Can I safely store my essential oils in plastic?

I get asked this question a lot!

Our oils come in beautiful glass bottles. Most people suggest that you store your DIY concoctions in glass bottles (preferably amber or cobalt to keep the light out) – and there’s a really good reason for that!

Heat, light, oxygen, moisture, are all factors that can effect the expiration date of essential oil. Where possible, it is recommended that you store essential oils in amber or cobalt glass bottles, since sunlight can accelerate the expiration of the oil.

We also know that essential oils can interfere with some plastics, and break them down.

However – that doesn’t mean that plastics are off limits!

“We know that essential oils interact with many forms of chemistry, including some plastics. Many varieties of plastics exist, some of which are more impervious to essential oils than others. While this is a concern, not all plastics are as delicate as others and not all essential oils affect plastics in the same way. Citrus oils, in particular, have a chemical composition that is known to interfere with the chemistry of plastics. We should only use plastics that will not breakdown when exposed to essential oils. For instance, doTERRA® uses plastic parts (lids, orifices, diffusers, etc.) that are made of HDPE plastic and will not be broken down by essential oils. Typically, HDPE plastic as well as plastics number 1 (PETE) and 2 are safe for use with essential oils.” – Dr. David K. Hill D.C. – Founding Executive, Chief Medical Officer / Chairman, Scientific Advisory Committee

There are many reason people choose to use plastic bottles and containers.

1. Because almost everything we buy these days are in plastic bottles and containers! Reduce, reuse, recycle! When plastic enters landfill, it takes hundreds of years to break down. So reuse whatever plastic you can!

Give it a good wash (I suggest using On Guard Cleaner Concentrate), and then you’re good to go!

2. Kids!

As a mum of 2 small kids, I often prefer to use plastic where possible – think bathrooms, showers, tiled areas, anywhere that’s an optimum smash zone!

I make my own foaming body wash and hand wash and we have used our foaming plastic bottles for over 2 years now without any issue.

PET, PETG & HDPE are suitable for high ratios of essential oil, however I would never exceed a ratio of more than 5% essential oil. So for example, if you had a 100ml plastic container I wouldn’t recommend using any more than 5mls of essential oil. 5mls of essential oil is approximately 85 drops. If you are finding you need more than 5ml of essential oil to achieve your desired result I would (respectfully) suggest that you look into the quality of essential oils you are using.

LDPE & PP Plastics are suitable for medium to low essential oil ratios of less than 2%. Keeping that in mind, 2% is still approximately 34 drops of essential oil per 100mls.

I hope this helps!

Happy DIY-ing!

Tiana x

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