I buy all kinds of things that come packaged in mason jars. Honey, tomato sauce, applesauce, jam – anything that fits a regular or wide mouth lid gets saved.
But most of the time, I don’t want the old label that came with the jar. This how-to guide is about how to remove the sticky glue from your jar.
One Special Ingredient
The one cleaning item you need to get rid of sticker residue is Goo Gone. It’s dirt cheap and you don’t need much, so pick up a bottle and you’ll have all you need for a long, long time. As you’ll see below, our bottle is almost full and we bought it 2 years ago.
Works on Any Sticker or Label
I selected a very challenging label for this demonstration. It’s a vinyl label that likes to tear into small pieces with very strong adhesive on the back. The label covers at least half of the jar surface, so there’s tons of glue that needs to be removed.
I’ve already run this jar through the dishwasher a dozen times at least, and as you can see the label is on just
Keep Out of Reach of Small Creatures
Goo Gone is plenty toxic, so keep it away from pets and children. My cat was very interested in what I was doing out on the kitchen floor so I made sure to work above it on a 5 gallon bucket instead.
Step 1: Peel off What You Can
Goo Gone works best on the glue underneath the label, not the label itself. Fortunately most labels can be peeled off very quickly with your bare hands.
Use a sharp knife to get any last remnants of label off. Ideally you’ll want only adhesive showing.
Step 2: Lay Down Paper Towels
I like to lay my jar in a little nest made up of a couple sheets of paper towels. These paper towels catch every drop of goo gone, so that I can use the minimum amount necessary without spilling any.
Step 3: Apply Goo Gone
After pouring on enough Goo Gone to get the entire surface of the jar moist, roll the jar around on the paper towel to make sure that Goo Gone is spread around the entire gluey surface.
2 Minutes Later
It doesn’t take long for Goo Gone to work its magic. And it works so well that you don’t need to scrub with anything abrasive to get the last of the glue off. I used the paper towel “nest” to quickly rub off all the remaining glue residue. In under 2 minutes of rubbing, the jar came out literally sparkling, with no glue residue left whatsoever.
Again, Goo Gone is somewhat toxic and you should read the health warnings on the back of the bottle if you use the stuff. I made sure to wash my hands well with dish soap and water. Before you use a jar treated with Goo Gone, make sure you run it through the dishwasher.
Go Get Goo Gone!
Here’s a link to a good deal on Goo Gone from Amazon.