Reusing Diffuser Reeds – Is It Ideal?

Reed diffusers are a fantastic way to introduce a subtle fragrance to your home. 

They’re less overwhelming than electrical diffusers and far safer than scented candles. If you have children or pets, then they’re a great option. However, a lot of people are confused about what to do when you’re finished with a scent. 

They’ll often ask, “Can I reuse diffuser reeds?” 

In short, it’s not advisable. Let’s look at the reasons why you wouldn’t reuse diffuser reeds and what else you can do. 

Check out our guide below. 

Can I Reuse Diffuser Reeds? 

Simply put, there’s no point trying to reuse diffuser reeds. 

That’s because it’s impossible to clean the essential oils off of the old reeds. This makes them useless because you can’t do anything else with them. You can try but you’ll quickly realize that it’s a futile exercise. 

However, there are no health risks in trying to reuse the reeds. 

It’s just that they will no longer release the fragrance that you want. Of course, you can use your reed diffuser as often as you like. But don’t get this mixed up with the reeds themselves. 

Fortunately, they’re not expensive to replace. 

Typically, diffuser reeds are made of either rattan or fiber. Rattan is ideal because it easily soaks up the oil before releasing it into the air. They’re very cheap so you should just buy new ones instead of trying to recycle. 

How Diffuser Reeds Work

The easiest way to learn why you can’t reuse diffuser reeds is to understand how they work

Reeds have small channels that run up their flanks. The scented oil will run up the shaft of the stick and then dissipate into the air when it reaches the top. Some reeds have nodes and are less effective at dispersing the oil. 

They are also long-lasting so you don’t have to worry about replacing them very often. 

Diffuser reeds have a lifespan of about six months before you should get new ones. Of course, this depends on how much oil you use and the type of reeds. You can control the intensity of the scent by spreading the reeds or bringing them closer together. 

Spreading the reeds increases the airflow and allows the scent to spread more. Bringing them closer together has the opposite effect. 

For an optimal effect, it’s best to use about 10 to 12 reeds.

Maximizing the Effect of Your Reeds

There are several ways you can optimize the effect of your diffuser reeds so that you can enjoy their full potential. Let’s look at these now. 

Turn your reeds in the opposite direction every week or two. This allows the reeds to channel and distribute the oil evenly. It’s all about creating a balanced effect. You want the dry end to touch the oil so that it evaporates quicker. 

It’s also important not to use your rattan reeds for different scents. 

Even if the reeds are still usable, they’re only capable of carrying one fragrance. Otherwise, the new oil will mix with the old one and potentially create a nasty effect. Nobody wants their diffuser reeds to stink up the entire house. 

Avoid putting your diffuser reeds in a confined space. Ventilated areas are better because they will disperse cleaner without being overwhelming. Remember, animals have sensitive noses so be careful about your pets. 

However, the downside of placing the diffuser reeds near a window or open air space is that they’ll have a shorter lifespan. You should experiment and see how much scent you want to experience by moving the diffuser around the room. 

Keep your reed diffuser away from wooden surfaces because essential oils can ruin them. You can also place a paper towel beneath reeds so that they don’t drip oil everywhere when you move them. 

One fun way to make your diffuser reeds more appealing is to add a few drops of food coloring.

This way you can watch the process of the reeds at work. The food coloring will travel up the reeds in the same way as the oil. As a result, they’ll be even more aesthetically appealing. 

How to Choose the Best Scents for Your Diffuser

The best oils are typically more expensive because they are the purest. However, you can enjoy pleasant fragrances without worrying about spending your child’s college fund. 

Some contain DPG or alcohol and this makes them cheaper to produce. 

Keep in mind that they will also diffuse more quickly so you’ll have to replace your oils more often. Of course, you should choose the scents that you enjoy the most and make you feel relaxed. 

If you have pets be careful because strong smells will affect them more easily. If they show a negative reaction, don’t use them. 

Do Diffuser Reeds Become Toxic Over Time? 

Don’t worry, diffuser reeds aren’t toxic unless you ingest the oil. 

Inhaling the diffused scent isn’t an issue even if it is old. The only problem is that you won’t experience a strong fragrance if any. 

Just be careful with small children and pets because they are always great at finding ways to make trouble for themselves. Toddlers and animals are experts at eating and licking things that they shouldn’t. 

But this is usually avoidable if you stow the diffuser out of reach and supervise it when you are using it. 

Final Thoughts

Diffuser reeds are fantastic but you shouldn’t waste your time trying to reuse them. 

It’s easy to find a pack of 100 reeds for about $10 on Amazon so there’s no need to be frugal. Make the most of them and experiment with different fragrances to find the one that’s best for you. 

Naturally, you can use the reed diffuser as often as you like. 

Just keep it clean so that any residual oils don’t travel up the new diffuser reeds. Otherwise, you might not experience the pleasant scent that you want. 

They are extremely easy to use and very convenient to buy so there’s no wonder why they are so popular. 

Andrew Scents and Aroma