How to Remove Sticky-Gooey-Icky Adhesive Labels
Sticky labels and how to remove them
We all have struggled with it. That horrible gooey residue that is left when you try to remove a label. I recently installed a new sink and have never seen so many labels stuck everywhere. I will pass on some of the methods I used to rid the glue that is left behind when you remove an adhesive label be from glass or ceramic.
Some methods you may have used before, and others may be new to you. What works well on one item may not be suited to another. Experiment with what you already have at home before going out to purchase an over-priced cleaner.
Another point to mention, always check there will be no change in the color of your jar, or other glass item by applying some of your chosen remover to a hidden spot before using. If you are using the method below demonstrated in the video, check that your item can withstand boiling water. If you aren't sure, opted for a different method.
Removing a label from a jar or bottle to reuse the bottle, as they have in the picture above is a great idea. These are perfect for giving gifts, or for making your own pickles, chutneys, or jams.
Removing adhesive from glass
Perhaps you have bought a vase or pitcher and there are sticky labels on it. These obviously need to be removed before you can use it. For this type of item, try soaking it in warm water to start with. This will loosen the glue and the paper. Don't be too quick to take it out and start scraping with your fingernail. Let the warmth and the water work. If you are lucky, the label will float off. If this is the case, you will be left with very little residue on your glass item.
Sometimes it isn't possible to soak an object in a sink or bucket of water. For example, a window or large mirror. these will need to have water sponged onto them. This will be a blotting technique, don't scrub, this will just roll the wet paper off and leave you with glue smeared everywhere.
If the label is on a jar which came with a vacuum style lid, you can pour boiling water into the jar. The glue will melt as the glass heats up. The label will then easily come off.
If you have baby oil, this will work wonders. In fact many of the items I am listing today are oiled based. I prefer to use a cotton ball to apply it. I find it is still better to remove most of the label with warm water first, then go in with the baby oil. It will loosen the glue and simply come away. It may be helpful to dab and leave for a few minutes. then return.
Often we can get overaggressive when trying to remove a label. Remove some of the glass is thin and as such you don't want to be exerting undue pressure.
For the baby oil and other oil based items I am suggesting, be careful when you pick up your newly cleaned object, it will be slippery. Wash in warm soapy water.
Use Mayo to remove labels
Mayonnaise isn't just for your tuna sandwich! It is great for removing labels as well. As before, soaking the label before will aid in the removal. If you don't have time, or the inclination to soak it, apply a generous dollop of mayo. If the article is vertical this could prove difficult. If it is not possible to lay the item down, use the mayo sparingly, you don't want to be cleaning mayo stains from your carpet. Gently dab on with a paper towel and leave for 5- 10 minutes.
Who doesn't have a can of this in their house? Okay perhaps the skinny straw has gone missing but that doesn't matter. If you have a can of WD-40 you can solve so many problems. I was once told,
"There are only two things you need in life! A can of WD-40 and duct tape. If it moves and it shouldn't use the duct tape, if it should move and doesn't use WD-40"
Spray the WD-40 on the label and leave for the required time, 10 minutes or so.
Using vinegar to remove a label
This is different than the above products that are oil based. Vinegar as you may remember from your chemistry class is an acid. This will burn the adhesive away. The smell isn't pleasant but it will do the trick. Again, I would use either a paper towel or cotton ball to apply. Use only clear vinegar, red wine vinegar could leave a mark.
This will melt the adhesive and with a bit of elbow grease you will roll that adhesive into little patches and can easily pick them off. This is always easy to use on a cotton ball. It does evaporate quickly so you may find you need to keep reapplying.
Nail polish remover to remove labels
If there are women in your house, you have a bottle of nail polish remover somewhere. This is so strong it is used to remove artificial nails. It literally melts them, and it can do the same for your sticky troublesome labels as well.
Like rubbing alcohol, this is quick to evaporate so you may use more than you think.