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Recycling Glass Candle Jars - What do YOU do with your empty jars?

Started 1315929595.21 in Candles | Last reply 1316270870.283 by BonnieBelle

This may have been discussed at length prior, so please forgive me if I'm readdressing an old discussion regarding.

I do not buy as many candles as I used to, and am very selective these days about which I buy and how many of, since I am so limited in space in my apartment. However, the few which I have gotten, and used to the very bottom, I always keep and use for other things. After they have burned down, I usually clean them well of all residue and find a spot for them (if possible) so that I'm not just throwing away a perfectly good jar into the recycling bin. I have used them as holders for cotton swabs and cotton balls in the bathroom, but how many of those can one have? (well, me anyway...don't need but two or three in that room).

I have a pantry that used to be a dumb-waiter in my apartment. The house I live in used to be separated in living spaces such as the "help" lived on the lower floor and the owners lived on the top-most floor. In any case, the dumb-waiters were converted into small pantries, with shelving and the like. It is a great space, and it reminded me of the old shelves in convenience stores 'back in the day', as we say. Because of that, I began to save all of the used candle jars and slowly added them as containers for my wrapped bouillion cubes, wrapped baking chocolates, dried fruits, dried herbs, packets of seasoning, etc. My pantry now looks like an old fashioned grocery store shelf with it's shiny glass jars that allow me to see what I've stored.

In keeping with these ideas, I was curious to know if anyone wanted to share their ideas on what you do with your empty candle jars? Do you refill them with new wicks and wax from unburned candles (I do this with the Slatkin candles as there always seems to be a 1/2 in of unused wax at the bottom of the three wick 14 oz candles), or do you put them to use elsewhere?

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Sooner1315930819.0815184 PostsRegistered 10/6/2004

Throw them away. I need to throw a lot more stuff away.

Jolexi1315931332.75926 PostsRegistered 9/22/2006NYC

LOL Sooner. Good candid answer. That's why I don't buy as much as I used to - I had too many and now I try to buy just the single pillars, votives or tarts/melts. I save one or two empty ones for the left-over wax sometimes. Purging is good though {#emotions_dlg.biggrin}

imaclothes­hog1315936342.621995 PostsRegistered 2/12/2006

I throw mine out. Part of my de-clutter and organize efforts this year for the house.

"If you can't make it better, you can laugh at it". ~Erma Bombeck

lork1315937372.23415 PostsRegistered 3/20/2009

I just can't throw them out. . .guess it's the horder in me. . .Add a pretty bow and they make inexpensive gifts when filled with hard candy, candy corn, bath salts, hot cocoa mix, spiced tea mix, bath salts, small cookies, home dried fruit, nuts, granola, etc. Toclean them I melt all of the wax and pour it out; rinse out with boiling water then run through the diswasher.

Christmasn­ut1315958735.287627 PostsRegistered 12/1/2010

What doesn't burn anymore I melt on the candle warmer. After the scent is gone, while the wax is still melted I scrape out the wax and clean out the jar. Take to Goodwill. Good use for someone to store items in and some candle makers reuse them.

Last edited on 9/13/2011

Last edited on 9/13/2011

Jolexi1316004060.237926 PostsRegistered 9/22/2006NYC

Great ideas! Lork, I clean mine out the same way. In fact, I had a terrible accident while cleaning mine out last Thanksgiving....got 2nd degree burns on my hand and wrist, which healed excellently. But, I learned my lesson and plan on being extra cautious next time around.

flamingo1111316011339.217100 PostsRegistered 10/9/2010

I am a crafter so I use them to store small craft items in. That way I can see what I have.

yellowrose1316012292.7534319 PostsRegistered 10/6/2004

Mark with a red "X" on bottom and use for target shooting. (don't try this if you live in the city.) {#emotions_dlg.biggrin}

Jolexi1316013296.39926 PostsRegistered 9/22/2006NYC

LOL yellowrose. Well, that's still using them, so it counts. {#emotions_dlg.laugh}

Texas Barb­ie1316013322.4173521 PostsRegistered 12/7/2006Spring, Texas

I am a new member of Flylady so I have an impressive stack of boxes of just that sort of thing for Goodwill to pick up next week. Like Flylady says, if I don't LOVE it, get rid of it. I don't love empty glass jars so I will bless someone else with them.

Jolexi1316013898.877926 PostsRegistered 9/22/2006NYC

That's a good frame of mind Texas Barbie. It keeps your space clear and free for things you DO love. I'm sure someone will put them to use in some way, shape or form. Me - I'm not collecting any more; I just keep reusing the ones I have when they empty out of whatever I've filled them with.

When I can't find a use, well, I hand them off with a recipe and a baking mix included from one of those cookbooks aimed at gifting in jars such as http://www.cookbookcupboard.com/bookstore/ to someone special.

Mrs Grace1316014411.1076854 PostsRegistered 8/21/2011

I love to put candy, cake batter, muffin mix, or seasonal items in them, cover with fabric and tie with ribbon, and give them for thank you gifts, birthdays, Christmas, etc. You can get creative and put all kinds of things in it !

If you have a friend who is a hot tea lover, a variety of good tea bags always hits the spot.

Also, gourmet chocolates, or coffees, small tree ornaments, baby items, like little booties, and bibs, etc. for a shower, etc.

I think you get the idea.

I keep my jars clean and ready to go. Keep a variety of fabrics for the occasions with ribbons on hand, and small cards to run the ribbon through with a little note and your name on it. Inexpensive, homemade and thoughtful.



Jolexi1316014904.56926 PostsRegistered 9/22/2006NYC

Not mention, gracehill, that you are giving a gift that would cost you a lot more purchased as is. I love giving gifts of that type because I can put my own 'flair' to it and make it unique. Again, excellent ideas. Thanks for sharing Smile

MaggieGF1316015649.54536 PostsRegistered 3/25/2010

Same as the OP...One for q-tips, one for cotton balls. The rest go in the recycle bin. I like the idea of using them for pantry items, but I am too klutzy to use glass containers for that sort of thing (I drop containers from the pantry all the time)...I try to keep that stuff in Lock N Lock.

jackthebear1316017100.955877 PostsRegistered 10/6/2004

toothbrush holders, you always have a clean one, put the dirty one in dishwasher,

use a little vinegar to clean out the toothpaste

Princess_P­oo1316021072.84801 PostsRegistered 2/7/2009

We have a nice recycling center (or at least we used to have one, then along came Irene, hopefully it will be back soon), and we clean them and take them to the recycling center. Crafters use them for all of the ideas above. I have contacted Bath and Body and requested they have a recycling bin in their stores to received the used glass candle holders. Each time I request this, I get the "gee, that would be a good idea" routine, but nothing happens. Perhaps if more people requested in their local stores it might happen? Just a thought.

Life is Short, Buy the Shoes

Sooner1316021297.85315184 PostsRegistered 10/6/2004
On 9/13/2011 Jolexi said:

LOL Sooner. Good candid answer. That's why I don't buy as much as I used to - I had too many and now I try to buy just the single pillars, votives or tarts/melts. I save one or two empty ones for the left-over wax sometimes. Purging is good though {#emotions_dlg.biggrin}

Me too! I haven't bought a candle in a couple of years and am STILL working through the 6 or 8 I had on hand. It is also something I've pretty much lost interest in.

Alsee1316021479.982559 PostsRegistered 11/21/2006

Toss them away

catprincess1316021624.1232365 PostsRegistered 4/9/2007Rocky Mountains

I am reading these postings with interest, but I have a question. How do you get the glue out of the bottom of the jar. Most of my Slatkin & yankee candle wicks are solidly glued in the bottom of the jar. I have everything to get that lump of glue out so I could reuse the jar. How do you do it?

depglass1316026722.98724102 PostsRegistered 11/14/2006

Our recycle center no longer takes glass. So into the trash for me, I have enough stuff around here now.

Jolexi1316099462.66926 PostsRegistered 9/22/2006NYC
On 9/14/2011 catprincess said:

I am reading these postings with interest, but I have a question. How do you get the glue out of the bottom of the jar. Most of my Slatkin & yankee candle wicks are solidly glued in the bottom of the jar. I have everything to get that lump of glue out so I could reuse the jar. How do you do it?

catprincess -

I know exactly to what you are referring. It is because of that infernal lump of glue that I sustained the burns on my hand last year. The problem is that not only is that glue sticky, but is oily/greasy and leaves an unsightly (and unwanted) streaky mess on the bottom. What I did find was that I had to use a bit of olive oil and rubbing until most of the adhesive in the glue gave way. Then I boiled a bit of water with some vinegar, warmed the bottom of the jar (so that it would not crack) with a bit of the water (in the same way one would warm a teapot), and then pour the rest of the hot water in - letting it sit with just a drop or two of dish soap. I've found that rubbing in a bit of lemon directly from the fruit also helps to dissolve the adhesive. I tend to be a bit determined and if one thing doesn't work, I always try a dozen others until I get it - hence, a burned hand and wrist... {#emotions_dlg.blush}

BonnieBelle1316270870.25719403 PostsRegistered 4/13/2007

Throw them in the recycle. I don't save anything. I also don't buy candles anymore, waste of money.

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