Can I Use Reed Diffuser Oil In An Electric Diffuser? (Important Information)

So, imagine this scenario – you’ve come back from work after a long day and you want to relax. Oh, snap, you are out of essential oil for your electric diffuser. Not wanting to go back to the stores, you spot the reed diffuser oil sitting nicely on the table. Grateful for the miracle, you figured, you have found your quick fix. 

Can you use reed diffuser oil in an electric diffuser? No, absolutely not. You cannot use a reed diffuser oil for an electric diffuser. The reason is that most reed diffusers use incredibly strong oil, water, and alcohol. On the other hand, electric diffusers process water and essential oils only. By implication, you can’t use reed diffuser oil since it contains alcohol, neutral oil, essential oil, and water. Risking it will lead to various health complications and you will damage your electric diffuser. So, don’t even think about it.  

A photo of a Reed diffuser with oil
It is a really bad idea to try to use reed diffuser oil in an electric diffuser

There are different types of diffusers, and each has its design and purpose. As a result, not all diffusers can be used in various ways. 

By the way if you are looking for some amazing oils to use in your diffuser have a try of these ones available on Amazon. I have tested them out and have got to admit they are simply divine ( don’t worry the link opens in a new window).

Reed and electric diffusers 

A diffuser is a device that provides a convenient way to spread essential oil throughout the entire house or office space. It releases a clean scent into the air to help you clear your mind. Some essential oils you can use with a diffuser include lemon, lavender, peppermint, eucalyptus, tea tree, sweet orange, lemongrass, and frankincense. 

You can put a combination of different oil into the diffuser provided you know how to do so. 

Reed diffusers 

Reed diffusers have reeds or wooden sticks placed in a bottle of essential or fragrance oil. When the oil travels up the reed, it releases scent into the air. Unlike most diffusers, reed diffusers don’t produce mist. It also does not use electricity. 

A reed diffuser uses essential oil, natural oil, alcohol, and water as its main ingredients. In some cases, it can include a mix of perfumes and preservatives. Instead of water, most reed diffusers use carrier oil. This way, it lets the essential oil mix and distribute evenly throughout the reed. 

Reed diffusers use alcohol to keep the reeds fresh and prevent mold. The common alcohol used is either isopropyl alcohol or vodka. 

Take a look at these reed diffusers on Amazon if you need a new one, they come in amazing scents and the scent last for a long time from my experience.

To learn more about Reed diffusers and how to use them check out the helpful guide that I wrote.

Electric diffusers 

This type of diffuser uses electricity to warm the oil and distribute the scent. It is easy to clean, and the size will determine the reach of the scent. Electric diffusers will only process essential oils and water. 

My personal preference is to use an electric diffuser and one of my favourites is this one from Amazon, it comes with a huge selection of oils that are safe to use.

Why you can’t use reed diffuser oil in an electric diffuser 

Both diffusers are designed to process specific liquids. As a result, you can’t change that liquid as desired. Because of this, you must check the ingredients in your reed diffuser oil before choosing an alternative. 

If your reed diffuser oil is just essential oil and water, you can use it for an electric diffuser. But since it is not, it is not advisable for an electric diffuser. 

What will happen if you put reed diffuser oil in an electric diffuser? 

Below are some of the problems you will face if you try to use Reed diffuser oil in an electric diffuser.

Diffuser malfunction 

You probably would have guessed it by now – using reed diffuser oil in your electric diffuser will either damage or break the machine. 

Liquids have varying properties. For example, how they mix and viscosity. Reed diffuser oils are less concentrated and thicker than normal pure essential oils. Because of this thickness, your electric diffuser will not be able to turn the oil into a mix. As a result, it will start to malfunction or break down completely.  

Health implication 

Let us assume you successfully bypass the diffuser malfunction part. Another reason not to use reed diffuser oil in an electric diffuser is the health implication. 

There are certain things you should not breathe into your lungs. Whatever you put inside the electric diffuser will be sent into the air and inhaled. Water vapor transports oil into the lungs differently in both diffusers. 

When you smell the mist of a working diffuser, you inhale the water particles and the oil. But since the mist is small and diluted, there is almost no risk of a health complication. 

Remember, a reed diffuser oil contains alcohol, oils, and perfume. When projected into the air, these combinations are not safe to inhale. Imagine inhaling a large quantity of alcohol? This will cause alcohol poisoning and lead to nausea, rapid heart rate, low body temperature, dizziness, and various other symptoms. 

The human body can process small amounts of isopropyl alcohol. However, directly inhaling the mist is risky. Apart from the alcohol, inhaling unknown alcohol can trigger allergic reactions. 

Now you are obviously asking, are the ingredients not harmful in a reed diffuser anyways? No, they are not. All ingredients in a reed diffuser are safe since the diffuser doesn’t project them into the air. But they are not safe for an electric diffuser. 

Is there any way to use a reed diffuser oil for another diffuser? 

Yes, use candle diffusers, also known as wax melts.

Candle diffusers are similar to electric heat diffusers. However, it uses a candle as its heat source instead of electricity. The candle flame heats the oil and diffuses the scent. The oil will eventually evaporate. On the other hand, you don’t have to worry about diffuser malfunction or ruining the diffuser since it is not electronic. 

Another solution is to never run out of essential oils when you need them the most. Put differently, buy your oil in bulk. Although you will eventually run out, you can keep enough as supply whenever you need them the most. 

How to choose the right diffuser? 

Choosing the right diffuser depends on the need. But generally, consider the following: • The power source • Material • Run time • Room size and type of room 


Using reed diffuser oil in an electric diffuser definitely sounds like a genius idea. However, there are serious risks, so don’t try this substitution trick. Since diffusers are supposed to help you feel better, switching the oil will ultimately complicate your health. Apart from that, a broken diffuser is another expense you don’t want to deal with. 

Andrew Scents and Aroma