What Is the Shelf Life of Carrier Oils?

Ask the Aromatherapist:

Do carrier oils spoil or go bad, and do different carrier oils have a different shelf life? Thanks for your help!
Many carrier oils (such as sweet almond oil, olive oil, sunflower oil, apricot kernel oil) can "go off" over time. Many of these oils become rancid, marked by a distinct, unpleasant smell. Depending on how old the oil is when you buy it and how it has been handled, the carrier oil may last years. I have had several carrier oils for more than four years without any perceptible change. Jojoba oil in particular does not go rancid because it is actually a liquid wax.

Store your carrier oils away from heat and light, and with the caps tightly closed. With proper handling you can probably expect that your carrier oils will last two years, and possibly much longer. Be sure to discard them if you detect any rancid smell. If you plan to use only small amounts of carrier oils, purchase the smallest size available so that you don't end up storing large unused quantities that will go bad.


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