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Remove Any Label from Glass with Household Items

April 22, 2015

Happy Earth Day!
I love to reuse and repurpose glass containers and jars. Mostly, because I create a lot of stuff (if you browse around this site, you'll see what I mean). A lot of which is food related. I don't solely use glass jars for food, but I do prefer using glass jars because they keep the food fresher longer. Also, glass has longer a life than plastic... Unless you break it.

In honor of Earth Day, I have decided to share some of my favorite ways to remove all kinds of labels with products you may already have at home. There are many ways to remove labels but I have only listed my tried and true methods.

Adhesive Residue 
-Usually left over after removing any labels
  • 1 part Vegetable Oil + 1 part Baking Soda
    • aka Homemade Goo Gone
  1. Apply mixture to the residue and allow it to soak for at least 10 minutes. 
  2. Wipe it off with a wet cloth.
  3. Wash with Soap and water.

Expiration Dates
-Found on most Food and Drink Containers
  • Regular Nail Polish + Cotton balls/Paper towels
  1. Apply Alcohol to paper towel and wipe the date off. 
  2. Wash with soap and water to remove any remaining ink.

Heavy Brand Printing Directly on the Container 
-similar to most Liquor Bottles
  • 1/4 Cup Vinegar + 1 TBSP Borax + Dish Soap + Enough Water to Submerge the bottle + Shaving Razor
  1. Fill bottle bucket with ingredients and fill the bottle with water to help it sink.
  2. Soak the bottle for 3+ hours.
  3. Remove the print with the razor.
  4. Wash off the residue with soap and water.
NOTE: The print should scratch off  fairly easy. If you find your self 'shaving the bottle' with more pressure than you would shave your legs, let it soak longer.

Light Brand Printing Directly on the Container
-similar to Glass Soda Bottles
  • 100% Acetone Nail Polish Remover + Cotton balls/Paper towels
  1. Pour nail polish remover on a paper towel or cotton ball.
  2. Hold over the writing for a few seconds,
  3. Wipe the printing off.
  4. Wash with Soap and water.
Price Tags 
-specifically, but in limited to, the ones on the bottom of candles

  • Hot Water + Dish Soap
  1. Soak the glass in hot water and the labels will usually slide off within 10-15 minutes.
  2. If it's being stubborn, add oxyclean to the water and soak it again.
Sticker Labels 
-similar to the ones on Candle and Food Containers
  • Blow Dryer + Tweezers
  1. Set the blow dryer on the high heat and setting.
  2. The label will begin to lift within 5 minutes.
  3. Peel it off.
NOTE: If you're impatient like I am, apply direct heat for 1 minute then use tweezers to peel the label off. This is a great method if you want to preserve the label. If there is any remaining residue, follow the "Adhesive Residue" instructions above. Also click HERE to learn how to depot a candle and upcycle the leftover wax.

Hope this helps! Happy recycling and repurposing!

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