Essential Oil Refill & Bottle Reuse FAQ’s

Essential Oils UK

I often get asked if Wild As The Wind offers a refill service, or whether people can return their bottles for me to recycle proactively within the business by sterilising them and refilling them myself for resale.

Unfortunately, whilst the preservation of the planet is absolutely dear to my heart… I have been a card carrying member of Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth as early as the eighties, when ‘they’, (read the government) put you on a ‘list’ if you joined an organisation like that.

I was even out canvassing for the Green Party in my early twenties over thirty years ago aso.

So, it saddens me to say it is not possible for Wild As The Wind to meet it’s fiduciary responsibilities to it’s customers or to the governing bodies which Wild As The Wind is answerable to, and who monitor what is produced and traded in the UK and Europe, if I were to offer a refill or internal recycling of bottles to customers.

Besides, the way in which a bottle reuse service would have to be set up would waste a lot more energy than if you simply recycled your bottles. So, if Wild As The Wind were to attempt to reuse bottles this would actually be more detrimental to the planet than if you simply recycle your bottles. 

Essential Oil Bottle Reuse

Here is the latest request from a customer for Wild As The Wind to reuse essentialoil bottles

I have accumulated quite a few glass essential oil bottles with plastic droppers and screw lids, and I was wondering if you could use them for your business rather than throwing them out.
I hope you can use them as I believe that re-using them is better than recycling. I live in Watchet and have bought essential oils from your stall on the esplanade so was thinking I could drop them with you next time you are there.

Jan, Watchet

This query raises so many issues it has spurred me on to write this much needed FAQ on essential oil bottle recycling and reusing. I will attempt to address each issue individually in it’s own section, with the issue of a Wild As The Wind refill service provided at the end of this essential oil bottle FAQ.

Wild As The Wind Venues

There is no guaranteed consistancy of Wild As The Wind at the various markets which have been attended in Somerset. Gloucester, Avon, Wiltshire and Dorset. So my answer began thus…

Hi Jan,

Thank you for your email.

Unfortunately I don’t believe I am in a position to help you. I am unsure if I will return to Watchet this year, and won’t do so until the summer if I do.

The time of writing this email was January 2020.

Can Wild As The Wind Reuse Essential Oil Bottles From Other Businesses?

My response continued…

Besides, it would never be possible to return essential oil bottles to a business that did not supply them as I have to provide Safety Data Sheets relating to the essential oil bottles and how they have been tested as fit for use, as well as essential oil bottle caps and inserts etc… These go into a Product Information File, which can be inspected at any time by various governmental and non-governmental bodies. I would never be able to vouch for essential oil bottles supplied by other vendors, and there would, of course, be a lack of uniformity to their shape etc, even if I were permitted, which would mean the Wild As The Wind labels would not fit properly on the other essential oil bottles, and it would make displaying the essential oils difficult.

Reusing Essential Oil Caps & Inserts

As for the essential oil bottle caps and inserts, these would never be reusable as sterilising them after they have been used to dispense essential oils would be nigh on impossible for the more viscous oils, which would mean it would not be attempted in all instances.

Plastic Essential Oil Caps

The essential oil plastic caps you refer to are not used by Wild As The Wind. They are very much firmly in the single use plastic category as they are designed to create a safety seal to show the contents have not been exposed to oxidative stress. The seal is broken after purchase of the essential oil, after which the essential oil cap cannot be recouple with the essential oil collar.

Essential Oil Aluminium Lids

Only aluminium lids are used for essential oils at Wild As The Wind, but these lids, whilst being inherently more environmentally sound could not be reused either.

The material used to create a seal within the inside of the essential oil aluminium lids will stain and retain the aroma of the essential oil which it has originally been used for.

What To Do With Your Empty Bottles?

The best thing for you to do is either reuse your empty essential oil bottles yourself, or recycle them.

However, you will also encounter the same issues of insert and cap contamination from the previous essential oils also.

Wild As The Wind Essential Oil Empties

Unfortunately the same applies to Wild As The Wind essential oil empties as to the essential oil bottles supplied by other businesses, as stated immediately above.

Reusing Other Wild As The Wind Bottles?

Unfortunately, all essential oils taint any pourous materials used in their packaging. This means the insides of all lids, the plastic components of all spray diffusers, and all plastic lids will be tainted and rendered unusable for any other product.

Sterilising Bottles

If however, you wish to sterilise your bottles at home, particularly the bottles with pipettes, used for the facial oils, then it is entirely feasible to do this by dismantling the pipettes, placing the components in a plastic or silicone pot and then putting the components and the bottle through the dishwasher.

I particularly advocate keeping your smaller starter sized bottles for going on holiday. As you will doubtless progress to larger size bottles, after your trial period, it will be possible to decant face oil from your larger bottles into your smaller, starter sized, bottles for your weekends away and longer holidays.

As you will be using the same product in the smaller sized bottles there will be no issue with tainting the secondary contents with another aroma, like Eucalyptus Essential Oil, which has very powerful menthol overtones, or Cinnamon Essential Oil, which is very spicey and warming and should not used on the face around the eyes etc…

Essential Oil Refill

It is not possible for Wild As The Wind to provide an essential oil or product refill service for all of the above reason, plus a whole raft of others besides.

As products are sold at markets they have to be ferried from one location to another. There are over one hundred Wild As The Wind products and it just isn’t feasible to carry that amount of additional containers around in the vehilcle used for the markets.

However, the logistal issues are rendered irrelevant because there is no way of providing the level of sanitation required for a refill service for cosmetic products. Everything should be sterile… just like an operating theatre, otherwise eye and fungal, amid all manner of other infections could occur if a customer used a cosmetic refill performed in less than sanitary conditions.

So, what is okay for floor cleaner and other household cleaning products really isn’t okay for cosmetic products.

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