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Do You Know What the Shelf Life of Your Oil Stash is?

Did you know that all oils have a shelf life that varies greatly from oil to oil depending on the structure and extraction method?

One of the frequent questions I receive is about the shelf life of various natural oils aka expiry date.

People also ask if it’s safe to use any oil after the recommended shelf life date on the bottle has passed.

I answer those questions in this post and outline the things to consider before using any oil that’s past the recommended date.

There are various components at play when it comes to the shelf life of oils.

These components include the processing method (cold-pressed, expeller-pressed, or steam distilled), purity of the oil, and container type used.

However, there are 4 things you can do to elongate the shelf life of natural oils initially which are:

What is the shelf life of your oil? Find out in this breakdown

4 Ways to Extend the Shelf Life of Your Oil Stash

1. Refrigerate

Refrigerating an oil can increase its shelf life by up to a year depending on which type of oil and processing method. 

2. Store Properly

Keep your oil stash in a cool area away from sunlight. Refrigeration is one way of achieving this or keeping it in a storage box.

3. Store in Dark Bottles

Try to buy oils in dark-colored bottles or bottles manufactured with UV filtering. If not available, you can buy dark-colored bottles and transfer the oil there.

4. Don’t Contaminate Your Stash

Use only the amount you need when handling your hair. Don’t pour out more than you need and then pour the leftover back into the bottle.

Besides the tips above, I have broken down the shelf life of many natural oils below so you can make a more informed decision when it comes to purchasing them.

As I study and feature more oils for hair and beauty, I will update the list.

Natural Oils with 6 – 12 Months Shelf Life

Related Hair Care & Growth Resources

Natural Oils with 1 – 2 Years Shelf Life

Natural Oils with Over 2 Years Shelf Life

Based on my experience, it’s highly unlikely you will have so many oils in rotation at the same time that you will end up keeping one until the expiration date.

If you have any oil getting close to the expiration date, you can use it in a pre-poo treatment to get rid of it faster. Should make for some interesting experimentation.

In any case, if you’re unsure and want to test if the oil is rancid, just sniff it. If it no longer has a pleasant, appealing smell, bin it. 

The list above is a general guide and the dates may shift based on the efforts you make to preserve the integrity of your stash.

I will be updating the list as I garner more information.

Abi is a curly hair expert who delved into the world of natural oils after severe hair loss issues. Through her research, study, and testing, she was able to regrow her bald spots & a healthy head of hair. She is the founder of Healthy Natural Hair Products & Ade Ori Hair Care, and the author of the highly-rated Healthy Hair Care Series. She continues to study hair science, Ayurveda, and natural and healthy solutions for hair and skin. Learn more about our Editorial Guidelines

This post contains affiliate links which means I will make a small commission if you purchase through those links. Read full disclosure HERE.