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  1. #1

    Default Reusing sample atomizers

    This post was inspired by the how to use sample vials post because I hate using them due to my inability to experience the fragrance at its fullest. So I'm thinking about refilling and reusing those sample atomizers that I get from department stores. I've tried and failed reusing the decant atomizers despite after lots of rinsing, soaking, and spraying to clear the device. I cleaned out a decant container holding GIT and filled it with MI, and to this day, I still smell the mix of GIT and MI when I spray it. In any case, fragrances stain... badly. I remember reading a post back in the day about using alcohol, but that wasn't entirely effective. There must be a better alternative. Any other ideas? [or I can save myself the trouble and buy a bulk of 2.5 ml atomizers off of eBay]

  2. #2

    Default Re: Reusing sample atomizers

    i'd just buy a bunch of new vials/atomizers. it's just not worth the trouble of thoroughly cleaning and drying those little vials, and then checking to see if it smells like the last frag or soap or whatever other contaminant might be in there. and if it does, then having to repeat the process... just buy new ones.
    [SIZE=1][COLOR=RoyalBlue]
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  3. #3

    Default Re: Reusing sample atomizers

    I usually reuse sample atomizers without troubles and don't understand why to waste money buying new ones...
    I simply totally disassembley 'em and let 'em bath all night in a solution on water and dish-detergent (which removes completely all residues of odors, essential oils or other) paying attention to sprize it also to let it enter in the atomizer too.
    The day after I wash 'em well in fresh water and dry them. If they had to have still residues of odors, I'll wash 'em also in alcohol. Result is assured!
    I've reused so many samples that way!

  4. #4

    Default Reusing atomizers?

    I just ordered some 10 ml frosted glass atomizers from essentialsupplies.com and wanted to get member's thoughts on this. I have to travel sometime for my job so if I were to decant from bottle to atomizer for the trip, would it be a bad idea to redecant into the same atomizer in the future? Has anyone tried this? I have no idea whether or not if you rinsed with hot water if the next decant would be compromised with the last. Thanks to those who pointed me in the right direction for the atomizers.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Reusing atomizers?

    I often refill those tiny spray samples that you get at the department stores. If you rinse it out with soap, it will be nearly perfectly clean. I usually go the extra step and rinse it out again with some Everclear or Lavacol Rubbing Alcohol (Lavacol is denatured ethanol; don't use isopropyl because it's not the same). I find that the foamy hand soap works the best (Dial makes a version of it) because it has a rather strong surfactant it in.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Reusing atomizers?

    I'm thinking it would be best to assign one atomizer to each scent. They aren't very expensive and it's good in case you ever want to go on a trip and need to take lots you can bring however many you want each in their own personal atomizer. I bet if you washed them though it would be fine.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Reusing atomizers?

    yes i have one atomiser each for all of the perfumes i use regularly. i've tried rinsing out the bottles to swap fragrances but i find that i can't clean them perfectly. for instance i tried to rinse away the smell of Blenheim Bouquet and Ambre Sultan and reuse those atomisers - but it seems that some fragrances just won't be removed...

    regards
    m

  8. #8

    Default How do I  clean a glass atomizer?

    Does anyone know how to clean a glass atomizer to totally remove the previous scent?

  9. #9

    Default Re: How do I  clean a glass atomizer?

    Not a good idea, sorry. If you still want to re-use it or it is so fabulously precious (some of them are beautiful!) try completing the following steps:
    1) fill it with hot water until full, spray out the contents, repeat 3 times, you might want to use the mixture of water and rubbing alchohol, or just alchohol;
    2) unscrew the spraying mechanism, shake out what is left there and dry the bottle and the mechanism completely with a Q-tip and let sit for a day or two to air-dry;
    3) sniff it, and if it still smells of the fragrance, repeat steps 1 and 2.

    I heard that people boil glass bottles in a pot of water but I would not know how they manage doing it without damaging the spraying mechanism.

    Good luck!

  10. #10

    Default Re: How do I *clean a glass atomizer?

    I simply wash 'em well with dish detergent. then I let 'em dry well.

  11. #11

    Default Re: How do I *clean a glass atomizer?


    Quote Originally Posted by Timberwolf
    Not a good idea, sorry. *
    Agreed.

    I fill a new 'disposable' or an expensive previously-used atomizer with warm, soapy water (preferably a heavily-diluted *unscented dish detergent or shampoo) and spray until empty. Hot water can damage glass by an abrupt temperature change. I repeat three times and work towards progressively clear water to ensure the mechanism is clean.

    Avoid rubbing alcohol. Although rubbing alcohol is isopropol alcohol, it has been denatured with chemicals that can be detrimental to fragrance. If you choose to use alcohol, I recommend 180º (or higher) vodka, *Everclear, perfumer’s alcohol or formulator’s alcohol. http://www.snowdriftfarm.com/perfume.html *Fill the bottle with alcohol, reattach mechanism, spray until empty.

    Remove the spray mechanism, dry with a clean cotton towel and allow to completely air dry. *Use a clean cotton towel to dry the bottle by hand to avoid water spots or streaks.

    Let me guess.

    You just purchased The Different Company’s 250ml Divine Bergamot ‘refill’ from kroy@milwpc.com for $100 but don’t like the aluminum bottle so you decided to decant?

    You have a vanity set? http://www.auntjudysattic.com/Antique_Vanity_Items.htm *

    You broke your Creed? http://www.basenotes.net/community/Y...1139380587/1#0

    Your significant other threatened to leave if you purchased another fragrance and you are ‘recycling’ existing bottles to avoid detection; the Samsara is actually Mahora and the Metalys is Mitsouko? http://www.basenotes.net/community/Y...1144592335/4#0

  12. #12

    Default Re: How do I  clean a glass atomizer?

    ;D LOL at the last paragraph! ;D Way to go!


  13. #13

    Talking Decant bottles

    I had a scent in the decant bottle and would like to clean and neutralize it in order to fill it with other scent but I found that I cannot remove traces of the scent that was there. Do you have any recommendations what should I do to avoid mixing scents?

    Thanks in advance

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Decant bottles

    Glass itself can be cleaned by heat. I've set my glass items on our woodstove in winter, but you could probably bake them in an oven or simmer them in water on the stove (treating them like eggs and putting them in the water while it's still cold). When a friend needed a sample on the spot, I performed an instant sterilization with a handheld hairdryer, holding the vial in a towel in my hand and blowing it until it no longer smelled (the glass does get hot!). I hesitate to recommend reusing a spray mechanism or roller ball, because they can't be heat-cleaned. But I've reused them for myself when the new scent is very similar to the last scent they carried (La Chasse replacing Orange Blossom, for example). Some scents, I'm thinking of something like amber, can be nearly impossible to neutralize, however.
    In a world where 6 million people are added each month, every landscape matters.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Decant bottles

    What about the plastic lids with the applicator sticks? Do they ever come clean enough to re-use?

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Decant bottles

    Quote Originally Posted by purplebird7
    What about the plastic lids with the applicator sticks? Do they ever come clean enough to re-use?
    Maybe if you treat them to a bath of hot, sudsy water, rinse and let dry in the sun on a window ledge for a few days. Again, something with a heavy amber or patchouli scent may be hard to erase.
    In a world where 6 million people are added each month, every landscape matters.

  17. #17

    Default Re-using decant bottles?

    Hey all - I recent made a sale to a local basenoter and he gave me a ton of decants for free, which was a really great surprise. I ended up having a perfume spraying/sniffing orgy with a friend, where we made ourselves sick and sniffed all kinds of coffee, and choked all over the place.

    Anyhow, the question is that there were a couple of decants in nice glass spray bottles where I really didn't like the scent, and so I poured it out, thinking I'd use the sprayers to carry decants of a one or two of my favourite scents for long days away from home. But the trouble is I can't get the smell of the old cologne out of the bottles. I tried alcohol, soap, water etc.

    Is it just a lost cause? Are decant bottle monogamous, or is there a proper way to clean them up for a new fragrance? Thanks!
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  18. #18

    Default Re: Re-using decant bottles?

    Not an expert, but have read that the plastic parts will never lose the smell. Sorry if that's bad news.

  19. #19

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    Default Re: Re-using decant bottles?

    Have seen the question asked before and the consensus was - NO! :bounce: (I scatter them in amongst my frillies or let them snooze under pillows during the daytime.) Jazztweety has an apothecary-quality bottle that can be dishwashered (it has a ground glass stopper) but that's it!!
    "The world is ruled by letting things take their course. It cannot be ruled by interfering." Lao Tze

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Re-using decant bottles?

    I have tried also with alcohol, soap, all purpose cleaners - nothing worked. Toss 'em.

  21. #21

    Default Re: Re-using decant bottles?

    Yipes - oh well, thanks all for your experience. Don't know if I'll put them under pillows...

    Have any of you tried putting a new perfume in an old bottle with the lingering smell of it's previous inhabitant? I suspect it'd be a gross combination, but it never hurts to ask!

    At least the original decant vial of fumerie turque is still good to put more fumerie turque in!
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  22. #22
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    Default Re: Re-using decant bottles?

    I beg to differ with my esteemed colleagues ...

    Glass can be sterilized by heat. It "burns off" any scent molecules on the surface.

    I happen to have a wood stove, so, after a thorough wash and rinse, I place glass vials and bottles on the hot surface of the stove and leave them for an hour or more. They are truly fragrance free (and scorching hot!) after that. You might try boiling, baking or microwaving with the same caution you'd use in sterilizing something like jelly jars.

    Now, if the bottles you have are a fairly standard size, you can order replacement sprayers from http://www.essentialsupplies.com/ for just 41¢ each.
    Last edited by Quarry; 6th May 2007 at 07:06 PM.
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  23. #23

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    Default Re: Re-using decant bottles?

    Quote Originally Posted by quos View Post
    Not an expert, but have read that the plastic parts***will never lose the smell. Sorry if that's bad news.
    ...***which is the problem, not the glass. So new replacement sprayers could be a solution!!
    "The world is ruled by letting things take their course. It cannot be ruled by interfering." Lao Tze

  24. #24

    Default Re: Re-using decant bottles?

    Yes, the trouble are the sprayers, not the glass! I have already tossed very valuable full size bottles that I used for experimental stages because the smell would never get out of the sprayers (which are mostly the more expensive part of the whole thing) again

  25. #25

    Default Re: Re-using decant bottles?

    Quote Originally Posted by Quarry View Post
    Now, if the bottles you have are a fairly standard size, you can order replacement sprayers from http://www.essentialsupplies.com/ for just 41¢ each.

    Ah thanks - 41 cents ain't so bad! I was hiping I could just use what I had, but that's the next best thing - thanks to all!
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  26. #26

    Red face Re: Re-using decant bottles?

    Hi Go to hardware store, paint section, buy a can of denatured alcohol. It works wonders cleaning out the old smell and is cheap. Some one at a perfume store told me. Can in not expensive and lasts a long time. Hope this helps.

  27. #27

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    Default Re: Re-using decant bottles?

    Quote Originally Posted by perfumegirl View Post
    Hi Go to hardware store, paint section, buy a can of denatured alcohol. It works wonders cleaning out the old smell and is cheap. Some one at a perfume store told me. Can in not expensive and lasts a long time. Hope this helps.
    For the sprayers?
    "The world is ruled by letting things take their course. It cannot be ruled by interfering." Lao Tze

  28. #28

    Default What is the best way to clean a used atomiser?

    I have a 5ml atomiser that is currently filled with something I don't use much anymore, and already have in another spray bottle. It's not a heavy scent but I want to clean the bottle thoroughly so that it is completely scent free to be refilled with something I only have in a small splash bottle. Would something like ordinary dish soap be thorough enough? Is it possible to totally remove the scent from a used bottle like this?

  29. #29

    Default Re: What is the best way to clean a used atomiser?

    Tide

  30. #30

    Default Re: What is the best way to clean a used atomiser?

    I had to look that up, do you mean the laundry detergent? Would any laundry detergent work? Does it have to soak?

  31. #31

    Default Re: What is the best way to clean a used atomiser?

    I would suggest some dish soap, followed by a solution of water and bicarbonate of soda (baking soda).


  32. #32
    Dependent pluran's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is the best way to clean a used atomiser?

    To hell with cleaning em. Just buy em in bulk. They're cheap.

    http://victoriasown.blogspot.com/200...-vials_01.html
    Last edited by pluran; 21st October 2007 at 09:33 AM.

  33. #33

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    Default Re: What is the best way to clean a used atomiser?

    They are cheap, but so are plastic cups and I reuse those, too! You know, reduce, reuse, recycle. I don't think they need to soak, and I wash like my dishes in very hot water. I spray through some of the wash water. I rinse well in hot water and spray through some hot water. I used to do an alcohol rinse and spray through as well, but I don't anymore as I have a bunch of them now. I leave them apart on top of my refridgerator -- a warm spot -- for days and days or weeks sometime. I still sniff them before I put anything else in them but I've never been able to detect anything and I've never noticed any off notes in the resulting purse spray.
    Please, spritz responsibly.

  34. #34

    Wink Re: What is the best way to clean a used atomiser?

    I have been told to clean all perfume containers with a high grade vodka. Fill, let sit and empty. Repeat. If using an atomizer, squirt ten times with each vodka application. Supposedly, the alcohol in the vodka is the purest without its own scent and will bond with whatever scent is left in the bottle, thus cleaning it out when emptied.

  35. #35

    Default Re: What is the best way to clean a used atomiser?

    I would use vinegar and then lots of water.

  36. #36

    Default Re: What is the best way to clean a used atomiser?

    If you plan on saving as a collector's item, avoid scrubbing and using abrasive cleaners. Areas decorated with hand staining, gilding, or enameling should be gently wiped. Labels are crucial to value and can be damaged by water, perfume, and other liquids.

  37. #37

    Default Re: What is the best way to clean a used atomiser?

    I use warm water before soaking the bottle in Miltons (used to disinfect baby bottles, can be found in chemists and supermarkets in the baby section). To help neutralise the odour, I sometimes would soak the bottle in denture tablets which also help to clear stains.

  38. #38
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    Default Re: What is the best way to clean a used atomiser?

    First soap ... then perfumers alcohol or Vodka .

  39. #39

    Default Re: What is the best way to clean a used atomiser?

    I wish I had an atomiser like that. I bought one from the Body Shop, filed it with EDT and a week later it was empty. I don't know whether it evaporated, leaked, or what, but it was a real pain.

    I wouldn't clean anything with vinegar as it has a really clingy scent and you need a base (like soap, detergent, bicard) to break down oils.

  40. #40

    Default Advice on cleaning old perfume bottles please...

    I'm hoping you can give me some advice on cleaning old perfume bottles for re-use. I'd love to decant some of the splash bottles I have into spray bottles, and I was wondering if it's possible to clean old spray bottles well enough to re-use them. I am of course talking about bottles with removable spray tops (Miller-Harris, l'Occitane, Lutens).

    I have run the bottles through the dish washer a couple of times, and the scent seems to be gone from the glass. But the spray tops themselves still smell quite strongly of the original scents. Is there a way to clean them? Or should I invest in new bottles?

    Have any of you done this successfully?

    BTW: One by-product of this experiment is that my dishwasher smells lovely!

    Many thanks in advance...

  41. #41

    Default Re: Advice on cleaning old perfume bottles please...

    Quote Originally Posted by JanAlways View Post
    I'm hoping you can give me some advice on cleaning old perfume bottles for re-use. I'd love to decant some of the splash bottles I have into spray bottles, and I was wondering if it's possible to clean old spray bottles well enough to re-use them. I am of course talking about bottles with removable spray tops (Miller-Harris, l'Occitane, Lutens).

    I have run the bottles through the dish washer a couple of times, and the scent seems to be gone from the glass. But the spray tops themselves still smell quite strongly of the original scents. Is there a way to clean them? Or should I invest in new bottles?

    Have any of you done this successfully?

    BTW: One by-product of this experiment is that my dishwasher smells lovely!

    Many thanks in advance...
    Try Everclear 190% proof only, or denatured alcohol.

  42. #42

    Default Re: Advice on cleaning old perfume bottles please...

    Get some sort of spirit, and spray it through/leave the tops in there, it usually works, its what I use to reuse sample vials (cba to buy them!) If a sprayer, afterwards, spray some water through, and leave to evaporate, after doing so, you'll have a clean sprayer

  43. #43

    Default Re: Advice on cleaning old perfume bottles please...

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Get some sort of spirit,
    Like poltergeist

  44. #44

    Default Re: Advice on cleaning old perfume bottles please...

    soak them in vodka in a small jar for a few weeks, you dont need much only enough to cover them

  45. #45

    Default Re: Advice on cleaning old perfume bottles please...

    I use white vinegar to rinse old perfume bottle and vials, then I rinse again with water.

    No smell at all after this treatment.

  46. #46

    Default Re: Advice on cleaning old perfume bottles please...

    acetone

  47. #47
    DON'T DRINK AND DRESS

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    Default Re: Advice on cleaning old perfume bottles please...

    Extrait/Perfume/EdP/EdT/EdC = alcohol, water, oils and/or synthetic fragrances/coloring or just some of those ingredients.

    Use a mixture of a few drops of non-scented liquid diswashing detergent and 1/2 cup of hot water. Fill the drained bottle and replace spray mechanism. Spray solution through the spray mechanism 5-6 times, shake vigorously, rinse thoroughly, refill bottle with clear hot water and spray another small amount of clear hot water through the spray mechanism until no trace of detergent remains. Drain bottle and pump spray mechanism dry thoroughly to completely empty it.

    Then mix 1/4 teaspoon baking soda in 1/2 cup hot water and repeat steps above with the baking soda/water mix instead of the detergent/water mix. Leave bottle open and upside down to dry along with spray mechanism.

    If your bottle is glass no trace of the old fragrance should be left.

    If it is plastic all bets are off.
    Last edited by kbe; 8th April 2008 at 04:58 PM.
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  48. #48


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    Default Cleaning atomizers

    I am looking to buy a few atomizers so that i can use my samples as sprays instead of using those annoying glass vials that lack sprayers ( i call these anoying glass vials "dabbers" because you have to dab a bit of fragrance on instead of spraying). My only concern is cleaning them, i.e., lets say i fill my atomizer with Amouage's, XXV, then after i am finished with the XXV, i decide to fill the same atomizer with Bond No. 9's, Bleeker Street? How can i clean it so that the XXV will not disturb the Bleeker Street?
    Last edited by TheAttorney; 3rd September 2008 at 02:14 AM.

  49. #49

    Default Re: Cleaning atomizers

    I don't like "dabbers" either.

    Shycat and Quarry discussed recycling sample vials. Quarry's were glass though. I don't know if yours are plastic or glass.
    Here's the thread:

    http://community.basenotes.net/showt...ghlight=Decant

    It starts at post #25. 'Might want to ask them if it worked well enough!
    Last edited by Aiona; 3rd September 2008 at 02:44 AM.

  50. #50

    Default Re: Cleaning atomizers

    If you can find it, Everclear 190 proof or denatured alcohol.

    Also Snowdrift Farms

  51. #51

    Default Re: Cleaning atomizers

    If you get them from the right source, they're about a buck and change for 8 ml. Why spend a small fortune on the juice and cheap out on the sprayers?

    http://stores.ebay.com/ACCESSORIES-FOR-FRAGRANCES

    The lady at AFF will hook you up bro.
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  52. #52

    Default Re: Cleaning atomizers

    I've transferred several 1ml dabber vials to these little spritzers. Once you snap the top on, they're not supposed to be reused, but they're relatively inexpensive as well.
    .
    Sniff and let sniff.

  53. #53


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    Default Re: Cleaning atomizers

    To test, i grabbed a small atomizer last night and unscrewed the top off. It had been previously occupied with a scent so i soaked it all in hot water for approx 4-5 hours, then left it on the counter to dry. It seemed to wipe out the other scent completely.
    Last edited by TheAttorney; 3rd September 2008 at 04:32 PM.

  54. #54

    Default Re: Cleaning atomizers

    I think denatured alcohol would clean the glass ones. The plastic one's I wouldn't bother

  55. #55
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    Default Re: Cleaning atomizers

    Quote Originally Posted by TheAttorney View Post
    To test, i grabbed a small atomizer last night and unscrewed the top off. It had been previously occupied with a scent so i soaked it all in hot water for approx 4-5 hours, then left it on the counter to dry. It seemed to wipe out the other scent completely.
    I'm confused.

    Are you cleaning plastic atomizers with plastic sprayers or glass atomizers with plastic sprayers??

    IMO, it doesn't matter what you soak (or how long) the smell will never be completely removed from a plastic sprayer. Since this is the case, I NEVER reuse atomizers. I just buy new ones...they're so cheap!

    Now a glass atomizer (not the sprayer) can be rid of scent - one way to do it effectively is with heat (in an oven).
    "One day I will find the right words, and they will be simple"

    -- Jack Kerouac

  56. #56


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    Default Re: Cleaning atomizers

    The atomizer is glass and the sprayer is plastic (i should have noted this). It worked pretty well, i was just curious.

  57. #57

    Default Reusing sample atomizers

    Over the past month or so I have received a ridiculous amount of samples in multiple forms. My disdain for splashes in general has left me with twenty some odd empty atomizers and another thirty or so regular splash samples, so here's my conundrum... Is it possible to clean empty atomizers to remove all the fragrance and then refill them with a different sample, or will there always be enough oil left over to mar whatever new scent I place in them??? I know it's a noob question but mother earth wants me to recycle
    At your service

  58. #58

    Default Re: Reusing sample atomizers

    Hey mate,
    Actually, I have had great success in throwing my empty sample vials (with stoppers off), in the dishwasher. As long as they're contained in the knife/fork basket where they cant slip out and get caught in the drain, Ive managed to successfully remove any trace of scent from the vial and lid.

    I never found a sound way to clean them effectively prior to this though.

  59. #59

    Default Re: Reusing sample atomizers

    I use the mini sample sprays to decant from the big bottles. They need many washes before the scent is removed but if you persist then it should eventually be removed
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  60. #60

    Default Re: Reusing sample atomizers

    I didn't clean an atomiser of C&S 88 before filling it with AdP Colonia Assoluta, the result was amazing!

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