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  • Writer's pictureValinda

12 Easy Methods to Get Labels Off Jars

Updated: Feb 7

Embarking on a journey of jar-label liberation unveils the art of transforming ordinary containers into versatile vessels ready for a new purpose. Whether you're an avid DIY enthusiast, a sustainability champion, or someone simply tired of sticky remnants, the quest to remove labels from jars can be both rewarding and, at times, surprisingly intricate. In this guide, we delve into a variety of techniques, from the traditional soaking ritual to the unexpected heroes like hair dryers, oils, and even nail polish remover. Join us as we navigate the label removal landscape, revealing tricks, cautionary tales, and eco-friendly alternatives, making your jars not just containers but canvases for your creativity.

Things to take into consideration when removing labels

Material of the Jar

When it comes to removing labels, it's important to keep things simple and considerate of the jar's material. Plastic jars can be a bit sensitive to certain chemicals, unlike the robust nature of glass. Just be mindful of the jar's makeup, and you'll find a method that works without causing unintended effects. It's a straightforward approach to label removal that ensures your jars stay in good shape throughout the process.

Type of Glue used for the Label

Different types of glue require different methods of removal. For example, in some cases, potato starch is used for labels that can simply be dissolved in water while in other cases strong glues are used for labels. Unfortunately, you can’t see from the outside what type of glue is used therefore it is recommended to start trying to remove the label with the most gentle methods and work towards more intense methods unti the label is removed. 

12 Easy Methods to Get Labels Off Jars

Embark on a journey to liberate your jars and repurpose them with our guide on label removal. Whether you're a DIY enthusiast or just tired of sticky residues, discover tricks and eco-friendly alternatives to transform your jars into versatile canvases for creativity.

jar with label - Easily remove labels from jars

Leave the Label on

For those who consider themselves time-poor, a bit lazy, or simply couldn't care less about achieving that picture-perfect pantry look, here's the ultimate solution: just leave those pesky labels on! Embrace the carefree vibe and let time do its magic. Toss your jars in the dishwasher or give them a good hand wash, and like a magician's disappearing act, those labels will vanish over time. No need for extra effort – just kick back and let your jars evolve into a label-free masterpiece, all on their own.

Soak in Water

Immerse your jars in a relaxing soak of warm, soapy water, letting the labels succumb to the bath's gentle persuasion. For a little extra magic, try filling the jars with hot water to coax the stubborn glue into loosening its grip on the labels. Once they've soaked up the warmth, embark on a label-peeling adventure, revealing the jar's true beauty.

Scrub with Oil

Let your jar take a cozy soak in warm water. Using your everyday kitchen oil, like cooking oil or even some olive oil and give the label a gentle oil massage, it will gradually loosens its grip. Use an old toothbrush or a sponge to clear away any leftover residue. Voila! Your jar is now free to start fresh, sans the label baggage.

Rubbing with Baking Soda

Turn label removal from a chore into a breeze by enlisting the help of the unassuming baking soda. Start by giving your jar a nice soak in warm water; let the label soak up the warmth. Sprinkle some baking soda over the label. Peel off the label with ease, and for any sticky residue left behind, whip up a simple paste of baking soda and water. Apply it gently, and voilà! Your jar is back to its label-free, pristine state.

jar with and without label - jar with label - Easily remove labels from jars

Clean with Dishwashing Soap

Dive your glass jars into a bath of warm, soapy water, letting the labels soak in. After this soak, embrace the satisfying task of peeling off those stubborn labels. 

Soak in Vinegar

Unlocking the versatile power of white vinegar! Beyond its role as a staple cleaner in eco-conscious households, this wonder liquid has an additional trick up its sleeve. Imagine effortlessly bidding farewell to stubborn adhesives clinging to your glass jars. The secret? A simple concoction of white vinegar on a cloth. This eco-friendly solution not only leaves your glass containers gleaming but also adds a touch of sustainability to your cleaning routine.

Use Heat

Throw your jars in the oven for around 10 minutes, pop them in the microwave (not the plastic ones) for a bit, or give them a gentle blast of hot air from a hairdryer. The sticky glue holding those labels hostage will surrender without a fight. Once softened, the labels and any sticky residue will part ways with your jars effortlessly.


Beyond the warmth of a hair dryer, here's a frosty revelation: freezing jars can also do the trick! Just pop that jar into the freezer, sans lid, and after a few hours, voila! The label practically peels itself off, leaving you with a frosty-fresh container. Alternatively, take the plunge into an ice water bath overnight, where the chilling magic works to melt away both adhesive and label.

Use Alcohol

Unleash the power of household heroes like methylated spirits, isopropanol, or even vodka or hand sanitizer to conquer the sticky remnants of labels and stickers. These high-alcohol wonders are your secret weapons in the battle against stubborn adhesives. Simply dab a bit onto a rag or let the fabric soak in the potent elixir, then channel your inner superhero as you rub away the stickiness.

A Razor Blade

With a gentle hand, skillfully shave away any lingering adhesive remnants that persist post-label-peeling. Treat it like a meticulous grooming session for your jar, ensuring that every stubborn bit is carefully scraped away.

removing sticker with knife - jar with label - Easily remove labels from jars

Commercial Sticker Remover

Unlock the power of convenience with a Commercial Sticker Remover when liberating your jars from stubborn labels. This magical elixir takes the hassle out of label removal, sparing you from tedious scraping and soaking sessions. Simply apply the sticker remover as directed, and watch as the once tenacious labels surrender effortlessly. The specialized formula works like a charm, dissolving adhesive bonds without a fuss. Bid farewell to the laborious struggle and welcome a swift, efficient solution that leaves your jars pristine and ready for a new chapter.

However, tread cautiously on the path of label liberation with commercial sticker removers, as their potent efficacy comes hand in hand with a degree of aggression. While these products excel at dissolving stubborn adhesives, it's crucial to handle them with care. Follow the instructions diligently, and ensure proper ventilation to avoid inhaling any potentially harsh fumes. Additionally, bear in mind that some commercial sticker removers may not be the most eco-friendly choices. Consider alternative methods if environmental impact is a concern, and always strive to strike a balance between effectiveness and sustainability. With a mindful approach, you can harness the power of these products while minimizing their potential drawbacks.

Nailpolish Remover

Begin by soaking the jar in warm, soapy water to loosen the label's grip. Then, armed with a cotton ball or pad soaked in nail polish remover, gently rub away the label and its adhesive residue. The acetone in the nail polish remover works its magic, dissolving the stickiness without breaking a sweat. A few swipes, a touch of finesse, and voilà – your jar emerges liberated, pristine, and ready for its new purpose.

While nail polish remover is a surprisingly effective ally in liberating jars from labels, it's essential to acknowledge that it may not be the most eco-friendly option in your toolkit. The acetone content, while adept at dissolving adhesives, raises environmental concerns. Consider this method with a green conscience, opting for eco-friendly alternatives if possible. In the pursuit of label-free jars, one can explore gentler approaches to align with sustainable living practices. Whether through natural solutions or reusable, eco-conscious alternatives, there's always room for creativity in preserving both your jars and the planet.

It's crucial to exercise caution when reaching for commercial sticker remover or nail polish remover for label removal, as these potent solutions are best suited for glass jars. Their aggressive nature, while effective on glass surfaces, poses a risk of dissolving plastic. To safeguard your containers from potential damage, it's advisable to reserve these powerful removers exclusively for glass and explore alternative, gentler methods when dealing with plastic jars. Taking a mindful approach ensures successful label removal without compromising the integrity of your beloved containers.

As we conclude this journey of label liberation, let's celebrate the triumphs of repurposing our jars into pristine canvases ready for new adventures. From the soothing soak to the razor-sharp finesse, we've uncovered an array of techniques to bid farewell to stubborn labels. Remember, each jar carries a unique tale, and by giving them a fresh start, we contribute to a sustainable and creative lifestyle. Whether you opt for natural remedies or tap into the surprising potential of household heroes like nail polish remover, let your label removal journey be a reflection of care for your belongings and the environment. Here's to a future filled with label-free jars, brimming with endless possibilities and the promise of new beginnings.


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Meet Valinda

Hi there, I am the founder of the green and happy mom blog and green and happy shop. After battling severe depression, I am determined to make the world a little better and I want to take you along that journey with me. 

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