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Jars for Things

In addition to the cigar boxes, I had this idea of on-display storage for most of my Pet Shop items. With the studio housing white furniture and soft pink walls, my color-loving heart wanted my crafty supplies on display in clear vases, jars and the like, using the built-in shelves as the backdrop. Between my product packaging (shades of blue-green and goldenrod like our logo) and ready made art prints, I have plenty of color to show for.

Over time, we’ve stashed “dead” candles in our cupboards, saving the ones with the prettiest jars to use later. (For a vase, I would tell Scott. We have the cabinet space, I argue; this is an obvious lie.) To save pennies on the numerous clear vessels I have in mind, we finally have a use for them – upcycle the jars for on-display studio storage.

While in California, I asked Kalli for tips on how to get the hardened wax out, and she suggested placing the jars in boiling water, then scooping out the wax. A quick Google search confirmed her simple instructions, and I pulled up even more tips from Wikihow. Thinking that pouring or scooping out the hot wax could be messy (and handling the hot jars with oven mitts could get complicated), I opted to try Wiki tip #2: Pour boiling water into the jar.

The red candle is soy, and it immediately began to liquify. Very lava lamp-esque:

For the others, the boiling water allowed the wax to soften without separating, and I was able to gently lift the wax loose with a butter knife. It floated to the top, I cut it in two and easily pulled the halves out.

Now, here’s where I got ahead of myself.

If there’s one thing you take from this post, remember this: If you get the wax out before the water has completely cooled, do not pour the hot water down the drain. Stupidly, I did this. The water still had melted wax in it (although in my defense, it was clear, and I was excited), and it was no different than pouring warm, liquid wax right down the drain. I proceeded to spend the next 15 minutes scraping the mess before Scott found me, alternating my scrapes with hot water clean up.

There is no photo proof, as I had out-stunned myself. Sometimes I don’t know about me.

If you wait for the water to cool completely (as Wikihow instructs; I could not outsmart the Wiki, oh no), you can then pop all the cold wax out, dump the cold water and wash the jar in warm, soapy water – and be done.

After my initial mistake, I refilled the jars with hot water again and started over. Then I did exactly as the Wiki told me to. I actually let the water cool overnight, and the next morning, the wax floated to the top and hardened. At this point, you can cut it in two, and, well, look at that!

Tip: if there are still remnants of wax on the sides of the jar, warm water, a soapy brillo pad and patience helped me to dislodge the last stubborn bits.

Do you do this with your candle jars? (Clean them, I mean. Not the pouring-water+wax-down-the-drain thing.) What methods have you used? Scott insisted on saving the leftover wax to create a mega candle (yes, Scott insisted), and when I resisted, he made a hefty promise to make the candle himself. A man full of surprises, I say.

We hope you’ll take a moment to read our guest vignette over at Courtney Out Loud today!

  • Laura @ DMHB - March 8, 2012 - 8:32 AM

    I’ve only tried removing small amounts of wax from jars (the small votives), and I just use a bowl and hot tap water. Leave the jar sitting in the hot tap water for about 5 minutes, use a butter knife, and the hardened wax literally pops out like a disk. Then I brillo-pad away the remaining crud around the edges. Admittedly, my water heater is set pretty high, so my hot tap water gets pretty hot, but I never need oven mitts to handle the glass.ReplyCancel

  • Loren - March 8, 2012 - 8:41 AM

    This is a great idea. I worked with a party planner for a while and her solution was to leave glass containers with wax on them soaking in sink full of hot water while we cleaned up. It had exactly this ‘float to the top’ effect. It’s a great trick :) The jar look great all cleaned up.ReplyCancel

  • Jane @ The Borrowed Abode - March 8, 2012 - 8:52 AM

    I’m mentally smacking myself. I always set the jar in boiling water, then pour the melted wax out and into the trash. The water-inside-the-jar idea is genius.
    The way I get rid of the last bits of wax is – pop the jar back in the water. Then when it’s all hot and melted, I just take a rag or paper towel and wipe out the jar once or twice. If you do it with enough pressure and enough speed, you can get it all before it re-hardens.ReplyCancel

  • Amy - March 8, 2012 - 8:53 AM

    There’s a much much easier way to do this! Pop the candles in the freezer overnight. The next day, go around the edge of the wax with a sharp knife, and shove the knife down to the bottom of the jar and wiggle the wax out. No boiling water needed.ReplyCancel

  • Kim - March 8, 2012 - 9:30 AM

    Hi Amy, I saw that method on the Wiki, too! I’ll have to try that the next time we have a few jars in need of de-waxing!ReplyCancel

  • Jessica - March 8, 2012 - 9:36 AM

    I use the freeezer method all the time. It works so well!ReplyCancel

  • Kyley at Painting Pony - March 8, 2012 - 10:08 AM

    Man, I wish I had known u could get the wax out! I’ve thrown away such cool candle jars because I didn’t want to bother getting the wax out. Now I know! Thanks for the post – can’t wait to see your pretty jars filled with pretty things.ReplyCancel

  • casacaudill - March 8, 2012 - 11:29 AM

    I always say I’m going to do this and then I never do. Actually, that’s not true. One time I did and it was a mess. Oh, and I did pour the hot wax water down the sink.ReplyCancel

  • Kim - March 8, 2012 - 11:32 AM

    Casacaudill, thank you for admitting that you also poured hot wax water down the sink. I no longer feel alone.ReplyCancel

  • Kalli - March 8, 2012 - 4:30 PM

    Oh, no! We all have moments where we just kind of do something to quickly to finish thinking it through completely, like pouring wax-water down the sink. I prefer putting glasses in simmering (boiling could be a bit dangerous) water to soften it enough to come off in a chunk or melt it until you can pour (just) wax out into the trash and wipe clean with paper towels. Depending on the shape of the container (if the top has a wide mouth and does not taper at the top) or if candle wax has formed into a lumpy sort of puddle, freezing can allow wax to pop off in one piece, but it’s sometimes tricky.

    My other favorite tip is: if you spill candle wax on fabric or a rug, etc, the best way to get most of it out is to let it harden, then lay a brown paper bag over it and use a hot clothes iron to draw the melted wax up into the paper and out of your carpet- it should get nearly all of it out. Can you tell I had a lot of accidents during my stint making candles back in the day?ReplyCancel

  • Kalli - March 8, 2012 - 4:44 PM

    also, “hot wax water” instantly makes me think of this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BdmySY9QiqoReplyCancel

  • pixie - March 8, 2012 - 6:52 PM

    Thanks for sharing this, I may or may not have a stash of pretty anthro candle jars under my kitchen sink that could use such treatment. May. Or may not. lol.ReplyCancel

  • ann - March 8, 2012 - 8:48 PM

    After the majority of the wax is out pop the jar in the microwave for a few seconds then wipe with paper towel. After a rinse with warm soapy water your jar is spotless.ReplyCancel

  • emily @ the happy home - March 9, 2012 - 1:46 PM

    ee! love this. my boyfriend (yes, boyfriend) is big into the candle thing, and i always feel bad throwing away the otherwise fine glass that they come in. this is so much better than BUYING votive holders!ReplyCancel

  • Jen - March 9, 2012 - 5:39 PM

    I don’t even boil the water, I just run the tap till it gets super hot, fill them, let them sit , then scrape and dump. Another good way to get candle wax off of anything is the old blow-dryer/paper towel trick. Magic!ReplyCancel

  • Kim - March 12, 2012 - 10:13 AM

    These are all such great tips!

    Kalli, I’ve never (knock on wood!) had to use the ironing trick to get wax out of carpet, but I’ve heard of it, and it’s always on the back of my mind – just in case!ReplyCancel

  • Ruth - March 12, 2012 - 12:21 PM

    You could melt the ends of the candles into 1 new candle and add a new wick to avoid wasteage :) My dad does this with old tea lights inside a Heinz baked bean can! Looks very fun and quirky ;)

    http://www.flossyblossom.blogspot.comReplyCancel

    • Kim - March 12, 2012 - 12:39 PM

      Ruth, that’s a great idea!ReplyCancel

  • Joy - March 12, 2012 - 1:45 PM

    I *always* save my candle jars! I generally just put the jars in the freezer for a couple of hours, something sciency happens and it makes the wax really to get out (sometimes just by slapping the bottom like a glass bottle of ketchup). I’ve been collecting them and keeping them in a grey “party” tote. They’re great for vases and votive holders when I’m hosting!ReplyCancel

  • April - April 8, 2012 - 6:16 PM

    My method was a little different but still works. Instead of filling up the sink with hot water I just filled up a pan that way I wasn’t wasting water. And yes I’ve actually dumped it down the drain and after wards did a mental head slap. I’m such a “container” hoarder that I’ve saved my large jars and reused them and filled them with buttons, pom poms and those foamy shapes. Thanks for sharing your method, I’ll have to try it next time.ReplyCancel

  • Sasha - April 16, 2012 - 9:45 AM

    My mom and I have alwyas turned our oven on to somewere between 175 and 250. We take an old coke flat and line it with newspaper then paper towels. Place candles upside down on flat and slide into oven. wax falls out in whole chunks. then you just take another paper towel or warm wash cloth and wipe out the smudges. we just save up a bunch of candles and work on it on a cool afternoon. takes about 10-15 minutes per flatReplyCancel

  • Christina - April 19, 2012 - 10:01 PM

    My mom has always used the freezer method as long as I can remember I’ll have to let her know about this!!ReplyCancel

  • Careful Cents - April 20, 2012 - 12:01 PM

    This is an awesome method for reusing candles and other jars! I’ve been looking for ways to get the wax out of my leftover candles. So glad I found this wonderful tutorial. Thank you!ReplyCancel

  • Pam - May 9, 2012 - 9:26 AM

    Both the boiling water and freezing methods work great to get wax out. To prevent votive candles (not tea lights or tapers) from sticking add a small amount of water (maybe a teaspoon or so depending on size of your jar) and add 1 – 2 drops of cooking oil, then place the votive in the water. When the votive burns down it will extinguish itself and when cool the remaining wax will pop out. I learner this from a candle store and it works great plus the small amount of water helps illuminate the candle.ReplyCancel

  • Becci - May 13, 2012 - 12:15 PM

    I always pop the containers in the freezer and the wax just pops out. Sometimes there are remnants of small bits of wax that stick (not much though) in which case I clean them off with hot water.ReplyCancel

  • Susie - May 14, 2012 - 11:17 AM

    To add to your tips, if you place a couple of Tablespoons of water in the container before you place your candle in, it will prevent sticking in the first place. The candle leftovers just fall right out! I do it all the time!!!ReplyCancel

  • Barbara - May 16, 2012 - 3:00 PM

    I put my candles on the warmer until they melt completely then I pour the little bit of wax in the trash and wash the holders in my dish water after all dishes are washed.ReplyCancel

  • Kristin - May 22, 2012 - 5:01 PM

    Just a fun idea for the left over wax…. Take one of your misfit socks that the dryer elves stole the match of and put some pieces of your SCENTED wax scraps into it, tie it up and throw it under the seat of your car. Makes a cheap and wonderful car air freshener! Probably would work like a sachet for your dresser drawers too!ReplyCancel

  • Kim - May 22, 2012 - 5:33 PM

    Great tips and ideas, everyone!ReplyCancel

  • Barb - June 1, 2012 - 9:46 PM

    I use the freezer method also, have reused several jars that way for jewelry, coins, potpourri…and I used the leftover wax from the bottom in my tart burners.ReplyCancel

  • jody simmons - June 2, 2012 - 1:40 PM

    you can use baking soda to wipe the left over wax in the jars after you have gotten the bulk of the wax out of the jar. Sprinkle a bit in the jar (not water needed) take a paper towel and wipe right out.ReplyCancel

  • Kim - June 2, 2012 - 3:57 PM

    Baking soda cures everything it seems. Great tip!ReplyCancel

  • Brooke Morgan - June 4, 2012 - 1:12 PM

    Instead of wasting the wax, pour the melted wax (requires using a method to actually melt the wax) create your own layered candle. Use one of the jars you have so neatly cleaned out, pour in the melted wax and allow to harden before pouring in the next layer. Choose scents that blend well together and you have created a whole new candle! Don’t waste that wax!ReplyCancel

  • Debi - June 7, 2012 - 11:01 AM

    First I put the my candle jars in boiling water then carefully pour the wax into an old metal oil can. After that can is full, I put the can in boiling water to melt the old wax again. I use the old wax to make fire starters. I stuff dryer lint into paper egg cartons and pour melted wax over the lint. Let this harden, tear off one of the pieces and they work great in my wood stove. I don’t even have to use kindling. Then…I put the empty candle jars in the dishwasher. They come out super clean.ReplyCancel

  • Kelly - June 8, 2012 - 9:55 PM

    I’ve just recently started using the freezer method… it works beautifully. I use the jars to hold my qtips and cotton balls… and now all sorts of artsy stuff for school projects for my 7 year old. I LOVE that I’ve figured out a way to save them. I, too, have thrown away way too many cool jars because I just hadn’t really thought about it.ReplyCancel

  • Karina - June 9, 2012 - 3:54 PM

    Excellent idea, thanks! Another useful wax remover is the microwave. Just warm the jar for 10 seconds or so, and wipe out with paper towel. Works great for those little specks of wax.ReplyCancel

  • [...] is the original pin I saw on Pinterest called Removing Candle Wax-hot water and it immediately appealed to my crafty side! I am one of those people who doesn’t [...]ReplyCancel

  • Kathie - June 11, 2012 - 8:51 PM

    I just put mine in the freezer. With the tarts, they usually pop right out in one piece.ReplyCancel

  • kim - June 12, 2012 - 10:21 AM

    Freezer works great to get the drips off glass, brass or silver candlestick holders too.ReplyCancel

  • April - June 12, 2012 - 12:44 PM

    Just happened to stumble across this wax removal idea as well:
    Use nonstick spray on the inside of your votive holders. When the candle has burned out, the remaining wax will just slip out.

    *please note – I have not tried this myself. You probably don’t want to do this on clear holders. It might make the glass foggy*ReplyCancel

  • Laura - June 12, 2012 - 3:01 PM

    Save yourself all of the trouble. Simply put the candle in the freezer over night. The wax will contract because of the cold, then you simply use a knife or other utensil to pop the wax out of the container. Wash with warm soapy water and enjoy!ReplyCancel

  • Kim - June 12, 2012 - 3:08 PM

    We really need to try the freezer trick! Thank you for all the tips!ReplyCancel

  • Allie H. - June 12, 2012 - 6:41 PM

    I’ve found that the easiest way is to find/use a saucepan you don’t really care for anymore and bring 3/4 full of water to near boiling. Gently slide the jar into the water (it has to be thicker glass, I don’t trust very thin to maintain) and keep an eye on it. The wax will come out of the jay by itself and once it looks like most of the wax is there (this you have to eye so an old thick glass pot would be the best) and let it cool. All the wax stays on top of the water and you can pull it out in a disk and reuse it, if wanted. And the jar is virtually clean. (At least in my experience.) You just need a little extra scrubbing for the jar.ReplyCancel

  • Charlotte - June 13, 2012 - 8:08 AM

    Wow what a great tip!! I will definitely be doing this today!! You can even use the leftover blocks of wax in an oil burner, brilliant xReplyCancel

  • Jen - June 14, 2012 - 9:24 PM

    I just turn mine upside down and let hot tap water run over the bottom of the candle holder (usually while I’m already washing dishes so not to waste too much water). The hot water loosens the wax and it falls right out in one big chunk with no mess. I then take a dry paper towel and just wipe the inside to remove any wax residue while the glass is still warm and then wash it with the dish soap.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - June 14, 2012 - 10:08 PM

      Another great tip! Thank you, Jen!ReplyCancel

  • Bekah - June 15, 2012 - 11:06 AM

    I used the freezer method and it worked rather well. I also saved the leftover pieces of candle wax and put them in my Scentsy lamp! :)ReplyCancel

  • kathy - June 15, 2012 - 8:43 PM

    Oven at 300 degrees, jelly roll pan lined with several layers of paper towels, old candles/candle holders up side down on paper towels. 5-15 minutes in the oven (please keep an eye on them!). Take out, carefully remove candle holders–I use a potholder. Melted wax is left on paper towels…toss. Easy!ReplyCancel

  • Mary - June 16, 2012 - 8:22 PM

    I have always used the oven method but with wax paper. Always worked, just hard handling sometimes with the potholders/towel, etc. Next time I am going to try to freezer or the hot water or both to see what works the best for me.ReplyCancel

  • Lawfrog - June 16, 2012 - 9:52 PM

    I will raise my hand and admit to pouring the wax down the drain as well. Easy to do when you aren’t thinking about it. I haven’t tried the freezer method, but I will do that next time. I love candles so I have plenty of jars to practice on!ReplyCancel

  • Lisa - June 16, 2012 - 10:52 PM

    Try putting it in the freezer for a couple hours. In most cases just taps right out.ReplyCancel

  • Danielle - June 17, 2012 - 10:36 PM

    I tried this method and the glass jar cracked when I poured the boiling water into the container. I wonder why that happened.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - June 18, 2012 - 12:04 PM

      Oh, no, Danielle! Perhaps the glass was very thin? We used the boiling water method on several jars (all from different brands/companies), and we didn’t have that problem. My best guess is the jar may have been a thin glass and too cool in comparison to the hot water, causing the crack.ReplyCancel

  • Cheryl Hill - June 20, 2012 - 10:47 PM

    For the past 6 1/2 years I have only used Mia Bella candles in our home because they are made of a natural wax that burns clean and all I have to do with these is us a butter knife in the center to break up the bottom of the wax that is left over for safety reasons and it pops right out. I clean out the majority of the wax, wipe it up with a paper towel and then wash the jar in the dishwasher.

    I have used these jars all around the house…toothbrush holders, for cotton balls, pens and even office supplies like paper clips etc.

    I love to recycle the jars they come in….Thanks for the great post! OOH and for those that want a candle that cleans up with hot soapy water you must try a Mia Bella they are the best when it comes to that! ;)ReplyCancel

  • Kellie - June 21, 2012 - 8:02 AM

    I’ve used the freezer method, but found votives only need 15-20 minutes in the freezer to loosen the wax. You can also put them in your frig, but for a little longer time. No boiling water needed and the wax pops right out.ReplyCancel

  • Karen - June 21, 2012 - 11:05 AM

    Does this method work on tall (15″) Hurricane? I would be afraid it might break it. But I have one that someone blew wax all over inside of it.ReplyCancel

  • Kim - June 21, 2012 - 6:11 PM

    Hi Karen, all the jars I used this method on were on the thicker side (Ball jars, etc). If you’re unsure, I would start with very, very hot water – not boiling – and see if that doesn’t loosen the wax.ReplyCancel

  • Karla DuBois - June 22, 2012 - 5:41 PM

    Use the left over scented wax in wax melt defusers. Great way to use it up!ReplyCancel

  • Sandy - June 23, 2012 - 8:09 AM

    Another option is to put the candle container in the freezer. Once frozen, either the wax will just pop out, or you can break it up with a knife and it will come out in chunks. I’ve tried this method and it works really well. Good luck with this one if you choose to try it. I’m going to try your method.ReplyCancel

  • leigh blake - June 23, 2012 - 10:12 AM

    I have sooo many to clean….I have always used the freezer method, but think I will try the over – upside down and use a disposable tin (like for turkey) and just keep it around for such projects. Have used a paper towel with googone once the wax is out to clean jar – cleans all waxy residue off.ReplyCancel

  • LibbyR - June 23, 2012 - 10:06 PM

    To get the little bits left in the jar, I use a dry scrubby cloth, rags from old towels are good and then hot tap water and dawn. The dawn helps to lift the oil of the wax off.ReplyCancel

  • LibbyR - June 23, 2012 - 10:17 PM

    A good way to reuse bits and chunks of wax, just lay them on the middle of a double sheet of newspaper (roughly a small handful of wax scraps on 12″ x 12″ size of newspaper is a good size for us) roll the paper up and twist the ends like a tootsie roll. Then lay on top of wood when starting a fire or campfire. We have these little bundles stacked in a basic next to the fireplace ready for use Works great without dealing with melting and pouring wax to reform it. (Although I do love another commenters idea of pouring wax into paper egg cartons to reuse!)ReplyCancel

  • lori - June 25, 2012 - 8:57 AM

    you can also put them in the freezer and once they ae frozen the wax pops out.ReplyCancel

  • Melanie R - June 25, 2012 - 11:29 AM

    I find it ezr to pop them in the freezer, at least overnite. Whenever i get back to them, most of the time most of the wax pops rite off with help frm a butterknife.ReplyCancel

  • MELISSA - June 27, 2012 - 11:38 AM

    FYI–if you put water in the bottom of a votive holder before you put the candle in when it burns it won’t stick to the bottom.

    But..I need help on how to get candle wax off of a tablecloth???Any suggestions?? I haven’t tried the freezer yet but thought that might work.ReplyCancel

  • Kim - June 27, 2012 - 12:13 PM

    Hey Melissa, I haven’t tried this yet myself, but I’ve heard of using brown paper + a warm iron. See this:

    http://www.wikihow.com/Get-Wax-out-of-Fabrics-and-Carpet

    Hope that helps!ReplyCancel

  • Liane - June 28, 2012 - 1:51 PM

    I always just pop mine in the freezer .. works all the time.ReplyCancel

  • Shelly - June 29, 2012 - 12:52 PM

    I just saw this on pinterest last night, pinned it to my board, woke up this morning and started on mine! Worked perfect and i put my wax in ziplock bags while it was still warm and smashed it into a flat square and divided into several small squares that i can later break off and throw on my candle warmer instead of buying new scented wax candles! My house smells amazing right now and i have about 40 squares from one candle! Cant wait to finish the rest!ReplyCancel

  • Kim - June 29, 2012 - 1:35 PM

    It seems to me like we really need to get a candle warmer for our leftover wax!ReplyCancel

  • [...] Do you have a stash of ends of candles in jars (or is that just me?)?  I found a kindred spirit…and a how-to on getting the wax out! [...]ReplyCancel

  • sarah - July 2, 2012 - 12:01 PM

    I use the freezer method. But after I get the large pieces out I use vegetable oil and a paper towel to get the crud off the edges. Then wash with soap and water. In my opinion it works better than the boiling water methods!ReplyCancel

  • chichicho - July 3, 2012 - 5:23 PM

    thanks for the great tip!! I have been trying to do this for years and failed….
    I will definitely try this out tonightReplyCancel

  • chichicho - July 3, 2012 - 6:28 PM

    I just tried doing this and it works like a charm!!!!ReplyCancel

  • Angie - July 5, 2012 - 1:31 PM

    Just a word of caution: The iron and paper bag trick works well to remove wax from carpet, but be careful not to have the iron too hot. I tried this at my brother’s house, and the iron was too hot and melted his carpet! Oops! At least it was at his house, and not mine!ReplyCancel

  • Jayne Genter - July 7, 2012 - 2:37 AM

    An old neighbor told me many yrs. ago to put the jars in the freezer over night & the wax will pop out perfectly & she was right. Start loosening around the edge with a table knife & it will pop out. Don’t mess around with hot water. It’ll mess up your drains. :)ReplyCancel

  • Heather - July 7, 2012 - 5:54 AM

    I use the freezer method!ReplyCancel

  • Michelle - July 7, 2012 - 1:07 PM

    Ive gotten wax out of old candles just using hot water, and letting it soak for awhile. But my question is how did you get out the little metal piece on the bottom of the glass that holds the wick? I have looked everywhere to figure it out, and everyone’s just “magically” disappear.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 7, 2012 - 5:59 PM

      Hi Michelle, the metal piece is stuck with glue/wax, and it lifts easily out with the hot water trick! Hope that helps!ReplyCancel

  • Dawn - July 9, 2012 - 9:16 PM

    Oh my goodness, ladies! Boiling water? Ovens? Melted wax?? Sounds like danger and mess to me! :-P Please try the freezer method! I’ve done that ever since my sister worked for a candle company and discovered the freezer tip. Just put it in the freezer for a while, use the edge of a butterknife to pry at the edges a bit and it will literally pop out. Then use the various tips given for getting any little tiny stuck on bits off. Make it easy on yourselves!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - July 9, 2012 - 10:57 PM

      Thank you, Dawn! I do plan on trying the freezer method soon!ReplyCancel

  • Stephanie - July 10, 2012 - 11:21 PM

    I had a 3 wick candle from Bath and Body Works. I lit the wicks until the last remaining wax was liquid, then I blew out the flames and poured the wax onto a thick paper plate. I pulled the wicks out of the bottom, put the vase on the top rack in the dishwasher. Perfect. Why go through all the boiling water trouble?ReplyCancel

  • Kim - July 11, 2012 - 9:29 AM

    Hi Stephanie, I think your method can definitely work too! In some cases, our candles wouldn’t burn all the way down (they were burning unevenly, etc), so the hot water worked for us this time around.ReplyCancel

  • Lynda - July 11, 2012 - 12:03 PM

    Have to tell you… the freezer method didn’t work for me but the water method did… heated some water in the microwave, it was hot but not boiling as I didn’t know how the glass would hold up… put the glass in a plastic bin and poured the hot water in… let it sit for a few hours, and out it popped…ReplyCancel

  • Earendil - July 12, 2012 - 8:06 AM

    I always put mine on my candle warmer and let it melt and pour the wax onto another candle or into a mold to use as tart later then take a little warm water and elbow grease and scrub out the container.ReplyCancel

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  • Shawndris - July 19, 2012 - 12:36 AM

    Very good idea, I will have to try this.
    P.S. I have that same mirror you do in your last picture!ReplyCancel

  • Autumn Rose - July 24, 2012 - 2:00 PM

    Freezer method works great, too!ReplyCancel

  • Melanie - August 1, 2012 - 9:17 PM

    Did exactly the same thing with the hot water! I had nicely lined the sink with clear wax and then had to scrub the sink!
    Also, be carefull with the butter knife that you don’t splash yourself with the boiling water and wax! I did this and ended up with burning hot wax over my neck and hand!
    Lesson learnt…at least I have nice clean pretty jars!!ReplyCancel

  • Linn - August 4, 2012 - 8:36 AM

    I always put the entire jar into the freezer. When the wax hardens you can just break it up and pop it right out. No mess involved!ReplyCancel

  • Cory - August 5, 2012 - 12:21 PM

    This is a good idea but as a candle maker I sometimes don’t have time to let the water cool. If there isn’t very much wax left in the jar you can simply warm the wax up on a warmer and then, with a paper towel, wipe the wax out. You may have to do this a few times but it will remove all the wax.ReplyCancel

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  • olya - August 5, 2012 - 6:18 PM

    its a whole lot easier to freeze them. u put the jar in the freezer for an hour or more if u have the time. the wax constricts a bit and u just crack it with a butter knife and it comes right out no mess or melty wax to deal with.ReplyCancel

  • Kelly - August 8, 2012 - 8:27 AM

    I too use the freezer method, but all the wax doesn’t always pop right out. Plus, sometimes, the wax pieces are too big to get out of the jar if it has a lip on it. I will try this method on the ones that still have some wax left. Great idea!ReplyCancel

  • Lauren - August 11, 2012 - 2:12 AM

    I always just run the underside of the jar under some hot water, and pop it out when the bottom layer of wax is melted.ReplyCancel

  • Natasha - August 13, 2012 - 8:25 PM

    I haven’t tried this yet, but I plan on it now!! Great tip :) Thanks!

    And also, I imagine you could then use the left over wax in one of those things from ‘Scentsy,’ right? Or would the water somehow ruin the wax?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 14, 2012 - 4:33 PM

      Natasha, a Scentsy holder would be great for the leftover wax! We’ve never tried it ourselves, but it seems like a great fit.ReplyCancel

  • Kimberly - August 14, 2012 - 8:17 AM

    If I use votives, I put a small amount of water in the bottom of the votive holder; just enough to cover the bottom. When I have used all the votive, the last little bit will pop right out. No freezer or boiling water needed.ReplyCancel

  • Paula - August 16, 2012 - 10:02 AM

    I’ve done option # 1 where you let the candle rest in hot water til the wax softens and it “pops” right out of the jar.. Cleaned the jar with Warm soapy water & a scotch brite scrubber and voila in minutes I have large pieces of wax and clean jars.. I still do this :) As for what do I do with my wax… I melt it down in a double boiler (Or you can melt it down over a low setting on your stove just keep a close eye on it!!!) then pour some sawdust in a throw away wax coated paper dixie cups, pour the hot wax over the top, wait an hour or so, then tear away the dixie cup and voila it’s a homemade fire starters for camping/ getting a fire started in your fireplace/ or anywhere you need to get a fire going!! They smell & work great!!!ReplyCancel

  • Tracy Hope - August 20, 2012 - 9:36 PM

    Just put your old candles or tart burners in the freezer for a bit and the wax pops right out.ReplyCancel

  • TONI - August 21, 2012 - 10:01 AM

    I always just leave in hot soapy dishwater. The best ones are from Colonial Candles (oval shaped glass jars) if you line them up and put flowers in them- WOWReplyCancel

  • Teresa - August 22, 2012 - 8:28 PM

    Lots of great tips, thanks ladies ill have to remember this :)anytimeReplyCancel

  • Sylvia - August 24, 2012 - 3:08 AM

    I often use the freezer method, often there are remnants left in the bottom. I stick the candle jar in the microwave for a few seconds and it softens it enough to wipe out.ReplyCancel

  • Julia - August 25, 2012 - 4:16 AM

    I use Orange oil Goo Be Gone after the hot water to remove all the remnants and the black soot on the jar, I have found the soot is the hardest to remove, with hot soapy water I still have a gray film left but with the goo be gone it comes off completely. I also made the mistake of poring the hot water out in the sink but the goo be gone came to the rescue and cleaned out the sink easily. I kinda like the idea of saving the wax to make my own candles, melting down different scents to make my own unique scented candles.ReplyCancel

  • Dani - August 28, 2012 - 3:51 PM

    This is such a great idea!! Usually I just put the candle in the freezer and pop it out. But sometimes that doesn’t always work or there are remenants left behind! I will def have to remember this next time I am trying to get wax out of a jar :)ReplyCancel

  • Shannon - September 1, 2012 - 5:22 PM

    Just freeze them then just pop it out with a spoon or knife, works good same as tart bowls just freeze them comes right out.ReplyCancel

  • Lib Horne - September 3, 2012 - 8:03 PM

    I place a paper plate with paper towels on it then turn the jars upside down & microwave it for maybe 30 seconds.If that doesn’t get it all out I do it again. Works for me & I use all of my candle jars again.And save the scrapes of candle wax to add to other projects.For smells!ReplyCancel

  • Liz - September 4, 2012 - 11:48 PM

    Putting them in the freezer always worked for me.ReplyCancel

  • Ali - September 7, 2012 - 8:07 AM

    When I have the tart burners full of wax that wont come out, I put it in the freezer over night. Like magic, the wax pops right outReplyCancel

  • Kathy - September 8, 2012 - 1:14 PM

    Do these different methods for removing candle wax work on the Glade candles? They are such nice heat-resistant containers, but so hard to get finished wax out of.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - September 10, 2012 - 1:25 PM

      Hi Kathy, I’m not sure why these methods wouldn’t work on Glade candles!ReplyCancel

  • kenju - September 10, 2012 - 7:58 PM

    I put the candleholders upside down in a disposable aluminum baking pan and place it in a cold oven, which I set to 200* and leave them there for 20-30 minutes. The wax will melt out into the pan. Take them out of the oven and using mitts or tongs, remove the candleholders/votives and place them into a pan of hot, soapy water. It melts the last of the residue and then you can wash them in the dishwasher to get them sparkling again.ReplyCancel

  • Sharon Whitaker - September 12, 2012 - 8:11 AM

    So many of my friends throw the jar and unused candles away. DON’T…….RE-USE THEM……Works great coating pine cones, laying on top logs in wood burning stove or fireplace and your fire start up in no time. Make some, put in a pretty basket with a bow as a gift for someone. They will love it, I did! ;-)ReplyCancel

  • Michele - September 13, 2012 - 12:20 PM

    The best, easiest, least messy, least aggravating method is to freeze your jars. 24 hours at least. Then take a butter knife, letter opener, etc. and poke/stab at the frozen wax until it breaks up into chunks and then just dump them out. I have found this method to also be great for saving the wax for later use in my flameless wax warmers. Then just scrub the heck out of the jar with napkins or paper towels. Soap and water and wax don’t mix, so you’re better off using a dry scrubber, but I prefer to not waste a scrubber and use paper towels. Also there’s no chance of burning yourself with this method.ReplyCancel

  • Shannon - September 14, 2012 - 12:25 PM

    My mom taught me to put the jars with the remaining wax in freezer. Once it’s hard I use something sharp, usually a knife to pop it out. It works great. Sometimes i have to break up the hardened wax into smaller pieces to get it out of smaller opening jars. I then use a brilo pad with soap and water to clean the remainder of the jar. Just like you do. It’s funny because when you open my freezer you will find 2-3 jars right now hardening.ReplyCancel

  • Amanda - September 15, 2012 - 11:52 PM

    ok so I have to say, I have been throwing candle jars away for years and always wished that I could find cool looking jars without paying an arm and a leg, but I have now used the hot water trick and the cool jars that my candles come in I actually get to keep….THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THE TIPS!!!!! what a way to save and reuse!!!ReplyCancel

  • Amanda - September 15, 2012 - 11:55 PM

    kathy i just did this method tonight on my glade candle jars and it works the same it is fantastic….cause i love my glade candle jars and now i get to re-use them!!!ReplyCancel

  • Gracie - September 17, 2012 - 8:10 AM

    Well, I went ahead and used this method yesterday, and all I can say is HURRAH! It totally salvaged a hurricane vase I have bought a few years ago that has been sitting on the hearth looking very sorry for itself. Now all I need to to is go out and buy a nice new pillar candle for it.
    Thanks so much!
    XOXOReplyCancel

  • Mary - September 20, 2012 - 4:13 PM

    I am responsible for all the candles we use for a variety of events at church. The freezer method is great IF the base is not smaller with a “lip” that holds candle in the bottom. I am going to try the hot water method. We also put one on a candle warmer in the office and when the bottom was melted, used knife to cut down into soft wax and it came right out. When I have several to do, this is way too slow.ReplyCancel

  • Dolly - September 20, 2012 - 9:32 PM

    The wax that you don’t need can be put to good use if you are a camper. I save the lint from my dryer. Then take the lint and fill up cardboard egg cartons. I melt the wax no longer needed and pour it over the lint. It makes the best campfire starter you have ever used.ReplyCancel

  • Lynda Rogers - September 21, 2012 - 8:16 AM

    Put candle jars on an old baking sheet or cardboard box lid. Set in sun. Works great in the summertime.ReplyCancel

  • Kim - September 21, 2012 - 8:42 AM

    Great tips, everyone! Thanks for chiming in!ReplyCancel

  • Jenny - September 27, 2012 - 11:38 AM

    I’ve always just put the jars of old candles that won’t light anymore into a pot of shallow boiling water to melt the wax back to liquid form. I ended up pouring them all into one bigger jar at that point (they were all the same scent) with a new wick. Therefore, creating one new candle for use and cleaning out all the little ones for other crafts, etc. (which I’m using for Halloween stuff right now actually!!) :) With this method, you could also do different scents in one jar: pour one scent and let it cool, then another and let it cool, until you get a layered colors/scents candle. Pick scents that accent each other like apple and cinnamon, and so on!!ReplyCancel

  • Yvonne - October 1, 2012 - 8:44 PM

    I use ice water… fill the jar with ice then with tap water or submerge the jar in a bowl filled with ice. Either way after just a few minutes the cold will cause the wax to contract and draw away from the jar… it’ll pop right out and leave far less waxy residue than heating the wax.ReplyCancel

  • Ashley - October 2, 2012 - 8:11 PM

    THANK YOU! I tried this DIY and it worked! I appreciate the warning about dumping the water down the sink… that would’ve been a huge pain in the butt! I made a post on my own blog (citing my experience). Check it out: http://pinterestexperiment.wordpress.com/2012/10/02/diy-remove-candle-wax-from-holder/ReplyCancel

  • [...] you to YellowBrickHome.com for the inspiration and detailed instructions! Share this:Like this:LikeBe the first to like [...]ReplyCancel

  • Adelaide Irene - October 4, 2012 - 1:16 PM

    Awesome post! & I hope none of you throw out the left-over chunks of wax… a great way to pro-long your candles life is to use the “wax chunks” in an oil diffuser (with the tealights underneath)…great way to get an extra bang for your buck!

    My favourite :)ReplyCancel

  • Jamie - October 5, 2012 - 11:52 AM

    I stick my holders in the freezer for a while and then pop out the wax with a screwdriver…no muss..no fuss…ReplyCancel

  • Liz - October 5, 2012 - 12:19 PM

    I work in a restaurant, and we need to clean our candles each day, so we use the hot water method. Here’s a tip if you want to use the hot water method, but don’t have time for the water to cool:

    Cover your sink drain with a coffee filter (the larger the better). Carefully pour the water over the filter… and the filter will collect the wax, while the water goes down the drain. Just be sure not to splash, or you’ll be scrubbing the wax off your sink!ReplyCancel

  • Jar Candle Earring Holder — Marvy Moms - October 8, 2012 - 9:42 AM

    [...] I was lucky enough to have these pre-cleaned for another project that fell through, but you can try this website for ideas on how to get that gunky wax [...]ReplyCancel

  • Bonnie M. - October 12, 2012 - 10:25 AM

    I have always used the hot water method,but once I have the candle remains out I just throw the water out in the back yard.Repeat a couple times and the job is done,wash jar and put away or use for hard candy,holiday candies,flowers,etc.Some of the jars are so pretty,you for sure just want to keep them.Can always find a use for them.ReplyCancel

  • Bonnie - October 12, 2012 - 10:38 AM

    I have to say,I just took the time and read all the comments.Enjoyed reading them,so many good ideas.Love the one for those who camp and like having a camp fire.
    Great ideas ladies.ReplyCancel

  • Beth - October 13, 2012 - 10:16 PM

    This boiling water INTO the jar seems better than me putting the jar into hot water method I use (with work).
    To get the remaining candle gunk I use Goo Gone cleaner or WD-40. Mere drops of either on a paper towel and the wax wipes right off.
    Also, at age 19 in my first apartment, I poured the hot wax down the drain. I did have the hot water running. That sink was never the same again until I moved out months later. Yet, I did learn and have NEVER repeated it. =)ReplyCancel

  • candice - October 14, 2012 - 12:02 PM

    been savin candle “bits” for years. I melt them all together on the stove…all the burned bits stay in the bottom. I then put some in a clean jar..let it cool back to ALMOST hard and push a taper into it…voila!!! new candle…:)ReplyCancel

  • Sue Anderson - October 15, 2012 - 10:59 AM

    I just made fire starters with old candles and you could use the old wax for that. It was soooo easy. All you need is those cotton make up pads and the melted wax (in an old pan you would only use to melt wax in from then on. Melt the wax till there is about 4″ or 5″ in the pan and then put in enough pads to cover the bottom of the pan. A few seconds and the pads are soaked. Remove pads and place separately on wax paper to dry. When completely dry put in zip lock or one of those empty candle jars for starting a fire. There’s more on pinterest if you search “fire starter”. When you use it just pull the pad apart a little and then light. As I’m writing this I’m thinking hmmmm… will the wax ruin the fireplace? Maybe best for outdoor fires, camping, etc.ReplyCancel

  • kbz - October 17, 2012 - 5:19 PM

    you can melt the wax in the oven. take it out with a pot holder and pour it in layers into the new candle jar! let each layer cool before you add more or you will have ugly mess!ReplyCancel

  • Marlene - October 18, 2012 - 1:56 AM

    Well I try doing things the easy way and reading these posts, just thought, what if you put these candle holders on top of a heating pad while doing housework etc. left it to melt and then redo another candle with a new wick in a different jar. No wasting of time, water, wax or otherwise. GOOD LUCKReplyCancel

  • Tip: How to Remove Candle Wax from Jars - October 18, 2012 - 3:15 AM

    [...] Resource: YellowBrickHome [...]ReplyCancel

  • Deanna - October 18, 2012 - 1:05 PM

    I learned a looonngggg time ago to just put the jar in the freezer. I then break the wax in half (or pieces) with a fork, knife…whatever is handy at the moment & dump the frozen wax in the trash. Works great every time!! No boiling water to contend with. Could be hazardous with a toddler and 5 dogs. :-)ReplyCancel

  • Stacey Herrin - October 18, 2012 - 1:07 PM

    I put mine in the freezer for about an hour and that does the trick nicely if the candle has burned evenly. I am super thrifty. I recycle the left over wax (if scented) into candle melts and use it until the scent gives out. Thanks for sharing your tip as this sounds like it’ll work well for unevenly burned candles.ReplyCancel

  • [...] Adapted from YellowBrickHome.com [...]ReplyCancel

  • Bethyj - October 22, 2012 - 5:13 AM

    I use my candle warmer and melt the wax, then pour the wax into an old ice cube tray to make tarts. That is if the wax still has some smell to it. I use plastic ice cube trays and they pop right out. If they don’t you could use a cooking spray.ReplyCancel

  • barbar - November 6, 2012 - 9:00 PM

    I think I enjoyed your commentary more than I actually needed the info! :)
    Really, you tell a good tale and you’re funny. I could see your husbands face as he watched you and even heard you explain your way out of the situation.
    PS..I put them in freezer.ReplyCancel

  • Dorka - November 27, 2012 - 3:53 PM

    I used the microwave! Put the jar in for a couple of seconds, not more because of the small metal stuff at the bottom.. The wax melts to an extent that you can pop it out. The quickest solution. However, hot water might be needed for the metal stuff…..ReplyCancel

  • megan - November 28, 2012 - 11:44 AM

    I just tried this out, and it works so well!!
    I’m using the old candle wax mixed with my own fragrances to make brand new candles personally.
    works out well for diy christmas presentsReplyCancel

  • Linda Geiser - November 29, 2012 - 6:56 PM

    Great advice! And I love the story of your hot wax mishap!ReplyCancel

  • Colleen - November 30, 2012 - 8:00 PM

    You dont have to do any of this. Pop the jar into the freezer for 1-2 hours….the wax will pop right out.ReplyCancel

  • [...] Vía: yellowbrickhome [...]ReplyCancel

  • Peggy - December 7, 2012 - 10:14 PM

    after your done getting all your old wax together you can recycle it by: MAKING CAMP FIRE STARTERS . . . use a coffee filters or cup cake liners . . . fill with combination of pine needles, saw dust,straw, small or mini pine cones, bark, wood chips of any kind… you get the idea … anything that burns good… then pour melted wax over your “filling” let set up. Put on bottom of your campfire (this takes the place of or IS you kindling) start the liner or filter on fire… don’t forget to build your logs like a tee pee … sit back and enjoy the best fire you ever startedReplyCancel

  • Tiffany - December 11, 2012 - 9:16 AM

    Just got doing the boiling water method and it worked like a charm. It was also very cool looking. Thank you!!ReplyCancel

  • Geri - December 11, 2012 - 10:21 AM

    I just got the wax out of a Glade candle jar with hot water. However, the metal piece will NOT come out. I tried using a butter knife as I always have in the past. But this one is really glued on! Any idea how I can get this out. I practically broke the knife trying!ReplyCancel

  • Kim - December 11, 2012 - 10:27 AM

    Hi Geri, this has happened to us before, too. I squirted some Goo-Gone down in the base of the jar, and let it set for a while. Eventually, the Goo Gone ate enough of the glue that I was able to pop our the metal piece!

    Hope that helps!ReplyCancel

  • Geri - December 11, 2012 - 1:11 PM

    Love Goo Gone. Good idea!ReplyCancel

  • Char - December 13, 2012 - 10:45 PM

    I have a scentsy burner that my puppy knocked over, and it spilled the wax on the arm of my sofa. Can you give me ideas as to how to get it off the couch without ruining it? I threw the scentsy thing in the closet- don’t want that to happen again.
    Thanks-ReplyCancel

    • Kim - December 14, 2012 - 8:44 AM

      Hi Char, we’ve heard of using brown paper and a warm iron to get wax out of fabric/carpet/upholstery. Apparently, the paper between the soiled upholstery and warm iron will stick to the wax, pulling it off your couch. I hope this helps, but we’d recommend Google-ing a few tips and ideas before moving forward!ReplyCancel

  • Ashley W - December 14, 2012 - 9:33 PM

    This is a fantastic idea, thanks! I’ve tried putting my candle jar in a pot of boiling water and transferring the hot wax to make a “new” candle and that worked great. But I’ve got two really nice mosaic candle jars that I was to reuse and I can’t imagine it would be good to put them in pots of boiling water so this method will hopefully work for them! Thanks again!ReplyCancel

  • Ashley - December 19, 2012 - 8:58 PM

    I freeze mine wax pops right outReplyCancel

  • Kathy - December 20, 2012 - 8:28 PM

    I will confess that I did not read all the comments and I may be repeating someone else. I simmer mine in a pan of water and using tongs, I pour the wax into a pot of sawdust. I keep adding and stirring, until the mixture is about the consistancy of Rice Krispie treats. I spoon this onto newspaper (about a cup) and roll it up, twisting the ends. I freeze them until solid and use as firestarters.ReplyCancel

  • Jessica - December 26, 2012 - 5:55 AM

    To get the last bits of candle wax put, instead of using a knife, Brillo pad, elbow grease OR patience.. A baby wipe works WONDERS. You just wipe.. And the wax slides right off! I’ve only tried it with Kirkland wipes, but it’s worked like a charm every time I’ve tried it!ReplyCancel

  • celia - December 26, 2012 - 8:20 AM

    I put my jars in the freezer for about an hour (depends on how large the candle is) pull it out and then the wax just breaks apart and comes out in chunks. Easy peesy.
    But I love this idea too!ReplyCancel

  • Laurie Morrow - January 2, 2013 - 3:26 AM

    Side tip…….putting candles (I do this with tapers) in the freezer before they are first used, will cause them to burn slower..ReplyCancel

  • Alana - January 2, 2013 - 8:45 PM

    What do you do with the soy candles when the wax separates? I tried this out for the first time tonight and mine did end up separating. Should I just try freezing it? But what do I do with the hot waxy water now?ReplyCancel

  • Kim - January 2, 2013 - 10:06 PM

    Hi Alana, the soy candles separate to the top of the water the fastest. By the time the water has cooled, all the wax should be at the top, and you can crack it with a knife and pull it right out! Once your water has completely cooled off (room temperature), you can just dump it down the drain. We made the mistake of pouring HOT water down the drain, which is a no-no!ReplyCancel

  • Becky - January 4, 2013 - 7:08 AM

    I found this method worked well: Take a cookie sheet and line it with tin foil. Place several layers of paper towels on top of the tin foil. (to absorb the melting wax) Place candle containers/jars upside down onto paper towels and place in your oven on low temp. (about 250 degrees) after 10 minutes or so the wax has completely melted and is trapped in the paper towels. clean up is easy – just wrap up the tin foil and paper towels and toss! Any residual wax on the jars can be wiped clean with a paper towel or baby wipe.ReplyCancel

  • sarah - January 5, 2013 - 2:55 PM

    Freeze it over night then use a butter knife and pop it out….no hot water to mess withReplyCancel

  • angie defrenchi - January 5, 2013 - 8:27 PM

    I have many candles as I love candles, especially Paula Deen ones. Am gonna try the freezer method and see if it works as some of them are in very pretty jars Thanks for all the info ladies!!ReplyCancel

  • Michelle - January 8, 2013 - 4:40 AM

    Have any of you put food in the clean candle jars? Wondering if it is safe?ReplyCancel

  • Kim - January 8, 2013 - 9:22 AM

    Hi Michelle, for most of my jars, once it was clean, it was just a glass jar. I don’t see the harm in putting food in it!ReplyCancel

  • Michelle - January 8, 2013 - 3:57 PM

    Thanks!ReplyCancel

  • Pinteresting | It's a DAZZLEful Life - January 10, 2013 - 3:27 PM

    [...] also learned how to get candle wax out of containers.  Technically, I haven’t tried this yet.  But around my house we are really into candles.  [...]ReplyCancel

  • Alexa - January 11, 2013 - 6:55 AM

    The best way to clean the remaining wax from the jar is to use a magic eraser. No need to use a Brillo pad or paper towel and soap. This works so fast and easy. I also use the Magic eraser during the use of the candle. If the sides start to look nasty from the wax or soot I just swipe it with eraser and it is so clean and looks like new until the candle is gone.ReplyCancel

  • Kim - January 11, 2013 - 10:22 AM

    Magic Eraser! Who knew? Thanks, Alexa!ReplyCancel

  • Rachel - January 11, 2013 - 11:23 AM

    (if someone has already said this, I apologize. I didn’t have time to read every comment) With the left over wax, instead of making a humongous candle, why not cut it up and put it in a cool candle warmer? Especially the wax that has the fragrance you like best…ReplyCancel

  • AJ Rogers - January 11, 2013 - 10:21 PM

    Can’t wait to try it!!ReplyCancel

  • trysha - January 14, 2013 - 4:48 PM

    THANK YOU! I have never poured hot-wax-water down my drain….but I totally WOULD HAVE had I not read your entire post. THANK YOU.ReplyCancel

  • Kim - January 14, 2013 - 5:53 PM

    Trysha, ha! Glad I’m not the only one!ReplyCancel

  • Mary - January 17, 2013 - 2:40 PM

    Oh on a hot summers day, I just sit mine in the hot sun for about one hour (turn over or not) and it gets very soft and comes right out too.ReplyCancel

  • Amber - January 19, 2013 - 11:50 PM

    I loved reading all of the comments! I wish I would have thought about this years ago when I still lived at home with my Mom. I ended up trying to scrape it out, in the sink, with just soap and water. Needless to say that did not end too well! I’m definitely going to try this! Thank you so much for sharing everyone! But one more thing… how do you place the wick in the candle when you make a new one? I’ve tried this once before as well and we never could get the wick to stand up. It ended up just floating around in it.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - January 21, 2013 - 11:33 AM

      Hi Amber, I wonder if using hot glue to stick the wick on the bottom could help?ReplyCancel

  • Shannon - January 21, 2013 - 6:20 PM

    I was looking for info on removing SOY candle wax from micro fabric and wood. Any suggestions? It doesn’t harden the way regular wax does, so using ice on my couch isn’t an option. Any help?ReplyCancel

  • Kim - January 21, 2013 - 6:25 PM

    Hi Shannon, try this tip from Kalli, above:

    If you spill candle wax on fabric or a rug, etc, the best way to get most of it out is to let it harden, then lay a brown paper bag over it and use a hot clothes iron to draw the melted wax up into the paper and out of your carpet- it should get nearly all of it out.ReplyCancel

  • Remove Old Wax from Jars » unikatissima's - January 27, 2013 - 12:03 AM

    [...] you may want to remove rests of wax from still beautiful jars. That’s not soo easy and every tip is helpful [...]ReplyCancel

  • Kathy - February 3, 2013 - 11:50 AM

    Cleaned out candle jars in unusual shapes make great small flower vases. I used different sizes and shapes for my daughter’s (grown up) birthday party arrangements. They turned out really pretty!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - February 3, 2013 - 1:20 PM

      Kathy, great tip! We like to use our leftover jars for flowers, too. I bet they’d look pretty in large groupings.ReplyCancel

  • Paula - February 5, 2013 - 9:54 PM

    If you have a fireplace… I use the left over wax as firestarter! Pour melted wax in cardboard egg cartons. After the wax has rehardened, use one or two to start a great warm fire.ReplyCancel

  • Tina from MI - February 6, 2013 - 5:23 PM

    For that wax residue left behind in the jar or candle holder, after removing the wax use some (no longer worn) knee highs or pantyhose to wipe out the wax film.ReplyCancel

  • molajen - February 8, 2013 - 9:39 AM

    Great tip, awesome description of the process, thanks! Like Paula, I reuse wax as firestarter. I make mine in cupcake papers inside silicone cupcake containers so they pop out easily. Cleaning up the jars was always a pain, though!ReplyCancel

  • Yvonne Donaldson - February 10, 2013 - 8:44 PM

    I want to see a picture of this mega-candle!ReplyCancel

  • Yvonne Naylor - February 11, 2013 - 5:55 PM

    I used to boil in a pan wich was very messy! Soaked in Hot water-long time! As long as the candle wick does NOT have an alunimum/metal base- you can mircrowave a few seconds at a time/pour hot wax onto paper towel (to discard in trash)Repeat until you can wipe glass clean! Usually only takes a couple of times to do this! Rinse in hot water once wax is gone!ReplyCancel

  • Dicas geniais para a sua casa! | Xô Bagunça - February 12, 2013 - 8:33 AM

    [...] Dica 10. Aprenda a tirar aquele restinho de cera e reutilize os vidros na organização da casa! Exemplo: porta algodão, porta miudezas, vasinho e muito mais! Veja o tutorial clicando aqui. [...]ReplyCancel

  • linda - February 16, 2013 - 3:46 PM

    I use a coffee warmer plate to melt candles that are in glass jars. Add a bit of water and let it heat up slowly. Depending on the wax it either softens or floats. Never gets too hot and i get to enjoy the last of the scent. Pour leftover wax into greased mini muffin tins to save as homemade wax melts.ReplyCancel

  • Haley - February 17, 2013 - 10:59 AM

    This was great, just finished melting one. Truthfully I did it half way. I was boiling the water and (since there was so little wax left) decided to dip the bottom into the boiling water. I was able to easily cut the wax into a few chunks after the bottom had softened, I’m saving that for my wax warmer, and then proceeded to wipe out most of the wax, and pour the boiling water in there just for good measure.ReplyCancel

  • Anne Vrolyk - February 19, 2013 - 11:47 AM

    Left over candle wax also makes great fire starter. Wrap a bit of paper around it and lay with the kindling. Really works !!ReplyCancel

  • Jacki - February 19, 2013 - 7:03 PM

    I microwave my jars for about 30 seconds or so and then use a paper towel to wipe out the wax. If it all doesn’t come out, I just nuke it again. The wax softens, but doesn’t melt and it comes out really easily. No clogged drains, either!ReplyCancel

  • Diane - February 20, 2013 - 4:04 PM

    Why throw away the left over candle wax? I melt mine on a coffee warmer to melt the wax and enjoy the smell without burning the wick. I prepare cardboard egg cartons by lining lint from my dryer in each egg hole. Then pour the used wax over the lint. Break off about 4 egg cups and put under the wood in fire place or camp fire before starting the fire. Great holding power. Works every time even with damp wood.
    I then wipe out the glass container with a paper towel and wash residue in hot soapy water.ReplyCancel

  • Kiley Mars - February 22, 2013 - 10:56 AM

    The easier way to go is to put the container in the freezer. The cold temperature makes the wax contract and it will pop right out. And, if there is any residue in the corners, it can be easily scraped off while it is still cold.ReplyCancel

  • Linda Dobson - February 24, 2013 - 11:01 PM

    Freezer! Wax breaks and comes right out. No waxy residue from the boiling water.ReplyCancel

  • Brenda - March 2, 2013 - 4:22 PM

    You can use the leftover wax as a firestarter in your outdoor firepit. I usually wrap them in old newspaper.ReplyCancel

  • Rachel R. - March 16, 2013 - 2:41 PM

    Pure soy wax will just scrub up with hot soapy water. :) (One of the many benefits soy candles have over paraffin!)ReplyCancel

  • [...] Getting excess wax out of jars is a huge pain. Lucky for you, Yellow Brick House has tips on how to remove that pesky wax. [...]ReplyCancel

  • Amy T - March 18, 2013 - 1:46 PM

    Wish I had known this trick, it would have saved me big time. I thought I would dig a candle out with paring knife, candle holder broke went through thumb severing the nerve in two places and nicking the artery. Not so much fun. I have partial feeling in my thumb, all from digging out an old candle, so yes use hot water and not sharp knives. Learn from my bad example.ReplyCancel

  • Sandy - March 19, 2013 - 8:01 AM

    I use the freezer method which works well for soy, but not always for other waxes. Other waxes seem to be a bit soft and sticky and don’t get brittle enough. Beeswax can be a pain.

    After I get most of the wax out, I use a little goo gone, because it’s a little quicker than oil.

    I’ll try this with my next non-soy wax. I like soy wax for clean up, but over-all I prefer other waxes.ReplyCancel

  • Candle Supply - March 21, 2013 - 1:41 PM

    Aww thanks for the tips, I always find it hard to to do this.

    When leaving the jar with boiling water though can the jar shatter because my jars are really thin.

    Sarah MidlandReplyCancel

  • Kim - March 21, 2013 - 1:49 PM

    Sarah, even very hot water will do! Or, you could try the freezing method as many of our commenters have suggested!ReplyCancel

  • Alma - March 23, 2013 - 10:14 PM

    I need help. How do I take the metal holder writhing the candle that contained the wick. I read a previous post that said to add glue goo but I do not have that so what else can I do?ReplyCancel

  • Lisha - March 24, 2013 - 2:17 AM

    Thank you so much for this WONDERFUL helpful tip! I have so many jars as well that I love the shape of and wanted to find a way to CLEANLY get all the leftover wax out. However, upon “boasting” about me finding this “pin” to my partner, she simply said “Oh yes, I know how to do that, you use boiling water”…needless to say that “burst my bubble” quickly! LOL! Although, I am still proud that I found this on my own and will be using it soon! We have a couple of candles that are just about done, or down to the last little bit of wax and I REALLY love fresh, clean and clear jars. (Our kitchen is lined with “Ball” canning jars of ALL sizes, filled with pastas, rice, beans and just about anything that you wouldn’t want any “critters” to get into. Once again, thank you for this surprisingly helpful hint! Happy Pinning and candle jar cleaning! :-)ReplyCancel

  • Kim - March 24, 2013 - 3:19 PM

    Hi Alma, we’ve only ever tried the hot water method or goo gone to get out the metal part of the wick. Sometimes the glue can be pretty stubborn, but perhaps a few rounds of boiling water could help?

    Thanks, Lisha!ReplyCancel

  • [...] cleaning the jars, I used this tutorial.  The boiling hot water did its magic and the hardened wax rose to the surface of the jars.  It [...]ReplyCancel

  • Cole - April 8, 2013 - 7:56 AM

    I recently tried the freezer method, and it was not as easy as I anticipated. The first candle I did was no easier than trying break apart a candle straight from the store. The second one, I assume from sitting out for a few minutes while I chipped away at the first, was much easier. I then found the problem of the little metal piece that holds the wic in place, was stuck to the bottom of the glass and just would not budge. So, the next day, I put a little water in a frying pan, set it on the stove, placed both candle holders on top, and once the water got hot, I used a butter knife to get the metal piece out. I left the candle holders in the hot water for another minute or two before removing them and wiping the insides with a towel. There’s no visible wax left, and none that I could feel, so I’m happy with the results.ReplyCancel

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  • Bev Paluska - April 20, 2013 - 9:58 PM

    Many many tears ago I helped my Girl Scouts make batik bandanas. The idea, after crackling the wax and dying was to press the bandana between paper towel s and the wax would transfer from bandana to paper towel. We had our wax pretty thick, and I soon tired of the iron. I put the bandanas in the sink, turned on the hot water, and scraped the wax off with a spoon. The wax clogged up the drain in the a segment and the basement flooded! I was real popular with my husband for a while!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - April 21, 2013 - 2:09 PM

      Bev, oh no! Well at the very least, there is some comfort in knowing you weren’t the only one to pour hot wax down the drain… Aye!ReplyCancel

  • Jen - April 21, 2013 - 8:10 PM

    The freezer method is FOOLPROOF! It works all the time and you only need to have it in the freezer for about half an hour! It comes out clean and easily!!ReplyCancel

  • Kat - May 2, 2013 - 9:00 PM

    If you put alittle water in the bottom of the candle holder before you put the candle in. It will come right out.ReplyCancel

  • Annette - May 3, 2013 - 11:10 PM

    How do you get out the wick? My last two glass jars, the wick was glued to the bottom. Any recommendations to remove it when it is glued?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - May 4, 2013 - 11:24 AM

      Hi Annette, you can try doing the hot water trick a few more time to loosen the glue, or perhaps some Goo Gone. We had luck getting the stubborn wick out with a spoon or butter knife.ReplyCancel

    • Sierra - June 2, 2014 - 8:54 PM

      The last candle thing I read said to soak it in rubbing alcohol I’m not sure if it is true or not I’m talking about the wickReplyCancel

  • Reilee - May 16, 2013 - 6:38 PM

    This looks like a lot of work. It’s 1000% simpler to place your jar in the freezer for 5 minutes then break the wax out with a fork or butter knife. It comes out clean and you can salvage the wax if you want to.ReplyCancel

  • [...] cleaning the jars, I used this tutorial.  The boiling hot water did its magic and the hardened wax rose to the surface of the jars.  It [...]ReplyCancel

  • Helene - June 7, 2013 - 12:36 PM

    I put them in the freezer, or even the refrigerator, and it comes out so easy, then wash out with warm soapy water. You might have to break it to get out of jar, but its so easy when its cold, not sure how it would work with soy candles, but I think I did one and it was fine, but the hot water made it a big mess.ReplyCancel

  • Lydia - June 7, 2013 - 2:09 PM

    I would reuse the wax for what I call emergency candles, They need no fragrance and are kept for power outages for me, which unfortunately happen quite a lot where I live.ReplyCancel

  • Laura Kovach - June 8, 2013 - 3:06 AM

    I use the freezer method. Then I separate the leftover wax according to color into leftover ice cream buckets. When I have enough I make new candles, adding “virgin” wax from the craft store for “stability” and I use paper milk cartons with new wicks. Then it begins all over again.ReplyCancel

  • Michelle - June 11, 2013 - 12:23 AM

    I also use the freezer method..so easy. Sometimes the wax will fall out on own or a butter knife around the edge works great. Along with the jars, I also save all the wax in a container, along with egg cartons, and dryer lint. Once I have enough “trash” saved I will make fire-starters for summer camping. Just open egg cartons, fill each spot with dryer lint, pour melted wax (I remelt inside a foil pie pan over boiling water)over the dryer lint. Can be cut apart or used whole. I love repurposing trash!ReplyCancel

  • Roberta - June 13, 2013 - 8:14 AM

    I put the candle jars upside down on a tray lined with aluminum foil and sitting on kabob sticks. Then I put them in the oven on the lowest temperature until the wax melts out. Then I use paper towels to wipe them clean while they are still warm.ReplyCancel

  • Jocelyn - July 3, 2013 - 12:22 PM

    I’ve used the hot water trick before too. I find it works well. My mom tried to microwave it to soften the wax slightly, and the candle actually lit in the microwave – we figure it was because the wick was a wired wick.ReplyCancel

  • Elly - July 5, 2013 - 9:49 PM

    This is great! The only thing I still haven’t figured out is how to then remove the little metal bit that held the wick.ReplyCancel

  • Kim - July 6, 2013 - 8:53 AM

    Elly, a bit of Goo Gone should help to get that metal bit out!ReplyCancel

  • trish davisson - July 8, 2013 - 3:11 AM

    Elly… I use a coffee mug warmer to melt the wax and pour it into another jar… at that point you can pick the metal wick thing right up. And then I just wash the candle holder or jar in soapy water and its like New :)ReplyCancel

  • Bonnie - July 11, 2013 - 10:48 AM

    Wow, thank you SO much for sharing, I have a Ton of jars and had come to the same conclusion, oven mitts ect, like Way too much work and mess, this is awesome, can hardly wait to try it out, easy ones I have cleaned out, soak in hot tap water in sink, and wipe and wipe and wipe with paper towels. I probably have more than 20 jars…I’m almost scared to count them, been saving them over 20 years…might be a lot more than 20…ReplyCancel

  • Liz - July 17, 2013 - 10:11 AM

    I usually just put the candle jar upside down in the freezer overnight, sometimes a bit longer, and the wax and metal wick holder release from the bottom of the jar. Then clean the jar with warm soapy water for any small bits left on the inside of the jar.ReplyCancel

  • Gloria - August 6, 2013 - 6:28 PM

    I did the oven mitt method once. I dropped the jar on the tile floor, spent hours cleaning up the mess. I now let the water cool before getting the wax out. Recycle all the old melted wax into fire starters.ReplyCancel

  • Julie - September 1, 2013 - 9:58 PM

    I haven’t tried the freezer idea, but I have used baby oil… It works awesome too!ReplyCancel

  • Cathy - September 15, 2013 - 1:16 PM

    If your container has no metal, pop it into the microwave for a bit and then wipe it out with a paper towel. After that you just need to wash it. Nothing down the drain, no waiting for hours freezing or cooling. But be aware that it could come out of the microwave very hot so you may need oven mitts.

    For the person wanting to get wax (candle wax, crayons, etc) off furniture, just use your blow drier and paper towel or a soft cloth.ReplyCancel

  • PENNY WALKER - October 3, 2013 - 5:05 PM

    I HAVE DONE THIS TOO..TO GET THE SMALL EXCESS WAX OUT…U CAN HEAT IN MICROWAVE A FEW SECONDS..ONCE WARM WIPE OUT WITH A PAPER TOWEL..NOTHING GOING DOWN DRAIN AND IF SCENTED CANDLE…EXTRA BONUS…TRASH SMELLS NICE…LOL..THEN ONCE WIPED WELL..RUN THEM THRU A HOT DISHWASHER…OR SINK…AND TADAAAAReplyCancel

  • Gail - October 21, 2013 - 5:52 PM

    I tried this way, and while it did work, I found that placing the candles in the freezer, they will “chip” right apart! It even works when there is a lot of wax left…I did some up to a couple of inches!ReplyCancel

  • Cindy Segafredo - November 13, 2013 - 10:46 AM

    I put my candles in the freezer for 5 minutes. The wax pops right out.ReplyCancel

  • Candace - December 20, 2013 - 9:21 PM

    I like to break the left over wax into small chunks. Then I put a taper candle in a recycled jar to use like a wick. I fill in around the taper with the chunks of wax. As it burns the melted wax fills in the spaces between the chunks, or you can pour melted wax in the gaps if you catch a candle at the end of its life with that little bit of melted wax left. It’s sort of like the layering method but there’s much less melting and pouring. And less accidents.ReplyCancel

  • Kim - December 21, 2013 - 9:50 AM

    Candace, I love that idea!ReplyCancel

  • Rebecca - January 4, 2014 - 3:13 AM

    You can put the candle jar in the freezer
    For a few ours. Then its quite easy to take a knife and cut it in quarters and then take it out. :)ReplyCancel

  • Neva - January 31, 2014 - 3:57 PM

    I break up my candle remnants, into chunks, freeze them, then put the frozen chunks in a container. You can then melt other remnants in a jar (inside a pan of water, like a double boiler type thing) then pour the melted wax over the frozen chunks. Because the chunks are frozen, they keep most of their shape and make nice different colored shapes/chunks in your candle.ReplyCancel

  • amanda - February 8, 2014 - 1:59 PM

    i actually freeze my jars untill the wax hardens up, cleaning is usually a breeze, i never really have to srub the jars (it depends on the wax) clean i just wash them bc when the wax freezes it kinda just pops right out of the jar once you cut it upReplyCancel

  • Libby - February 21, 2014 - 10:07 PM

    To reuse the wax chunks, lay out 2-3 layers of newspaper, put the chunks and bits down the center and roll, twist the ends (like a tootsie roll) and use as a fire starter for a regulae fire place or when camping. The paper starts on fire, the wax drops into the kindling, and helps the wood to burn. If melting out the wax, you can pour it onto layers of newspaper with your surface protected and small amounts of course.ReplyCancel

  • jean jones - March 12, 2014 - 2:20 PM

    put old candle holders with wax in freezer the run hot water over themReplyCancel

  • Bobby - March 30, 2014 - 10:42 PM

    So do you think you could take the wax from the old candles set in a form like the ice cube trays or wax melt containers and use them for scentsy burners?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - March 31, 2014 - 8:52 AM

      Hi Bobby, yup, a lot of commenters have said that they’ve done this!ReplyCancel

  • […] pringles can used as cookie canister gifts mason jars used as cupcake wrapper storage getting wax out of old candle jars for reuse CD case as a bagel carrier crayon nibs melted into new crayons old headboard used as a […]ReplyCancel

  • Ourania - April 26, 2014 - 12:13 PM

    I collect left over candle bits in an old saucepan (that I keep for that purpose only), then when I have enough I melt the whole lot together (usually have similar colours/scents). (If you have several coloured/scented candles, place the left overs into separate ziplock bags and melt in batches). Place a new wick in each “recycled” jar I have cleaned up and pour the melted wax to form a new candle. I secure the metal wick holder with a dab of wax, place in the centre and tie the wick onto a bamboo skewer placed over the candle holder. Leave it like this until it dries (overnight) and trim your wick and remove skewer. It works very well and I have used this method many times over. Wick kits are not expensive at all and sometimes you can even salvage the metal wick holder depending on the type it is. Happy candle making!ReplyCancel

  • Holly - May 4, 2014 - 2:20 PM

    I am looking for advice regarding the lids of purchased candles. How do you remove the aroma from the previously scented candle, in order for future food use is said such container.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - May 5, 2014 - 9:53 AM

      We’ve used our leftover jars for vases and small containers (for crafts, etc), but not for food. I imagine an overnight soak in hot, soapy water could do the trick!ReplyCancel

  • […] I was lucky enough to have these pre-cleaned for another project that fell through, but you can try this website for ideas on how to get that gunky wax […]ReplyCancel

  • » How to make scented soy candles - May 20, 2014 - 3:33 PM

    […] I did not know that it would be pretty easy to clean the odd glasses but when I read this tutorial I happened to clean them like new […]ReplyCancel

  • Tiffany - May 23, 2014 - 12:28 PM

    this worked like a charm!!!ReplyCancel

  • […] pringles can used as cookie canister gifts mason jars used as cupcake wrapper storage getting wax out of old candle jars for reuse CD case as a bagel carrier crayon nibs melted into new crayons old headboard used as a […]ReplyCancel

  • Mariah - July 21, 2014 - 10:05 PM

    I’ve always put them in the freezer to let the wax freeze and then pop it out…this seems way simpler, and a lot safer (no knife required). I always save my candle jars! You can use them for anything and its such a waste just throwing them away!ReplyCancel

  • Petula - July 28, 2014 - 7:08 PM

    Oh this is much better than putting the candle jar in the refrigerator. It works, but not for all candles, wax… Thanks for this. I’d started throwing my jars away again. This sounds relatively quick and easy!ReplyCancel

  • Paula` - September 14, 2014 - 1:51 PM

    I have always put the candles in the freezer to get the wax out. There might be some residue left. Your idea with hot water will be good. I will try that too.
    Thanks for the tip.ReplyCancel

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