I’ve had a favorite method for cleaning label glue off of jars for quite a few years now, which I shared a couple of years ago in this post here. I continue to get comments on that post still to this day from people who say that my method is the only method that worked for their jars after trying all kinds of things so I’m really happy to have that post out there, floating around the internet and helping my fellow jar enthusiasts with their jar-related issues. 🙂 Since I put that post out though, I’ve seen quite a few people mentioning that they use essential oils to remove the glue from their jars and that they’ve found it to be quite successful, so I finally decided to try it out and see what all the fuss was about.
First of all, here’s what you do:
Take a clean cotton ball and place a few drops of lemon essential oil on it. Make sure all the paper parts of your label are removed from your jar and use the cotton ball to wipe away any glue residue stuck to the jar.
What I like about it:
First of all, it’s fast. Unlike my other method, there isn’t any waiting time or soaking time needed, so you can just grab your jar, clean it, and get to using it right away. This method always works pretty well, and is fairly low on the frustration scale, although it doesn’t work perfectly, and some subtle glue residue can remain in really stubborn spots. This isn’t really visible though unless you’re looking really really closely. I also like how it smells! 🙂
What I don’t really like about it:
I consider my essential oils to be fairly precious, so I don’t like to use them for something like this where I already have a perfectly good, natural solution that I know works. I also don’t like that it takes quite a bit of rubbing to get the glue off and that it doesn’t work very well on spots where the glue is thicker. You could apply more essential oil to your cotton ball and get those stubborn bits of glue off successfully, but that just seems like a big waste of essential oil to me.
This solution is definitely a good one to know about if you just need to quickly touch up a jar that has very minimal glue on it, but I wouldn’t consider it to be my go-to solution if I’m trying to clean a whole bunch of jars to reuse. This solution is just too expensive and wasteful to be an everyday type of thing for me. Like I said, it does smell amazing though! 🙂
I should mention that the oils that you see in the pictures are the oils that I usually use at home and they’re from PURE, where I get most of my essential oils. You need to order directly from them, so let me know if you’re interested and I can get you some more info. Just leave me a comment or send me an email. ???? The PURE oils go through 9 different purity tests and are super high quality. They’re also about 1/2 the price of a lot of oils that you can get from the other big essential oil companies so that’s why I almost always buy from there. ???? I linked to some oils from other manufacturers in this post for your convenience so you can see what the bottles look like or buy them instantly through Amazon. This brand that I’ve linked to is the brand that I usually go with if I’m out of something and need to pick it up from a local store and don’t have time to wait to get my PURE order for that month. I find that if I don’t provide enough info about which essential oils I choose and why in these posts, that someone always asks to have that part of things explained a little better. So if you want to know more about this (or anything else I write about ever, just drop me a line!)
Have you ever tried using essential oils to get the glue off of your jars?
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Courtenay Hartford is the author of creeklinehouse.com, a blog based on her adventures renovating a 120-year-old farmhouse in rural Ontario, Canada. On her blog, Courtenay shares interior design tips based on her own farmhouse and her work as founder and stylist of the interior photography firm Art & Spaces. She also writes about her farmhouse garden, plant-based recipes, family travel, and homekeeping best practices. Courtenay is the author of the book The Cleaning Ninja and has been featured in numerous magazines including Country Sampler Farmhouse Style, Better Homes and Gardens, Parents Magazine, Real Simple, and Our Homes.