May 10, 2013

Repurposing Candle Jars

 candle jar woodwick bath and body works slatkin and co freeze freezer candle diy repurposing jars
For the first 21 years of my life I was just tossing candles out as I finished them. The wick would burn out and leave a couple centimeters of wax at the bottom but the candle was toast. Now, I would never dream of just throwing that seemingly useless candle in the trash. You can salvage the glass containers and re-purpose them around your house for no extra cost instead of wasting your money on the jars they sell at home or craft stores.

Cleaning out the glass containers is relatively easy. Once the wick is burned, stick the candle in the freezer for a couple hours. The wax will freeze and end up hard and possibly cracked. At this point you can move the candle to the sink and CAREFULLY stick a butter knife into the wax. The wax should pop out in big pieces relatively easily depending on the brand of candle. In my experience, the Slatkin and Co candles sold at Bath and Body Works part with their wax the easiest while Yankee candles are a big more difficult. Woodwicks are sometimes a bit more difficult as the wax remains relatively greasy no matter how long they're kept in the freezer.

Once the wax is out you can peel the labels or stickers off the side and bottom of the candle. Usually the stickers on the bottom are paper and a big more difficult to peel than the brand labels. Additionally, a lot of the stickers and labels can leave behind that sticky residue, especially if you get over eager and peel too fast. This can be remedied by running the candle under hot water and attacking it with a steel wool pad, like Brillo or SOS. If the wick has been left behind on the bottom of the jar the hot water will loosen the glue and allow you to scrape it off with a spoon. Give the jar a quick wash like you would with any normal cup or run it through the dishwasher and you're done. You have a container that is totally unrecognizable as a former candle.

This is especially great if the candle jar was more unique than just a standard glass cup

A holder for drink stirrers, straws, small measuring cups, etc in the kitchen

This candle had a unqiue flat jar and now sits on top of my dresser and holds my most worn jewelry for easy access

I would have been sad to part with this cute pink container once the candle was used up but cleaning it out turned it into a great brush holder. The clear former Woodwick candle holds pens.

A tall, skinny candle turned into a mini vase and a former Slatkin and Co candle now holds little candies on our side table.

 My nail care basics fit in a Slatkin and Co container as well.

Other great uses for former candle jars are coin holders in your entryway, containers for cotton swabs, balls or pads in the bathroom, containers for hair bands or bobby pins and storage for tubes of lipgloss. I've also been saving some Yankee candle jars to use for building terrariums. These things are so multifunctional and make me feel like I'm cheating candle companies a little since I'm getting years of use out of them rather than just a week's worth before they have to be tossed. Hunt down some candles in cute containers and try it out for yourself!

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