How to refill a KBShimmer Cuticle Oil Pen

Thursday, January 14, 2016

This is kind of a press sample and kind of not. The cuticle oil pen was originally a lemongrass scented pen from KBShimmer, and was a press sample from one of the Cosmoprof 2015 events. The oil I refilled it with was purchased by me.

I managed to blow through my lemongrass cuticle oil in two weeks because it smelled wonderful. Considering that the pen was only used for two weeks, I couldn't bear the idea of throwing the plastic out. How Oregonian of me. After flinging the cap in my face a couple times, I figured out how to safely disassemble, clean, and reassemble this style of cuticle oil pen.

Tools Needed

Cuticle oil pen refill KBShimmer

You will need: a butter knife, needle nose pliers, a syringe/pipette/dropper of some sort, an empty cuticle oil pen, and some paper towels (not pictured). Don't try to tell me you are clean and won't need the paper towels. I promise you will eat your words by the end of your attempt.

Disassemble it! 

Cuticle oil pen refill KBShimmer

I purposefully pulled apart my pen before taking this photo to exaggerate where you put the knife. That should give you an idea of where to look.

Start with your butter knife and wedge it between the plastic pieces on the ratcheting side of the pen. The best way to do this is to work your knife around the edge of the plastic instead of prying from one side. Be very careful at this stage or you'll end up flinging the back end of the pen into your face like I did.

Cuticle oil pen refill KBShimmer

Success! The hardest part of this whole process is over.

Cuticle oil pen refill KBShimmer

Gently tip your pen so that the spring and "gear" fall out of the back. Don't lose these!

Cuticle oil pen refill KBShimmer

Next you are going to take your needle nose pliers and grab the plunger from inside the tube. I pulled mine out a little bit so that you can see what I'm talking about. Now pull the plunger completely out of the tube.

Cuticle oil pen refill KBShimmer

See how the plunger is sitting above? The plunger itself is on the left side of the bar, and the ratcheting piece has (over time) spun the the right side of the bar. We need to manually spin that back so that it is on the same end as the plunger. It doesn't have to be touching, but they should be close. Please refer to the next photo for an example of how it should look when you are done.

Cuticle oil pen refill KBShimmer

Ok. We are nearly at the home stretch. This step is optional, but I chose to thoroughly clean my pen with hot water and Dawn dish soap. I let it air dry for about a day before I did anything with it. If you are refilling your pen with a similar scent, or one that will mix well with the old one, you can skip this step.

Refill please!

I was a bad blogger and didn't take photos of the reassembly -_-. In my defense, I had oily fingers and was home alone. I am going to walk you through this process to the best of my ability. I personally found reassembly far easier than the disassembly.

  1. On the brush side of the pen, replace the exterior cap. 
  2. Grab your refill oil and measure out approximately 2mL (if possible). If you have to estimate that's fine. Just know that it's better to under fill if you can't measure the quantity.
  3. Fill pen with oil from your syringe/pipette/dropper.
  4. Now turn your pen slightly on an angle, grab your plunger and push it into the pen until it nearly meets the oil. Some oil will spill out into your cap through the brush, and that's ok. 
  5. Once your plunger is in its place, tilt your pen so that it's parallel. If the oil stays inside the chamber you are almost done. If it leaks you need to pull back the plunger, wipe the oil off of the plunger end, and try step four again.
  6. Now replace the rest of the parts in the reverse order of which they came out. When you replace the gear make sure the "teeth" are facing toward the plunger and that they fit inside of the ratcheting piece. It needs to be done the right way otherwise it will not ratchet. After the gear is replaced you can replace spring, then the cap. The cap may be hard to replace, but it will go back on.
  7. Turn your pen so that the brush side points toward the ceiling. You want to twist ratcheting end to get most of the air out. Ideally, you want no larger of a bubble than what you can see in the photo below. The idea is to create a seal which keeps the oil in. If you leave too much air, your oil will leak out through the brush over time

Cuticle oil pen refill KBShimmer

You're done! It sounds way worse than it really is. If I had done all of the steps back to back I would have refilled three pens in about fifteen minutes or less.

This style of cuticle oil pen is currently available through KBShimmer, and Rica Polish. There are other pens that are similar that can be refilled essentially the same way. I have one from Polished by KPT that is nearly identical minus the spring. The most important part is that you get most of the air out of the oil portion of the tube when you refill it.


I found refilling cuticle pens to be easy and worthwhile. I'm not sure how many times you can refill a pen before it will stop sealing properly, but I will let you know if, or when that time comes. If you have any questions about the process leave me a comment below. I will get back to you asap!

You Might Also Like