Tuesday, January 18, 2011

50 An Oil Decanter, Can't?

I feel it is my duty to share when things don't work.  They always say, "If at first you don't succeed, try try again!"  Well, that's exactly what I did.

I tried to use an oil decanter for my dishwashing soap once here:


And that didn't work so great.  I used it for awhile, but it started to drive me insane... so I switched to just leaving an actual bottle of dishwashing soap out on the counter on a white tray:


And then I stumbled across another decanter in a three pack of glass bottles I purchased from Ikea.  It looked like it had a bigger spout and more potential as a pretty dishwashing soap dispenser....



This is the try try again part.  It didn't work.  Again.  Clogs.  Build up.  Sooooooo slow!  I have always heard of individuals loving this decorative way to store dishsoap close at hand {vs. leaving those bulky bottles out on the counter-top}, however, after Strike 2, I have decided to toss in the towel.  I give up.  Calling it a day.  No more oil decanter dishwashing soap dispensers for me.  Nada.  I am officially back to this.


And that is OK with me!  In fact, I adore so much how the soap dispenses out of this bottle, that I don't know why I ever needed to change it in the first place.  And if I ever switch up my dishwashing soaps in the future, I can always reuse this smaller bottle on my counter-top and tuck the bigger bottle away under the sink.

So bottom line, I learned, it's ok to try and try again, but you have to be able to let go and admit defeat sometimes.  I also learned, sometimes, it's better not to mess with a good thing.... Just thought I would pass on the tip to everyone else trying to use a decanter based on my previous posts... or anyone thinking of going that direction in the future....

Anyone else been learning any lessons lately?  How about success stories when something didn't work out so great the first time, yet was a soaring success because you didn't give up right away?


P.S.  I have heard these decanters may work better if you dilute your dishwashing soap first.  I personally decided not to take that extra step...

50 comments:

  1. A lot of times I do dilute my handsoap. I like the foaming dispensers, but I don't always like the foaming soap that is available. If you add regular handsoap about 50/50 (you may have to play with it) and swish it around it works well. I have also found that lukewarm or warm water works best when trying this. I will say, though, that someimes when I do this it takes a day or two for the soap and water to mix properly. I just try to turn the bottle upside down and back a few times each time I wash my hands for the first few days. It really isn't as complicated as I made it sound.

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  2. Have you considered making a cute label for your soap bottle? I've noticed how you creatively label other things around your home and thought maybe that would do the trick here. The label that's already on it isn't ugly or anything, I just figured you could make a label with something that appeals more to you.(Maybe a fun, patterened piece of scrapbook paper wrapped around it?) You might could even laminate paper so that it won't get destroyed by (inevitable) splashes of water!

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  3. The bottle didn't work for me either. Yes, it was cute, but messy and I worried about it possibly breaking my granite. (I'm not sure that it could break granite, but it worried me.) :) I now just keep my Mrs. Meyer's plastic bottle on the counter and consider it good.

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  4. awwww boo! I thought for sure it would work with a different nozzle! Or was it the same nozzle for both bottles? Either way - sorry chica! My cheapo nozzle from bed bath and beyond works really well... but I'm guessing it's because it has a really long "straw" attached to it. Luckily the containers you have for your dish soap are cute! I wouldn't mind displaying those versus my ugly giant plastic bottle that my soap comes in!

    I tried a DIY project recently that was an absolute disaster. We all have those moments of "omg really? and moving on!" haha

    Good luck with the next one <3

    xoXOxo
    Jenn @ Peas & Crayons

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  5. I've never had luck with the decanters either. During one of my attempts the soap trapped about 100 gnats over the coarse of a month or so. It looked disgusting and I was totally embarrassed that there were that many gnats in my house....who knew!

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  6. I have mine in a decanter and it actually works really great. I agree with the previous poster though. I think it is the straw part that makes the difference since it lets in air as it pours. I got mine at HomeSense. (I think that is Home Goods in the US).

    Glad you found something that works for you though!

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  7. Bummer! I bought an oil decanter set from World Market and while the soap is slow to come out, I have noticed that I use less of it now, therefore saving resources! I have also gotten to adding water to dilute it a little bit, but it doesnt seem to do much for it.

    At least your soap bottle is cute, and is all corralled together on a cute little tray. And hey, at least you tried!!

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  8. I covered a Windex bottle with some leftover wallpaper that matches my kitchen, so it's pretty and I can leave it out. Don't ask me why I haven't bothered to do the same with my soap bottle, which I usually waste time by putting under the sink inside the cabinet. I'm off to find more wallpaper scraps to do that now.

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  9. I appreciate your honesty on this one. I never, ever tried it because I suspected it would be more trouble than it's worth. I'm also such a neat-freak I don't like things on my counter, so everything is under the sink for me. However, your little dish soap bottle is so cute I think it looks darling on the white tray. Love it.

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  10. Oh that's so funny! I have an oil decanter and it works just fine! I wonder why mine is different? I agree tho... I totally use way less soap than before!! Yay for conservation! :)

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  11. I have a soap pump as part of the sink and I wouldn't trade it for the world!! I save counter space and I can buy soap in bulk and just refill the pump. I can one-handedly pump my soap :)

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  12. I know someone who just uses an old glass bottle without a spout (like an old wine bottle or large beer bottle with labels removed of course). It looks cute!

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  13. I use a repurposed glass bottle with a liquor pour for my dishsoap. I dilute the dishsoap just a bit, but have never had problems with bugs or slow pouring. Your local spirits retailer (or heck, even the grocery store) will have them for about $1 each. Then, you can use whatever pretty bottle you like!

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  14. We have had problems with these, too. So for olive oil we now use what the pros use - a squeeze bottle from a restaurant supply store. Cost about $1 or $2...and they work SO well! :)

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  15. I use an old soft soap frosted white pump and refill it as needed.It never had a label..and it is so clean looking.I never could get used to using a decanter for soap, as what do you after cleaning or handling raw meat and need to wash your hands??I wouldn't want it all over the bottle...but with my soap dispenser which has a fab pump on it..even using my elbow in situations like these..ha,ha.

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  16. I've used one before and hated it. Don't get me wrong. It looked great on the counter tops but it took forever to get soap out of it. So long I would much rather use the original bottle then that. Great post!

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  17. What about a tin can (that your current bottle can fit in) covered in a cute paper or fabric print then clear coat it to somewhat waterproof it.

    Then you would just see the knozzle sticking out which is somewhat better than the whole plastic bottle. :)

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  18. I've tried things like that too and they've never worked.

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  19. Tried twice (like you) and it never worked, but I do use a bottle for my olive oil and it works amazing!
    I have a pretty holder for hand soap and lotion (from William Sonoma ---it was a gift!) that I adore. Now I fill with my own stuff but hide the dish soap under the sink!

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  20. I saw someone (wish I could think of the Blog right now) take a regular dish soap bottle and spray paint it with spray paint made for plastic and put a monogram on it....sooo cute! So, you get the same bottle with a cuter look.

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  21. I have this exact same dilemna! The oil decanter LOOKS great but is just toooo slow. So I have the regular bottle of dish soap sitting next to it. Never thought of watering the soap down, maybe I'll give that a try.

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  22. My mom always uses the decanters by diluting...but it was a pain to get the hang of at first. She had to come up with just the right amount and it sucked for a while. Now they are pretty though!

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  23. Spray bottle: diluted about 2:1. Works so, so great. I use the stream if I'm washing a sinkful or the spray if I'm just washing 1 dish. Much easier for kids to use too. Love it - and looks nice with a simple label: dish soap!

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  24. I can relate to this. My suggestion is when you need a new sink, get one that has the built in soap dispenser. Solves all problems!

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  25. I first saw the oil-decanter-for-soap idea on Martha Stewart (long ago when she had her own show - before incarceration). I thought it was a stunning idea, but never actually did it. In fact, I think it was one of her "Good Things". Hmm. Anyway, I found a nice clear and stainless steel pump that I refil. It has a nice, long spout so I can fit a sponge under it to pump out soap when washing dishes. The only drawback is, the kids use it for hand washing, too, which isn't so bad, but I'd like to keep it just for dishes - can't have everything, now can we? Sometimes less is more.

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  26. That's a bummer! Oh well though. It's worth a shot.

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  27. i was just thinking about this the other day, that i should copy smarty-pants jen and do this. thanks for the update. ;)

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  28. I had the same problem until I was browsing the kitchen area of Ikea and found a sugar shaker. It has the same look but with a larger hole to pour from.

    http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/40103826

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  29. My sister-in-law uses a hand soap pump bottle. It's cute (i think from Target?) and pumps out the perfect amount each time, which is perfect if my soap-happy brother does the dishes. I love the idea and plan to look into it soon!

    That said - your dishwashing liquid already comes in a cute bottle!

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  30. I was going to suggest what House of Hepworth's did when she painted her regular ole dispenser with ORB and that was that!

    I was wishing I could use a beverage dispenser for my laundry detergent, but all things I read online when others tried was that it didn't work out!

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  31. I got some silver soap dispensers in the kitchen section of target, they rusted within a week. So I decided to try pottery barn. They have some beautiful clear glass dispensers that I bought and have never had a problem with!

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  32. This post actually made me giggle a little because my husband and I were fighting this battle for awhile. I wanted the pretty decanter, which he would repeatedly put it back under the sink and pull out the original bottle. I would then switch it on him. This continued until I finally gave in and realized that it really wasn't working! I hear you on this one! :o)

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  33. I was so excited I went and searched house of hepworths site. Here is her dispenser. You girls inspire me to "dream" great things now if only working outside the home and kids sports didn't get in the way of actually "doing" those things.
    http://www.houseofhepworths.com/2010/11/22/the-soap-pump-revisited/

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  34. I totally had the same issue with the decanter. Finally gave up!

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  35. You inspired me to put my plastic bottles away and switch to pretty glass ones. I have a regular soap pump for hand soap. For dishwashing soap I didnt want to use a decanter because i couldnt find one. I found a pretty glass jar that has a spout and it is plugged with a cork. I love it so far. I got it at hobby lobby, just though I would share because you made my kitchen look so pretty! :) Love your blog

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  36. It looks like you are going for something a little more modern, but this was my answer to the spout :)
    http://cleanmama.blogspot.com/2010/09/cute-soap-dispenser-solution.html

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  37. I'm always looking for ways to store my soap. I've thought about a decanter but after reading so much about it, I didn't want to risk it not working. I wanted to use glass but my sink has a big window where light shines directly on it and I didn't like my soap sitting in the sun. Isn't it bad? So now I just have a stainless steel container for dish soap and a black container for hand soap. Unfortunately even though the dish soap is labeled, everyone uses that soap to wash their hands. I wonder if they think the black one is lotion or something.

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  38. Aw, well that's no fun! Oh well, if it doesn't work for you, it doesn't work for you. :) Personally, I'd have to agree with the other commenters on this - it might be the spout. I bought ours at Target awhile ago and it works great! Granted, it takes a few seconds for the soap to come out, but we've gotten used to it. My only complaint is that we use clear dishwashing liquid without dyes and scents, etc, but after awhile of being in the dispenser it turns yellow. Maybe the sun? Oh well, I'm not complaining (too much, anyways!).

    ~Chelsea

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  39. I have used a soap PUMP for years! I love it. In fact I change them for the seasons! I have a Fall one, a snowman one, a birdhouse for spring and summer.....LOL!

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  40. I use the Lillholmen soap dispenser from IKEA. It's actually a bathroom soap dispenser, but it's clear glass w/a stainless steel nozzle and it's perfect for my sink/soap! I agree with a previous commenter, I think the IKEA Dold sugar shaker would work well! I'm going to have to pick one up the next time I'm at IKEA!

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  41. i have a pump built into my sink, and i love it, but i couldnt give up the dawn direct foam, so that bottle sits out, i love some of the suggestions with making a new lable or spray paiting the bottle... Also i just came across a new blogger who used a recycled olive oil bottle: http://insidethemindofnicole.blogspot.com/2011/01/my-home-dish-soap-bottle.html
    might try it.

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  42. I use an oil decanter for my dish soap and it works great - no diluting required! As others have mentioned however, mine too has a "straw" feature that lets in air as the soap comes out. At any rate, mine is an actual oil decanter. I received it as a gift with dipping oil in it, and once the oil was used up, I washed up the bottle, peeled off the label and have been filling it with dish soap ever since!

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  43. I've heard a lot of people complain about this but I got one for $4 from Marshall's and I've never had a problem, other than the bottle getting soap streaks that wash off easy. I don't know if it is because the bottle is almost triangular and I don't fill it up to the top?

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  44. I've tried 3 different soap dispensers and all three have given me problems :( one leaked from the top, one from the bottom, the tubing broke on the other, it wouldn't pump right...I've given up on them too, Lol. Next time I need dish soap I'll be buying one already in a pump container!

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  45. I too once tried the oil-spout-as-soap dispenser. Looks pretty, but it doesn't FUNCTION well at ALL. you drizzle oil, I don't ever want to "drizzle" soap! Well, my solution may not be aesthetically pleasing, but at least its better than the original bottle the soap came in. And it works GREAT: I use a clear plastic mustard/ketchup/sauce bottle from a kitchen supply store. My dad gave me the idea and I have never looked back!

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  46. It is funny I came across your post..because I did the same thing, except I used the bathroom pump from Ikea. It was right next to the olive oil one that you purchased. So far no problemos..works great and looks nice! :-)

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  47. I've been reading through the blog from start to finish so sorry that this comment is behind the times! I got the same bottles from Ikea and use them for Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinegar - not radical but I like it!!

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  48. Any bottle you can't force soap out of by squeezing or pumping will be super slow if you don't dilute it so the consistency runs easily with gravity...try diluting concentrated dish soap 2:1 slowly with hot water. I have been doing this for years in an old Trader Joe's Lemonade bottle (the middle of the bottle has an hourglass shape for no-slip pouring) with an oil decanter on top. Saves soap and looks great.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks so much for the tip! I decided a soap pump works wonders for dishsoap. Decorative and practical.

      xoxo!
      Jen

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  49. A foam soap pump does work well, but for greater efficiency a spray bottle with diluted dish soap is seriously the best. I have a deep blue color spray bottle I found at Publix.

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