Dun…Dun….Dun….. <que the crazy music> it’s Friday the 13th, and to make a big deal outta nothing, I decided to put together a list of home remedies in celebration of the day! I searched the web high and low, left and right, and click and after click to find these babies, and I have to say, some of them sound quite interesting to try! I myself have made at-home beauty recipes, like scrubs using my own kitchen ingredients. What was also nice to find was remedies for cleaning and fixing things so it doesn’t just stop at beauty. I bring to you, my Top 20 Home Remedies found on the web:
1. Duct Tape On Warts: Does it Work? My research on the Internet says most likely, yes! But how does it work? It seems as though, duct tape stimulates irritation of the skin while stimulating the body’s immune system to attack the virus that causes warts. What people do is place a piece of duct tape over a wart and leave it there for 6 days. At the end of 6 days, the tape was removed carefully. The wart is then soaked in water for 5 minutes and filed down with an Emory board or pumice. and left un-taped overnight. Repeat the process the following morning and continue to file the wart down. If no change is seen within the first two weeks, don’t bother, it’s just not going to work. Grey duct tape is suggested, not clear. less painful alternative to liquid nitrogen method.
2. Toothpaste on Zits: Does it Work? My research on the Internet says most likely, no! Wha? Let me explain friends… toothpaste can be considered a drying agent. With a dab of paste on a zit, yes, it may soak up excess oil–however, remind yourself of what a pimple really is. An inflammation and infection of a pore on your skin. Toothpaste contains fluoride which can cause extreme burns when left on the skin. Ouch! Why add irritation on top of inflammation? no thanks! You’re best bet is sticking to long-time approved acne killing ingredients like BP or SA (Benzoyl Peroxide & Salicylic Acid)
3. Save a Cell Phone With Rice: Does it Work? My research on the internet says most likely, yes! For those of us with butter fingers and a cell phone, there is hope if you have dropped your cell phone in toilet, pool, or even a cycle in the clothes washer! Reports all over confirm that by burying a cell phone in uncooked ice after the battery and sim card have been removed have revived a once water-logged cell. Don’t get your hopes entirely up though, it’s also rumored that if the phone shorts out before removing the battery your out of luck. Another cheap alternative to try? Desiccating Packets or Silica Gel can also do the trick in a zip lock back and a few packets. More importantly DON’T use heat from a dryer or oven it will damage the phone entirely.
4. Save a Scratched CD or DVD with Brasso or a metal polish: Does it work? After several sites were visited I say mostly likely, yes! Brasso is a polish used to remove tarnish from copper and stainless steel. It also works as a fine abrasive to wear out scratches on CDs and DVDs. Looks like the claim is to polish the disc wiping from the inside out. Major scratches or grooves cannot be repaired, but simple scratches possibly can. The key is in the direction you polish so be sure to look up an example before giving it a go.
5. Remove Odors From Shoes and Lunch Containers with Newspaper: Does it work? Research on the web suggests most likely, yes! Newspaper is a great way to absorb spills and wipe down windows for a lint-free shine. Its fibrous properties allow odors to be absorbed with a little time. To remove odor from shoes, loosely stuff your shoes overnight. Same goes with Tupperware or lunch containers that have contained a fragrant meal.
6. Steak On a Black Eye Reduces Swelling: Does it work? Yes, but mostly no. Why? Steak on a black eye is really a creation of hollywood. In the old cartoons we would see someone slap a raw steak on their eye and presto it healed the eye. The idea originated from the fact that steaks in a freezer would be the equivalent of giant blocks of ice. The cold from the steak would reduce blood flow to the area and reduce swelling. It doesn’t absolutely nothing for the bruising that occurs. Not to mention raw meat on your eye? Probably not the best idea. Next time you need an ice pack,wrap a zip lock bag filled with ice cubes in a hand towel.
7. Peanut Butter Gets Gum Out of Hair: Does it work? My research on the internet concludes that yes, this definitely works! It may seem weird to put something sticky in hair, but the oil in peanut butter attracts the gum base in chewing gum. Apply smooth peanut butter to the wad of gum in hair and work the gum out with long brush strokes with a tooth brush. Wash with shampoo and rinse. Presto, gum gone!
8. Clear A Clogged/Slow Drain with Baking Soda, Salt, and Vinegar: Does it work? Research on the internet says most likely, yes! This method requires one cup of each (in that order) followed by a rinse with hot water. How does it work? Baking Soda, Salt, and Vinegar are also the three ingredients needed for a typical volcano science project. Allow the mixture to fizz and bubble up into the sink and eat away at the gunk left in there. If your drain is severely clogged, contact a plumber asap!
09. Tobacco on Bee Stings: Does it work? I know it sounds crazy but yes, wet tobacco draws out the poison and helps with pain! However, as much as everyone says this works online, I could not find one site explaining how. If it was so simple, I would imagine it would be repeated all over the place.
10. Vodka As A Fabric Refresher: Does it work? Most definitely, yes. Because vodka is alcohol, it kills bacteria that is odor-causing. Although, I would recommend using a cheaper brand and save the Goose for a cocktail. It may also help to add a few drops of essential oil to add a fragrance of your choice.
11. Banana Peels on Mosquito Bites: Does it work? Several websites agree yes, bananas are a wonderful way to ease the itch of a mosquito bite. The inside of a banana peel can soothe a mosquito bite and stop the itch. Just rub inside of the peel on the bite and the itching should go away, this is in part due to the potassium, which gives the fruit and peel it’s anti-itch benefits.
14. Papaya or Pineapple to Reduce Swelling & Bruising: Does it work? Research shows this is a widely used method for reducing swelling and bruising in a natural way. Both fruits contain Bromelain or Papain, protein-eating enzymes that can break up a bruise, along with a few other added benefits: anti-inflammatory, digestive aid, facial mask. Popular enough where you can also get it in pill or cream forms.
15. Beer as a Hair Treatment: Does it work? Research and personal experience say yes, temporarily. Beer contains proteins that can act as thickeners for hair, while the sugar (which I think are in the alcohol), tighten the cuticle plates making it appear shinier. Oh, how fun is the science behind all this? Beer, in my opinion did make my hair feel thicker, but never anything that made me continue doing it. Most likely due to the fact that your hair is washed daily so if anything is deposited on the hair it would be washed out the next time in the shower.
16. Sugar as a Face & Body Exfoliant: Does is work? Yes, but not recommended for sensitive skin or skin with open wounds, Sugar is a great non-drying exfoliant that you can use for face and body. It can be mixed with just water into a scrub or a paste with a base like olive oil, almond oil, coconut oil, or your favorite liquid soap to aid in exfoliation. Sugars contain an natural form of alpha-hydroxy acids that help slough off dead skin. I’ve used the sugar packets in my hotel rooms when I felt like I needed an extra scrub when I’m away from home. Cheap, fun to use, and rinses down the drain.
17. Treat Insomnia with Milk or Bananas: Does it work? The internet says yes, milk and bananas can help you get a better nights sleep. But how, you ask? Milk contains calcium and magnesium which calms frazzled or stressed nerves. Melatonin production is kicked into high gear with a glass of warm milk so drink up. Banana’s contain high levels of tryptophan, the same chemical in Turkey that in part makes us nice and lazy after a thanksgiving meal.
16. Baking Soda as a Body Deodorizer: Does it work? Many people swear by this all-natural deodorant as an alternative to sprays or sticks. A mixture of baking soda and water dabbed into the armpits will prevent odors from forming. But how does it work? Baking soda works in two ways, for one,it’s weakly alkaline so it neutralizes acidic scent molecules. It is also suspected that the salt in baking soda attacks bacteria on the skin, thus removing the smell they (bacteria) produce. I’m trying this one for sure!
17. Honey as a All-In-One Facial Mask: Research on the internet, and reports from friends conclude that yes, Honey can be used as a facial mask! Honey has anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, brightening and moisturizing properties. As weird as it may seem, this sticky material has been reported to help with mild acne/blemishes, hyper-pigmentation, and soothing irritated skin. Time to make a trip to the market!
18. Teeth Whitening with Baking Soda, Hydrogen Peroxide or Strawberry Paste: Sorry to burst everyones’ bubble….but unfortunately, all of these are slightly deceptive, and in my experience working in the dental field–no, there are more effective ways to brighten your smile. Baking soda works effectively as an abrasive agent, polishing away stubborn stains, thus, making your teeth “whiter”– but not in the way bleaching gel would. Brighten is the key word, not whiten. Carbamide peroxide is the key ingredient in bleaching gels–however the liquid form we buy at the drug store is not the same as Carbamide peroxide. Carbamide peroxide reacts with water to form hydrogen peroxide. Hydrogen peroxide needs to sit on the teeth to produce any results. A rinse or weekly brushing with peroxide may help loosen stains, but is not strong enough to lift deep stains or “bleach” teeth. Your teeth will be brighter, but nothing drastic. You also have to be careful using hydrogen peroxide, make sure its diluted. Strawberry paste is one of the craziest ones I’ve ever heard. Some sites suggest that malic acid found in strawberries (also apples) naturally lift away stains and discoloration. What they don’t remind you of is that fruit has sugar and you are going to rub sugar on your teeth? Strawberries may brighten a smile temporarily, but will not produce the same results as using bleaching gel. They also do recommend doing it too often due to its tendency to eat away at tooth enamel.
19. Lemons for Bleaching and Cleaning:According to several sites on the web, yes, lemons are an excellent way to clean household items such as counter-tops and copper pots. It doesn’t stop there though–depending on whether you use a lemon cut in half, diluted, or full-strength, lemon juice can also be used to brighten your fingernails, make chrome faucets gleam, and get grout scrubbed bleach-y clean! A great alternative for those who want to go as chemical-free as possible. The secret is the fruits low pH (making it acidic) and antibacterial properties. Combine with the cleaning power of Baking soda, and your house will be clean from tip to toe.
20. Milk of Magnesia for Acne: Does it work? I wish this was a cure all, but it only works in one way, soaking up excess oil. Milk of Magnesia or MOM is a saline laxative you can buy at most grocery and drug stores. the key ingredients that does all the magic is the magnesium hydroxide which soaks up excess oils for hours and can serve as a makeup primer for a smooth start. I have read through tons of personal reviews on MOM and I conclude that this will help someone with oily skin. Some users suggest only using Philips Milk of Magnesia Original formula–no flavors, no special formula–the added ingredients can possibly further aggravate pimples. I have yet to determine which type of acne this will benefit- mild, moderate, or cystic, there appears to be reports from all sorts of acne sufferers.
21. Homemade soft-scrub for household cleaning: Does it work? Yes! Several environmentally conscience people out there have relied on this homemade method to clean sinks and tubs. All it requires is ½ cup baking soda, and a few teaspoons of liquid vegetable-based soap (Think Castile Soap, like dr. Bronners). You can add in a few drops of essential lemon oil if you wish, but is not necessary. Mix until it forms a nice paste you can clean with and rinse away when done. There are various recipes on the web that also include borax or vinegar, but the main ingredient here is the baking soda.
22. Vitamin E for Stretch Marks: Does it work? By itself, not 100%, but it does help skin protect itself with its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. We’ve heard it countless times, vitamin E topically applied to a scar or stretch mark can reverse its appearance. Unfortunately, it is very difficult to explain HOW it would reverse a scar. Scar tissue and stretch marks look the way they do because of a couple of reasons. Scar tissue does not always heal in flat perfect layers. Bumps and bunches in the healing skin can create an uneven appearance giving it a scar-look. Stretch marks look the way they do because the skin has been pulled and the collagen/elastin fibers that give our skin some of its structure needs to be replaced. Vitamin E indirectly stimulates collagen production. What it does do is increase the function of your SPF cream, further protecting the skin from UV damage. It also has anti-inflammatory benefits that may calm the area allowing it to heal better–but nothing set in stone on the web. My suggestion for scars or stretch marks is to seek the advice of a dermatologist if the appearance is bothering you.
23. Clove oil for a Toothache: Does it work? I didn’t think this one would, but yes, clove oil reportedly can help in dealing with a toothache. Clove oil has analgesic and antibacterial properties which can help with a toothache. It was actually widely used in the dentistry field, long before anesthetics took its place. While this wont replace a trip to the dentist, it may allow you to buy some time over a weekend while waiting for an appointment. I will warn you, it doesn’t sound like it tastes all that great from the reviews I read, but its worth a shot to try!
What home remedies do you rely on? As I type this post I’ve learned of Vick’s on the soles of feet covered with socks will dissipate a cough. Ha! And I’ve heard this from countless people in “real life”. This one, i MUST try the next time. It makes absolutely no sense to me, but it somehow even only works in my mind, then it has somehow done its job.