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Blue is Not Better: Retailers Guide to the Best Alternatives to Cobalt Glass

Despite their appealing appearance, there’s a reason why cobalt blue glass containers are not as popular today as they used to be. In fact, they have become more common in antique stores than they are in shopping centers and beauty shops. What could be the reasons behind this?

The color blue is often associated with a sense of tranquility and peace. It’s a color that goes well with nearly any kind of design or style, which is why it’s no surprise that blue glass, particularly cobalt blue glass jars, won the interest of many businesses. 

Ever since Ancient Egypt, people have been using cobalt blue glass for making dishware, ceramics, jewelry, and different types of embellishments. Today, cobalt glass jars and bottles remain to be some of the most popular containers that businesses use, particularly retailers of skincare products, perfumes, and essential oils.

However, as with any popular product, it’s vital to ask some questions before jumping on the bandwagon and mindlessly buying cobalt glass jars wholesale. In this article, we’ll talk about the answers to some of the most common questions of retailers about cobalt blue glass. Is it worth your money? Is this type of glass safe? Are there better options?

But before going more in-depth, let’s first look into some of the basics. This should help us understand why blue glass became a thing and why some businesses have decided it isn’t anymore.


Cobalt: The Basics

Cobalt is a naturally occurring element. It is usually found in rocks, soil, plants, water, and animals. It is found nearly everywhere, and its uses apply to many different industries--from construction to military, automotive, medicine, agriculture, paint industry, pottery, and many more.  

Exposure to cobalt is generally safe, especially if the amount of cobalt is small or the material is already mixed into finished products. Cobalt is also necessary for good health as it is one of the elements that form vitamin B12.

Humans normally ingest cobalt through food, particularly meat and dairy products. However, aside from food, cobalt may also enter the body through inhalation or dermal exposure. 

Excessive exposure to cobalt could have harmful impacts on health. In the 1960s, when adding cobalt to beer was still acceptable, cobalt was linked to a heart problem experienced by people who drank excessively. Also, several animal studies reveal that long-term exposure to cobalt in the air can cause lung damage and increased counts of red blood cells. These animal studies included pigs, guinea pigs, hamsters, and rats. 

According to studies about cobalt toxicity, industrial workers who inhale cobalt dust in above-normal amounts are the most at risk of developing cobalt-related health problems. The same is true for radioactive cobalt, which could damage cells and weaken a person’s immunity against infections. 

Despite these, there’s no reason for the public to worry about cobalt. The USA Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Energy, Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration have policies and procedures in place to regulate different types of materials that could pose health issues, including cobalt.


Cobalt Glasses and Why They’re Blue

Blue glass containers are often seen in beauty shops and homeware stores. They’re undeniably pleasing to the eyes. Plus, after using up their contents, customers can use them as decorative elements for their homes or offices. 

Some people use empty cobalt glass jars and bottles as flower vases, herb canisters, and holders of any other stuff that could fit in. Some people also use them for decoration or to add an antique vibe to their place.

But how exactly did these glasses become blue? The answer is simple: cobalt. Cobalt is naturally bluish in color, and it is a highly reliable coloring agent. 

When a cobalt compound, particularly cobalt oxide or cobalt carbonate, is added to a molten glass mixture, the glass naturally gets stained. However, unlike typical stains, a cobalt blue stain is intense and permanent. This is primarily why cobalt is also used in the paint manufacturing industry. It’s natural, it’s intense, and even just a small amount of it is usually enough to produce a bright blue color. 

What’s more, glassmiths can create lighter or darker shades of blue by changing the concentration of the cobalt compound that they use.

Why Blue is Not Better

Despite their appealing appearance, there’s a reason why cobalt blue glass containers are not as popular today as they used to be. In fact, they have become more common in antique stores than they are in shopping centers and beauty shops. What could be the reasons behind this? Let’s look into some of them:

The Case of Colored Glass Containers

Colored glass containers are known to offer both aesthetic and protective qualities. They are generally compact and leakproof. Plus, unlike plastic containers, they are not as sensitive to temperature and they do not release harmful chemicals when exposed to extreme heat or cold. 

Color can indicate various things about the quality of a glass container. For retailers, the important qualities to consider include light protection, shelf life, and resistance against breaking or chipping. 

The color of a glass container indicates what types of light it can absorb and what it can allow to pass through straight into its contents. While some types of light are beneficial, there are others, particularly harmful ultraviolet light or UVb, that can promote deterioration of organic matter. 

Thus, if a glass container doesn’t filter harmful UV light, its contents are likely to lose their quality sooner than a retailer and customer would expect. Unfortunately, blue glass is one of those types that don’t filter harmful UV light, so buying cobalt glass jars wholesale will likely prove to be a bad idea.

Poor Protective Qualities

Truth be told, cobalt blue glass jars and bottles aren’t very reliable in protecting their contents. Blue glass cannot block UV light. Because of that, materials in a blue glass are left exposed to these harmful light rays, which results in rapid oxidation. Oxidation alters the state and effectiveness of materials, thereby affecting their overall quality and shelf life.

If the product you’re selling can be used up quickly, then blue glass containers could be a good choice. Otherwise, you might be jeopardizing your product and your business. 

Also, it’s important to note that very few customers are actually aware of the protective qualities of glass containers. Thus, if your product loses its quality because of a cobalt blue glass, customers will likely blame your formula or your brand instead of the container. 


Another reason why blue is not better is because blue glass containers are expensive, even if you buy in wholesale. And considering their poor protective qualities, you can go and figure why they’re not worth it.  

Of course, it is okay to invest in expensive containers, especially if your product is high-priced and you’re sure that your target market would love an expensive and elegant-looking canister. However, you must be sure that the container you’re choosing can offer more than just looks. Otherwise, you might be dooming your business to having many sightseers but very few paying customers.

Health Concerns

As mentioned earlier, cobalt is generally safe--but not for the workers who extract it from the environment and are likely to be inhaling high and harmful amounts of cobalt on a regular basis.

Because of this, some people opt to limit their support for products containing cobalt. Although cobalt is nearly impossible to avoid because of its uses in making corrosion-resistant alloy, batteries, and other products that help make life much more efficient, for many people, reduction of consumption still matters.

Best Alternatives to Cobalt Blue Glass Jars

To figure out what alternatives are best for your products, it’s important to consider several things: the type of product you’re selling, the product’s sensitivity to light, how much you’re willing to spend for the container, and how much your final selling price is. (Note: your selling price should take into consideration how much your target market might be willing to spend for the benefits that your product offers.)

If your product is not sensitive to light, one of the most affordable options is to use clear glass containers. Clear glass containers don’t offer any level of light protection, and they’re widely available at an affordable price. If you’re a little concerned about light exposure, overlaying the container with a label could help. 

Another affordable option is using plastic containers--just be sure to check for quality. For safety purposes, it’s best to choose food grade plastic containers or those that are labeled to be BPA-free.

You can also opt for amber glass jars. These types of jars are commonly used as medicine and liquor bottles. Their color appears like a dark shade of yellow, red, and orange. They can block all types of UV light, and they’re more affordable than other types of colored containers. 

The downside of amber jars, however, is that they don’t permit beneficial light to pass through. Yes, you read that right. There are types of light that are beneficial, particularly infrared light and UVa. Studies prove that these types of light can fight bacterial growth and reduce a material’s rate of degradation. Thus, if you want your product to have a longer shelf-life, it’s best to use a container that filters harmful light while letting in beneficial light.

The Best Alternative: Ultraviolet Infinity Jars 

Ultraviolet glass containers, particularly the patented UV Infinity Jars, are the best options for keeping products fresh and effective for longer. These containers can absorb nearly all types of colors, which is why they appear to be black. When held against a light source, however, their real dark violet color surfaces.

Infinity Jars offers plenty of benefits. Aside from protecting your products from degradation due to light exposure, they also prolong their shelf life while maintaining their quality. For retailers, this quality in itself is already a strong and appealing selling point. Plus, there are studies that can support this claim and help enhance your products’ branding and, consequently, the public’s trust in your brand. 

In a recent lab test comparing Infinity Jars with other glass containers, the testers were astounded to discover how effective and impressive Infinity Jars products are. Items that should have degraded and become unusable after days and months in storage retained their quality while in an Infinity Jars container. They maintained their color, their smell, and they appeared as fresh as they did at the start of the lab test. 

With this, it’s easy to see why cobalt blue glass jars are starting to lose their place. Infinity Jars provides far better options, and they also have an appealing look that gives a sense of strength, elegance, and good business.

What Sets Infinity Jars Apart

Now you might be wondering: there are so many other anti-UV jars out there, so why should I trust Infinity Jars? 

The answer is simple: Infinity Jars products recognize both harmful and beneficial light. They keep the harmful light rays out and the beneficial ones in! No other container can do what Infinity Jars products do. In other words, UV glass jars and bottles are simply the best! And there are plenty of reviews that back them up!

Best Uses of Infinity Jars

Infinity Jars are great for all types of products. There are over 70 designs of these jars, including cosmetic jars, essential oil containers, apothecary bottles, kitchen bottles, soap dispensers, and many more. 

70+ Styles

You can also get these containers with the type of top or cap that you need. You can choose from a screw top, push pump, spray pump, roller applicator, dropper, and other lid types that can help ensure that your product is released smoothly and conveniently without blockage or excessive release.



Several reasons reveal that blue is not the better choice for businesses. Blue containers, particularly cobalt blue glass jars and bottles, don’t offer much benefits other than their stylish blue appearance. While appearance absolutely matters in business, it is simply not enough--especially when it can compromise the effectiveness and shelf life of your product.

To keep your products fresh for longer, it’s best to switch from cobalt glass jars to containers that can protect them against harmful elements while giving them the benefits of healthful infrared and UVa light. Thankfully, you are in the right place to find these types of containers. Head over to the Infinity Jars wholesale collection now to avail of the best deals for the best price!


  1. http://www.glassencyclopedia.com/cobaltglass.html
  2. https://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/PHS/PHS.asp?id=371&tid=64
  3. https://www.cobaltinstitute.org/cobalt-senses.html
  4. http://toxicology.imedpub.com/cobalt-poisoning-a-comprehensive-review-of-the-literature.php?aid=10377
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