Zero Waste Guide: How to reuse empty candle jars

I’ve introduced Greenway Soy Candles and their amazing mission previously. And because I don’t currently have a system to recycle empty glass jars, I’d like to share a couple of DIY practises as to how you can make great use of an empty glass after the candle finished.

If you’ve ever tried to remove the remaining bits of wax from a candle jar, you know it could be an absolute nightmare… Greenway Candles are made with organic, natural ingredients such as 100% pure soy wax which is 100% biodegradable. It is super safe for the skin and doesn’t contain harmful chemicals so cleaning out the little jar with warm water and a bit of soap is very easy. It doesn’t stain your furniture or textiles either as it can be wiped off easily. If you need extra help, get a little spoon and gently scrape the wax and the glue off the bottom of the jar.

How to clean the jars?

Before you start washing out the jars, try and remove the remaining wax with a little spoon. If that is all done, you can start the cleaning process.

My best practice is to bring the kettle to boil, then pour the water in the jar. This will melt the remaining wax. Since the water is likely very hot, wait a couple of minutes, then starts cleaning the inside with a loofah sponge (or any sponge) and some dishwashing liquid.

How to remove the label?

You can leave the label on if you like, but if you decided to remove it, follow these 3 easy steps:

  • Soak the jar(s) in boiling hot water for about 10 minutes.
  • Whilst the jars are being soaked, make a paste with 1 tablespoon of Bicarbonate of Soda & 1 tablespoon of Oil. Mix well.
  • Remove the jars from the water, dry them, then apply the paste to where the jars are still sticky. Leave them on for another 10 minutes, then use a Loofah sponge the wipe it all off. All done!


This is where your imagination is your only limit. Ildi, the Founder of Greenway Design is a keen gardener, so her obvious first choice is to use the jars to make your home greener. She recommends you choose plants that don’t need too much water in order to avoid excess water at the bottom of the jar. Both cactuses and succulent plants are perfect and you can even build a whole nursery of them! They are tough little creatures and very easy to replant.

As an alternative option, you can use the empty jars for storage everywhere from the kitchen to the bathroom.

A no-brainer, but just putting it out there… you can make your own candle! All you need is soy wax, wicks and essential oils. I will soon show you how to make this happen. Until then, enjoy these DIY’s and don’t forget to show us what you’ve created. Tag @zerowastegenerations on Instagram, message us on Facebook or drop us an e-mail!

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