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Handy Tip – How to Clean Essential Oil Diffusers


Aromatherapy lovers will agree that there’s nothing better than the pristine, nurturing scent of essential oils filling your space, and one of the best ways to achieve this is through the use of essential oil diffusers. But diffusers need maintainance, just like anything else, and here are some handy tips for keeping them squeaky clean and in good working order.

Whether you use the old-style ceramic burner or the newer electric diffuser, you’ll notice that once the water evaporates, a thick, sticky essential oil residue can be left clinging to the walls and/or base of the bowl. In electric diffusers, this residue can clog the filter, causing the motor to struggle or even malfunction and break. In ceramic burners, the residue can attract flammable dust and become ‘baked on’ by the heat.

Diligent cleaning is the only way to manage these issues, such as wiping out the bowl with a damp cloth after each use. But there are times when we forget to do this, or life gets busy and wiping out a diffuser bowl may fall low on the list of priorities. It is then that the sticky residue builds up and can become a hazard. 

The sticky essential oil residue, when left to build up, can be difficult to remove from certain surfaces, particularly glazed ceramic bowls. An easy way to remove a build-up of residue from diffuser bowls is to wipe the walls and base of the bowl clean with alcohol wipes, or to apply white spirits or isopropyl alcohol to a cloth/paper towel and wipe the bowl surface. Always use a wet cloth afterwards to wipe the surface and remove traces of the spirits/alcohol. If you are cleaning an electric diffuser, make sure to unplug it and remove power cords first. 

For the more stubborn, ‘baked on’ essential oil residue left on ceramic bowls, you can fill the bowl with white spirits or isopropyl alcohol (never do this with an electric diffuser) and let it sit for a while until the residue is dissolved, then soak up the alcohol with paper towel and wipe clean with a damp cloth. Use gloves with white spirits or isopropyl alcohol as it may irritate and dry out your skin.

To enjoy the freshest aromas, and to prolong the life of your diffuser/burner, make a habit of regular cleaning. 

Enjoy your aromatherapy!

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