How To Store Your Essential Oils To Extend Shelf Life

properly store essential oils

I’ve seen various different pins about reclaimed essential oils shelves and pretty DIY essential oil shelving, unfortunately what people don’t realize is… that by storing your essential oils out in the open you are cutting down the shelf life of your oils. Considering the price of some of the essential oil brands out there, I wouldn’t want to make that mistake!

Although essential oils do not become rancid, they do oxidize, deteriorate and lose their beneficial therapeutic properties over time. All essential oils expire, citrus essential oils expire the fastest due to their very small molecules. Besides citrus oils and evergreens which start to loose their aroma and healing properties in as little as 6 months, most all other essential oils have great shelf lives of around 4 to 6 years. With the exception of patchouli and sandalwood which scents mature with age, eventually even those two loose their therapeutic properties with time.

Cobalt Blue Vs Dark Amber Essential Oils Bottles

empty blue essential oils bottlewhen purchasing or creating your own essential oils blends the best colored bottle to help extend the life of your essential oils is cobalt blue, because it has a stronger ability to block sunlight exposure. But either amber or cobalt blue will do if you don’t have a choice.

You never want to buy or store essential oils in clear bottles, because clear bottles have no protection from sunlight and never purchase or store essential oils in anything other then glass. Essential oils are very concentrated and have been known to melt plastic and rubber. Some vendors sell oils in lined aluminum bottles. It has been said that aluminum bottles are acceptable if the interior of the bottles are lined.


How To Properly Store Your Essential Oils

When storing your essential oils, if you remember these 3 key factors then you will help extend the shelf life of your essential oils.

  1. Store in a dark place. Like inside a cabinet or drawer. Sunlight and direct light breakdown the molecular structure of the oil.
  2. Store in a cool location. Heat also effects the molecular structure of the oil and causes it to breakdown faster.
  3. Keep your lids tightly sealed. Oxygen is the other main culprit for deterioration, so be sure that all your lids are tightly sealed when you’re finished using your choice oil.

Final Note

Avoid purchasing essential oils that are stored in bottles that have a rubber dropper incorporated into its screw-top cap. Droppers with rubber bulbs should not be kept with essential oil bottle with dropperthe essential oil bottle as the highly concentrated oil can turn the rubber bulb into gum and ruin the essential oil.

Instead of a rubber dropper top, many essential oils that are sold to consumers in sizes of 1/2 ounce (15ml) and smaller are packaged in bottles that contain an orifice reducer. An orifice reducer is a small, clear insert inside the bottle opening that acts as a built-in dropper. Unlike the material that rubber dropper bulbs are made of, orifice reducers are made of a material that can withstand exposure to essential oils. The name orifice reducer may seem a little strange at first, but it’s a handy little dispensing device. You simply tip the bottle and you can dispense the oil drop by drop.


I hope you found today’s post helpful, feel free to comment any thoughts or questions below and share with a friend!

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