How to Clean and Reuse a Candle Jar for Storage

I love candles. Come over to my house any night of the week and there is bound to be a candle burning. My absolute favorite scent is this one from Anthropologie, but I also pick up other candles every now and then. Especially if they have a cute container!

But because I burn candles all the time, I go through lots of candle jars. I always feel sad getting rid of them (or recycling them), so I decided to figure out the best way to clean and reuse a candle jar. Here’s the simple method that worked for me.

How to Clean and Reuse a Candle Jar

You see this cool candle jar (another awesome one from Anthro)?! (similar) There was just no way I could get rid of this brass & marble candle (similar) when I came to the bottom of it. I mean c’mon…it has 2 of my favorite things…brass AND marble! When I came to the bottom of this one, I immediately started researching the best way to clean the jar. 

Lots of people use boiling water, but it just seemed too messy to me. Instead, I decided to go the opposite route and use cold to my advantage…

Pop your Old Candle in the Freezer

I took the lid off of my candle and placed it in our freezer overnight. You can probably do it for just a couple hours, but I kinda forgot that mine was in there. Whoops. Don’t worry, keeping it in the freezer longer doesn’t do it any harm. You just want the wax to freeze up, so it is easy to pop out!

Slice the Wax

I then sliced up the frozen wax…kinda like a pie. You can just use a butter knife and put a little pressure on the wax as you cut. It should come apart in sections fairly easily.

Dump out the Candle Wax

With the wax sliced, it should come out of the candle jar in no time at all! Just dump it out and use a paper towel to get any small slices out of the container.

You’ll then be left with a container that may be a little sooty and waxy. Not clean enough to use for storage…yet.

Throw it in the Dishwasher

I put my candle jar on the top rack of the dishwasher and washed it with my normal cycle. When it came out, it was perfectly clean and ready for storage!

You can then reuse a candle jar like this one for cute storage around your home. I tried mine out in the bathroom. Love the brass in this neutral space. 

Plus, it can hold a boatload of cotton balls and q-tips. I love secret storage like that!

It can also work for office supplies like my (growing) collection of washi tape. 

It looks all neat and tidy on my desk, even though the inside is full of colorful rolls of washi tape! Secret storage at its finest.

If your New Year’s resolution involves being greener, more frugal, or more organized…this project checks all the boxes! And it’s an awesome way to reuse a candle jar that you have in your cabinet.

And for all of my other candle lovers out there, what are your favorite scents? I just love these ones from Anthropologie!


The Year of Casey

Hey there!

I’m Casey Finn, the voice behind The DIY Playbook. I’m a Chicago gal teaching you how to design, DIY, and maintain your home…by yourself! Learn more about me right here.

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