We love salt in cooking. It can enhance savory and sweet dishes alike (try a dash in your hot cocoa this winter). But when we started researching it as a go-to part of our green cleaning arsenal, even we were surprised at how versatile this simple seasoning is.
- Eliminate sticky residue from an iron: Not that many of us are ironing anymore, but when it's time to do it, we like the job to be as smooth and as pleasant as possible. Run a dry hot iron over plain paper sprinkled with salt.
- Clean your drain: Pour 1/2 cup salt down the drain with one quart of hot water once a week to keep your drains running smoothly.
- Remove dirt from vegetables: Rinse them in salt water.
- Chill champagne or white wine: Stick your warm bottle in a bowl of ice. Layer ice and salt up the bottle. Pour in cold water. Wait 10 minutes and voila!
- Get rid of ants: Sprinkle salt in areas where you have ants and watch them flee.
- Clean pots of stuck on food: Fill your pot with water and add salt. Bring to a boil and continue boiling for 20 minutes. Remove pan from heat and cool.
- Keep your flowers fresh: Add a pinch of salt to fresh-cut flowers to help them last a little longer.
- Get the garlic and onion smells off your hands: Rub your hands with lemon juice and salt, rinse and wash with soap.
- Get rid of wine stain on a tablecloth: Blot the wine and sprinkle it with a thick layer of salt. Let dry and rinse with cold water.
- Mildew be gone: Mix lemon juice with salt to remove mildew from damp clothes and towels.
- Stain away: Remove stains from old tea and coffee cups by rubbing with salt moistened with water. Add lemon juice to remove rust stains. Also works on porcelain sinks.
- Clean your cutting board: Pour salt on your cutting board and rub lightly with a damp cloth before washing in warm, soapy water.
- Soothe a sore throat: Gargle with 1/2 cup warm water and 1/4 teaspoon salt.
- Unstuff a stuffy nose: Stir 1/2 teaspoon of salt into a 1/4 cup of warm water and sniff it up your nose (use your finger to bring drops of water up to your nose one by one), then blow.
- Fill up the holes your walls: 1 tablespoon of salt plus 1 tablespoon of corn starch plus 2 teaspoons of water makes a thick paste that can be used to patch up the holes in your walls.
- Wash your water bottle: Rinse your reusable water bottle with hot water and salt.
- Salt glow: Mix equal parts oil and salt and scrub your scruffy parts, paying special attention to your knees and elbows.
- Fleas away: Wash your dog in salt water to keep him free of fleas.
- Soften your skin: Pour a generous amount of salt into your bath water to smooth your skin.
- Sore feet: Add equal amounts of salt and baking soda to a basin of warm water for a soothing foot soak.
- Clean up spills: Eggs on the floor? Overflow in the oven? Sprinkle on some salt and clean up the mess quickly and easily.
- Purge the poison ivy: We've heard that three pounds of salt plus one gallon of soapy water equals a mixture that's lethal to this summer scourge.
- Kill the grass in the cracks: Pour salt in the cracks of your path or sidewalk, followed by hot water to kill those stray bits of grass.
- Keep your windows frost-free: Wash them with salt water and they'll stay clear all winter.
- Whiter ivories: A mixture of lemon juice and salt will keep your piano keys sparkling.
- Keep your line clothes from freezing: Add salt to the final rinse to prevent your clothes from freezing.
- Remove white spots on wooden tables: Whether caused by heat or water, eliminate white spots by rubbing them with a mixture of salt and oil. Let stand for an hour and then wipe off.
- Make your sponges last longer: Soak them in salt water.
Learn more about salt at The Salt Institute
. Have some uses we haven't covered? Share them with us in the comments!
We love salt! Here are even more ways to use it around the house
(Image: Pink Sherbert Photography, licensed under Creatve Commons)