How to Clean Your Empty Candle Jars

How to Clean Your Empty Candle Jars

As soon as you see the top of the wick clip (the metal piece that holds your wick upright), your candle is done. Now, it’s the jar’s time to shine!

Before you can use your jar for something useful (maybe a snack holder or a drinking glass?) you have to give the jar a good clean.

First, remove the label. 

Our labels are not coated with plastic, so removing them is easy. Just submerge your jar in a large bowl of water until the label becomes soft and can be easily scraped off. 

Then, remove the wax. There are many MANY ways to clean your jar, but we like these three best. 

  • Boiling Water. This is the easiest method and is our go-to. Place your candle jar on a large plate to catch any splatter, and pour boiling water in the jar up to where the wax was before your first burned the candle. As soon as you pour the water, you’ll see the wax start to melt and rise to the surface of the water. Let the jar cool for a few hours or even overnight. Once everything is cool, you’ll see the wax collected on the surface. Just pick up the wax clump and throw it away, then wash the jar with warm soapy water.
  • The Freezer. This is also pretty easy but just takes a little more effort. Put your candle in the freezer for at least 3 hours. Overnight is fine too. One it is thoroughly frozen, take the jar out and start chipping away at the wax with a butter knife (be careful!) until the wax all comes out. Then wash the jar out with warm soapy water. 
  • Melting. This is the most dangerous way to clean your jar as it involves hot wax and a hot jar. This method works best when you do this right after extinguishing the final flame. Layer paper towels on a paper plate or bowl - enough paper towels to soak up all the melted wax. Using hot pads, CAREFULLY pick up the hot jar and pour the melted wax onto the paper towels. Pour slowly and add more paper towels if need be to absorb all the wax. Clean the empty jar with warm soapy water. 

After the wax is removed, all that’s left inside the jar is the wick. We stick our wicks to the bottom of jars with a strong adhesive circle. The heat methods work to loosen the wick adhesive. For the freezer method, try carefully picking at the wick with a butter knife until it’s loosened enough to remove by hand.

Now that you have an empty clean jar, skies the limit! You can use your jar to organize your pantry or your desk, to pack your lunch or hold some fresh flowers. How do you use your empty jars? Tag us in a picture of your favorite reuse method on Facebook or Instagram at @oateshomeco.

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