How to Open a Beer Bottle Without an Opener
Sometimes you need a beer. Sadly, you don’t always have a bottle opener handy. If you’re ever stuck up that creek without the right tool, then you need some alternative methods. We’re going to get thorough and teach you every way we’ve found to open a beer bottle without an opener. Some are simple. Some you’ve seen. Others will expand the way you view the world.
As your reading the list, we need you to remember one disclaimer. Beer bottle caps are rigid. They can scuff, scratch or otherwise damage anything you use to pry them off. No matter what you see on the list, don’t use something to open a beer unless you’re ok with it losing a fight against the bottle cap. Got it? Let’s have a little fun.
One more thing. It is perfectly acceptable to drink a beer (or more) while reading this list. Since we vetted these methods, you can bet that some suds were consumed while we wrote them all down.
We’re going to start this list with one of the easier and more reliable methods. A lot of guys carry a utility knife. There are several ways to do this, but they all basically boil down to the same technique. You’re going to use your hand as the fulcrum and the knife as a lever to pry the cap off. This basic technique will apply to many of the tools in the rest of the list, so pay attention.
You start by holding the beer in your non-dominant hand. You want your index finger close to the cap. You’re going to take the end of the knife (it’s still folded closed) and wedge it between your finger and the lip of the cap. Then you’re going to pry the lid off.
There’s an extra trick to the technique that helps a lot. Instead of trying to pull the cap straight off, you want to use the lever to bend the edge of the cap away from the bottle. Once it bends a little, it’ll come free. If you apply enough pressure, it’ll fly off and be a little fun.
If you have a polished or wood handle that might be damaged by the bottle cap, you can use the back end of the blade. Just be smart, and don’t grip the blade to try this. Most pocket knives can use the blade while folded closed. If yours can’t, don’t cut yourself. Beer doesn’t taste better with blood.
There’s a good chance you’ve seen someone do this before. If you carry a lighter instead of a knife (or both), it’s the same technique. It’s probably easier to practice and learn with the lighter since you can get a cheap one that you don’t mind destroying.
You can also use a Zippo, but it’s a little different. The metal shell is rounded and terrible for prying bottle caps. Instead, take the insert out and use the edge on the bottom. It’s actually incredibly easy and better than traditional lighters.
Scissors do not use the same method as lighters and knives. In fact, that would be an easy way to lose a finger. Instead, you’re going to open the scissors and then clamp them against the neck of the bottle, right below the cap. Hold the bottle firmly (near the base so your hand isn’t at risk) and pull the handles of the scissors down. They’ll lever against the glass of the bottle and pull the cap off. Easy peasy.
Any Desk, Counter or Table
This is possibly the simplest method in existence. It’s even easier than using an actual bottle opener. You put the edge of the cap on the edge of the table (or counter or whatever). Hold the bottle firmly with one hand. With the other hand, hit the top of the cap nice and hard. Using the heel of your hand will probably hurt less than using a knuckle or any soft parts. The cap will fly right off.
There is a drawback to this method. You’re essentially slapping the cap off of the bottle. It’s going to cause some foaming, so be ready for a mess. Still, it’s an extremely reliable way to get to your beer.
This method is similar to the desk method, but it’s a little easier and cleaner. In a lot of door frames, you can wedge the cap between the cuts of wood. In some cases, you can even get the cap inside the latch. Regardless, you have to hold the bottle sideways for this. All you do is use the frame (or latch plate) to lever the cap off. It’s less messy than the table method (no slapping is necessary), but holding the beer sideways will give you a little bit of fizz. Act accordingly.
The Twisting Cloth
This is a truly challenging method, but with patience, it does work. You’re going to wrap a cloth around the cap (in order to grip it without tearing your hand). Twist the cap counterclockwise. This will cause it to loosen, and then you can start prying it off. It’s a rinse and repeat of twisting and trying to pry. Eventually, you’ll get it.
You might find it a little more fun to do the same method with a rubber band. You twist the rubber band over the cap enough times that it holds firmly. Then you can twist and pry without the cap biting into you.
This is ultimately the same technique as the knife method. Most keys can lever off the cap, but it might take a couple of tries. The key has less contact point to pry the cap, and keys are known to bend. Because of that, you don’t want to use your house or car key. This is doubly true for chipped car keys, and key fabs are completely off limits. Those things are expensive.
If you want to reduce the risk of bending the key, try gently prying the cap away from the bottle in a few spots before you go for the finishing blow. It can help a lot.
You not have ever realized this before, but your belt buckle is really just a bottle opener that you wear. It works exactly the same way as a dedicated bottle opener, so you shouldn’t need any instructions. Because you’re likely to remember and try this for the first time when you’re already drunk, we’re going to give you two disclaimers.
First, this can scuff the buckle, so don’t try this with your custom alligator belt. Use the Walmart special instead. Second, don’t do this while you’re wearing the belt. Take it off first. It’s way easier. And, if you do it right, it’s way sexier too (you sober guys aren’t going to fall for that, but we had to try).
Before you try this, remember the important part. This is intended for hard metal rings. A gold or silver ring is soft, and it’s going to take damage from the bottle cap. It’s not worth it.
With that out of the way, the ring method is easy. You’re going to grip under the bottle cap with the ring (while you’re wearing it). The rest of your finger or hand is going to be over the top of the cap. Keep your finger stiff, and rotate your wrist up. It’ll pry the cap off with surprising ease. The trick to this technique is to not let the ring slip. Once you get it, you’ll never struggle with a bottle cap again.
This is one of the best methods around, because you’re not some weirdo who buys beer one bottle at a time. Until you’re on the last one, there’s another bottle handy, and it works great. Hold the extra bottle upside down. Hook the caps against each other. Then, use the extra bottle as a lever. Again, you’ll have to get used to it to keep the caps from slipping before they open, but once you get it, you’ll have an open bottle. You don’t have to worry about both bottles opening, either. Physics is on your side, and only one comes free each time, guaranteed.
When you’re drunk enough, you might try to use an open bottle to the same effect. In the vast majority of cases, the glass lips are too round to get a good hook, and it won’t work.
This goes back to the knife method. With your finger as a brace, you can use a spoon, fork or butter knife to get to that sweet nectar. Just remember that bottle caps are stiff and it’s super easy to bend your silverware in this process. As long as you don’t care about that, get to it.
You can also reduce any silverware bending by working the cap loose at multiple points before you apply a big force. What you learn from one method should be easy to apply to the next.
No one carries cash anymore, but this is one of the better party trick methods to opening a beer. You fold the bill as many times as you can in one directly. It should be pretty stiff and thick. Then, fold it in half the other direction. That ought to be enough. From here, you can use the knife method and get the cap off.
It’s worth noting that this works with any paper, not just money. With enough folds, paper gets pretty tough, and that makes for a useful bottle opener.
Your Phone Charger
Your charger has these two prongs that go into the wall. It turns out that they’re great for prying a cap off. Keep in mind that this can bend the prongs, so learn from the key method and loosen things a bit before you try the final blow.
Also, make sure you clean the charger and dry it before you use it again. Beer does not belong in electrical outlets. Please, please just take our word on this one.
The Actual Smartphone
Smartphone companies are all bragging about how tough and durable their stuff is, right? If they can’t even open a beer bottle, then what’s the point of having the phone. You don’t need a special app. Instead, use that knife method with your phone as the tool of choice. And, in all seriousness, it’s your own fault if you do this and damage your phone.
A Beer Can
Any drink can works, but come on. You should use beer to open beer. It seems right. This method is just like using another beer bottle, but you’re using the thin lip of the aluminum can instead. Hold it upside down, fit the lip under the cap, and use the can to lever the cap free. This method works way better with a full can than an empty one, but you already figured that out, didn’t you?
A Woman’s Heel
High-heeled shoes are amazing. Just lever the cap against the end of the heel. This can be done with the shoe off, but it’s way sexier to do it with the shoe on. Just be sure to practice thoroughly before you try to use this to get laid. Nothing turns sexy into pathetic like a failed attempt to do something cool.
You’re not going to believe this is serious at first. It’s super dangerous, so we can’t recommend it, but it is real. And, to no one’s surprise, it was a group of Russians who invented the technique. Here’s how it works.
Set the bottle on the ground. Check the rotation of the chain. You want the chain to be moving upwards when it comes into contact with the bottle (well, not you, because you aren’t going to do something so stupid, right?). With the chain spinning, move the saw so that it barely clips the edge of the cap. The cap will pop right off, and the beer will be left intact.
Just Break the Damn Thing
Desperate times call for desperate measures. We were going to talk about the machete method, but it’s really just using a machete to break off the top of the bottle. You don’t need a special tool for that. Everywhere on earth has a ground. Just break the top of the bottle and pour the beer into a cup or a glass. Try not to drink any shards, but if you have to, the beer is what really matters here, right? (Do we need a disclaimer? Do you understand how jokes work?)
Be a Man
Real men don’t need tools; they use their bare hands. You’re soft, so you’ll have to train for a while. Work on strength exercises. You’ll also need to toughen your skin. So, like the kung fu warriors get tough by kicking bamboo, you’re going to get tough by rubbing your hands against tree bark. After enough training, you should be able to completely strip an oak with just your grip. At that point, you’ll be ready to try a beer bottle. Congratulations on becoming a real man.
Eat It Whole
We’ve really been beating around the bush this whole time. Opening the bottle is the wrong approach in the first place. If they didn’t want you to enjoy the glass, why did they include it with the beer? Did you ever think about that? Just like the true intellects eat oranges without peeling them, you’re going to enjoy your beer without removing that delicious glass skin. Once you do, you’ll be able to look down on all of the lesser men who can’t handle a little glass in their system. This is the one, true way to drink beer. And, if you come up against a keg, well, tough luck. Even we aren’t men enough to eat those whole.
If, after all of this, you still can’t get to your beer, you really don’t deserve it. Either take up hard liquor (which is always easy to open), or stick to water. Beer is for those who earn it, and the miniscule amount of industriousness necessary to open a pry-off cap is a small bar to set. Beer is earned, so use your newfound knowledge and go earn it.
Until next time, have fun, enjoy a cold one, and remember the most important thing of all. Always drink responsibly, and never let a good time be an excuse for a bad ending.