How To Get Candle Wax Out Of A Jar (6 Methods Ranked From Easy To Hard)
So, you finally buy that lovely, expensive candle with its intricately designed jar that you always wanted.
The jar looks so good that you decide you want to keep it and use it as a storage alternative or a decorative vase. Perhaps you want to repurpose the leftover wax as well.
The only problem is that it can be pretty tricky to remove the remaining wax out of the jar. It’s awkward, difficult, and can get messy.
Rest assured, in this article, we are going to detail several handy methods you can use to remove that leftover wax.
When Should I Collect Leftover Wax?
If you feel like you can still easily light the wick, then the candle should still be up for more flames. But if the wick is already too hard-to-reach and can’t be lit anymore, maybe it’s time for you to remove the leftover wax and clean the candle jar.
Optimally, about ½ inch of candle wax should remain at the bottom of the jar before you bid your candle goodbye.
Burning past this mark can also be bad for your jar or the surface it’s on. Besides, this tip should give you a reasonable estimate of how much wax you’ll be cleaning out when it’s time to do so.
Getting wax out of your jar doesn’t really need lavish equipment or so much time. With just a handful of household items (and some patience), you no longer have to worry about your ruined candle jar going in the trash.
Let’s get started.
6 Ways To Get Candle Wax Out Of A Jar
Tip: Before trying any of the following methods, try to scrape off as much wax as possible to make the whole process a breeze.
1. Warm Water (Easy Difficulty)
This is a very easy method. All you need is a bowl and warm water.
- Get a large bowl and place your candle jar at the bottom.
- Fill the bowl with warm water.
- Let it soak for about half an hour to allow the wax to detach from the jar, making it easier to scrape out.
To make this process quicker, you can opt to use boiling water instead. Just be careful!
2. Freeze (Easy Difficulty)
This is one of the simplest ways to save your jar, thanks to wax’s nature since it hardens and shrinks when frozen.
- Ensure the candle jar is at room temperature before placing it in the freezer. This will prevent it from cracking.
- Put the candle jar in your freezer overnight or until it is frozen (usually a few hours).
- Take it out and flip it upside down. The wax should come out. You can also use a spoon to help remove leftover wax.
3. Hairdryer (Medium Difficulty)
The heat from a hairdryer should be enough to soften the wax inside the jar for easier removal. Also, wear something protective for your hands (like an oven mitt) since the jar heats up quickly.
- Put the jar on a heat-resistant surface, then hold the jar.
- Turn the hairdryer on a warm setting when you’re all set up. Aim the hairdryer towards the wax for a few minutes until the wax softens.
- Once the wax looks soft enough, remove it from the jar. You can use a knife for this step or just let the wax slide out of the jar if possible.
4. Hot Water (Medium Difficulty)
This tip usually works best with wide-mouth jar candles like mason jars.
- Boil water in a kettle.
- While the water is boiling, place your candle on a protected surface such as a potholder or towel.
- Pour the boiled water into the jar, up to an inch from the top. The extremely high temperature of the water should be enough to melt the wax, causing it to rise to the surface.
- Let the water and jar cool first before removing the wax using a strainer to remove the wax chunks from the water.
- Using a small knife or a spoon, scrape the leftover wax before finally cleaning the jar.
5. Microwave (Medium Difficulty)
Just a heads up before you continue: do not follow this step if your candle has a metal wick holder or if you have colored or bubbled jars. Ensure that the glass is also microwave-friendly before proceeding. If in doubt, don’t do it. Safety comes first.
- Fill the jar with water and microwave it for 1 – 2 minutes. The time depends on your candle wax. Soy and coconut candles usually have lower melting points.
- Turn off the microwave once all or most of the wax has risen to the top.
- Remove the jar (use oven mitts) from the microwave and let it cool to room temperature.
- Scrape off the leftover wax with a spoon.
6. Oven (Great For Many Candles – Hard Difficulty)
If you’re thinking of removing wax from several candles all at once, this tip’s for you. You’ll need aluminum foil and a baking sheet.
- Remove the labels on your jars first. If your jars have any decorations that can’t be removed, we recommend not using this method.
- Preheat the oven to 200°F and cover your baking sheet with aluminum foil.
- Put the candle jars open side down on the foil without crowding them too much. Then, place them in the oven for about 15 minutes.
- This should allow the wax to pool onto the foil.
- Take the baking sheet out of the oven and put the jars aside on a heat-resistant surface (use an oven mitt!).
- Remove the wax from the aluminum foil. You can clean the jars once they are cooled.
Cleaning Your Candle Jar
Yay! The hard part’s over. You finally got rid of the nasty wax from your candle jar… what’s next?
You might notice some wax residue stuck for its dear life on the glass.
Scrub the jar carefully using a sponge with dish soap to shun any lingering oil, soot, and wax bits. Next, use a bottle brush or any adhesive remover for the remaining wax. Then, wipe it dry with a towel.
That’s it! Now you have a newly polished, recycled candle jar that’s totally ready to be something else again.