Recycle Essential Oil Bottles (Part 1)

Recycle Empty Essential Oil Bottles - here's howRecycle essential oil bottles! Yes, empty essential oil bottles can have a second life! Many essential oil lovers don’t discard their empty bottles because they smell so good. Eventually, they start piling up. If this is you, we have some creative ways to reuse those empty bottles.

You may be tempted just to leave an open, empty bottle to make an area smell good. However, there are many more ways to take advantage of the last few drops of oil in a bottle.

Well, with the help of my essential oil friends, we’ve come up with some handy and creative DIY ways to recycle those empty and nearly-empty bottles. In fact, we have so many ideas that we’re breaking them up into a series of four posts.

This first post has some straightforward ideas that require virtually no extra work. Our next post features ways to pamper yourself and your pets. Then we move on to recycling projects requiring clean bottles. The last in this series features some “upcycling” ideas that very well spark your creative side.

In this post, we begin with a few simple recycling tips. Some of these you may already be using. You may even find a new idea for your empty bottles.

Recycle Essential Oil Bottles as They Are

All of these simple tips use an empty or almost empty essential oil bottle. The only other item needed is a cotton ball for some of these DIY Projects.

The most complicated part is removing the orifice reducer (the plastic dropper insert) from the bottle. But even that’s easy when you have the right tool! Obviously, you can use the edge of a knife to pry the plastic insert out of the bottle. However, if you are going to do a lot of recycling, you may find it easier to use an inexpensive “key.” There are inexpensive tools on Amazon that will save your fingernails (or teeth).

So on to the recycling.

Room Deodorizer

You may already be doing this one. The easiest way to recycle an empty essential oil bottle is to remove the bottle cap and place it where you need a little freshening!

  • Remove the cap and place the bottle in a room you want to deodorize (laundry room, bathroom, closet, etc.)
  • Let the bottle stay until the scent is gone.
  • When the aroma completely disappears, add a few drops from another bottle of the same oil.

Some favorite deodorizing essential oils include Melaleuca, lavender, eucalyptus, geranium, peppermint, Douglas Fir, lemon, wild orangetangerine, rosemary, lime, and lemongrass.

The following projects require the removal of the plastic orifice reducer and placing a cotton ball in the bottle. For each of these follow these initial steps:

  1. Remove the orifice reducer from the essential oil bottle.
  2. Stuff a cotton ball into the bottle. If there are several drops of oil remaining, stuff two cotton balls into the bottle.
  3. Replace the cap and allow to sit for 24-48 hours for the cotton to absorb the oil in the bottle.
  4. Use tweezers (or a toothpick) when it’s time to remove the cotton from the bottle.

Recycle and Eliminate Odors

Now, let’s make some odor eliminators!

Stinky ShoesRecycle empty essential oil bottles to fix stinky shoes

  • Insert an essential oil-infused cotton ball into the toe area of each shoe.
  • Allow to sit overnight (a day or two if especially stinky)

The recommended essential oil for shoes with an over-powering odor is Melaleuca (Tea Tree). Other choices are Eucalyptus, Siberian Fir, Thyme, Oregano, Basil, Rosemary, Cinnamon, Clove, Peppermint, or Lemon.

Stinky Trash Can

  • Place the scented cotton ball in the bottom of the trash can.

Some oils that work well for deodorizing include Lemon, Melaleuca, Douglas Fir, Lavender, Wild Orange, Grapefruit, Lime, Cinnamon, Eucalyptus, Peppermint, and Spearmint.

Refrigerator Refresher

This works best with any citrus essential oil. Recycle an almost empty bottle of your favorite citrus oil like Lemon, Lime, Tangerine, Wild Orange, or Grapefruit. Then:A DIY refrigerator refresher can help stop smelly odors

  • Remove the cap and orifice reducer.
  • Fill the bottle about 3/4 full with baking soda.
  • Replace the cap on the bottle.
  • Shake the bottle vigorously to mix.
  • Remove the cap and set the open bottle near the bottom and back of the fridge.

This miniature refresher will last up to a week.

Carpet & Rug Deodorizer

  • Remove the cap and orifice reducer.
  • Fill the bottle about 3/4 full with baking soda.
  • Replace the cap and shake to mix.
  • Allow mixture to sit overnight in the capped bottle so the baking soda can absorb the essential oil.

To Use:

  • Shake the baking soda/essential oil mixture into a shaker or into a small strainer.
  • Lightly sprinkle the mixture onto the carpet or rug.
  • Vacuum as usual.

The carpet and room will smell amazing! Citrus or floral essential oils make any room smell great; however, you can recycle any essential oil you like.

To deodorize an entire room or large carpet, you’ll want to use several bottles of the mixture. One bottle is plenty for a small area or entry rug.

TIP: This works even if the essential oil bottle is empty, just as long as the bottle still has the aroma of the essential oil. If the bottle has been washed out and completely empty of essential oil, add 3 drops of essential oil to the container to begin.

Next: More Simple Tips

That’s it for now. Our next post will have more tips for the home and a simple way of pampering yourself and your pets. All by recycling empty essential oil bottles!

Following that post, we’ll have tips on how to clean and sterilize your recycled bottles for more uses. Not to worry, it’s an easy process, too!

If you have a favorite tip on how to recycle your empty bottles, please share with us in the comments below.

Go to Part 2