Cleaning Time: How to Remove Wax from Glass Candle Holders 6 Easy Ways

Whether it’s a glass container from the store or a unique glass candle holder you use for your own candle magick, that pesty candle wax tends to build up and stick to the container. Learning how to remove wax from a glass candle holder can vary depending on the shape and type of wax used in the candle itself. Regardless, it’s a relatively straightforward process and an easy way to upcycle those beautiful crystal glass jars.

It’s very rare that you burn through all of the wax in a glass container candle. In fact, you may damage the glass if you try to burn it when the wax reaches around ¼ to ½ of an inch. Though there are certainly other methods out there, here are six ways you can remove candle wax from glass candle holders.

Method 1: Removing Wax from a Glass Candle Holder Using Hot Water

The first method is arguably the easiest and simply involves pouring hot or boiling water into the glass container. Though you are handling scolding water, so be cautious with both the hot water and the glass.
To remove wax from a glass candle holder by pouring hot water into it, you will need:

  • A pot of hot water
  • The glass candle holder
  • A spoon
  • A paper towel

Follow these instructions for the best results:

  1. Fill a pot with hot water and place it on the stove
  2. Once the water is hot, carefully pour it into the glass candle holder
  3. Allow the wax to melt and then use a spoon to scoop it out
  4. Wipe down the candle holder with a paper towel to remove any remaining wax

Be careful not to pour the water too hot, as this could break the glass. Also, be sure to let the wax cool completely before handling it, as it can be hot to the touch.

Method 2: Storing the Glass Candle Holder in the Freezer

This is a relatively straightforward method that may work out for you. Store the glass container containing the wax on a tray overnight in the freezer right-side up. In the morning, you’ll flip it upside down on the tray and the wax will fall onto the tray.

Depending on the wax, it might not have shrunk enough to fall right out. If this happens, take a butter knife or spoon and press down on the side of the wax while holding the glass jar upside down. This should cause it to fall onto the tray.

Method 3: Clean Out Wax in a Candle Jar Using the Oven

If you’re looking for something a little faster and to the point, try using the oven method. This involves heating and melting the wax in the oven.

We would like to note that this method only works for non-decorated glass candle jars. Decorations can catch on fire in the oven and should not be placed there.
To clean out a candle jar in the oven, you will need:

  • The candle jar
  • Oven mitts
  • A baking sheet
  • Aluminum foil
  • A spoon
  • Paper towels


  1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Place the candle jar on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil
  3. Put the baking sheet in the oven and let it heat for 10 – 15 minutes
  4. Use oven mitts to remove the baking sheet from the oven
  5. The wax will pool underneath the jar onto the foil
  6. Use a spoon to remove any leftover wax on the glass holder
  7. Wipe down the jar with paper towels
  8. Let the jar cool completely before reusing it

Method 4: Bust Out the Hair Dryer to Remove Candle Wax from a Glass Jar

Another easy method for removing candle wax from a glass holder is to use a hair dryer where the wax is. You don’t need to heat the jar too much that it melts the wax, but just enough to soften the wax and have it pop out. If it doesn’t pop out, use a butter knife or spoon to give it a little nudge.

Method 5: Microwave Your Candle to Clean Out Candle Wax

We’re going to preface this one as well that this method is not the one we recommend, as it only applies to undecorated glass jars. This method is also a fire hazard as certain wicks may catch fire in the microwave. While wicks are meant to be lit on fire, if the wick is already low, it can damage the glass itself.

To remove wax in the microwave:

  1. Fill the candle holder with water
  2. Set the microwave for a minute
  3. The wax will rise to the top of the water
  4. Let the jar sit for a couple of seconds before grabbing it with an oven mitt
  5. Scoop out the wax with a spoon or butterknife

Method 6: Use the Double Boiler Technique for Easy Wax Removal

If you’re feeling a little uneasy about pouring water into the candle holder itself, you can instead opt for the double boiler technique. Instead of pouring in hot water, you’ll instead place the glass container into the hot water with tongs. Or, you can place the glass jar in an empty container and pour the hot water into the container surrounding the candle holder. Whichever method you feel more comfortable with, but they do the same thing.

From there, simply pop the wax out with a butter knife or spoon and you’ll be good to go.


Can you scrape out the wax with a butter knife from a glass candle holder?

It’s not recommended to simply scrape out the wax with a butter knife, as it can scratch the glass itself. Using any of the methods above adds a layer of protection against scratching.

Do certain types of wax take longer to melt?

Yes, different waxes have different melting points. In order from easiest to melt to hardest:

  1. Soy candles
  2. Paraffin candles
  3. Coconut candles
  4. Beeswax candles
  5. Gel and Palm wax candles

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