50 Things You Never Knew You Could Do With Toothpaste
Toothpaste will keep your smile in great shape but it's also pretty handy in cleaning up around the house. See the many incredible uses of toothpaste.
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Photo: Teresa Odland
Mark Nail or Screw Placement
Toothpaste can help immensely when hanging pictures or art around the house. You can place a small dab of toothpaste on the hanger and then press it against the template once it's on the wall. Remove the frame, and the spot of toothpaste on the template will mark the nail's placement. If you have to place a heavier item on the wall, like a mirror, find out how to hang a mirror so it holds.
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Since some toothpastes contain ingredients to remove odor from peoples' mouth, it's thought it can soak up the smell of a skunk. Make pests no trouble around the home with some tips and learn how to get rid of pests.
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We know you can use a toothbrush to polish your headlights but add a little toothpaste to eliminate headlight haze. A car has countless small crevices in need of a good cleaning. You can keep both your head and tail lights clean using a toothbrush and soapy water. Additionally, if your headlights are especially dirty, use toothpaste and a toothbrush to remove the grime.
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Toothpaste can eliminate some of the fog of goggles but be gentle so you don't create any scratches. The abrasive granules of toothpaste can work to remove the light film that covers goggles. Get some inspiration for your own pool by checking out these amazing backyard pools.
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Clean Refrigerator Seals
If toothpaste can whiten your teeth, it should be able to brighten the seal on your refrigerator. A toothbrush will help you clean those goofy spots on the gasket seal. Find out how to repair a refrigerator gasket seal.
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Buff Auto Scratches
The abrasive properties of toothpaste provide a perfect quick fix to buff out small scratches on vehicles. Got a job that needs more than buffing? Find out how to do touch-up painting.
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Last-Ditch Patching Fix
You’ve made two trips to the home center store already but you’re eyeing a tiny hole in your wall that you’ve got to patch up and you’ve run out of material. Head to to the bathroom and grab that tube of toothpaste for a quick fix.
Check out other solutions to drywall problems and how to patch drywall.
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DVD and CD Cleaner
If you have a DVD or a CD skipping, make it sparkle with toothpaste. The toothpaste will help to smooth out the scratches and make that DVD run. Discover other cleaning tips you didn't know and learn how move into the 21st century by converting VHS tapes to DVDs.
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Clear Up Coffee Rings
Your guests should've used a coaster but now you have a coffee stain on your table. A little dab of toothpaste can get that stain out, just like coffee stains on your teeth. See how to remove stains in wood furniture if that stain penetrated deep and how to refinish furniture as well.
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Make the Shower Sparkle
Sharpen the look of shower doors with whitening toothpaste. Work in a circular motion to clean up soap scum on those doors. Find out what you're doing wrong when cleaning a bathroom and see how to clean a showerhead better.
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Nail Polisher Remover
Toothpaste can help remove nail polish in a pinch. Mix some toothpaste, water and lemon to place your nails in, and begin brushing away. Find out what you can do with fingernail polish to help your tools and other secret cleaning tips from the pros.
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Defog a Mirror
Similar to defogging swim goggles, toothpaste can help defog a mirror. If you have trouble with fog in your vehicle, find out how to fix your car's rear window defogger. Got a fogged-up window at home? See what you can do to defog it.
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Remove Stinky Smells
Toothpaste has some amazing deodorizing properties that people swear by it as a way to remove foul stenches from hands. Toothpaste isn't going to work everywhere around the house, but if there are smells in the basement, see how to eliminate them. Also, check out how to fix a smelly dishwasher.
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Just ran out of hair gel and you're running late for a date? Reach for the toothpaste to solve your coif conundrum. Toothpaste has some of the same properties as hair gel and can help keep follicles in line. Find out why you should keep a bobby pin in your toolbox.
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Give Diamonds Their Luster
If that diamond doesn't sparkle like it used too, apply a quick toothpaste scrub to it for a fine shine. The only diamonds in the workshop are usually tools shaped like a diamond, but learn how to use a diamond tile saw.
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Toothpaste can eliminate water spots in the bathroom or put a shine on your bike. Find out the secret to get a motorcycle to shine. Toothpaste is a pretty simple cleaning tool. Find out cleaners that are harmful to use.
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Burns aren't easy to deal with but some non-gel toothpaste can bring some relief. Apply some toothpaste to the burn area after plunging the affected part under water. Be careful around fire and don't end up a great goof like someone who lit a plastic potty on fire. See how to identify common fire starters and prevent a fire.
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Reduce Skin Irritation
Skin irritations like bug bites can be treated with toothpaste to reduce the itching.
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Make Bruises Disappear Quicker
You can put toothpaste on a bruise every night for two to three days to help make the bruise disappear, according to home remedy sites. Place a bandage over the bruise and toothpaste and wash it in the morning. The toothpaste helps break the clot and reduces the swelling. Don't bruise yourself working in the cold by falling on ice. Next, see how to save yourself bruised knuckles with tips on replacing a serpentine belt.
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Some toothpastes contain baking soda and hydrogen peroxide, which can work to dry skin and treat acne. Home remedy sites suggest toothpaste can help with other skin blemishes as well but urge caution for those with sensitive skin. Find out how lotion can help you paint and why you need to have petroleum jelly nearby for DIY projects.
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Shine Up Sneakers
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Restore Your Jewelry
A slightly damp toothbrush is perfect for cleaning delicate jewelry. Clean your jewelry with a solution of water (almost hot) and dishwashing soap. Soak your jewelry for about 20 to 40 minutes, gently brush it with a very soft toothbrush, and then rinse under warm running water. If needed, repeat. Learn clever places to hide your valuable jewelry here.
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Whiten Piano Keys
Piano keys can get discolored over time and through use. Get them to sing a different tune by cleaning them with toothpaste. See how a piano can work as a hiding space. Ever seen a piano on Craigslist for free? See what a repurposed piano looks like.
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Scrub Out Scuff Marks
Stop pouring cleaning products on the floor or pulling wipes to clean the floor. Grab a tube of a toothpaste to scrub out the scuff marks. Scrubbing scuff marks stinks, see how to speed up scuff mark removal. You haven't played tennis in 10 years but have a tube of tennis balls sitting around, find out how to use them around the house.
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Rub some toothpaste on a scuff mark on a leather shoe and rub it in with a cloth to remove the scuff mark. A tear in leather doesn't mean full replacement all the time, see what you can do to save some leather. Leather can be pretty bland color-wise, find out how to liven it up.
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Crayon Mark Eliminator
Crayons are great when used appropriately but when your wall gets used as a canvas, fight back with that fluoride-filled tube of toothpaste. Smear some on the wall and rub with a damp cloth to remove the crayon marks. Of course, you can always try a more abrasive approach. Or take away junior's crayons and turn them into a gift.
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Fight stains like you fight cavities with toothpaste. Use some toothpaste on countertops or on clothing. Just make sure there aren't any bleaching compounds in the toothpaste. When toothpaste isn't fit for a stain removal project, check out how to remove tough stains.
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Toothpaste will help clean up carpet stains. Scrub away with an old toothbrush at the stain after placing toothpaste there to work the stain out. It will take care of some stains but not some of the more serious ones. See what you're doing wrong when you're cleaning your carpet and get rid of those nasty pet odors in your carpet in five minutes.
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Baby Bottle Deodorizer
Baby bottles will develop a smell after prolonged periods of use and getting rid of the smell isn't always easy. Toothpaste might be the solution you've been looking for to remove the smell. A little bit of a water and toothpaste solution will reduce the smell of sour milk and get you back to enjoying baby smell. Baby proof your home in a jiffy.
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An old iron will accumulate stains through years of use but an old toothbrush and toothpaste can breathe some new life into that iron by removing the stains. Believe it or not, an ironing board has multiple uses, see one of them.
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Remove Ink from Fabric
A dollop of toothpaste and a toothbrush are the tools you need to help remove ink from fabric and clothing. Just work the toothpaste in with the toothbrush to rub out the stain. Find out what to do when a washer stains clothes and where to store seasonal clothes.
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Get Rid of Beach Tar
Beach tar is real and real annoying if you don't know how to get rid of it. Try reaching for the tube of toothpaste to rub away beach tar. Ever wondered how to get rid of other tough stains? Check out how to get rid of oil stains in the garage. Sick of looking at that sorry driveway, learn how to repave it.
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Treat Poison Ivy Stings
Lather on some medicating toothpaste to reduce the irritation of poison ivy. Just like toothpaste can soothe burns and clear up other skin issues, it can help with the sting of poison ivy. Keep applying until the burning subsides and wash the toothpaste away with soapy water after each application. Be on the lookout this spring when you're trying to eliminate weeds from your yard and planting ground cover plants.
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Remove Gum from Hair
Add another remedy for gum in hair to your growing list when you put together a toothpaste fix. Apply toothpaste to the gum and it will break down the stickiness of the gum. Know what else works for removing gum? We've got the answer. Just keep that gum out of the sink so you don't have to unclog a drain.
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Clean Up Messy Hair Dye
When hair dye gets all over you while dying your hair, remove it with some toothpaste to avoid looking like the same color of your hair. Don't make a mess in the bathroom but if you do, learn how to clean it quickly. Learn what the cleaning pros won't tell you.
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Clean Up Straighteners
If the sight of that hair straightener is starting to become jarring, reach for some, um, toothpaste to polish it up. Toothpaste can help remove some of those stains, like the build up of hair spray, that show up on a hair straightener. Learn how to create more storage in the bathroom.
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Tupperware can take on a funky smell but you can eradicate that smell by cleaning it with toothpaste. Just rinse it off after cleaning it and remember to keep the lid off to prevent the smell from returning. See what kitchen cabinet rollouts can do for you and how to build rollout cabinets.
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Liven Up Car Interior
If you like that minty smell of your toothpaste so much, you can have it in your car, too. Just put some toothpaste on a paper towel and place it in the car. Eventually the smell of the toothpaste will permeate the car. Keep your interior fresh with these tips and see what needs cleaning in your car.
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Clean Outdoor Plastic Furniture
Bring out the good plastic outdoor furniture for company and make sure it impresses by cleaning it up with toothpaste and water. The cleaning combo will remove stains and make the furniture more presentable. Skip the plastic and create your own garden furniture, including some spectacular tables.
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Clean a Keyboard
Clean grease and dirt off the computer keyboards with an old toothbrush and a solution of alcohol and water or a toothpaste mixture.
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Clean a Dirty Horse Bit
Horse bits collect all sorts of debris and toothpaste can help remove that in swift fashion. It's important to wash the toothpaste off the bit once it's clean because fluoride can harm horses. Here at The Family Handyman we're familiar with horsepower and sawhorses. Check out how to maximize your sawhorses and some savvy sawhorse tips.
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Shine up Die-Cast Models
Die-cast model toys can get overlooked when cleaning a home but if it's in need of cleaning turn toward toothpaste and a toothbrush. The toothbrush can reach tricky spots to give that die cast toy a good look. When you're done with that, put your toys away or get going on creating a toy storage solution.
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Remove Permanent Marker
Just like with crayon marks, toothpaste provides a good solution to removing permanent marker from walls. Find out why you always need a permanent marker on hand.
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Toss aside that tape to put up that poster. Add a few dabs of toothpaste to the poster to make it stick on the wall. The toothpaste will wipe away when it's time to take it down. See what you can hide behind a poster. Make sure that poster lines up square on the wall.
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Keep Bows in Hair
Get a little creative when a bow won't stay put on a baby's head with a little toothpaste to make it stick. Just like hair gel, toothpaste can help style hair.
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Clean Watch Scratches
The face of a wristwatch can get beat up through the hands of time but a little toothpaste cleaning can roll back the clock. Find out how to clean other glass surfaces like an oven glass and windows.
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Toothpaste's makeup can contain tiny calcium spikes that can deter insects from crawling around gardens and vegetable gardens. Discover other natural pest control devices and learn how to do your own pest control.
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Remove Brake Dust
Toothpaste can make your smile shine and your wheels. Get rid of that troublesome brake dust on wheels with toothpaste and water. Find out what to look for when you get brakes replaced at a show and how to refinish your wheels to keep them looking good.
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There might be toothpaste stains around your bathroom sink but they're pretty easy to remove with more toothpaste when you're cleaning the sink. Don't like buying a lot of cleaning products? Find out how to make cleaning products.
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Cell Phone Screen Protector
A little toothpaste can help make your cell phone screen look fresh from the factory again. Just be careful not to scrub too hard and go easy on how much water you use. If your cell phone reception is sluggish at home, learn how to boost your cell phone signal and make sure you're not a distracted drive by mounting a device holder on your car's dashboard.
Originally Published: March 20, 2021