Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Repurposing bottles

For a few months now, I've been hoarding, er, recycling some of my old bottles from dressings and things I'm hoping to never have to buy again.  My thinking was...well, if I'm going to be making my own stuff, I'll need some bottles to use to store the stuff in, right?  It's not in my budget right now to go out and purchase any, so this just came about from necessity.  Or, maybe I'm just getting old and weird, lol! 

I started out by putting the bottles in the dishwasher, hoping the super hot water would get them totally clean and remove the label.  Well, it got them clean, but didn't remove the labels.  Then I got to thinking....hmmmm, that's probably not too good for the old dishwasher, lol.
So, I ended up tossing them in a sink full of scorching hot water with some dish soap.  I let them soak for an hour or so.
I was then able to peel the majority of the label off by rubbing my thumb across it.
But I was still left with the gummy little film from the adhesive.  Now, I know I could have used some GooGone if I had any, but I didn't.  Besides, I was trying to use as little chemicals as possible, especially since I plan on storing food and food ingredients in these.* 
So, thinking that Baby Oil is pretty mild, I rubbed some of that on the gummy stuff with a piece of cotton.  It took a little rubbing in a circular motion, but it worked!
I then washed my bottles by hand again, being sure not to submerge the opening, lest any of the baby oil get inside.  Look, sparkling clean!  You know, looking back, I'm wondering if I could have used all natural coconut oil!  Hmmmmm, maybe next time.
Then I took my lovely collection of containers and let them dry on a paper towel.This is a good way to annoy your husband...a favorite, unintentional pastime of mine!
Here's what I do with the empty/cleaned seltzer water bottles. I fill them with water and use them to take to games/practices, etc. I do NOT allow people to drink straight from these bottles though.  I use them to refill our drink cups/sports bottles, etc...I'm sure I'll catch holy hell from someone, but when I get home (if we haven't been anywhere dirty), I'll just fill it back up and put it in the fridge.  If we have been somewhere dirty (football, etc...) I'll bring it home and hand wash it, then refill.
*As you can see in my pictures, I have repurposed some plastic bottles and containers.  I am going to be slowly phasing these out as I'm sure they probably all contain BPA**.  My intent is to move toward glass storage as my budget will allow.   I'm not a tree-hugger, recycling fiend or have an irrational fear of all things chemical, lol.  I'm just becoming painfully aware of the damaging affects my poor diet  and everyday 'normal' items have had on my health over the years and I'm trying to remedy that.

**BPA is controversial because it exerts weak, but detectable, hormone-like properties, raising concerns about its presence in consumer products and foods contained in such products.  A 2010 report from the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) raised further concerns regarding exposure of fetuses, infants, and young children.In September 2010, Canada became the first country to declare BPA a toxic substance. In the European Union and Canada, BPA use is banned in baby bottles.


  1. Who would have thought baby oil would take off that glue, good information to know, tfs.

  2. Hi there! I just found your blog (and Im loving it, btw) because I was searching for a homemade ranch dressing and I found your not from a packet tastes like ranch dressing recipe and I cant wait to try it. I also wanted to say that coconut oil totally works for removing labels from bottles. I, too, am a bottle/jar hoarder!

    1. Awwwww, thanks, Jenn! So glad to hear I'm not alone in this strange habit, LOL! BTW, I just tried it with coconut oil today and you are correct! Worked like a charm! Thanks!