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How to clean and empty your used glass candle jars

Posted by Allison Ritto Almstedt on

Recycling is great, and all the glass used for my products is recycled. However, keeping and re-purposing your jars is even better than putting them back into the recycling stream. Some cities have suspended glass recycling specifically, which is a shame. Here are your options plus a bonus for being green.

  • Return your glass to me for a discount.
  • Clean and reuse your vessel for other purposes.

Returning

If you're local, drop off your empty containers to me at my home studio. If you order via mail, you can mail them back. Email allisonsgoods@gmail.com for details. At this time, I'm only accepting signature glass jars in any color, so I can reuse them in the current offerings.

I'll email you a special code to get $1 off each candle for every container returned. The code will work on any item, so if you return a candle but want to get a diffuser or spray or even soap, that works too!

Reusing

Clear glass that I sell are dishwasher and food safe. The painted glass is hand wash only, but is also food safe. If you wish to use your container for food, I'd recommend ordering a replacement cork. Cork absorbs scent, and no one wants candle-flavored food. But, if you use the jar for non-food storage, you're good to go!

 

Cleaning

If you return or reuse a jar, here's how to clean it. There are many tutorials on the internet but here's what I do.

Hot method

  1. When the candle is still warm, empty the melted wax into the trash. DO NOT empty wax into the sink unless you want clogged pipes and an expensive plumber visit.
  2. Wipe out the jar with a paper towel (not cloth, because again, plumbing and wax do not mix).
  3. Remove metal wick holder by gently wiggling lose. Wipe the remaining wax and sticky residue from the wick holder sticker.
  4. Once you're sure all the wax is empty, hand wash with warm soapy water or toss in the dishwasher.

Reheating method

If your candle has cooled and rehardened, you have a few options.

I prefer to place my jar upside down out in the sun on top of something I'm already throwing in the trash. Then go to step 2 above.

If it's a cold day, you can place the candle in a warm water bath. These glass vessels are rated for several hundred degrees, but the wax melts at about 150. So, no boiling water. Use a stovetop pot or a tea kettle, place the jar in a heatproof container, and add your water bath. Be careful when removing the jar from your hot water! Then take step 2 above and you're good to go.

I don't recommend using your oven to melt the candle jars. I've done that and had a smelly oven for a while. It goes without saying to not use a microwave, right? There's metal in there. Just don't.