I have done a lot of bottle research lately and I keep seeing threads come up talking about bottles asking where to buy, what kind, etc. So I wanted to compile a list of bottle suppliers and all the information I have gathered on the subject.
First off, lets talk about the different types of bottles and the specific material properties. For most of us we use what is called a “Boston Round” bottle. While other bottle shapes are available, especially in the retail market, these are the most widely used by the DIY chef.
Polyethylene Terephthalate is a strong, lightweight plastic resin and form of polyester that closely resembles glass in clarity and takes colorants well. PET is commonly used in food packaging due to its strong barrier properties against water vapor, dilute acids, gases, oils and alcohols. PET is also shatter-resistant, slightly flexible and easy to recycle. These bottles will wrinkle and I consider them a one time use bottle or for personal storage of liquids if you don’t mind wrinkled bottles. These wrinkles will eventually crack over time. PET is more resistance to leeching of gases such as Oxygen than HDPE bottles. Ketchup bottles are usually PET.
High Density Polyethylene is a rigid, tough and strong resin of natural milky color. HDPE has very good stress crack resistance as well as high impact and melt strength. HDPE is appropriate for personal care, beverages, food and chemicals. It lends itself particularly well to blow molding. These bottles are reusable and stand up to a lot of abuse (squeezing). Elmer’s Glue comes in HDPE Bottles.
Glass containers don’t leach potentially harmful chemicals when in contact with food. They are more durable and more reusable than any plastic container. Ever notice how foods you buy in glass bottles taste better? It’s a no brainer, especially for long term storage of your e-juice and base liquids and recipes.
There are many types of closures available for the bottles we use. I am not going to go into every one. But I will point out the best closure types I have found and will give some specific information for picking out the proper closure for your bottles. Closures come in all shapes and sizes. Child proof, tamper evident, different linings (seals), dropper type, standard cap closure, spout caps, etc. Determine what specific needs you have and do some research. In my opinion childproof caps should always be used. But in some cases that may not be possible.
Droppers: Pertaining to glass bottles, these are the rubber bulb type dropper caps with the glass tube for dispensing your liquids. These also come in plastic at some sources. They can also be found graduated for measuring the amount of liquid you are dispensing. These come in pointed tips and bulb tips. I say this because when sourcing your bottles you need to make sure you get the pointed tips. If in doubt always ask the supplier. These are readily available with childproof threads.
Spout Caps: These are great for use on your larger bottles of PG, VG, and your Nicotine dispensing bottle at your mixing table. These should not be used as long term storage bottles as they don’t provide the best seal. These are not childproof so bottles with these should be kept well out of reach of children at all times.
Plain Caps: Caps come in all different varieties. Colors, type, seal, etc. The best I have found is a poly cone lined cap. These are by far the cleanest closure and provide the best seal. But I have yet to find any childproof offerings. So be warned if using these types of closures make certain that any harmful liquids are stored well out of a child’s reach.
Dripper Tips: These are the tips used in plastic containers. These come in various shapes and sizes. Some are thicker and rounded at the tip. Some are very slender and more easily fit into the various fill ports on some atty’s. Capella Flavor Drops use the thicker rounded tips. Flavourart uses the long skinny tips. Make sure you are getting the proper tip for your application.
Determining Cap and Thread Size for Various Bottles
This is easiest to explain by the professionals. CLICK HERE to view a page describing various threads and how to determine cap size and thread type. The “T” dimension will be the first number of the cap size. The second number will be the number or type of thread. So if the distance across the threads is 28mm, and the thread on the bottle makes one full revolution the cap size will be 28-400. If the thread makes one and a half revolutions the cap size is 28-410. Pretty simple.
Sourcing Your Bottles and Closures
Below are some links to vendors for various types of bottles and closures. If you have any links you would like added to this list feel free to message me or post below and I will add them. Note: I have not ordered from all of these vendors. So I am unaware if they have good shipping practices, customer service, etc. Any that I have dealt with personally I will make a note of it.
Glass Bottle Outlet - Nice selection of bottles and some very nice Poly-Coned caps. They also have a nice selection of droppers as well.
eBottles.com - Nice selection of bottles and closures.
Container and Packaging Supply - These guys will send you up to 10 samples of most of their products for a mere $7.50 shipping. After that, their shipping is absolutely ridiculous. But you can pick up some nice samples especially if you just need some nice closures for some of your miscellaneous bottles.
angel_park2014 - This is my go-to vendor on eBay for all of my bottles I sell my e-liquid in. They sell some really cool purple PET bottles that I love. The quality is amazing. The only con I find is the bottle opening is a bit small.
Premium Vials - Amazon retailer that has some good prices on Cobalt Blue dropper bottles. They are roughly $.64 each when purchased 72 at a time. I have verified with the retailer these do have pointed tips.
One Stop DIY Shop - This has been posted on the forums for sourcing various bottles. I personally have not used them yet.
4oz amber Boston rounds
This is what I have so far. I will continue to add to this list. And if there is anything you would like to see added here please feel free to comment below and I will get it in here.