Determining Bottle Sizes

Figuring out bottle sizes

Refills, Not Landfills

When we purchase products like shampoos, body wash, lotions, detergents, and so forth, they usually come in a sturdy container. Whether containers are made with plastic, glass, or metal, it is a great option to reuse them to avoid these containers ending up in landfill. What's a great way to reuse such containers? Fill them up again with our collection of refill products!

Using your own containers for refills, but not sure if your containers will be large enough? Don't fret! We've got you!

Checking the Product Label

Bottle Label Volume
If you are lucky, some bottles have labels that indicate its volume capacity. These bottles will usually note the volume in units of fluid ounces (fl oz), milliliter (mL), or gallon (gal). This volume measurement may sometimes even be embossed on the side or bottom of the glass container.

For example, the example image shows that this bottle has a volume capacity of 16 fluid ounces (or 475 milliliters). Note that 16 fluid ounces is not the same as 16 ounces. Fluid ounces are a unit of volume and ounces are a unit of weight.

Calculating with the Nutrition Facts Label

Bottle Label Net Weight
Unfortunately, sometimes a bottle may have labels that do not indicate the net volume but instead indicate the net weight (usually in units of pounds (lb), ounces (oz), or both). This is how much your bottle weighs, as oppose to how much your bottle can fill in terms of volume.

These garbanzo beans have a net weight of 15.5 ounces (not fluid ounces), but we have no idea what the volume of this container is! Or do we?
Nutrition Facts Label
We do! To figure out this can's volume, we will need to do a bit of math:
We see that this can of garbanzo beans has a serving size of 1/2 US cup. A single 1/2 US cup is about 120mL. For a total of about 3.5 servings, we have 3.5 x 120 mL = 420mL (or ~14 fl-oz). This means that this can will fill up to around 14 fluid ounces! Use each refill product's volume calculator to figure out what volume your refill needs will require!

Can't convert tsps/tbsps/cups to mL/fl-oz? No worries! Just do a quick web search!

Using Measuring Cups

Jar with Measuring Cup
If you the container does not have a Nutrition Facts label, then you can use this method!

In this case, grab some measuring cups. I usually start off with a 1/4 cup. I then fill the container with 1/4 cups of water until the container is full, all while counting how many cups of water I have filled.

In this example, we know that 1/4 cups has a total volume of approzimately 60mL. If this container took four 1/4 cups, then we know that the volume is approximately 4 x 60mL = 240 mL (or ~8 fl-oz).

If you have pumps or caps that will take up part of your container's volume, make sure to account for the space when you are filling up the container with water.