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Tips on Preserving Your Essential Oils

Updated on December 23, 2015

Preserving Essential Oils

When shopping for essential oils, quality is one of the most basic factors that you must be looking for. Therefore, it is equally important to try your best at preserving that quality for longer use and higher effectiveness. The better able you are to care for your essential oils, you can also better able to protect your own health against serious complications and other contraindications that could happen when using spoiled essential oils.

Aside from the ability to enjoy the benefits of using a good quality essential oil, practicality is another consideration. When you are able to care for your essential oil, then you no longer have to purchase a new one.

Aromatherapy Essential Oils : How to Store Essential Oils Properly

How to Store Your Essential Oils

Since essential oils are quite expensive to buy these days, you would not want to simply throw your money away by being careless in storing them. You must take it as your own responsibility to properly care for your oils to ensure that you have the same quality oils as when you first bought them. Below are some basic tips you need to think of when storing your oils for a long term use:

  • You need to buy glass containers, if you don’t have one, for containing your essential oils. You must not use plastic containers as an alternative as the chemicals from the plastic could contaminate the oil.
  • The color of the container where you store your essential oil is not a top priority. However, it is key to preserving your essential oil since exposure to sunlight could lead to the deterioration of the oil. Choosing dark colored glass containers can therefore reduce light retention.
  • You need to store your essential oils in areas with cooler temperatures. You can get more extensive tips on proper storage below.

Using Essential Oils

Protecting Oils Against Sunlight

As mentioned above, exposure to sunlight could affect the quality of your stored essential oils. Therefore, you need to minimize the amount of sun exposure to ensure that you can maximize the oil’s shelf life. Both essential and carrier oils must be protected against the sun to avoid speeding up the process of oxidization that will facilitate in the quick deterioration of the oil.

Oxygen, together with sunlight, all contribute in faster degradation of the essential oil and making it rancid. It is therefore important to beware of how your essential oils are stored and handled to minimize the amount of sunlight exposure as much as you can.

Aside from natural light coming from the sun though, you must also think about limiting exposure of your essential oils to electric light. The need to reduce light retention on your essential oil also explains why using dark colored glass container is of the essential. This will help to limit the amount of light that mixes with the oil and increasing the rate at which it goes rancid. Aside from using dark colored glasses, you must place it on a dark cupboard to avoid being hit directly by the sun.

Choosing The Right Storage Temperature

To make caring for your essential oils a more complex task, did you know that the temperature of the environment where you store your essential oils could also affect its quality? To be specific, it can quickly reduce the oil's shelf life. Avoid storing your oils in areas that are either too hot or too cold. You need to achieve the right balance of temperature that is suited to preserving your oils for future use.

If you have devices for measuring at home, make sure that the temperature is around 5 degree centigrade. This is what aromatherapy experts believe is the ideal storage temperature for generally all types of essential oils. For those living in areas with extremely hot weather, it might be necessary to place your oils in specialized storage areas such as a mini-fridge since too much heat could spoil the oils or turn it into something toxic.

A thorough analysis of temperature rate around various rooms within your house might be important to ensure that you can identify the best places to store your aromatherapy oils. Once you have chosen the ideal area with the right storing temperature, you can safely hide your oils there and you can expect to use it for the intended time frame without ever spoiling.

Handling Your Essential Oils

The handling process of essential oils is what often comes in between the production of essential oils or buying it from a store and the act of using the oil. Thus, this aspect is often neglected when it comes to preserving the essential oils. However, it is still of equal importance as to choosing the right storage method and temperature to prevent reducing its shelf life.

Make sure to thoroughly wash your hands before handling any aromatherapy product, not just essential oils. This is of particular importance amongst products that involve direct contact with essential oils during application. If there is no place for you to wash your hands, you can use a clean pair of gloves instead.

When you open the essential oil bottle, make sure to avoid touching the top or mouth of the bottle. It can be one method of introducing external contaminants until it is mixed with the oil that is contained in the bottle.

How Can You Tell If The Oil Is Contaminated?

To ensure your own safety, it is very important for you to identify the qualities of a contaminated essential oil such that you can avoid using it. As much as you take all steps needed to protect the oil from external contaminants, there are some uncontrollable variables that lead to the spoiling of your oils.

You can easily identify a contaminated essential oil though, even if you are not an expert at aromatherapy or without using any special tools or devices. Simply conduct a sniff test and if the oil smells different than its usual aroma, then it should be a signal for concern. Knowledge about an oil's natural scent is therefore important so you can tell a good or spoiled essential oil apart. In this case, throw away the essential oil to avoid someone from using it by mistake.


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