Martha Stewart's Clever Rubber Band Trick To Open Stubborn Jars

Jars with lids that won't screw off happen at the least convenient times. Whether it's a jar of olives for your dirty martini or your favorite store-bought pasta sauce for a quick spaghetti dinner, when you want to get the lid off, you don't want to hurt your hand trying to unscrew it. Sure you can run it under hot water or gently top the edges of the lid with a knife in an effort to loosen it up. But you can also try Martha Stewart's clever rubber band trick to get the job done.

If you have a stubborn job, no problem. In a video posted to her TikTok account, the O.G. of domestic homemakers asks, "Ever try to open a jar, and you just can't get enough strength out of your hands?" After using a store-bought opener that will not work, she suggests using a couple of rubber bands. "How great!" she proclaims as the hack easily opens the jar. "Three fat rubber bands, they'll really give you that grip you need to open a stubborn jar lid."

Rubber band grip tips

Why does it work so well? The rubber band is creating traction. This is because when you stretch the band it is letting heat escape and when the band springs back into place, it gets smaller and soaks up that heat, creating friction and making the job easier for your hand. 

If you try this hack, there are a couple of pro tips to ensure your success. This trick was really designed to support those smaller, stubborn lids; however, it still works on the big jars as well — it just might take a little more muscle. Additionally, stick with the thicker ones over the thin ones, and be sure the rubber band is snuggly wrapped around the lid rim. Of course, if you can only find the thinner version of these stretchy bands, just grab more of them so you create a good grip on the lid and can easily twist it open.