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E-liquid flavors is what makes vaping a lot more interesting. Without it, it's just breathing water vapor in and out without anything else interesting going on. Once you're off combustibles and into vaping, you'll would want to get the best e-liquid flavor(s) that fits your tastes. You may even stock up on your favorites - always a good idea.
However, that does mean you have to store them properly in order to be able to expect them to be there ready to go when you want them the most.
Whether you're storing your eliquid for just a while or for a longer period of time, you should keep it in a cool, dark place away from any source of heat. High temperatures can deteriorate the quality of an e-liquid, even if it's not in direct sunlight or not in a hot enough condition that would have it immediately vaporize by itself.
Heat messes with the flavor compounds in the e-liquid and turn them into something else, so whatever you bought it for will no longer be if stored in a hot place. It's best to keep your e-liquid in a cool place.
You must properly seal your e-liquid in a proper container that will not let air or ultraviolet light in. Both of these things can deteriorate the quality of the e-liquid and hasten oxidation of the nicotine within it. If exposed to these elements, the e-liquid will change color as a result of chemical reactions.
Nicotine oxidation produces cotinine, which is the predominant metabolite of the former. Along with that is the breakdown of the flavors in the e-liquid, and ultraviolet rays act as a catalyst to this chemical reaction.
Other flavorful things like coffee and chocolate undergo a similar process when they oxidize, which also result in their loss of their pleasant flavors. While it's impossible to keep it from oxidizing forever, having your e-liquid sealed tight in a cool and dark place when not in use can certainly help it last a lot longer.
Leaving e-liquid in these places can become rather common due to online shipping. Sometimes, due to various circumstances, they may not get checked immediately upon delivery. When that happens, they sit in the mailbox or the car (if you got it from the post office) for quite a while, which is certainly not good for it.
If not moved to a cool and dark place right away, you'll find the e-liquid to be a runny mess instead of the syrupy goodness you'd usually expect.
There's no place cooler and darker for e-liquid than in the refrigerator. Before you think that would be too cold, do know that it's not only okay but also beneficial for the e-liquid. Since most bacteria can't thrive in near freezing temperatures, keeping it there can slow down or even kill whatever nasties may be hitching a ride inside those bottles.
If you really need to keep it in there for a longer time, you may want to move them to the freezer. There should be no need to fear the e-liquid turning into ice as the concoction won't just freeze like water. In fact, storing them in the freezer can make the liquid inside a bit more viscous, which may be what you'd want anyway.
Keep your e-liquid away from children and pets.
Of course, you wouldn't want your e-liquid to be gotten into by those who aren't supposed to, and that's namely children and pets. While you can have childproof caps on it, that's no complete guarantee that your e-liquid can be made safe from tampering. Any parent would know just how incredible an inquisitive child's ability to get into things can really be.
Therefore, being able to put your e-liquid in a place out of their reach is crucial, like a high shelf or a cupboard if you're not planning to store it in the refrigerator. This is very important not only because you would want to be able to enjoy your e-liquid, but also because the nicotine in it is flammable and can be poisonous if directly consumed.
Short-term storage means you intend to use your e-liquid shortly, like within a week or so at most. As previously mentioned, the main concern here is to have it out of reach from children and pets while making sure it's in a cool dark place. If you have it in glass containers and can store it somewhere safe like in a locked drawer or a cupboard in a cool room, then it should be fine.
If you happen to have them in plastic containers, then you should squeeze the bottle without spilling the e-liquid before putting the cap on to get rid of the air inside to minimize oxidation. The cap must be closed tightly so air and moisture can't get in. If the e-liquid has been partially consumed, consider transferring to a smaller container.
If you have to store your e-liquid for a long time, then consider having it in tinted glass containers. The glass will ensure the chemical integrity of the e-liquid throughout the duration, while the tint will make sure no light can damage the contents. Keep in mind that e-liquids tend to last for around 2 years in storage as long as they're stored right.
Having them refrigerated can extend shelf life, but it's still recommended to consume it before the 2-year period is up.
Also make sure to not mix the components right away if you know you'll have to store them away for a long time in order to maintain freshness as much as possible.