Get The Sticky Stuff Off A Mason Jar

By: Lilybee Oct 10, 2008

Sure it sounds simple, but I've just spent HOURS picking and peeling and breaking my nails. Does anybody have a fool-proof, no-picking-required method for getting the paper residue and sticky goo off of jars? I know that I could just buy empty ones but I have A BUNCH hanging around and I need to unpeel them to use for the flower arrangements at Ted's Naming Ceremony. Help me Curbly-Wan you're my nail's only hope!

created on: 10/10/08 Mason jars, beautiful on the inside!


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Did you know acetone IS nail polish remover??


My problem is not on the jar, but on the metal lid. I cannot get the price tag glue residue off no matter what I do and I don't want to scratch the metal lid.  Any suggestions for that?

Argan oil works fabulously too

How to get labels of mason jars :

Things you need :)

Hot water, paper towel and some nailpolish remover :D

1. Pour the hot water into the jar and wait some minutes.

2. Peel of label. 

3. If any glue residues, get the nailpolish remover and apply some on the paper towel.

4. Rub the paper towel with nailpolish remover on it, on the jar.

5. Then rinse the jar :D

Hopefully you have removed the the label :)

Sorry this is late, but this site pops up first on google:P

What you guys need is steel wool. Soak in hot water, soapless steel wool and cooking oil, the dishwasher to get rid of the oil. Perfekt clarity every time, just be gentle with the steel wool on glass.

I have tried it all and nothing is working....uuuhhhhggggg

Olive Oil does the trick so does nail polish remover but I would try the Olive Oil first.  I soap the bottles in hot water for a while and get off as much of the label as possible then I use Olive Oil to get off the sticky label left over then clean the bottle good in the dish washer, works everytime.  

Hi all - just wanted to add another oil that works: baby oil!  I had an old bottle lying around that I didn't want to use on my skin anymore. Some light rubbing with a paper napkin dipped in the oil took the stickiness right off. Of course you have to wash the jar with soapy water to de-grease it, but that's easy enough.

Submerge in hot water and murphys oil soap for 10 minutes. Use a spoon to scrape the label ... Comes right off.

I spent a lot of time professionally removing labels, believe it or not. I was a used bookseller for almost 20 years and people (and bookstores) put labels on paperbacks as if it were a hobby!


Here's what you do, if you have some, use Citrasolve, soak the label until it looks like it's wetted through, let it sit a little while (5 minutes or so ) and then the paper should just push off in a wet lump. If there's more glue on the glass, put more Citrasolve on a cotton rage and rub, it should come rihg toff. If you don't have Citrasolve, soak the label with salad oil, like cottonseed or canola. This will impregnate the paper and then you can just push it off.



It's great that you were able to get it done. One more check mark on your "To Do" list is a good thang. ~:0)

Cheers Curbliers! You guys were a huge help. I now have a veritable factories-worth of shiny clean mason jars. In the end I got 'em with a hot-water-scrubbie/goo gone double whammy, then polished them up with a spot of vinegar. I'll post pictures of them doing duty as vases at Ted's Naming Ceremony on weebabysftuff sometime after the 2nd.

Hey Lil'. Still stuck? I use cooking spray. Any kind will do. Just spray it on and let it soak in a few minutes. This also works great for sticky price label leftovers too.

I use Eucalyptus oil to take labels off of stuff.

I'm late to the party, you've received several answers and have probably already finished de-labeling all your jars. BUT, if you're still not stuck on (har-har) any method you've tried, and you're still stuck (har-har-har), my own fool-proof, no hassel, let-the-stuff-do-the-work-for-me solution is (maestro, drum roll, please)..... WD-40. (And the crowd goes wild!)

A tiny spritz directly on the label, rub it around to cover it, and let it sit. Leave it. Don't touch it. No, really, I mean it, go tweeze your eyebrows (or something). Come back later and it should wipe completely clean with a swipe of paper toweling.

I've used this method for over 30 years and it's never failed me. ~:0)

I've never had much luck with the goo gone stuff... I like to use a little razor blade scraper tool that you can find in the paint department at one of the big box stores, $2 max. Then some acetone (nail polish remover) or rubbing alcohol should get off any extra residue.

I deal with this issue often since I'm constantly relabeling jars and bottles. I use lighter fluid, the stuff used to fill Zippo lighters and such. It only costs about a dollar or two for a good sized bottle of it. Just saturate the label completely and scrape off the goop before the lighter fluid dries. I use a cotton ball for the big stuff and then a razor blade for the rest.

Hope this helps!


I just let mine soak in water and then use a scrubby pad to scrub the leftover paper and adhesive off. The scrubby will have to be thrown away if you're doing alot, but it's easier than messing around with numerous products. Sometimes you will find a certain brand that wont let go unless you use something like Goo Gone which does work great.

If you need something slightly stronger than soap and water, but not GooGone strength, you can try rubbing some cooking oil over the peeled label and then scrubbing again.

Champs! Thanks heaps folks!

I soak mine in hot soapy water and remove as much as possible (some come off without any work) and then I use GooGone ... amazing stuff!

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