The First Thing You Should Do with a New Jar of Coconut Oil

published Jul 1, 2021
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Someone holding jar of coconut oil.
Credit: Sarah Crowley

I love it when the solution to a cleaning problem is simple, straightforward, inexpensive — and already conveniently sitting in my cabinet. Turns out, coconut oil is one of those multi-purpose ingredients that can often be a solution! Besides using it as part of your hair and skincare regimen, coconut oil can also be a useful non-toxic cleaning agent when you need to, say, wipe grease from kitchen cabinet doors or polish stainless steel. 

But here’s a surprising tip about coconut oil you may have never known: Coconut oil can help get the labels off from all those empty and otherwise-clean jars you’ve been storing. While you can easily wash out tomato sauce and jam jars that you’re hoping to repurpose, one hiccup is the stubborn label residue that graces your would-be perfectly upcycled glass storage. If you’re anything like me, the sticky, unsightly residue might just keep you from actually using the glass you so responsibly saved. But there’s hope!

Credit: Sarah Crowley

Use Coconut Oil to Remove Sticky Labels

The next time you open a new jar of coconut oil, use that as a cue to take some time to give your stash-in-waiting some TLC. Generously dab coconut oil with a cotton ball on the troubled spots to saturate the paper label and glue clinging to the glass. Then, go do something else for a little! Let the coconut oil sit on the label for at least 15 minutes. After you wait, you should be able to effortlessly scrape off the label and glue (and if you’re lucky, it may even come off in one easy chunk!).

If you need a bit more abrasion, sprinkle baking soda on the oil and then scrub it all off. Wash your glass, rinse, and dry, and then use each one as you hoped! Note: You can also use coconut oil to remove sticky stickers from plates and other new dishes, like in the photo above!

This post originally ran on Kitchn. See it there: The First Thing You Should Do with a New Jar of Coconut Oil