I start my bottling marathon (I’m making about 30 bottles of oil, none are mixed, they are really just going from one bottle to another bottle, the brand new bottle from the bottle plant. Then, should I wash them in the dishwasher? Or, should I spray with alcohol, or should I wash with warm soapy water (I don’t have any Thieves to make a holistic wash, so I would be using Dawn)? I really appreciate your help on this and I will be signing up for your free 14 day Essential Oil course. I am a teacher and I use essential oils in my classroom. I have also taught my students Yoga and every Friday we have a 45 minute Yoga class, at the end I walk around (just like my Yoga teacher does) and having rubbed some essential oil on my hands, I cup my hands over their noses and have them breathe, they LOVE that. Before tests we smell peppermint oil to wake our brains up, some need Lavender to calm down, along with Yoga breaths. I have had these kids for 1-1/2 years – I went up to 5th grade with them – and since I won’t have them next year when they become mighty 6th graders, they want to take my oils with them, which is a great idea. But, the person that I thought was going to make all of my little bottles thought that I meant diluted sprays, which I don’t want, because my student are also getting oil diffuser necklaces so that they can wear their essential oil to a test! Great idea, right? There you have the whole story. Back to my new bottles, should I wash them or not before filling? Thank you SO much. Take care!
Tracey Black says
Hi Tamara, I would rinse them out and maybe use Lavender or Peppermint to sanitize them or a castile soap (http://amzn.to/1T4iRWC). Dry them out and use as needed. I think it’s a good idea to clean them out since you’re getting the bottles straight from the container company. Thanks for visiting!
I think that is amazing, Tamara…