Toothpaste is a handy product that helps remove plaque, whiten tooth enamel, and freshen your breath. When it comes to usefulness, your pearly whites aren’t the only items that can benefit from the use of toothpaste. Check out these household hacks for getting even more benefit from the cleaning, deodorizing, and whitening properties of a tube of toothpaste.
20. Buff Away Auto Scratches
The abrasive properties of toothpaste make it ideal for buffing away minor surface scratches. The North Carolina Consumers Council suggests using a whitening toothpaste to buff away small scratches in the protective clearcoat covering your car’s paint. Doing so can return your vehicle to a smooth shine. Just be careful not to buff too deeply. Be sure to avoid completely wearing away the clearcoat or scratching the paint layer itself.
19. Smooth Away Coffee Table Rings
If you have neglected to use a coaster, toothpaste may come in handy for buffing away the white rings that cups leave behind on wood. Bob Vila suggests using white toothpaste to remove those unsightly marks. Other possible remedies include using mayonnaise or petroleum jelly.
18. Polish Headlights or Chrome
When washing your car, try using toothpaste to clean away gunk and residue from both your headlights and taillights. Use toothpaste and a toothbrush to get into the little crevices and grooves around the lights. Give the lights a good polishing, and then rinse away any excess paste with water. You can also polish the chrome on the grill of your car with toothpaste and a stiff brush. Toothpaste also works well for polishing chrome on your bicycle, motorcycle, bathroom fixtures, and hood ornaments.
17. Clean Refrigerator Seals
The gaskets, or seals, that line the door of your refrigerator are critical for maintaining the airtight seal that keeps your perishables at the correct temperature. These seals often become dirty and grimy. Toothpaste can help clean and whiten these items. Use a toothbrush to clean between the accordion-style folds of these gaskets. While you are cleaning, check for any gaps in the seal, which can allow cold air to seep out of your fridge.
16. Prep New Swim Goggles to Prevent Fogging
Scubaguru notes that new swim goggles may come with a thin layer of silicone coating the lens. This coating can allow fog to collect on the lens, making vision difficult. Scubaguru suggests pre-treating new, glass goggles with a basic, slightly abrasive toothpaste to remove this silicone layer. Rub the toothpaste on both sides of the lens and then rinse away. Avoid using abrasive toothpaste on plastic goggles, as their surfaces can easily scratch.
15. Defog a Mirror
Apply white toothpaste to your bathroom mirror and then clean it away to help prevent fog and condensation from collecting on the surface. Who knew you could put those little flecks of toothpaste that land on the mirror to good use? A defogging alternative to toothpaste is shaving cream. You could also coat your mirror with shaving cream, then clear it away to prevent fog from building up from a steamy shower.
14. Clean CDs
You can use toothpaste to clean your CDs or DVDs. Furthermore, a light application of toothpaste may help you buff away scratches. Apply a dab of white toothpaste to the surface of the disk with a soft cloth. Rub it gently from the center of the disc to the edge. Rinse away the paste and dry your disc with a soft, microfiber cloth.
13. Clean Soap Scum
The mild abrasives in toothpaste can help scrub away soap scum. Use toothpaste, warm water, and a scrub brush to wear away soap scum from glass shower doors. You can also use a toothpaste and warm water solution to clean away soap scum from your kitchen or bathroom faucets. After scrubbing and rinsing, give them a good rinse and wipe them dry with a soft towel.
12. Whiten Piano Keys
The whitening properties of toothpaste can be useful for reviving dingy piano keys. Choose a slightly abrasive, whitening toothpaste to revive the fresh white hue of your keyboard. Individually clean each key with a soft, damp cloth dipped in a solution of toothpaste and water. Soon you will once again be “tickling the ivories” instead of grubby, dingy keys.
11. Polish Jewelry
A dab of toothpaste can allow you to revive jewelry that has lost its luster. Applying toothpaste with a toothbrush allows you to clean the nooks and crannies in your jewelry settings. Soap scum, lotions, and grime can get caught in the settings of your wedding ring and dull the shine of your diamonds. Give your ring a scrubbing with toothpaste, and it will glitter once again.
10. Scrub Countertop Stains
If you want to remove a stain on your kitchen or bathroom countertop, give toothpaste a try. The abrasives found in toothpaste accompanied by the whitening component can help eradicate stains from foods, ink, or makeup. Rub on some toothpaste, allow it to dry, and then scrub away the stain.
9. Remove Scuff Marks
Those black marks from the soles of your shoes can be easily scrubbed away with a little dab of toothpaste and an old toothbrush. You can also use toothpaste to remove scuff marks from furniture, walls, and appliances.
8. Remove Crayon Marks
Sometimes toddlers get creative while coloring. While coloring books are fun, there must be something incredibly inspiring about a fresh, clean, white wall! If you have crayon marks on your walls, tabletops, or furniture, use toothpaste to clean them away. The abrasives in toothpaste can wear away the colorful, waxy buildup of crayon marks.
7. Clean Carpet Spots
It is easy to see that toothpaste can be useful for cleaning hard surfaces such as walls, countertops, and fixtures. However, toothpaste can also be helpful for getting small, concentrated stains out of carpeting. Make sure to use white toothpaste. Colorful gels may stain your carpet, rather than cleaning it.
6. Shine White Tennis Shoes
Revive your dingy-looking tennis shoes by giving them a good scrubbing with a whitening toothpaste. Again, stick to white toothpaste, unless you would like to have red, blue, or green stains on your tennies. Toothpaste and a toothbrush can help scrub away dirt, grime, and dinginess from the white rubber portions of any of your sneakers.
5. Make Temporary Marks for Hanging Pictures
Toothpaste isn’t only great for cleaning. This handy paste has other household uses as well. When hanging pictures, it can be challenging to place the nail in the wall where it will properly line up with the hook on the back of your frame. Place a small dab of toothpaste on your picture hook and then hold the frame against the wall. A dab of toothpaste will remain on the wall right where you should place your nail.
4. Fill in Nail Holes
When you are moving out of your house or apartment, you may notice you are leaving behind unsightly nail holes where your pictures had been hanging. Fill in those holes with a small dab of white toothpaste. Use a flat edge, such as a putty knife or piece of cardboard to scrape away excess toothpaste. Presto! Your walls may look as good as new!
3. Soothe Itching
If an itchy bug bite is driving you crazy, try a dab of toothpaste. A baking soda toothpaste may be especially beneficial for soothing the itch caused by annoying pests such as mosquitoes. According to Ehrlich Pest Control, regular toothpaste can soothe an itchy bug bite due to the cooling mint sensation and the drying effects of the paste.
2. Deodorize Baby Bottles and Tupperware
You can use toothpaste to deodorize plastic food containers such as baby bottles, Tupperware, or Rubbermaid containers. If you notice your plastic food containers have a funky smell, try scouring them with a minty toothpaste. Just like toothpaste helps give you minty-fresh breath, it can also remove strong or stinky odors from your food vessels.
1. Remove Funky Odors from Hands
Sometimes after washing dishes, slicing onions, or pumping gas, you may notice a strong odor clinging to your hands. Use a dab of toothpaste to remove foul odors when cooking or working with strong-smelling items in your yard or garage. Simply squeeze a dab of toothpaste onto your palms, rub your hands together, and then rinse the paste away.