Does Neem Oil Go Bad? What You Need To Know

People have used neem oil for hundreds of years as a natural pesticide; many people still use it today to eliminate unwanted insects. You can find it used in several products, including cosmetics, soaps, and even pet shampoos as an ingredient. However, if you keep neem oil at home, make sure you use it before it expires.

Neem oil does go bad. Every bottle has an expiration date you’ll want to check before you buy. An unopened bottle will last about a year when stored properly. However, you can store it for longer by refrigerating it. Keeping your unopened oil cool can extend its shelf life by two years.

In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about neem oil. We’ll go over how long neem oil stays good, how you should store it, and ways to make it last longer. Neem oil loses its potency over time, so you will want to replace any expired bottles you have at home.

How Long Does Neem Oil Keep?

An unopened bottle of neem oil has a shelf life of about a year. You can check any bottles you have for expiration dates. Sometimes, there are no expiry dates listed, so it’s best to record when you bring new bottles home, just in case.

You’ll usually use neem oil in a mixed solution. Anytime you’re using this oil, you’ll only want to pour out the amount you plan on using right away. When used in a solution, neem oil will start breaking down immediately. While each product is different, you should try to use all of the mixed solutions within four to six hours of preparing it for the best results.

There are ways that you can make neem oil last longer. But as long as you store it properly, you can expect it to stay good for a long time.

How To Store Neem Oil

Everyone has their preferences for how they store neem oil. Remember that it is a pesticide, so make sure you have it adequately labeled when you keep it near food. After all, you don’t want anyone to think it’s a cooking ingredient.

If you plan on using the oil right away, you can store it anywhere that you want. It shouldn’t lose its potency too quickly within a month. However, if you need it to last longer than that, you’ll need to consider your storage options.

You should store your neem oil in a cool, dark place. Always ensure that it’s never in direct sunlight. For many people, that means keeping it in a pantry or fridge. Of course, your refrigerator is going to be the best option if you want the oil to last years.

The cooler you keep neem oil, the longer it keeps, making the fridge the best storage place. However, that doesn’t mean you should freeze it!

Still not sure how to store neem oil? Check this article about 10 golden rules for storing organic pesticides!

Why You Shouldn’t Freeze Neem Oil

Since neem oil lasts longer when it’s kept cold, many people wrongly assume that keeping their bottle in the freezer will give them the best results- which is not true. When neem oil is frozen, thaws, and is frozen again, it leaves a deposit known as stearin at the bottom of the bottle.

This deposit is thick, black, and not good. It’s a sign that the oil has lost much of its potency. If you need to thaw frozen neem oil, do it slowly, and don’t put it back in the freezer afterward. You should soften it using cool water since heating it too quickly can reduce the potency.

What Is Neem Oil Used For?

Neem oil has a variety of uses. If you have a garden, this oil works as a natural pest repellent. This oil interferes with insect hormone systems, altering their ability to feed. This makes it harder for insect pests to grow and lay eggs. Neem oil is also used for cosmetic purposes and is used to kill lice

Neem oil for cosmetic uses and pesticide uses are the same- they both come from the leaves of the neem tree’s seeds. You can store your neem oil in the fridge safely, no matter what you’re using it for.

For anyone trying to find the perfect neem oil solution online, Pure PetraTools Neem Oil is 100% cold-pressed. It’s organic and contains no additional additives, so you can safely use it for cosmetic or gardening purposes. The bottle is small and can easily fit anywhere at home. 

Like all neem oil, this product has a strong smell, is very potent, and you should always dilute it before use.

How To Store Neem Oil for Longer

As we mentioned above, the best way to store neem oil is in your fridge. Here are some additional ways to make neem oil last longer:

  • Store at 40°F (4.44°C).
  • Keep out of light.
  • Don’t break the seal on the bottle until you need it.
  • Store in dark glass bottles.
  • Let it solidify (not freeze).
  • Use mixed solutions as soon as you can.
  • Include dish soap in your solutions.

Refrigerating your neem oil allows it to solidify, increasing shelf life by two to three years. You can use solid neem oil safely as well. Scoop out the amount you need or allow it to return to liquid at room temperature slowly. You can add it to your solution from there.

Another way to ensure your neem oil lasts as long as possible is to buy only cold-pressed options. When it comes to cold vs. hot-pressed oils, cold-pressed oil keeps its natural properties during production. That also means it’ll stay potent for much longer.

This video breaks down a lot of information about neem oil that’s helpful to know:

Make Your Own Neem Oil

If you use a lot of neem oil and are worried about it going bad, you can always learn to make your own. When you do, you can have neem oil ready for use whenever you need it. Plus, homemade neem oil has the same shelf life as some store-bought options.

To make your cold-pressed neem oil, you’ll need the following supplies:

  • Two glass jars with airtight lids
  • Coconut oil
  • Fresh neem leaves

Follow these instructions to make your own neem oil at home:

  1. Wash the neem leaves carefully.
  2. Dab the leaves with a paper towel, then allow to air dry completely.
  3. Fill your jar with the leaves; make sure to leave a lot of space.
  4. Cover the leaves with your coconut oil.
  5. Put the lid on and store the jar at room temperature, out of the sun, for two weeks.
  6. Filter the leaves out and pour the oil into your second jar.
  7. Store as you would any neem oil.

This method provides you with a decent amount of homemade neem oil. Of course, you can make as much as you like, then split it up into several airtight containers for later use. However, you may want to keep gardening and cosmetic containers separated. 

Are you using the oil for cosmetic purposes? If so, you may also want to add jojoba oil or fresh basil to your cold-press mixture. Doing so helps with the pungent smell and provides your skin and hair with more benefits.

Final Thoughts

Overall, unopened neem oil left at room temperature should last you about a year. However, there are many ways to make it last longer. By storing your neem oil in the fridge, you’re adding a few more years onto its shelf life.

Neem oil has many uses and is in many different products. Many gardeners prefer this organic pesticide to other options since it doesn’t harm pollinators but still repels pests. If you want to use neem oil at home, make sure you dilute it and mix it into a solution, as it’s a very potent ingredient.

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Anat Goldberg

Hi! My name is Anat and I have lived all my life in the countryside. I grew on a farm in Northern Italy and from an early age, I took care of the animals on the farm and the family garden. Over the years I have developed a growing passion for organic cultivation and pest control.

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