Make Your Own: Waterproof Labels

Waterproof labels

 Waterproof Labels

A few weeks ago I shared a recipe for making your own bath paints.  And now I am sharing the how-to for the labels I used.

I know there is no need to  label your kids’ bath paints as it will be quite obvious which colour is which.  At least it will be if you use see-through jars…But I couldn’t resist labelling the paints.  Having done so, though, I realized that the labels would get trashed after half a bath time.  The answer?  Waterproof labels!

You could use this technique for any number of labelling projects – provided that the item you are labelling is made from glass…

 

You will need:

  • Printed labels
  • Tacky Glue
  • Paraffin wax OR a white crayon
  • Paper towel
  • Hairdryer

 

Instructions

To get started, clean your jars and spray paint the lids – if you’re going to go to the trouble of labelling them, you might as well pull a Cinderella on the lids.

Design and print out your labels.

Waterproof labels

Stick the labels to your jars using cheap and cheerful home made tacky glue (I swear by  this stuff!!!).

Waterproof labels

When your labels are firmly attached, paint over them with melted paraffin wax OR draw all over their surface with a white crayon.

Waterproof labels

It is obvious that the crayon is the more convenient option, so why even include the instructions for the paraffin wax?  Because:  I would never melt paraffin wax JUST for waterproofing labels (unless I am doing a million labels), but I had some already melted from making the paper drinking straws and I did not have any white crayons to hand.

Next you’ll want to wrap a paper towel around one of the jars.

Waterproof labels

Blow on it with a hair dryer until the wax/crayon starts melting.  The excess wax will be absorbed by the paper towel.  You will be able to see this happening as the wax will seep into the paper towel, making it translucent.  Your label will also become translucent.  Make sure that it is uniformly translucent.  Little “dry” spots will mean that the wax hasn’t been absorbed properly and those areas won’t be waterproof.

Waterproof labels

When you think the wax is sufficiently melted, wipe the label with the paper towel and set aside.  Repeat with all the jars.

Waterproof labels

And there you have it.  Waterproof labels in minutes.

Comments

  1. Lauren says

    Does this actually work? I wanted to make some waterproof labels for body scrubs that will be in the shower. Would it work with sticker paper?

    • Dedri Uys says

      Lauren, I have never actually left a bottle with a label standing in the shower (as in under constant running water), but my labels stayed on (and pretty) through numerous splashes. They also stayed nice in the fridge (condensation and all).

    • Dedri Uys says

      Rena, you can use any glue that works on the item that you wish to stick your labels on. Elmers should work…

  2. says

    Thanks for this very clever idea. in keeping with my “no-waste Christmas” theme I made all my Christmas presents this year, and upcycled all the glass jars I collected. These labels worked really well and were completely waterproof. I actually couldn’t find any paraffin wax, nor could I find any single white crayons (and I didn’t want to buy a whole pack in keeping with the no waste Christmas theme), so instead I tried candles. Just super cheap ones and they worked a treat :)

    • Dedri Uys says

      Candles work wonderfully. I am surprised that I didn’t mention that in the post.

      I had a look at your post and it is great.

      Thank you!

      Dedri

  3. Shera says

    Would this method hold up if the bottles are refrigerated??? My labels keep coming off my glass bottles after being refrigerated. Would this seal them enough so that the humidity of the bottle itself wont affect them?

    • Dedri Uys says

      Hi Shera. That is actually a very good question. I am going to have to do some experimenting before I answer definitively. The waterproofing will work on refrigerated bottles, but whether or not the labels will come off will depend largely on which glue you use to attach the labels to the bottles.

  4. Caroline says

    Thanks, I was making some cool video game inspired jars (long story) and i REALLY wanted to make the labels waterproof, so I just wanna say thanks, your ideas saved my crafts projects :)

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