Have you ever felt like you've been doing things all wrong? Don't sweat it; we've all been there – in fact, you might be surprised to learn that some everyday items you've been using are not quite as straightforward as they seem.
Yes, even the most common objects can be used in ways you've never thought of before. Intriguing, right? We've crafted a list of 12 items you've probably been using wrong for far too long.
Stick around and prepare to have your mind blown! You'll wonder how you ever lived without these simple yet life-changing tricks. Ready to dive in? Let's get started!
1. Aluminum Foil
Most people use aluminum foil only for wrapping leftovers or baking. But this versatile product can do so much more – for instance, it's a great tool to sharpen scissors.
All you need to do is fold a sheet of aluminum foil several times and cut through it with dull scissors. This will help to sharpen the blades. Also, you can line your pans with foil for easy cleanup after cooking – just remember to recycle the foil after use!
Many of us apply a long strip of toothpaste along the entire length of the brush. However, dentists recommend using only a pea-sized amount. This smaller quantity is enough to clean your teeth effectively without wasting product.
Plus, overuse of toothpaste can lead to dental issues like fluorosis. Toothpaste can also be used to clean and shine jewelry. Just apply a small amount, gently scrub with a soft cloth, rinse, and dry. Brilliant!
Have you ever noticed the little “L” and “R” on your earphones? They're not just for show. “L” stands for the left ear and “R” for the right – using them correctly can enhance your listening experience, as some songs are mixed differently for each ear.
Also, wrapping earphones around your phone can damage the wires. Instead, make a loose loop and store them in a case – you'll avoid tangles and extend their life.
4. Hair Conditioner
Most people apply conditioner all over their hair, starting from the roots. But this can make your hair greasy. The correct way is to start from the mid-lengths and work your way down to the ends. This part of your hair is older and drier and needs more conditioning.
Also, conditioner can be used as a shaving cream substitute. It's moisturizing, making for a smooth shave, and it's likely already in your shower!
5. Coffee Filters
Most people use coffee filters for, well, filtering coffee. But they're handy for other things, too! For instance, they're great for cleaning glass and mirrors, leaving no lint or streaks behind.
Also, did you know you should rinse your coffee filter with hot water before brewing? It removes any paper taste and helps the coffee grounds to stick to the filter. This results in a smoother, tastier cup of joe.
6. Dish Soap
We often squirt a large amount of dish soap directly onto dishes, but that's wasteful. Instead, fill a bowl with warm water and add a few drops of soap. This will create enough soapy water to clean your dishes effectively.
Plus, dish soap can clean more than dishes! It's excellent for removing grease stains from clothes – just apply a small amount to the stain, rub gently, then rinse and launder as usual.
7. Peanut Butter Jar
Have you ever noticed how the oil in a new peanut butter jar is all at the top? There's a simple fix. Store the jar upside down, and the oil will distribute evenly.
When you open it, please give it a good stir, and you're good to go. Also, why not make overnight oats in it before tossing an almost empty jar? The oats will absorb the remaining peanut butter, giving you a delicious, zero-waste breakfast.
8. Ketchup Bottles
It's not very common for people to use ketchup bottles correctly. We tend to tap or shake it, which only causes a mess. Instead, store the bottle with the cap at the bottom, and the ketchup will flow smoothly without any effort.
This makes it easier to portion out the perfect ketchup without worrying about making a mess. Also, storing it upside down helps get every last drop out of the bottle!
9. Soda Cans
Soda cans? What can possibly be wrong with them? Well, most people don't realize that the tab on top of the can is there for a reason. It's meant to be rotated and used as a straw holder! This keeps your straw from floating out of place or getting lost in the drink.
Also, did you know that you can use soda cans to make DIY bird feeders? Cut a hole near the bottom, fill it with birdseed, and hang it up. It's a fun project for kids and a great way to repurpose empty cans.
10. Bobby Pins
Most of us use bobby pins with the flat side up, but guess what? That's upside down! The wavy side should face down for a better grip on your hair. And before you put them away, slide them onto a piece of paper or fabric.
This keeps them organized and prevents rust. Remember, bobby pins aren't just for hair – they can also work as a quick fix for a zipper that won't stay up.
11. Clothes Hangers
Have you ever battled with clothes falling off hangers? The solution is simple – hang the garment with the hanger hook facing outwards. After wearing it once, flip the hanger to face inward. This way, you'll know what you've worn recently, making wardrobe decisions easier.
Also, save those little plastic clips on new hangers. They're great for keeping pairs of socks together in the wash – no more single-sock mystery!
12. Phone Chargers
Do you keep your phone charging overnight? Many of us do, but this is one of the worst things you can do for your phone's battery life. Once fully charged, it needs to be unplugged, or the continuous charging can damage the battery.
Keeping track of your phone's battery percentage and unplugging it once it's charged can help prolong its lifespan.
Everyday Items With Their Full Potential
So there you have it! Are you surprised yet? These are just a few examples of everyday items we may not use to their full potential. Small changes like these can make a big difference in our daily lives, whether it's saving time, money, or the environment. So next time you reach for one of these everyday household items, remember these tips and tricks to use them more efficiently.
16 Best Black Friday Deals That You Need to Take Advantage of
Get ready, bargain hunters! Black Friday is almost here, and it's the perfect time for some serious shopping. We've handpicked 16 of the best deals you don't want to miss. These aren't just your run-of-the-mill discounts but real steals that will make your wallet happy.
These 12 Items Are Cheaper at Costco Than Anywhere Else
Are you looking for great deals on your favorite items? Look no further! Costco is known for its incredible prices and bulk shopping experience. No one wants to overpay for an item, and luckily, Costco has some of the best prices around – from bulk meats to electronics and more. In this article, we have gathered a list of 12 items that are cheaper at Costco than anywhere else.
Top 16 Black Friday Deals at Costco To Take Advantage Of
Costco has been known for great deals on items like the $1.50 Hot dog and drink combo, the Rotisserie Chicken, and many of the Kirkland Brand Coffee. With a membership, you, too, can take advantage of some of the deals. During this week, Costco will have many Black Friday deals that can make your Christmas and Thanksgiving a great holiday.
I’m Steve. I’m an English Teacher, traveler, and an avid outdoorsman. If you’d like to comment, ask a question, or simply say hi, leave me a message here, on Twitter (@thefrugalexpat1). Many of my posts have been written to help those in their journey to financial independence. I am on my journey, and as I learn more I hope to share more. And as always, thanks for reading The Frugal Expat.