Double-duty ideas

See how ordinary, unassuming household items have hidden superpowers. ( photo)

33. Repel rain from your car windshield. Put gobs of baking soda on a dampened cloth and wipe windows inside and out.

34. Soak dried beans in a mixture of soda and water to make them more digestible.

35. Freshen your carpet and upholstered furniture. Sprinkle them with baking soda. Allow them to sit undisturbed for a half hour or so. Then vacuum.

36. Eliminate water rings on your finished wood with a paste of baking soda and toothpaste. Dip a soft cloth in the paste and rub the water spots away.

37. Get rid of ants in your house by mixing equal parts of baking soda and salt together. Sprinkle the mixture wherever you see the intruders coming in.

38. Fill in some nail holes in a plastered wall with a paste of white toothpaste and baking soda.


39. Use beer instead of water in your favorite batter mix, and it will have a delicious flavor.

40. Soften hair and add body with a beer shampoo. Mix a raw egg together with half a can of beer and massage it into your hair. Rinse and style as usual. Beer also makes an excellent conditioner for hair. Massage a cup of warm beer into your hair and scalp after washing and allow it to set for half an hour or so. Rinse thoroughly.

41. Fertilize plants. Use all of those half-filled bottles and cups of beer after a party to pour on your houseplants and garden vegetables. The plants will love the nourishment that the yeast adds to the soil.

42. Get rid of slugs in your garden. Put a shallow dish of beer into your soil buried up to the lip. The slugs will be attracted to the beer and become stuck in it. Empty the dish each day and replace with new beer as they are attracted to the smell.

Cotton balls

43. Fight mildew in hard-to-reach spots in the bathroom. Soak a few cotton balls in bleach and place them in those difficult spots. Leave them to work their magic for a few hours. Finish by rinsing with a warm-water wash.

Dawn dishwashing detergent

44. Get a better manicure by soaking fingernails in the soapy solution, rinse and apply polish. The polish will adhere better to the nail and spread smoother.

45. Pre-treat oil-based laundry stains, such as lipstick and grease.

46. Soak your oily and grimy tools to get them clean.

47. Kill pet fleas by washing pets in a soapy water bath.

Dryer sheets

48. Repel mosquitoes on your patio. Hang a sheet when outdoors during the mosquito season.