Organizing your Essential Oils
What have I been doing? In between making zucchini bread for the freezer and helping hubby paint window frames, I've been thinking about my essential oils and how I need to get in my cupboard to clean and organize the mess. When I first started studying about Aromatherapy, I bought a little glass-fronted 3-shelf cabinet that was the perfect size to hold my essential oils. I painted it and decorated the front with stars. But over the years, life has gotten in the way of keeping it tidy. I have years of half-used essential oils, some essential oils I'll never use, some droppers and vitamins, and even random cotton balls in there. I can never find what I need either. Every time I open the door, though I inhale a very lovely scent, but I cringe a bit at the sight of it.
Today is the day. First step is to get everything out and wipe down the shelves. Then to go through and see what's empty and what I don't want. I'll need a small container for the tools; droppers, roller-balls, empty bottles. Then what's left I will arrange so it is easy to see and grab.
How do you store your essential oils? Some use small cabinets, wall shelves, wire shelving. Most of the things you buy can get pretty pricey. I scored my cabinet at a flea market as an unfinished one that needed paint. Other storage solutions can be plastic storage containers, and even old wooden recipe boxes. I know one person who uses an old box that her tea came in. An old spice rack picked up at a thrift store or yard sale can even do in a pinch. You can paint and decorate as you please. Just make sure you keep them in a cool, dark place, out of sunlight.
Essential oils generally keep anywhere between 2-15 years, depending on whether you keep them out of the sun, keep temps pretty even, and keep exposure to oxygen at a minimum. The oils that go rank quickest, are the monoterpenes. These are the air purifiers, and they should be kept for only 2-3 years. These essential oils include Black pepper, Bergamot, Cypress, Frankincense, Lemon and Sweet orange among others (I definitely need to purge and restock!).
When you do this type of assessment, it reminds you of why you got into essential oils in the first place. It reminds you of scented projects you were going to do and got sidetracked on. And you get to see what you need and don't have. I think this is going to be a yearly thing for me. I may just become organized.