Water bottles with labels removed

How to Remove Labels from Water, Wine & Beer Bottles

At BYB we usually recommend removing the existing labels from bottles before adding a custom label. Because after all, you spend money on custom labels to get a great looking result, not a mediocre one. We’ve been doing this custom label thing for over a decade now and here are some tips on how to remove labels from different kinds of bottles and get the best outcome.

How to remove labels from bottles including water bottles, beer bottles and wine bottles.


  1. For paper water bottle labels simply find the end of the label and peel back. You’ll see only a small amount of glue holding the ends together and no glue on the rest of the label. It’s a fairly quick process to remove the labels and not as daunting as you might think.
  2. For synthetic or shrink labels either find a seam or lift the label edge with a snap-off utility knife like this one and cut the label being careful not to pierce the bottle, then peel it off. Most of the time you will only find glue on the label ends and not on the bottle.
  3. If there is a small amount of glue left on the bottle don’t stress about it. Our labels are thick and made from a synthetic material that will cover it. Just make sure the label you purchase is wider than the area of the glue residue. Caution: Do not use solvents on plastic bottles. It will fog the plastic and may cause it to melt.

Find the label ends and peel off the label. It’s fast and easy too.

How to remove water bottle labels


  1. Fill your kitchen sink with lukewarm (not hot) sudsy water to above the top level of the label. Let the bottle soak for an hour. It can sometimes help to score the label very lightly in a diagonal pattern.
  2. After it has soaked peel back a corner to determine what it will take to get the label off.
  3. If the label is coming up easily and comes off in one piece then take a scrubber sponge to the bottle to remove any remaining glue residue.
  4. If the label comes off in pieces and leaves remnants then you may need to use a plastic scraper to scrape the pieces off with the help of Goo Gone or Goof Off.
  5. If the label is really stuck and soaking doesn’t work. Pull the bottle out of the water and let the label dry.
  6. Next, Spray Goo Gone or Goof Off on the surface of the label. Do this in the empty sink and let the label sit for as long as recommended on the product instructions. Then take the plastic scraper and scrape away the label. Apply more Goo Gone or Goof Off on the remaining residue and let it sit for a few more minutes. Then scrape away any left over stickiness.
  7. Finally, make sure you wash the bottle in lukewarm soapy water and dry completely before applying the custom label. If there is any glue remover left on the bottle you run the risk of the new label not sticking or having the color compromised. The label can withstand ice, water and even some soaps, but solvents will ruin it.

We recommend using one of these products to remove label glue from wine and beer bottles.

Products to help remove labels from bottlesHere are some wine bottles with new custom labels on them. We removed the existing labels following the steps we shared with you.

Wine bottles with old labels removed

These are the bottles we removed labels from in the photo at the beginning of the post, but with new custom labels.

Bottles with custom labels added after we removed the old labels

For any questions on how to make custom water bottle labels, wine labels or beer labels email us at [email protected] or visit our website to live chat with one of our helpful staff weekdays Monday through Friday from 9 am to 4 pm Pacific time.
Create your own mini wine labels






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