Are Mylar Bags Worth It? The Ultimate Deep Dive

Are Mylar Bags Worth It? The Ultimate Deep Dive, Mylar bags have become increasingly popular among preppers, food storage enthusiasts, and even businesses. But are they truly worth the investment? This comprehensive guide will delve into the benefits, uses, and costs associated with Mylar bags, providing detailed tables to help you make an informed decision.

Table of Contents

  1. What are Mylar Bags?
  2. Benefits of Mylar Bags
  3. Uses of Mylar Bags
  4. Costs and Comparisons
  5. How to Use Mylar Bags Effectively
  6. FAQs

1. What are Mylar Bags?

Mylar bags are made from a type of plastic known as BoPET (Biaxially-oriented polyethylene terephthalate). This material is known for its strength, durability, and excellent barrier properties against light, oxygen, and moisture. Mylar bags are often used in conjunction with oxygen absorbers to prolong the shelf life of stored items.

Table 1: Characteristics of Mylar Bags

MaterialBoPET (Biaxially-oriented polyethylene terephthalate)
ThicknessTypically 3.5 to 7 mils
Light BarrierExcellent
Oxygen BarrierExcellent
Moisture BarrierExcellent
ReusabilityLimited (depends on usage and seal quality)

2. Benefits of Mylar Bags

Long-term Storage

One of the primary benefits of Mylar bags is their ability to significantly extend the shelf life of food and other perishables. When used correctly with oxygen absorbers, Mylar bags can keep items fresh for years.

Protection from Environmental Factors

Mylar bags protect against moisture, light, and oxygen, all of which can degrade the quality of stored items. This makes them ideal for long-term food storage, as well as protecting items sensitive to environmental conditions.

Space Efficiency

Mylar bags are flexible and can be vacuum-sealed to reduce the amount of space they occupy. This is particularly useful for those with limited storage space.


While there is an initial investment, the cost per use can be quite low when considering the long-term benefits. Mylar bags can save money by reducing food waste and allowing for bulk purchases.

Table 2: Benefits of Mylar Bags

LongevityExtends shelf life of items for years
Environmental ProtectionShields against light, oxygen, and moisture
Space SavingFlexible and vacuum-sealable for efficient storage
Cost SavingsReduces food waste, allows for bulk purchases
VersatilitySuitable for a wide range of items (food, documents, electronics, etc.)

3. Uses of Mylar Bags

Food Storage

Mylar bags are most commonly used for storing dry foods such as grains, beans, and pasta. They are also used for dehydrated fruits and vegetables, powdered milk, and other pantry staples.

Non-Food Items

Mylar bags can also be used to protect non-food items such as important documents, electronics, and even clothing from environmental damage.

Emergency Preparedness

Preppers and emergency planners use Mylar bags to store emergency supplies, ensuring that food and other essentials remain viable for extended periods.

Table 3: Common Uses of Mylar Bags

Use CaseExamples
Food StorageGrains, beans, pasta, powdered milk, dehydrated fruits/veggies
Document ProtectionLegal documents, birth certificates, photographs
Electronics StorageSmall electronics, batteries, cables
Emergency SuppliesFirst aid kits, medical supplies, emergency rations

4. Costs and Comparisons

Initial Investment

The cost of Mylar bags varies depending on size and thickness. Additionally, oxygen absorbers are often used in conjunction with Mylar bags, adding to the initial cost.

Cost Per Use

Considering the longevity and protection Mylar bags offer, the cost per use can be quite economical. This is particularly true when compared to other storage methods that may not offer the same level of protection.

Comparison with Other Storage Methods

Table 4: Cost Comparison of Storage Methods

Storage MethodInitial CostLongevityProtection LevelSpace EfficiencyReusability
Mylar Bags with AbsorbersModerateUp to 30 yearsHighHighModerate
Plastic ContainersLow5-10 yearsModerateModerateHigh
Glass JarsModerate1-2 yearsLowLowHigh
Vacuum SealingHigh1-3 yearsHighHighLow

5. How to Use Mylar Bags Effectively

Step-by-Step Guide

  1. Choose the Right Bag Size: Select a bag size appropriate for the amount of food or items you are storing.
  2. Use Oxygen Absorbers: Place the correct number of oxygen absorbers inside the bag before sealing.
  3. Seal the Bag: Use a heat sealer to ensure the bag is airtight.
  4. Label and Store: Clearly label the contents and date of storage, then store in a cool, dark place.

Tips for Maximum Efficiency

  • Ensure items are dry before sealing.
  • Use a vacuum sealer for additional space savings.
  • Regularly check stored items for any signs of deterioration.

Table 5: Step-by-Step Guide to Using Mylar Bags

Choose Bag SizeSelect appropriate sizeConsider future portion needs
Use Oxygen AbsorbersAdd absorbers based on bag size and contentsRefer to manufacturer’s guidelines
Seal the BagUse heat sealer for airtight closureDouble-check seal integrity
Label and StoreMark contents and date, store in cool, dark placeUse rotation system for oldest items first


1. What is the shelf life of food stored in Mylar bags?

When properly sealed with oxygen absorbers, food can last up to 30 years in Mylar bags, depending on the type of food and storage conditions.

2. Can Mylar bags be reused?

While Mylar bags can be reused, their effectiveness diminishes with each use, particularly if they are not sealed properly. It is generally recommended to use new bags for long-term storage.

3. Do I need oxygen absorbers for non-food items?

Oxygen absorbers are not necessary for non-food items but can still be beneficial for preventing mold and mildew in items like clothing or documents.

4. How do I know if my Mylar bag is sealed properly?

A properly sealed Mylar bag should not allow any air to pass through. Check the seal by pressing on the bag and ensuring there are no air leaks.

5. Where can I purchase Mylar bags and oxygen absorbers?

Mylar bags and oxygen absorbers can be purchased online from retailers specializing in food storage, as well as from some local stores.

Table 6: FAQs

Shelf Life of Food in Mylar BagsUp to 30 years (with oxygen absorbers and proper storage conditions)
Reusability of Mylar BagsPossible, but effectiveness diminishes with each use
Oxygen Absorbers for Non-Food ItemsNot necessary but beneficial for preventing mold and mildew
Ensuring Proper SealCheck for air leaks by pressing on the bag
Purchasing Mylar Bags and Oxygen AbsorbersAvailable online and at specialty food storage retailers


Mylar bags offer a highly effective solution for long-term storage of both food and non-food items. With their excellent barrier properties and cost-effectiveness, they are a valuable addition to any storage strategy. By following proper usage guidelines and understanding their benefits and limitations, you can ensure that your items remain protected and preserved for years to come.

By comparing costs, benefits, and alternative storage methods, this guide aims to provide you with a comprehensive understanding of whether Mylar bags are worth the investment for your specific needs.

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