When it comes to storing your eliquid either because you want to change flavours or because you want to save one of your favourites for a later date there are some precautions to take into consideration to maintain the quality and flavour of your juice. So if you are unsure about storing eliquid then read on.
The basic rules involve first understanding what degrades eliquid over time and to work on reducing these factors from having an influence. The main elements which are the enemy of eliquid are heat, air and light.
eLiquid – Effects of Air & Light
Nicotine oxidises when it comes into contact with light and air resulting in a colouration change which thankfully doesn’t actually degrade the properties however flavour has be impacted far sooner than the strength or quality of the nicotine within the eliquid. Also some flavourings can discolour more than others, flavours such as tobacco, chocolate and coffee all turn a much darker hue when left to the effects of light and air though as above this should not harm the quality of the nicotine or safety of the ingredients. Our tip is to keep eliquid away from direct sunlight and even better away from light altogether when being stored for more than a day or so.
Keep your eliquid lid tightly sealed to reduce the chances of oxygen and other airborne chemicals being able to effect the liquid. Colouration can be affected with long exposure to UV light, liquids containing nicotine mixed with excess oxygen can produce cotinine. Cotinine is a the result of oxidized nicotine. Two hydrogen atoms are removed from the compound, and one oxygen atom is gained. If both UV light and oxygen are present, they can act as a catalyst and speed up the degradation process of your eliquid.
Heats effect on eLiquid
Heat has an effect on all liquids, and even all elements. When something raises in temperature the molecules produce more energy and thus move faster. In eliquid this breaks down some ingredients and alters others as they slowly bond with each other. Compounds can separate or merge over time, and even change with other contaminates in the air. these changes will lead to a change in the taste of your juice. The best way avoid chemical reactions changing the taste of your eliquid is keeping the storage temperature nice and low.
Storage Bottles / Storage
Plastic bottles are fine for storing eLiquid short term but consider another solution for long term storing. Plastic is slightly porous and could contain dioxins and other chemicals. We advise using glass eliquid bottles for long storage if they are secure from breakages and you are not travelling with them (however the EU will be banning glass bottle eliquid in May so it may be a case of having to put eLiquid into your own bottles). Plastic can interact with the liquid and thus cause chemical changes in the composition of the product, again altering the taste slightly.
Keep your eLiquid at a stable room temperature for short-term storage and in the fridge or freezer for more long term storage. The same reason applies, if your liquid is cold then it has less energy to react with the plastic bottle and surrounding elements / oxygen. Fridges and Freezers are also dark when closed so that solves our light issue though opening and closing it all the time does mean you are applying the light directly to it on and off which is not ideal. While a fridge will also protect against bacteria PG one of the most common ingredients is actually anti-bacterial anyway.
If you do decide to store your eLiquid in a fridge or freezer then be sure to allow it to reach room temperature again before using it as the liquid becomes considerably thicker when exposed to cold temperatures. This is also a reason why we recommend keeping it in a warm pocket during the winter when you are out and about and also exposed to the cold.
Storing eLiquid Safely
The other vital consideration is safety to ensure eLiquid is away from the reach of children, animals and anyone else who might accidentally consume or misuse the product.
Nicotine is poisonous and incidents have already been reported of kids or dogs being poisoned as a result of handling and consuming the eLiquid we use in electronic cigarettes. Child proof caps are not a sufficient preventative measure alone, always keep your bottles in locked places or areas that a child or animal cannot access to 100% safe proof yourself and the other people around you. It doesn’t take long for crafty kids to work out a child proof cap and an animal such as a cat or dog can easily bite into a plastic bottle puncturing it and left able to consume the contents. Great places to store include high cupboards, safes or any other area you can lock up and assure nobody has access.
Round up of our eLiquid Storage tips
Short Term: Use a cupboard that is high up and not near radiators or an oven. This will provide a cool enough temperature so the quality will not degrade whilst ensuring it is away from children and animals and is in a dark place protecting it from light. That cures all of the main issues nicely for a short term solution.
Long Term: For storing eLiquid over longer periods you want to get the temperature lower and ensure it remains in the dark. A fridge of freezer can be perfect however that is more suited for people living alone or without Children who might scurry through the freezer for a frozen treat. So if you house share or live with a family then you may want to take some extra precautions such as letting everyone know that the product can be dangerous and not to touch it or by putting within a locking box before placing in the fridge or freezer.
If you have any tips or advice of your own, as always we would love to hear them in the comments below.