Strange... Because I often just tear the film instead of trying to peel off tape in the dark.
I rarely have problems feeding film onto plastic reels.

Further, I always take plastic reels apart when I'm done developing.
It's easier to get the film out and you have better access for cleaning. I lay the two halves of the reels on the bottom of the sink and use the hose from the faucet to "power wash" them with hot water.
Cleaned this way, immediately after use, I never have problems with reels getting sticky and dirty.