Each day, an estimated 11 million prescriptions are filled by Americans. Chances are, you have one or several pill bottles just lying around. Disposing of pill bottles can be tricky especially if there are leftover prescription meds. There are Take Back Days sure, but these only happen once or twice a year. Curbside recycling programs don’t always accept medicine bottles for recycling. So re-using these small containers may just be the best thing to do – plus this is good for the environment. Obviously, you can’t use these to store food items due to the tiny space and the risk of contaminating the food item with traces of the medicine. However, you can re-use pill bottles to keep sewing materials, jewelry, bobby pins, any small items you want to keep organized, in craft projects, etc. Use your imagination and go wild!

One of the best uses for pill bottles is as a miniature survival kit. Putting together a DIY pill bottle survival kit is simple enough and such an item can be really useful in an emergency.

Most pill bottles have waterproof seals on them and the larger ones offer ample space storage for you to put the most important things that you need.

Below are DIY pill bottle survival kits that you can assemble and use in different kinds of situations. You can assemble as many as you need and not worry about overstocking your survival bag or bug-out-bag.


  1. Fishing Kit

For your DIY pill bottle fishing survival kit, the basic items that should be inside your pill bottle are your fishing lines, hooks, and weights. If your pill bottle has extra space, then you can also add a mini knife and small lures.

  1. Sewing Kit

All backpackers must have sewing kits in their bag for quick repairs and gear modifications. For your DIY pill bottle sewing kit, put  2-3 mini spools of thread and a few sewing needles inside a standard pill bottle. Done!

  1. First Aid Kit

You will be surprised at how many first aid items a regular pill bottle can hold. Here are just some of the basic items that can fit inside a pill bottle that you can use for any outdoor injuries.

  • Various size bandages
  • Antibiotic ointment
  • Butterfly strips
  • Wet wipes
  • mini tweezers
  • sun block
  • Insect sting or bite relief
  • Gauze
  1. Fire Starting Kit

Your pill bottle fire starting kit should contain dry tinder and 2-3 fire starting devices. For tinder, tightly pack at least 3 cotton balls in the bottom of the pill bottle. Then, drop your fire starters inside the pill bottle. You now have a pocket sized pill bottle fire starting kit.

  1. Mini First Aid Survival Kit

For your DIY Pill bottle mini survival kit, you will need a larger pill bottle and you must carefully think on how you can properly fit the things inside the pill bottle. Also, make sure that the pill bottle that you will be using is 100 percent water proof.


Here are some tips and tricks for a few of the items that you will be placing into your pill bottle survival kit.

  • Duct Tape

Roll the duct tape onto itself so that it can be unrolled easily if you need it. Just lay your piece flat and start slowly rolling it up. Just make sure that the edges are all lined up.

  • Fishing Line

Your fishing line can be rolled onto a straw or a bobbin for easy storage without tangles and getting everything else tied into its web.

  • Razor Blade

If you plan to add a razor blade in your pill bottle survival kit, then, make sure that you put a small piece of tape over the edge of the razor blade. This will make sure that the razor blade does not poke or cut any of the other valuable pieces inside your pill bottle.

  • Thread

Just wrap the thread around a straw. This will prevent the thread from tangling.


  • Emergency Cash Stash

Fill your empty pill bottle with quarters and you will have emergency money on hand.

  • Emergency Ammo Storage

You can fit a few .22 shells even in the smallest of pill bottles.

  • Spices, powders, and other condiments for a bug out bag or hiking bag

Pill bottles are water resistant making them great storage tools for your favorite spices, powders, and other condiments that you want to bring with you in your travels.

  • Matchbox

You can make a pill bottle matchbox by filling the bottle with matchsticks and attaching the strike surface on the outside of the pill bottle.

  • Hide -A-Key

If you want a place to conceal your key where burglars can’t find it, just glue a rock on the lid of the pill bottle. Place your pill bottle in your flower bed or under your favorite tree where only you can find it.

  • Earphones Container

We all know that untangling ear buds can be annoying. To fix this problem, simply roll your earphones and place them in a pill bottle.

  • Cotton Swab Container

Cotton swabs fit perfectly inside a regular sized empty prescription pill bottle.

  • Child Proof Container

Pill bottles have child proof features on them. This makes it the perfect storage containers for anything that you would not want kids to get their hands on, like sharp pins, beads, or any other small items that a child can easily swallow.

  • Seed Storage Container

If you want to store your seeds most especially during wintertime, an empty pill bottle should be just the right size to store them until planting season arrives.

  • Vitamin Packs

If you’re going away, don’t bring all those big vitamin bottles with you. Use empty pill bottles to take only the vitamins/meds that you will need based on how long you will be gone.

There you have it; various DIY pill bottle survival kit ideas plus other preparedness uses for empty pill bottles to serve you in a survival situation. The best part is, all these pill bottle survival kits are small enough to fit inside your pocket.


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