What To Do with Old Pill Bottles – Quick Guide 2022

Millions of people fill prescriptions every single day and As a matter of fact, more than 4 billion prescriptions are filled in America each year.

This begs the question, what are we supposed to do with the old pill bottles.

Are they just going to pile up, collecting dust in our medicine cabinets?

Many people don’t know exactly what to do with old pill bottles.

Luckily, you don’t have to scratch your head too hard to actually find ways to repurpose those prescription bottles piled up in your medicine cabinet.

Instead of tossing them, reuse the bottles in a fun and creative way.

What to do with old pill bottles

At some point, you’ll get a prescription be it for a new medication or an old one.

But sooner or later, you’ll probably run out of the pills in the bottle.

That’s why it is important to find more creative ways to look for uses for those bottles before you toss them away.

It might seem crazy at first, but using old pill containers can actually help you save money and make your life easier.

Here are just a few ways you can put those pill bottles to good use.

Candle holder

Prescription bottles come in different sizes, making them versatile enough to be used as candle holders.

It’s a great way to give your old bottle a fashionable makeover.

Depending on the size of the bottle, you can create a small-scale or full-sized candle holder.

For instance, glue together a couple of bottles of different sizes to create a gorgeous candle holder.

Paint the outside of the bottles first to make them look classy.

Your imagination is the only limit when it comes to creating new designs by putting your old pill bottles on display in unexpected ways.

Storage for buttons and beads

Anyone who has ever accidentally popped a button on their clothing understands the frustration of searching for a replacement with no luck.

If you don’t want to go out and buy a brand new pack of buttons, you can use an old pill bottle to store your extra buttons in.

You’ll never have to worry about ruining another shirt if you keep the buttons in a pill bottle.

They’re easily accessible and so you won’t lose them under piles of clothes or in random places.

The same goes for beads and small trinkets.

Keep beads in these compact bottles especially when working on a jewelry project.

Earbuds holder

Moving to a new apartment can be a stressful experience especially when you don’t know where to put all your things.

If you’re tired of losing or misplacing your earbuds, consider storing them in an old pill container instead.

The compact size makes it easy to tuck the small objects in the pill bottle, creating a neat and tidy display.

Feel free to paint and decorate the outside of the containers before you put your earbuds in them to give them that personal touch.

Whatever you choose to do with your old pill bottles, they’re sure to be put to good use as a creative and stylish storage option.

Makeup organizer

Currently, the world is dealing with a plastic problem.

In fact, according to UNEP, approximately 400 million metric tons of plastic are produced every year.

Not only does this pose a huge environmental issue, but it also poses a health risk for wildlife including fish, birds, and mammals.

According to the Ocean Conservancy, plastic debris is responsible for more than 92% of all marine debris in the world’s oceans.

With our over-reliance on plastic, old pill bottles can be reused to safely store makeup and other cosmetic products.

You’re sure to find large enough prescription bottles among your stash that will serve as the ideal containers for your makeup brushes, mascara, eye shadow, and foundation.

Use them for safe and easy storage of your makeup products.

Storage for pointy objects

There are a lot of pointy things in our homes that require proper storage.

These include toothpicks, needles and thumbtacks.

If you’re looking for something more compact that can store a handful of pointy objects, then pill bottles are the perfect choice.

You won’t have to worry about scattered objects or lost items anymore.

Just keep the larger prescription bottles in your bathroom, kitchen, and office so you have quick and easy access to your pointy storage whenever you need it.

Travel-sized container for shampoo, lotion and conditioner

For those who love to travel, it’s always a hassle to choose where to put toiletries in your suitcase.

If you’re planning a vacation or a weekend getaway, consider repurposing old pill bottles into travel-sized containers for shampoo, conditioner and lotion.

You can easily fill up three large bottles with your favorite brand of shampoos, conditioners, and body lotions.

Just give them an attractive design on the outside and use them when traveling to make sure you don’t forget any essentials for your shower and beauty routine.

Additionally, take the time to thoroughly clean the pill bottles before adding your favorite toiletries.

While they’re not ideal for long-term storage, there’s no reason to put your shampoo in a dirty or unsanitary container.

Once you’re done with your trip and it’s time to store the toiletries in the pantry, consider storing them in clear bottles so you can see how much product is left.

Cotton swab container

If you’re out at home and can’t find your cotton swabs, it is super annoying.

That’s why you need to find a solution for storing your cotton swabs so they’re always available when you need them.

If you have old pill bottles lying around, this is the perfect time to put them to use.

They make great containers for cotton swabs or Q-tips because their sizes are almost identical.

You can even have several different sizes on hand and switch them out as needed.

For instance, you can have a small bottle for your cotton swabs and a larger one for your Q-tips.

Take one bottle with you to work or school and keep the others in your room or car.

Then, when you run out of one item, you can simply refill it from the substitution box that you supply.

Seed storage

People who love to grow their own herbs, fruits and vegetables know how important it is to store the seeds properly.

If you’re not very good at keeping track of the seeds’ germination date, you might end up planting them too early or too late.

That’s why some people like to write the date on their seed packets with a marker.

Instead of writing on the packets every time you need to start new seeds, try using old pill bottles as seed cases instead.

This will keep everything in order and leave more time for gardening.

Coin holder

If you’re one of those people who’s always losing coins or has them scattered in every corner of the house, you should consider using old prescription bottles to organize your loose change.

They’re small enough that you can keep them all together without feeling overwhelmed.

Use an old pill bottle to store your money in the evening before you go to bed.

You’ll know exactly how much money is there and where it is in the morning.

No more wasting time looking for loose change that fell under the couch or behind the nightstand.

Waterproof stash for your cash

On a rainy day, finding a dry place to keep your cash can be difficult.

For some people, it’s impossible.

If you’re one of those people, consider repurposing a pill bottle as a waterproof storage for your cash.

By placing the cash in a pill bottle, you’ll have it within reach whenever you need it.

This can help save your money from getting soaked or damaged by water when you accidentally drop the wallet in the rain or accidentally drop your purse into a puddle.

In fact, with some cash hidden away in a prescription bottle you can avoid lugging a bulky purse on a quick trip to the grocery store.

Bobby pins and hair ties storage

If you’re an active person who likes to stay in shape, then you know the importance of having a good hair tie or bobby pin when you need one.

If you plan to go for a run or if you just like keeping your hair in place, it’s crucial that you have them on hand when needed.

Instead of keeping them in your purse where they can get lost or tangled up with other makeup products, consider using empty pill bottles instead.

These will keep your bobby pins and hair ties in order.

Plus, they’re easy to carry with you wherever you go.

They don’t take up much space in your handbag or pocket, so they’re portable and convenient.

Jewelry holder

If you’re a woman who likes to carry some jewelry with you while you’re out running errands or travelling, try using an empty pill bottle to store your favorite accessories instead of a box or pouch that can get easily damaged or lost.

You can store everything that you want to keep with you on the go in one pill bottle.

Just clean and dry the container thoroughly, and fill it up again with your rings, necklaces, bracelets and brooches.

Designate several different bottles for your jewelry so that you always have them organized and ready for use.

Put necklaces in one bottle and rings in another.

Then, throw them into your purse so you can quickly get dressed up whenever you’re going on a night out with your friends.

Travel size sewing kit

If you like to sew and make your own clothes, you know how frustrating it can be to not have the right supplies on hand when you need them.

If you plan to travel out of town, consider preparing your sewing kit in advance so that it’s ready for your trip.

Take an old pill bottle and fill it up with the basic supplies that you need for most projects.

This way, you’ll always have thread, safety pins and buttons handy so that you can immediately start working on your next project.

Matches storage

Going on a camping trip?

Need to light a campfire?

Store your matches in an old prescription bottle so that they stay dry and out of the reach of a curious child while they’re NOT in your handbag.

Don’t forget to tear off the striking surface on the matchbox and put it on the bottle together with the matches.

You’ll be able to easily access them and use them even in a rainstorm.

Single flower vase

If you have a small plant in your house, consider using an empty pill bottle as a vase.

Simply fill it up with some fresh water and soil and place the flower inside.

The water will stay fresh for a few days and ensure that your plant is watered at all times.

If you have several plants, you can also store them individually in their own pill bottles to ensure they get enough sunshine and have enough water.

It’s easy to take care not to over water your plants, so this is a great way to ensure that they’re always cared for.


It’s not advisable to simply throw all of your empty bill bottles in the trash.

The plastic in them can take up to 400 years to decompose.

This means that they’ll be sitting in a landfill for a very long time, not decomposing and creating more waste.

Instead of throwing your empty pill bottles away, try taking them to your local recycling center for proper disposal.

In some communities you may find special receptacles on the curb for this purpose.

If not, then a trip to your local recycling center will do just the trick.

Check the US Drug Enforcement Administration for information on nearby drop-off centers.

Final Thoughts

There are many ways that you can repurpose your old pills as a great way to recycle and reuse them.

These tips have given you several creative ways to use your pill bottles for scrapbooking, organizing, storing and much more.

The possibilities for creativity are endless.

With just a little imagination, you can make your home more eco-friendly and build up some extra savings while doing so.

Have fun!


Is it safe to throw away empty prescription bottles?

Well, it’s not really advised to throw away your pill bottles.

These bottles are made of plastic that will pollute the environment.

Instead, you can recycle or reuse your bottles.

Recycling and reusing is also safer than leaving them in the trash or dumping them into landfills.

What should i do with old pill bottles?

If you have old pill bottles, you can store your valuable things such as jewelry, seeds and more.

However, be sure to clean them thoroughly before use.

You can also transform the bottle into a nice vase for your flower arrangement and other crafts project.