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How to Remove Prints from a Plastic Water Bottle

How to Remove Prints from a Plastic Water Bottle

Bottle Screen Printing- How Are Things Printed On Bottles?

Bottle screen printing is also known as silk screening – and simply means applying ink through a screen directly on to plastic packaging. This means that there is no extra label glued to the package.

The process of bottle screen printing begins when the printer applies a mesh pattern to a preferred label. The ink is then pumped through the mesh openings to print the label image.

Bottle screen printing is a cost-effective option if you only need limited colors, and intend on mid to long-run productions. Many manufacturers use bottle screen printing due to its durability, versatility, tactility, and attractiveness of the end product.

When it comes to mountain biking water bottles, many of these use screen printing rather than labels.

How to Remove Prints from a Plastic Water Bottle

If you do not particularly fancy the design on your water bottle, you could remove it for a plain look. Here are some ways you could do so.

Plastic Bottle with Painted Labels Using Acetone

Materials needed: shallow dish, nail polish remover with acetone, rubber gloves, scrubbing pads, water

  1. Fill a shallow dish with nail polish remover that contains acetone. Lay the bottle label-down so it can soak in the acetone.
  2. Allow the label to soak until the paint starts to loosen.
  3. Wearing gloves, use a scrubbing pad to scrape the paint off
  4. Rinse the bottle with clean water.

Here is a video showing the process using a nail polish remover containing acetone (Credit to Homeketeers):

Plastic Bottle with Screen-printed Label Using a Stronger Acidic Remover

Material needed: bucket, rubber gloves, scrubbing pads, Star San (an acidic cleaner available primarily from brewery supply companies)

  1. Fill a bucket bottle-high with Star San
  2. Let the bottle soak in the liquid for at least 24 hours.
  3. Wearing gloves, use a scrubbing pad to scrape the label off
  4. Rinse the bottle thoroughly with clean water

How to Remove Logo from Stainless Steel Water Bottle

Stainless-steel Bottle with Plastic Label Using Razor Blades

Materials needed: razor blades, scouring pads

  1. Hold your blade from the edge at an angle of about 30 degrees
  2. Scrape away the plastic with a steady motion. Take your time and scrape cleanly, rather than scraping across the entire surface
  3. Use a scouring pad to clean and finish the surface. Since it is stainless steel, you cannot damage the material with a scouring pad
  4. Rinse with clean water

Stainless-steel Bottle Using Steel Wool and Paint Stripper

Materials Needed: aerosol paint stripper, gloves, steel wool, stainless steel polish, terrycloth towel.

Warning: Paint stripper may cause chemical burns. Avoid contact with your body.

  1. Spray the logo with aerosol paint stripper and let it sit according to your label’s directions
  2. Wearing gloves, use the steel wool to scrape the label from the can
  3. Apply a stainless steel polish to the ghost of the label left on the bottle and let sit according to your label’s direction
  4. Rub with a terrycloth towel and rinse with clean water

This video shows how to remove the paint on a stainless steel water bottle, using paint stripper (credit to Camping NQ):


As always, make sure to take all safety precautions when working with sharp tools and toxic chemicals. If you wish to save the hassle of removing a bottle design, you could always purchase a new bottle designed for mountain biking and outdoor activities.