6 Easy Ways to Reuse Bath & Body Works Candle Jars at Home
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Want to know how to reuse candle jars after the wax melts down? Follow these tips!
Here’s how to reuse your old candle jars and give them a brand-new purpose!
They won’t be collecting dust any longer with these easy ideas on how to reuse them! Once the wax melts down, it’s easy to get them cleaned up so that they can serve a greater purpose around the house! Plus, we love helping to save the planet with frugal upcycling tips.
I’m addicted to buying all the yummy-smelling Bath & Body Works candles, and I quickly noticed a collection of empty jars forming.
Instead of tossing my old candles in the trash, I thought, why not turn them into something handy like containers for small bathroom supplies, beauty products, craft supplies, pantry storage – the options are endless!
Cleaning them out can be difficult, but I know just the trick! 😉
The secret to cleaning glass candle jars is to freeze them for at least a few hours. Then you’ll be able to use a butter knife and crack the wax easily and remove it. The metal wick at the bottom will also come off easily – just get under it with a butter knife and wiggle it off. Voila!
Trash or save the excess wax, it’s up to you! As an idea, you could save it and place the wax in your favorite wax warmer. I can smell the leftover pumpkin spice already!
Removing the labels is easier than you’d think, too!
The best approach to take is to first soak the jars in hot soapy water. Then they will usually come off pretty easily. If there’s still a little wax residue inside the glass, place it in the microwave for a few seconds to help melt and it will be easier to wipe clean.
Hip2Save reader, Barb, suggested an alternative cleaning method. She puts boiling water in her jars and the heat makes the wax break down and rise to the top. When cool, it’s easy to remove the floating disk of wax!
Hip tip for reusing your candle jars: For removing super stubborn adhesive residue, consider using acetone, Goo Gone, or when all else fails, spray it with WD-40 and let sit overnight. It should magically come off in the morning!
If you’re looking for a more all-natural approach and plan to place edibles inside of your jars, one of our readers suggested using lemon essential oil to get any remaining glue off. 🙌
Here are some fun ideas for re-purposing your jars:
1. Make beautiful bathroom apothecary jars.
To create some pretty apothecary jars for my bathroom, I glued some inexpensive clear glass knobs to the top of metal candle covers. Also, to make sure that the knobs stand the test of time, I used some heavy-duty e6000 craft glue.
I’m so happy with how they look on the bathroom counter! 😍 I chose to add cotton balls and Q-tips to mine, but you can add any small bathroom necessities that you want. Plus, it doubles as some pretty gorgeous home decor.
“I have been doing this for a couple of years. I painted the candle jars after they were cleaned so they match the décor in my bathroom and in my bedroom. They hold tampons, Q-tips, earrings, small samples of creams, and one on the dryer for my scent booster pebbles!” – Angela
2. Use them for small, sealed food items.
While we don’t recommend using these containers for open food items, you can still fill them with smaller food items that you want to keep in places, such as sugar packets at your coffee station or covered candies for your guests.
“After running them through my dishwasher a few times and making sure they’re sanitized, I put packets of sugar, creamers, and stevia all in jars in my coffee station! I even added some cute vinyl labels using my Cricut to give them a little custom touch and look even more decorative.” – Jess
Hip tip for reusing your candle jars: In order to get rid of the candle fragrance before placing your food items into the jars, readers suggested doing some of the following tricks:
- Run them through the dishwasher.
- Soak them in vinegar and baking soda.
- Place wadded-up newspaper to absorb the smell.
- Leave the lids off to air them out.
3. Place craft accessories to display and use.
If you’re reading this post, chances are you’re big into crafting like me! If you want a decorative and fun way to display all your favorite craft supplies, you can hang up some of our favorite floating shelves and fill them with your repurposed jars – they’ll look stunning with so many colorful buttons, ribbons, and whatever else your craft room has in store.
“I use them to hold craft items like buttons, safety pins, sea glass, etc. I have mentioned numerous times to Bath and Body Works employees that they should start an in-store recycling program with a discount incentive. It’s a shame they aren’t reused more often!” – Julia
“My husband and daughter are artists and they put decorative sand and rocks in them. They also use them to hold paintbrushes, sharpies, blades for matting, etc.” – Rosa
4. Use them as table centerpieces.
Do you have a special event coming up soon? We’re always looking for frugal ways to make milestone moments even more special while staying on budget. Consider reusing your candle jars as vases for fresh flowers at your wedding, graduation, baby shower, or any special occasion you have coming up.
“I used them for centerpiece vases for fresh flowers at my daughter’s graduation open house. Looked great. Crisscrossed clear floral tape across the top to hold the flowers up.” – Steph
“We collected used candle jars to use as part of centerpiece decor for our daughter’s bridal shower and wedding. We filled them with sand, added small seashells and paired them with additional tealight votives for simple decor at her shower. I have three daughters so I continue to save these in anticipation of using again for more weddings and hopefully for future baby showers!” – Sherri
“I’ve made many really neat things for fundraisers with refurbished BBW jars & lids. Even snow globes! Wish I could show a pic of one I just finished. The one I have done had modgepodge painted inside the jar then sprinkled with glitter. Lid has elephant design with trinkets and sparkly paints. Endless possibilities!!”
5. Place all your makeup brushes in them.
Having the perfect storage solution for all your makeup makes life so much easier when you’re getting ready in the morning! Plus, with these Bath and Body Works candles, you’ll likely just need one jar to have enough room for all your essentials.
6. Store all your hair accessories.
Hair ties come and go in our house and having a place to store them all will ensure you’ll never be trying to hunt one down during your morning rush again! You can also consider throwing in some clips, bobby pins, or whatever else you have trouble finding when you need to get ready!
“I love this idea! I am going to use these to store my daughter’s ponytail holders on her bathroom sink. The knobs Lina shared above also make them look so much prettier!” – Heather
I reused some of mine for facial cleansing wipes, love the idea with the kids ♥️, I’ll have to add that, thank you.
Lids not kids. Lol
No no definitely meant kids
Another way to remove leftover stickiness from labels- use coconut oil and a little baking soda (adds a tiny bit of abrasiveness). I’ve used it after buying picture frames from places like Tjmaxx when they put the price sticker right on the glass!
Hi. thanks for post. A little off topic: I want to know what others are doing in re- purposing empty BBW soap foam bottles. I asked the store one time if I can donate to them so they can reuse and was told just to throw them away which I think is an environmental waste. Any info is much appreciated!
I re-use them! I put about an inch of liquid Dawn (or any other fun smelling dish soap) in, fill the rest with water and shake.
Dawn, rubbing alcohol and water= dawn power wash
I buy bulk hand washing liquid and cut it with water.
Also use for dawn in the kitchen.
We save them for a terracycle program. Maybe see if your area has something similar. http://www.terracycle.com
I reuse the bottles for hand soap as well, but I have also started to do the same with my body wash! You just can’t do this with body butter body wash or the exfoliating kind. My body wash is lasting so much longer now! I also only put about 1-2 inches of body wash and then add water and shake. You sometimes have to shake it a couple times when you first fill the bottle.
That’s a great idea! I’m going to have to save the next one to empty out and give this a try 🙂
I paint mine with a homemade chalk paint recipe using plaster of paris. Made them look like concrete and terracotta. I refill them with dawn platinum and a little bit of warm water then shake it for a foamy handwash that kills germs. Perfect for 2021!!
Also I agree with it feeling so wasteful.. Stores and brands should give huge discounts to people willing to reuse packaging. If they had dispensers and sold concentrated tablets for the purpose of refilling stations that would be amazing!!
Thanks for sharing about using paint! I have use Talenti brand ice cream containers to mix chalk paint but never thought of glass. Good idea!
That is a great question as I am about halfway through my soap bottle as well, I believe I will use it as a toothbrush holder and I will see if I can send the pump in to terra cycle. You should look it up it is the company that glow recipe uses to recycle their non-reusable packaging. Hope this helps, let me know if you come up with a better idea!
I give the candle jars to my daughter. She paints scenes on them and then we put a tea light candle on them. You can also remove the wax by pouring boiling water in the jar. Let cool and the wax will float to the top. I bought some wicks on amazon and glue 3 into the jars, melt the wax, and pour them in. The end effect is different layers of different waxes.
All super amazing ideas guys!! I’ll try a few with my daughter since I have tons of free time now!! Thank you!
Sure! Thanks Gigi!
I like to do photo transfer on my glass jars too. Here is a tutorial https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bNsQGbkPAB8. Although it doesn’t list it, I suggest brushing mod podge on the transfer.
Oh that’s a fun idea – thanks!
I watched a YouTube video the other day where the girl coated the inside of the jar with modge podge (I believe matte finish) and used glitter to make a pretty jar for her makeup brushes. She added some plant rocks? to the bottom first so they stay upright.
Oh cool. I like that!
I love reusing the glass jar from bath and body but the lids get rusty and tarnished how can I prevent this from happening. I use them in the bathroom for Q-tips and face pads
Bar keepers friend brand cleaner is great for removing rust.
If you brush clear nail polish (top coat) over them it’ll prevent that. Just a thin coating but you must coat the entire thing because any part left exposed will still rust.
That’s what I’ve heard, too! I’m about to do that on the bottom of a metal soap holder.
Oh… I just read to the bottom of the post – someone said they use wash tape – that could be pretty, also!
Wouldn’t it be easier to just spray it with Rustoleum – a clear coat?
I have saved a few of the more decorative lids but got rid of the candle jars in moving. Any crafty ideas just for the lids?
You can use them as coasters!
also coasters under furniture, using some of mine for carpet protectors under the rails of Grandmothers hospital style bed railings.
I wanted to add cork on the inside and make a coaster out of the lids
Any suggestions on camouflaging the lids that say bath and body works? I like the finish but the words distract from the look once I add a decorative knob.
I was looking for a way to hide the words on the lid too. Any suggestions appreciated.
Just thinking out loud… but what about cutting pretty scrapbook paper to fit, then coating in Modge Podge?
I was able to remove the wax just fine but now I am stuck with the metal part that holds the wick in place. It won’t budge. Any suggestions as to how to gently remove them without breaking the jar?
I used a butter knife to wedge under it and it should pop off. Hope that helps!
actually there is an easier way to remove the leftover in the jar. Leave it outside when it’s raining. The jar will collect the water, then later on, the leftover will float up. then it’s easier to pour it out of the jar. Don’t ask me how I knew. 😛
I reuse the plastic soap bottle with 1/2 dr bronners castile soap 1/2 distilled water. Makes the best foaming hand soap and body soap!
You know what might be cute is to paint them with a paint/sand or paint/baking soda mixture (I think there was a post before on doing that to vases) to give it a pottery look, and plant succulents in them.
Great places to get pretty knobs for $10 or less: Big Lots, Home Goods, Marshall’s, TJ Maxx, Ross. This post has come out multiple times in the past. Since reading the first one, I’ve been saving my candle jars n buying knobs. I also use washi tape. I’m still waiting for inspiration to pull out those knobs n make pretty jars. I’ve used some as gifts n put wrapped candy in.
Thanks for the tip, Kay! How fun to save candle jars for upcoming projects. These are so pretty.
Hobby Lobby has a huge selection of decorative knobs too.
Has anybody been able to find knobs with a flat bottom? I’m finding ones with the long thread and not sure how to remove. Thank you!!!
Amazon has them!
Hobby Lobby has lots of choices! Wait until they are 50% off, too.
I put bacon grease in them!
Great idea, Tammy!
How do you get the smell of the candle out of the lid?
You can soak it in soapy water with vinegar, run it through the dishwasher as a few suggestions. It can be stubborn sometimes.
Someone suggested wiping around inside the lid with alcohol. When it dries, wash with soapy water.
I love these ideas!!! Thank you so much!
An easy way to clean the Jays is to put boiling water in them. The wax breaks down and rises to the top. When cool, there’s just a disk of wax floating on top that you just lift out and toss. I then throw the glass in the dishwasher for a good wash. Easy!
Where do you get the covers ?
The candles come with lids already. If you are talking about the knobs you can pick them up at craft stores, garage sales, and hardware stores.
Truly just curious… If the jar has been washed thoroughly and sanitized, why can’t you put unpackaged food in it? I’m thinking it would be perfect for things like chocolate chips or candy.
I think you can! However, the ring on the lid is pretty difficult to get the smell off of. I would say use your own judgement and do as desired 👍
I really like #1 & 2 since I’m about to get my first cricut machine! I’m so excited! I can’t wait to read all your crafting pages! Thank you!!!
I used my jar to hold my ponytails. But I left the label on because it looks nicer it doesn’t look as messy.
I’ve made many really need things for fundraisers with refurbished BBW jars & lids. Even snow globes! Wish I could show a pic of one I just finished. The one I have done had modgepodge painted inside jar then sprinkled with glitter. Lid has elephant design with trinkets and sparkly paints. Endless possibilities!!
Some of the bbw candles have a stained color and when I clean then, some color is coming off, how can I get it fully off?
I am unsure but maybe other readers can chime in! Sorry! Another option may be to spray paint them?