16 Hacks That Prove Tea Bags Are Good For More Than Just Tea

The internet never fails to surprise me with all the hacks it's discovered with random objects. Sometimes it's binder clips (the cord-organizing possibilities are endless) and other times it's food products like lemons (did you know those can clean the gunk off showers?), but it's always something that I wouldn't think to look twice at.

Tea bags are on the agenda for today, and it turns out that they can do much more than make a mean cup of tea. Whether you want to reuse spent tea bags or just clean out those overflowing tea cupboards, I've got the hacks to help.

1. Forget bath salts. Really, you should try out a tea bag bath.

Hey McKi | Hey McKi

Some teas have been said to be good for your skin, and the relaxing smell alone is worth it. Just stick a few tea bags in your bath and let yourself steep.

2. Used tea bags are a great green way to fertilize your garden.

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First make sure the tea bag is compostable — polypropylene bags won't decompose — and then dig a space for the tea bag by a plant's root to feed it and help keep the soil moist.

3. The fine material of the tea bag can help you fix a broken nail.

Chickettes | Chickettes

This hack is great for when your nail rips but still remains attached.

Paint nail glue onto the broken nail, gently place the tea bag fabric on top, and brush another layer of glue on top of that. Cut off the hanging edges and layer some products on top, and you won't even be able to tell it's broken.

4. When you're out of glass cleaner, a few tea bags can make sure your spring cleaning continues uninterrupted.

Chemistry Cachet | Chemistry Cachet

Steep four tea bags of black tea in hot water for at least 10 minutes. When it cools, you can use the strong tea and its tannins as a window and glass cleaner.

5. The humble used tea bag is perfect for absorbing kitchen odors.

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Try putting used tea bags in a bowl in your funky fridge or rubbing them on your hands after chopping onions.

6. Clean greasy pots and pans with the tea bags you don't like. 

Healthy Life Tricks | Healthy Life Tricks

The dry, unused tea bags will help to absorb the grease, and you can use as many as you need if the pots are extra disgusting. You can also leave the tea bags soaking in warm water to help dissolve the grease.

7. Fight puffy eyes after that late night with two teabags.

YouTube | My Imperfect Style

You put the teabags in warm water and then refrigerate for a few minutes. Put one on each eye for five minutes to help the puffiness to go down.

8. Make a tough piece of meat nice and tender by marinating it with strong black tea.

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The tannins tenderize even cheaper cuts of meat, and you can add other ingredients for extra flavor.

9. Sometimes our shoes get a bit stinky, but you can use dry teabags to absorb the smell.

The Homemade Experiment | The Homemade Experiment

Place teabags right inside your shoes and let them sit to soak up any moisture or unpleasant stench.

10. Black tea will help to clean germs in your hardwood floors as well as bring out the warm tones of the wood.

Apartment Therapy | Apartment Therapy

Steep eight bags of black tea in a half gallon of water and let it cool. Test out on a small area first, but then you can use the mixture to mop the floor or wipe it with a rag. The tea will even help to disguise scratches.

11. That red, angry razor burn might be helped with a touch of a tea bag.

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The tannins in tea are thought to be good for inflammation, so some people suggest wetting tea bags and pressing them against the irritated skin for redness and swelling.

As always, check products on a small area of your skin to see if you're sensitive to them.

12. Use green tea bags to create a gentle face mist.

Hack My Age | Hack My Age

This DIY face mist praises the antioxidant properties of green tea. You can spray your face with it whenever you want, and it only requires the tea bags, a few drops of essential oils, water, and jojoba oil.

13. Start seedlings by planting the seeds in used tea bags.

Turning Clock Back | Turning Clock Back

You place the seed inside a moist, used tea bag so it can feed off the nutrients. Once the seedlings start sprouting, plant the tea bag right into the soil.

14. We've all seen people using tea bags to age paper, but what about for dyeing fabric?

Apartment Therapy | Apartment Therapy

You can easily dye your textiles with tea, either for that classic vintage look or to cover up nasty stains. Plus, the dyeing process smells really good.

15. Making your oatmeal with a tea bag will make it taste much, much better.

The Kitchn | The Kitchn

Instead of cooking oats with water, steep the water with tea bags first and then add the oats for some extra flavor — and possibly extra caffeine.

You can try chai, of course, but earl grey, English breakfast, and green tea have all gotten excellent results.

16. Damp tea bags are great for wiping grime off and polishing leather.

Instagram | @taldeguzman

Rub the tea bag in circles on the leather, switching out for a new tea bag when necessary to ensure all the dirt is gone. You should finish by using a soft cloth to buff the shoes.