31 Handy Ways To Clean With Items You Already Have In Your Pantry
Egg Yolk: Treat a Coffee Stain
How to do it: Mix an egg yolk with lukewarm water and rub into the stain. Let set for a minute or two and rinse with water. Watch that tough stain disappear!
Salt: Remove Blood Stains
How to do it: If you’re chasing little ones around all day, you might be prepared with snacks and band-aids, but you’ve probably found yourself wondering how to get stubborn blood stains out of clothes in a pinch. Easy! Just immerse the item in cold(very important) water and sprinkle it heavily with salt. Finally, scrub with bar soap and rinse.
Club Soda: Get Red Wine Out of a Carpet
How to do it: If just the thought of a spilled glass of red wine on your carpet is sending you into a tizzy, don’t panic. The carbonation in club soda works wonders as a stain lifter, and doesn’t require much manual labor on your part. If the stain is fresh, absorb extra moisture by first blotting the area with a clean, dry cloth. Next, apply a small amount of club soda to the stain and allow it to fizz for 15 to 25 minutes. Gently blot the area with a damp sponge and absorb excess liquid with a clean, dry cloth.
Toothpaste: Spruce Up Your Running Shoes
How to do it: Good old-fashioned toothpaste works wonders to whiten running shoes. Just apply a bit to any scuffmarks and rub with a damp cloth. Rinse the area gently and wipe clean. Your favorite joggers will be as good as new in no time!
Talcum Powder: Remove Grease from Leather
How to do it: Grease stains are often nightmares. Thankfully, a little talcum powder can help remove grease from expensive leather upholstery, shoes or accessories. First, blot the area with a clean, dry rag. Then, sprinkle just enough talcum powder to completely cover the grease stain. Rub the talcum powder into the stain with a clean scrub brush (a toothbrush works too) using circular motions. Let the powder sit for at least three hours, and then wipe it away with a clean, dry rag.
Shortening: Get a Lipstick Stain Out
How to do it: Dab the stain with a small amount of vegetable shortening and then wash the garment with baking soda. Cold cream and even some hairsprays work to get lipstick stains out, too!
Vinegar, Water and Dish Soap: Remove Sandwich Blunders
How to do it: If you've got kids, you know that mustard stains are the bane of a lunchtime sandwich. If that delicious condiment happens to drip somewhere it shouldn't, relax. Simply combine half a teaspoon of dish soap with a half cup of water and a capful of white vinegar. Treat the stain with the mixture, rinse and launder.
Banana Peel: Instant Shoe Polish
How to do it: If your favorite pair of shoes have become stained and dirty, grab your favorite breakfast must-have from the kitchen—a banana! Rub the inside of the peel on your shoes, allow to dry, and buff away any scuffs.
Lemon Juice: Scrub Mildew Out of Porcelain and Tile
How to do it: Mildew stains can be one of the toughest household stains to battle. To treat, douse the area thoroughly with fresh lemon juice and let it sit for 5 to 10 minutes. Scrub with a heavy-bristle brush.
Baking Soda: Remove Stubborn Grease Stains
How to do it: After cooking a feast, grease stains are the last thing you want to deal with. Pre-treat the stains with a baking soda paste (mix with a bit of water) and then sprinkle a bit more to the wash load. Grease stains are gone!
Baking Soda and Aluminum Foil: Polish Your Silver
How to do it: Tarnished silverware can ruin your fancy dinner party. To treat tarnish stains, add 1/3 to 1/2 cup of simple household baking soda to a gallon of water and bring to a boil. Line a pan with aluminum foil. The pan should be large enough to hold the items you are treating. Add your silver items to the foil-lined pan, and then pour the boiling cleaning solution into the pan making sure you cover all of your silver items. Once cool, remove the silver items, rinse with cool water, and dry with a soft cloth. Your tarnished silver will be restored to its high-shine natural state!
Mayonnaise: Treat Water Rings on Wood
How to do it: Apply mayonnaise to a damp cloth and rub gently into the rings. Once the ring is removed, buff the entire wood surface. It may sound like a big mess, but your coffee table will thank us.
Coca-Cola: Cure for Rust
How to do it: Rust removers can be expensive and dangerously strong. Try saturating an abrasive sponge with Coca-Cola and scrubbing the rust stain to treat. The phosphoric acid in the soda is what gets the job done quickly and safely.
Baking Soda and White Vinegar: Brass Tarnish Remover
How to do it: If your favorite brass pieces are looking rough around the edges, mix white vinegar and baking soda together until you’ve created a paste. Rub the paste onto the brass. Apply the mix to the entire object for a thorough cleaning, not just the tarnished area. Rub it in with a soft cloth (never use a brush), and then rinse the paste off the object and dry it with a new soft cloth. Repeat if necessary.
Cornmeal: Rug and Upholstery Cleaner
How to do it: Rather than buying a pricey dry carpet cleaner, sprinkle cornmeal on dry rugs and then vacuum. The powder will help lift dirt stains and grime. Try using club soda to shampoo the rug for extra credit!
Vinegar and Newspaper: Glass and Window Cleaner
How to do it: If you've got nasty filth on your outdoor windows, try this: fill a spray bottle with half white distilled vinegar and half water, spray on surface and wipe with a newspaper. The area will be clean and the newspaper leaves windows streak-free.
White Vinegar: Remove Discoloration on Marble Countertops
How to do it: If you've avoided any foods with deep, bleeding colors (beets!) for fear of your sparkling counter tops, fret not! To lift a stain, saturate a paper towel with white vinegar and let it set on the area to dissolve the deposits causing the discoloration. After you clean the counter top, be sure to buff the surface with wax for added protection.
Vinegar and Salt: Shine Up Copper and Brass
How to do it: Scour both copper and brass items by combining 1/2 cup vinegar and two tablespoons of ordinary table salt. Apply the mixture with a sponge and let it set for about 20 minutes. Watch the grime disappear!
Vinegar and Baking Soda: Unclog The Drain
How to do it: This may not be a stain, but itis one of the nastiest cleaning problems around! If you’ve got a clogged drain on your hands and are wary of how your old plumbing might react to harsh chemicals, try pouring 1/2 cup of baking soda into the drain and then adding another 1/2 cup of white distilled vinegar (boiling water works as well). Once the mixture finishes bubbling, rinse with warm water.
Baking Soda and Water: Clean a Dirty Oven
How to do it: Traditional oven cleaners are full of harmful, toxic chemicals, but if you have baking soda and a few minutes to kill, you can get the inside of your oven as good as new! Just mix equal parts baking soda and water to create a paste and use it to coat the inside of your dirty appliance. Let the mixture stand overnight and then scrub with a cleaning brush the following morning. Rinse with a moist cloth. All of those baked on stains will lift with ease!
Baby Powder: Remove Grease from Wallpaper
How to do it: You’ve spent a fortune on beautiful wallpaper for your kitchen, but grease stains are taking the life out of it. No problem. Apply baby powder to a clean powder puff, rub onto the stained area, and watch the spot disappear.
Vodka: Freshen Laundry
How to do it: Vodka (yes, vodka!) kills odor-causing bacteria, but doesn’t leave a scent when it dries, so you can keep your laundry fresher by simply spraying your clothing and then hanging it to dry in a well-ventilated area. We recommend spot-testing first on special items, just to be safe.
Baby Oil and Vinegar: Clean and Polish Vinyl and Linoleum Floors
How to do it: Do you have stained floors from years of kids and cooking? Mix one cup vinegar with a few drops of baby oil in a gallon of warm water to prepare a cleaning solution for vinyl and linoleum floors. When used sparingly, this mixture can work wonders.
Mineral Oil and Lemon Juice: Scour Surface Stains
How to do it: Wood surfaces are beautiful but can be sensitive to harsh chemicals. To polish your pieces safely, mix 1/2 teaspoon of mineral oil with 1/4 cup of lemon juice, spray, and use a soft cotton cloth to shine and clean surfaces. Use a clean, dry cloth to shine, polish and dry the areas.
Baking Soda and Water: Clean a Stainless Steel Sink
How to do it: Water spots and tough stains can make your sink look gross! To clean, mix four tablespoons of baking soda with a quart of water. Wet a clean cloth with the mixture, wring it out until damp and then wipe out the sink. When the sink is clean, wipe it out again with a clean, dry cloth.
Baking Soda, Salt and Water: Scrub Your Stovetop
How to do it: To nix that baked-on ring on your burner pan, mix 1/4 cup of baking soda and two tablespoons of salt with enough hot water to make a paste. Apply the paste and let it sit for 5 minutes before scrubbing clean with a cloth or brush.
Lemon Juice and Ice: Freshen a Garbage Disposal
How to do it: If your garbage disposal is smelling a little less than, well, fresh, try grinding ice with lemon juice directly in the disposal opening.
Olive Oil and Lemon Juice: Polish Wood Furniture
How to do it: Mix two parts olive oil to one part lemon juice. Rub the mixture into the surface and then let stand for several hours. Polish with a soft, dry cloth. Your favorite wood pieces will shine!
Baking Soda: Keep Odors At Bay
How to do it: An open box or small bowl of baking soda will absorb unpleasant odors anywhere. Place in the refrigerator, freezer, bathroom, garbage, or sprinkle some on your mattress!
Newspaper: Keep Food Storage Containers Odor-Free
How to do it: Plastic food containers are porous so they often retain odors and stains even after you wash them. Try storing them with crumpled black and white newspaper inside them to absorb any odors, then be sure to give them a rinse before using again.
Ice Cubes & Salt: Clean Burnt Coffee From Carafe
How to do it: Place a couple of tablespoons of salt in the bottom of empty carafe. Add a few ice cubes and swirl. The friction of the ice on the salt removes the burnt coffee with little to no effort.