Handy Household Tips Using Household Items


Sep 03, 2014 by British Blog

All over the UK, there are people doing strange things with vinegar. Are they putting it on their chips? No. It turns out that actually, there are lots of 'unofficial' household uses for vinegar, which include washing windows and killing bad breath.

In fact, there are lots of helpful little secrets hidden in the average kitchen. Here are just a few of those secrets for you to try out, go on give it a whirl...



When it comes to kitchen contents, vinegar is one of the ultimate all-rounders:

  • A 3:1 solution of vinegar and water, applied to car windows at night, will help to keep frost and ice off the glass.
  • Vinegar, applied to scrunched-up newspaper and rubbed on the glass, brings windows to a sparkling shine.
  • Apple cider vinegar, when used as a final rinse on hair, adds shine and gloss (do remember to rinse it off, though, since the smell otherwise could be quite overpowering!)
  • A 50:50 mix of white vinegar and water, placed in a container inside the microwave and heated to a rolling boil, will loosen baked-on dirt and food for easy cleaning.
  • A tablespoon of white vinegar, added to the vase along with a teaspoon of sugar, will enliven, and prolong the life of, cut flowers.
  • Brushing the teeth with vinegar prevents bad breath (do not brush with vinegar more than twice a month or so, however, since vinegar is acidic and may damage tooth enamel).


Bicarbonate of Soda

Bicarbonate of soda is so handy; some people buy it in bulk. It can be used for:

  • Cleaning enamel baths.
  • A couple of tablespoons of bicarbonate of soda sprinkled on the bottom of the dishwasher, prior to running it, will banish smells.
  • Mixed with cider vinegar, it can be used to remove limescale from stainless steel sinks and glass shower enclosures.
  • If bicarbonate of soda is sprinkled into smelly shoes, such as trainers, at night and then removed in the morning, it can minimise or eliminate smells.


Lemon Juice

Lemons are perhaps the most versatile fruit - and that versatility is not limited to cooking. Lemons or their juice can be used to:

  • Clean brass. Half a lemon dipped in salt will bring brass items up to a lovely shine.
  • Tackle dishwasher smells: just pop half a lemon in the top of the dishwasher before use.
  • Loosen stubborn stains and baked-on food from hobs.
  • Remove ballpoint pen stains. Cover the stain in lemon juice, then rub and rinse; repeat the process until the stain has gone.
  • Remove smells from wooden chopping boards - just apply lemon juice and wipe away excess with a piece of kitchen towel.
  • Clean tarnished gold jewellery.


What is more; vinegar, bicarbonate of soda and lemons are not the only useful items in the kitchen. Milk can be used to remove ink stains, salt takes cutlery marks off dining sets and scented talcum powder can be used to deter ants. So, the next time the urge to buy more cleaning products strikes, why not have a look in the kitchen cupboards, instead?