8 Surprising tips to use around the home

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If you are like us and can't get enough of those do-it-yourself household tricks then you will love this list today. And you may have already heard of using baking soda as a natural toothpaste, but it might come as a surprise what else it can be used for. Or maybe you grow Basil plants at home to repel house flies and mosquitoes, but you might not know what else can be used as a natural insecticide. But keep reading and you can learn the recipe for it! 

So let's get started and find out which household products have more than one use. We bet there will be several tips and tricks here that you had no idea about.  

1. Onion And Tobacco As Insecticides

If you are particularly sensitive to the loads of chemicals in pesticides and insecticides, or are just against using them in your garden, then we have a couple of recipes you will love. The best part is that you can find all ingredients in your kitchen, or close at hand.

First option: Take four onions, 2 cloves of garlic, 2 tablespoons of cayenne pepper and one liter of water. In another bowl dilute two tablespoons of soap powder in 7.5 liters (253.605 oz) of water and blend together with the first lot of ingredients. Pour the mixture into empty spray bottles and use on your plants to keep insects at bay.

Second option: Boil a handful of tobacco in a liter (33.814 oz) of water. After letting it cool, pour it over your plants and voila! Insects will steer clear. 

2. Remove Stains With Baking Soda

Not just an ingredient to be used in baking, bicarbonate of soda is a versatile cleaning agent. And unlike most cleaning products, it is safe to use as much as you want, and also okay to wash down the drain. It can eliminate odors, clean kitchen surfaces, be used as a natural toothpaste, and even heal small wounds. 

Removing Fat: By adding a couple of tablespoons of baking soda to your normal dish washing routine, it will remove stubborn grease and fat.  

Scrub Surfaces: Dissolve half a cup of baking soda in a bucket full of warm water and use that to wash your tiles or unwaxed floors with. 

Spot Cleaning: Or if you have marks on walls or furniture, then take a bit of baking soda on a damp sponge and rub the spot out lightly.  

3. Coffee Beans Against Odours

Using coffee beans in the right way can quickly get rid of any unwanted odours. If your kitchen is caked in the smell of deep fried oil or if there are many mornings worth of bacon smell hanging around, then roast some coffee beans in a pan on your stove top. This will neutralise those odours, no problem! 

Alternatively you can grind coffee beans and leave small amounts in bowls around the room. The grinds will soak up the odours. 

And an extra tip for the ladies: for an inexpensive, completely natural exfoliator, collect old coffee grinds and use in the shower to scrub off that dead layer of skin. Who would've thought?! 

4. Toothpaste: Not Just For Mouths

Toothpaste not only removes the stains from our teeth, but also from walls and floors. This is a handy tip for all parents who constantly fight the coloured pencil marks on the walls in kid's bedrooms. So, take a tube of toothpaste, apply a pea sized dollop onto a damp sponge and rub that stain right off the wall. As easy as 1-2-3!

If you love this tip, check out this guide to choosing the best furniture for kid's bedrooms.

5. The Power of Coca Cola

Coca Cola has not always had a positive reputation. If you have come to read this article, you are probably aware of the corrosive power the fizzy soft drink has on stomachs. But that power can also work against the fat and grease on pots and pans too. 

Simply soak your dishes in Coca Cola for a few minutes, then with a scrubbing brush and water, rinse it off and there should be no more spots or stains. It's powerful stuff! 

(Side note: how great is this rustic kitchen? We love the copper and exposed brick combo designed by the great kitchen planners GAMAHOGAR).

6. Vodka To Keep Flowers Fresh

This one might well surprise you: a few drops of vodka can be sprayed onto flowers to stop them from wilting as quickly. The vodka halts ethylene production, which is the thing that ages flowers. You can also spray vodka onto clothes to soak up light odors like cigarette smoke or take away any stale smell. 

Another tip for flowers: if you add a couple of teaspoons to their vase it will give them a bit of added energy, making them last longer.  

7. Teabags In Footwear

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Changing your habit of throwing away coffee grinds isn't the only thing you should think about. After you have made that cup of tea, keep the teabag! Collect a few of them and once they are dried, place them in your shoes. They will soak up unpleasant odours, mould and any mildew. 

So whenever you make a hot drink, don't throw the waste away, it can all be reused!  

8. Get It Lemony Fresh

Lemon is also another common household ingredient that isn't just for consuming. For many years already, the cleaning power of lemon has been no secret, but we've added it to the list anyway, as a reminder. A strong, and natural weapon to fight spot and stains, you can rub it on surfaces to clean any unwanted bits away. 

Rub it on your kitchen table and leave it overnight. When you wipe it down the next morning, it should come up like brand new.

Do you have your own special household trick to share? Tell us below! 

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