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Thursday, June 13, 2024

15 Surprising Household Ingredients You Can Actually Use for Cleaning



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Good news: chances are extremely high that you already possess just about every item on this list of surprising household ingredients you might not realize you can actually use for cleaning. In fact, you might not need to make an extra trip to the store for cleaning products again. Simply make your way through our list of common household items that will straight up shock you in their multi-tasking abilities. There's no need to ever again waste hard-earned cash on chemicals, or harsh cleaning agents. Simply stock your cleaning arsenal with the all-natural, stain-fighting items on this list.

Image Credit: George Manolis / EyeEm/EyeEm/GettyImages Mouthwash used to clean four ways 2 of 16


While mouthwash is more typically used to freshen breath and kill bacteria and germs present in our mouths, it surprisingly has an impressive history of disinfecting that goes well beyond oral hygiene. In fact, Listerine was originally created and used in the nineteenth century as a surgical antiseptic (and floor cleaner). Our tutorial will show you how to use the antibacterial properties and minty freshness of mouthwash to effectively clean all kinds of problem areas, like your washing machine, toilets, stinky sink drains and even how to extend the life of your fresh cut flowers.

Image Credit: Jessica Kielman Writing on the Whiteboard in her Elementary Class 3 of 16


Toothpaste is a cleaning MVP, working to polish everything from piano keys to chrome. Any teacher can tell you that over time the debris from whiteboard erasers will build up to create smudges and smears that linger. Surprisingly, toothpaste works to clean a dirty whiteboard without the use of any harsh chemicals.

Image Credit: SolStock/E+/GettyImages Shaving cream applied to red wine stain on white carpet 4 of 16

Shaving Cream

Shaving cream is hands down the best way to remove any oil-based stain from fabric and will even remove marks from delicate materials like suede. There might be no better use for the stuff than replacing every store bought carpet stain remover that you've ever tried (and wasted hard-earned cash on). You'll never need to spend a ton of money on trial and error in order to remove carpet stains again thanks to this trick.

Image Credit: Jessica Kielman Close-Up Of Lemon Slice On Table 5 of 16


Not only does lemon juice work as an all-natural stain remover for clothing, cups, grout and even plastic containers, it also acts as a bleaching or whitening agent that removes stain-causing substances as it disinfects. And it doesn't end there: lemons will also remove grease and grime from kitchen and bathroom faucets and fixtures. Oh, and when mixed with salt, this multipurpose fruit makes an efficient scouring paste perfect for copper pots and pans. Our handy tutorial will show you how to naturally clean and de-stink your microwave using lemons.

Image Credit: Mathias Darmell / EyeEm/EyeEm/GettyImages Olive oil applied to clean towel to polish stainless steel 6 of 16

Olive Oil

Olive oil simply cannot be beat when it comes to natural conditioning and cleaning, and it works on everything from removing gum from hair to polishing wood furniture. Try our simple and chemical-free solution that will have your stainless steel kitchen appliances polished in no time, using none other than olive oil for a gleaming result.

Image Credit: Miaira Jennings Dryer sheets can be used to clean baked-on grime 7 of 16

Dryer Sheets

Dryer sheets are another MacGyver-level tool to always have on hand around the house because these babies can do it all. This trick will show you how to use dryer sheets to rescue even the most derelict, sad-looking sheet pans and restore them to like-new condition in no time (well, about 2-3 hours).

Image Credit: Jessica Kielman Close-Up Of Drink Pouring In Drinking Glass Against Black Background 8 of 16

Dark Soda

No need to shell out big bucks for pricey commode cleaners. Any kind of dark soda or cola can be poured directly into toilets to get rid of that nasty toilet bowl ring. No, really. The mild acidity present in cola can actually save you a lot of time (and money).

Image Credit: Pornchai Jaito / EyeEm/EyeEm/GettyImages Close-Up Of Ice Cubes On Table Against White Background 9 of 16


Who knew something as simple as ice could be your partner in crime when it comes to cleaning your house with ease. Not only could our non-toxic weekly or bi-weekly ice cleaning method keep your smelly drain fresh and free of odors, turns out a few ice cubes could also save you a lot of time ironing this summer. Now that's a win-win.

Image Credit: Prakasit Khuansuwan / EyeEm/EyeEm/GettyImages Close-Up Of Salt in Bowl on Marble 10 of 16


Salt and lemon are all you need to make copper shine like new, and here are 20 other ways you can clean with plain ol' salt in your home. Salt makes for a great natural cleaning agent for its ability to prohibit the growth of mold, bacteria and yeast, plus it's perfect for gentle abrasion. Combine salt with a few other items from your pantry to make our DIY jewelry cleaner in less than 20 minutes!

Image Credit: Liga Cerina / EyeEm/EyeEm/GettyImages Aluminum Metal Foil Texture 11 of 16


Foil can be used to clean in unexpected ways. This stuff will clean your grill, polish your silverware, polish your finest jewelry, and it can even help you soften hard sugar. No matter your needs, it might be best to keep some emergency foil lying around, you know, just in case you need a makeshift funnel, or something.

Image Credit: Gregor Hofbauer/Moment/GettyImages Cropped Hand Holding Talcum Powder 12 of 16

Baby Powder

Baby powder might be the biggest shocker on this list. Who knew it could help plump up your lashes while also acting as a dry shampoo for your pet!? Oh, and it can also be one of your best defenses against the dreaded oil stain on fabric: simply sprinkle enough baby powder to cover the stain and let absorb for up to an hour.

Image Credit: Phatharapol Nopharat / EyeEm/EyeEm/GettyImages Hydrogen Peroxide is an effective laundry stain remover 13 of 16

Hydrogen Peroxide

If there's but one cleaning product to have on hand, let it be hydrogen peroxide. Use this stuff to remove stains, do laundry and clean and disinfect surfaces in your bathroom, kitchen, bedroom, office and anywhere else germs breed. Try this laundry stain removal method on clothes and linens, or pesky carpet stains.

Image Credit: Jessica Kielman High Angle View Of Bottle With Herbs Arranged On White Background 14 of 16

Essential Oils

When it comes to creating chemical-free cleaning solutions, essential oils are, well, pretty much essential. Follow this easy tutorial to remove stuck on stickers from cars in mere minutes with help from orange essential oil (the same citrus power concept used by Goo Gone).

Image Credit: Wachara Kireewong / EyeEm/EyeEm/GettyImages White refined sugar in wooden spoon on dark stone background 15 of 16


Did you know sugar has enough cleaning power to eliminate even the worst grass stains? Really! The cleaning power of sugar comes from enzymes that help break down chlorophyll that causes the green stains in your clothes. Start with 1/2-cup of white sugar and add enough warm water to form a paste, then use it to cover the stain. Let sit for about 30 minutes, and wash as usual.

Image Credit: R.Tsubin/Moment/GettyImages Rubbing alcohol used to eliminate ink stains from fabric couch 16 of 16

Rubbing Alcohol

As it turns out, there are more than a few ways rubbing alcohol can come in handy both inside the home and out. Above all is the dreaded ink <ahref="https: www.hunker.com="" 12001367="" how-to-get-ink-pen-stains-out-of-a-couch"=""> </ahref="https:>stain, which can be successfully removed from a couch, or any fabric surface, with some rubbing alcohol, plus a few other household ingredients and this handy tutorial.

Image Credit: Kimbry Parker

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