Life Hacks: Toothpaste cleans more than teeth

Frank Lillig

This week’s life hack features the many uses of toothpaste. There are so many types of toothpaste sold today. Don’t waste money on really fancy toothpaste just to clean surfaces other than your teeth. The following list can be cleaned with plain white non-gel toothpaste.

1. Use it to fill in scratches to clean dirty CDs or DVDs. Apply a small pea-sized amount onto the underside of the disc, and use your finger to spread the toothpaste in the same direction across the whole disc (apply more if needed). The layer of toothpaste does not need to be very thick. Let sit for up to five minutes. Rinse with water and use your finger to wipe off the remaining toothpaste. Then dry with a lint free cloth or a fine rag.
2. Use toothpaste to remove stains from clothes. It works well on ink or lipstick stains. Simply squeeze some onto the stain, rub it into the fabric, and wash. This trick also works on carpet.
3. Toothpaste can help to ease light burns on skin, but is not intended for more severe 2nd or 3rd degree burns. Add a small amount of toothpaste on top of the burn, rub it in, and let it sit before rinsing off with lukewarm water.
4. Toothpaste helps to ease itch caused by mosquito bites. Add a dab and be itch-free. It can also help to dry out blisters and help them heal faster.
5. Use it to clean shoes. Find an extra toothbrush or a rag, put some toothpaste on your kicks, and scrub away. Dampen toothbrush bristles or the rag before cleaning.
6. Use it to ease acne or pimple breakouts. Be careful with this one: it should only be applied once per week. Otherwise, the toothpaste can dry out skin.
7. If your hands or feet smell strange, toothpaste can dry out the skin and freshen them up. Be careful with how frequently it is applied to avoid excessively dry skin.
8. Toothpaste can also clean fingernails. Just apply a dab and scrub lightly with your other hand.
9. Toothpaste can be used to clean some jewelry and to restore its luster. Scrub on the paste and let it sit overnight. Wipe off the toothpaste with a soft rag in the morning and and your jewelry should shine.
10. Swimmers, do you have problems with foggy goggles? Not anymore. Simply add a spot of toothpaste to each lens, scrub lightly and then rinse. Your goggles will no longer fog up. Scrub gently to avoid scratching the lenses. This trick also works for bathroom mirrors.
11. For those with leather shoes or watch bands that have scuff marks, toothpaste offers a simple at-home remedy. Apply a small amount to the scuffed surface, rub in with a soft clothand rinse with a damp cloth.
12. If your headlights look cloudy when lit, toothpaste can help. Just remove the headlight cover, put some toothpaste on a rag or shop towel, scrub and then rinse.