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How to Remove Candle Wax From Old Jars

How to Remove Candle Wax From Jars

After dozens of hours of burning your favorite candle, you’ve finally reached the bottom of the jar. What now? You’d love to reuse the jar, but there’s some pesky leftover wax that just won’t budge. We’re going to show you how to remove candle wax from old jars in just a few simple steps. We’ll even show you how to make your jars squeaky clean and some great ways to reuse them.

5 Ways to Remove Candle Wax from Candle Jars

How to Remove Candle Wax From Jars
How to Remove Candle Wax From Old Jars

Removing candle wax isn’t as hard as you think. Here’s how to remove candle wax from jars using five simple but effective methods.

1. Boiling Water

One simple way to remove candle wax is with boiling water.

  • Start by using a butter knife to remove as much wax from the jar as possible.
  • Next, place the candle jar on a protected surface (on top of a towel or newspaper).
  • Carefully pour boiling water into the jar. Leave some room at the top of the jar. For soy wax candles, you only need to use hot water and not necessarily boiling water.

As the boiling water works its magic, the wax will float to the top. Wait until the water cools to remove the wax pieces. You can use a strainer to remove small wax bits, but make sure that you don’t pour wax down the drain.

2. The Oven

If you have more than one candle to clean, you can use your oven to loosen the candle wax.

  • Use a spoon or butter knife to remove as much wax as possible from the jar.
  • Heat your oven to 180 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
  • Place your candles on the baking sheet upside down.
  • Put the baking sheet in the oven, and allow it to sit for 15 minutes.
  • Carefully remove the baking sheet and set it down on a heat-safe surface.
  • Using a pot holder, carefully hold the container, and wipe down the inside with a clean paper towel.
  • Allow the jar to cool before cleaning it with soap and water.

The oven is an easy way to remove candle wax, but it’s important to be careful when handling the hot jar.

3. Freezing

One of the most popular tips on how to remove candle wax from old jars is to use your freezer. The cold air in your freezer will harden and shrink the wax, which makes it easier to remove with a butter knife or other utensil.

  • Remove as much was from the jar as possible using a butter knife or spoon.
  • Place your candle in the freezer for at least three hours or until it’s frozen.
  • Remove the jar.

The wax should pop right out, but if it doesn’t use a butter knife to remove it. This method takes a little longer than some of the others, but it’s one of the safest and easiest ways to get the job done.

4. Double Boiler

Another way to remove wax from a jar is to use a double boiler method.

  • Remove as much wax as possible.
  • Place a pot or large metal bowl on a heat-safe surface.
  • Place the candle jar in the center of the pot or bowl.
  • Carefully pour boiling water into the pot or bowl around the candle, taking care not to get any water into the jar.
  • Allow the jar to sit until the wax has softened and loosened.
  • Holding the jar with one hand, carefully use a butter knife to scrape the loosened wax away.

The double boiler method is a little tricky, but It’s a simple way to remove wax when you don’t want to pour boiling water right into the jar itself.

5. Hair Dryer

Heat is great for removing wax from jars. But if you’d rather not worry about putting candles in the oven or using boiling water, a hair dryer is a great alternative.

Use your hair dryer on a high setting to heat the sides and bottom of the candle jar. The heat will soften the wax, making it easier to remove. A butter knife makes it easy to scrape away the wax and remove it safely from the jar.

How To Clean the Jar After Removing the Wax

Now that you’ve learned how to remove candle wax from old jars, it’s time to clean your jars. The bulk of the wax is gone, but there may be a light layer of residue or soot left behind.

Here are some simple and quick cleaning methods.

Soap and Warm Water

The easiest way to clean your jars is to use soap and warm or hot water. This method is best for candles that only have a little bit of residue.

Soak the candle in the warm soapy water, and use a sponge to clean up any residue or leftover soot. You may want to toss the sponge after you use it. Rinse the jar, and dry it with a clean paper towel.

You can also use a bottle brush to clean the jar if it has a narrow opening.

Adhesive Remover

Goo gone original - remove candle wax

For stubborn candle wax, try using an adhesive remover, like Goo Gone, which you can get on Amazon.

What To Do with The Jars After the Wax is Removed

Your jars are clean and wax-free. Now what? There are so many ways to reuse candle jars.

Succulent Planter

Succulent Planter

Candle jars are great succulent planters. They’re just the right size, and you don’t really have to worry about drainage. If you have a wide candle jar, like the ones that have three or four wicks, you may be able to plant multiple succulents in one jar. Just remember not to overwater your plants.

Office Supply Organization

Office Supply Organization

Candle jars are also great for organizing your office supplies. Use them to hold and organize your:

  • Paper clips
  • Pens and pencils
  • Rubber bands
  • Staples
  • Rulers
  • Scissors

Smaller jars are great for keeping paper clips and other small items organized on your desk. They won’t take up much space, and they look great, too.

Related: 21 Creative Apartment Organization Hacks That Will Make Your Life Easier

Turn Them into Jar Lights

Turn Them into Jar Lights

Add some ambiance to your space by turning your candle jars into mini lanterns. Place battery-powered fairy lights into the jar and place them strategically throughout your bedroom or living room. They create a cozy glow that can really make your space feel more inviting and comfortable.

Pinch Jars

Small candle jars are great for use as pinch jars. Fill them with salt, pepper or other spices, and grab a pinch whenever you need it. Just make sure that your jars are thoroughly cleaned and dried before you fill them.

Makeup Storage

Taller candle jars can be used to store makeup brushes. Smaller jars are great for storing lipstick, mascara and other cosmetics.



If you have taller or wider jars, you can use them as vases for fresh or faux flowers. You can also use smaller jars for short bouquets.

Organize Art Supplies

Organize Art Supplies
Organize Art Supplies

If you have art supplies, you can use your candle jars as storage for markers, colored pencils, paint brushes and more. They’re a quick and easy way to keep your supplies organized and make everything easy to access.

Make New Candles

Make New Candles
Make New Candles

Of course, you can also use your leftover jars to make new candles. The process is easier than you think, and you can continue using your jars to create new candles for years to come.

Making New Candles – What You Need and Where to Get It

Making New Candles – What You Need and Where to Get It
Making New Candles – What You Need and Where to Get It

If you want to use your old candle jars to make new candles, you’ll need some supplies. These include:

A Fresh Wick

A Fresh Wick candles diy

Every candle needs a wick. You have a few options here.

  • Bulk 100-piece wick kit from Amazon, with both cotton and wood wicks. This kit also has stickers and a centering device to help ensure your wick stays in the right place.
  • Wooden wicks from Walmart. These wicks make crackling noises just like a real fire.

Candle Wax

candle wax diy

Of course, you’ll need candle wax for your new candle. You can either use leftover wax that you’ve collected from old candle jars, or you can buy new wax.

If you want to buy new wax, you have a few options:

  • Soy wax. This kit from Amazon has 5 lbs. of soy wax, 100 candle wicks and two centering devices.
  • You can buy 2 lbs. of it on Amazon for less than $12.
  • Coconut soy wax blend. You can buy 10-lb or 20-lb boxes on Amazon.

Scent and Color (Optional)

Scent and Color - wax candle diy

If you want to add scent and color to your candle, you’ll need dye and either fragrance oil or essential oils.

You can also buy a candle making kit (like this one from Amazon), which includes a pouring pot, wicks, wicks holder and stickers.

Now that you’ve learned how to remove candle wax from old jars, you can put those old jars to good use and even make new candles. Use our tips and tricks to make the most out of your candle jars.