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Are you a fan of reusing all those glass jars that seems to sit around the house for months? I love reusing them for cute crafts or storage, but I hate those labels!
Look no further because I have the perfect chemist solution for you! How to remove labels from jars the easiest way possible with simple house hold ingredients you probably keep on hand!
PIN THIS: How to Remove Labels from Jars
One thing I have many years of experience in would be removing labels from jars!
I spent hours in a chemistry lab doing experiments which always involved labeling glass jars, then cleaning and removing labels. Commercial grade acetone was obviously the best way to go when it came to removing labels, but it was expensive and not always available.
**Update: Due to this post being one of the most popular posts on chemistry cachet, we have updated it with better photos for you! This has been viewed hundreds of thousands of times over the past year and it has a 100% success rate with readers! Many have suggested to me store bought products they use, but this is a simple concoction we used in a chemistry lab. This free from harsh chemicals and no special ingredients are required!!!
How to Remove Labels from Jars:
- Hot Water
- Blue Dawn Dishwashing Liquid ® (Buy it here if it isn’t available where you live)***
- Sodium Bicarbonate (Baking Soda)
- Heavy Duty Scrub Pad (Like This One!)
First, soak your jars in hot soapy water for awhile. I always give it about 15-30 minutes.
This removes most of the label, but there is always residue and leftover paper stuck somewhere.
Next, mix equal parts blue dawn and baking soda until it is a paste. Then, rub it all over the jars where the residue is left.
Let that sit for a few minutes, then take the scrub brush and scrub the mixture. It should start coming off very easy. After that, rinse them under hot water. Now, that will be perfectly shiny and clean!
If you really have some stubborn labels, try using a heavy duty brush, like this one, to do the job. The bristles are heavy duty enough to scrub, but won’t scratch glass or anything. Plus, the handle on this makes it really easy to use!
Why does this method work so well?
Chemically, sodium bicarbonate works as an abrasive. It helps scrub off left over labels that may still be on the jar.
The use of dishwashing liquid or dish soap is to act as a surfactant. Surfactants were designed to lower the surface tension between a liquid and a solid, which is why dishwashing liquid is used to clean grease or food off dishes. The dishwashing liquid in this pushes off the sticky residue completely.
Many people have suggested other methods to us. This is the method we used in our chemistry lab to remove labels. It was the safest with all the alcohols and acids we had around! Many readers have asked if they can use oil in place of dishwashing liquid….the answer is no! Oil is a fat and creates a greasy residue on the jars, so I wouldn’t recommend that. You will end up cleaning it more.
Do you use Pinterest for DIY Solutions?? Make sure you read this important post on avoiding Pinterest Cleaning Myths!
This doesn’t just work on glass!!! It works on metal jars, plastic jars or really anything you want to reuse! UPDATE:: I have had many readers tell me this has worked on the plastic containers they want to save:)
The Book is finally here! Many years of researched DIY solutions for your home.
Have a wonderful day!