How to Get Sticky Labels Off Jars

Updated March 17, 2017

Consider the number of items you purchase in glass jars from your local grocery store. Most of these jars probably end up in your trash or recycling once emptied. However, emptied jars can prove quite useful around the house. Instead of throwing away empty glass jars, remove the labels and reuse them to store other foods, household items, or for decorative uses and craft projects. Removing the label may take a little time and elbow grease, but it is worth the effort.

Fill your sink with hot, soapy water. Fill the jar with hot water and submerge it in the sink.

Soak the jar for one hour. Check to see if the label has come off. If not, take the jar out of the water and use your fingers to peel off the label. If the label does not come off, submerge the jar for another hour.

Boil a large pot of water. Lift the jar out of the sink and attempt to peel the label again. If it does not remove, carefully place the jar in the boiling water. Allow the jar to boil until the label comes off, but no longer than 15 minutes.

Use tongs and oven gloves to carefully remove the jar from the pot. Sit the jar on the towel and allow it to cool until cool enough to touch. Attempt to peel the label again using your fingers.

Submerge the jar in the sink for another hour. Remove the jar and attempt to use your fingers to peel off the label. If your fingers cannot remove the label, carefully slide the razor under the label and slowly scrape up the label.

Things You'll Need

  • Dish detergent
  • Large pot
  • Tongs
  • Oven gloves
  • Razor
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About the Author

Based in Atlanta, Renee Kristi has been writing since 2001 and her work now appears on various websites. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in political science from Spelman College and a Juris Doctor from Georgia State University College of Law.