Most of us use lemons in our food for cooking or add it to a drink for extra flavor, but did you know there are actually many ways to use lemons in your everyday life around the house? Read on to see all of the possibilities for using a lemon.
Help Clean The Dishwasher
Sometimes we forget to clean our cleaning aids, but nonetheless, it’s still important, as the dishwasher can also get dirty. Simply place a lemon wedge in the top rack of your dishwasher and run it with the dishes to freshen up the appliance.
Eliminate Food Browning
There’s nothing more annoying than slicing an apple and finding it browned when you go to eat it. To make sure this doesn’t happen, sprinkle a small amount of lemon juice onto your freshly sliced fruit.
Sanitize Your Cutting Board
Wooden cutting boards can easily build up bacteria and start to feel not-so-clean. To combat this, slice a lemon in half, squeeze the juice onto the cutting board, rub it in, and let sit for 20 minutes. Rinse it off with warm water and your cutting board will be good as new.
Remove Stains From Cloth
We’ve all been there: sitting around the dinner table with your family when all of a sudden you spill some tea on your new shirt. To clean it out, mix lemon juice with an equal amount of water. Use an eyedropper or a Q-tip to make sure the juice is only focused on the area of the stain, and thoroughly rub the stain with the lemon mixture. After this, rinse it off with cold water.
DIY House Decorations
There are so many decorating possibilities when you use lemons. They add a fresh, summery touch to your home and fill the room with a happy and bright color. Some ideas for decorating are to fill a glass bowl with lemons for a table centerpiece or place a row of them along a windowsill so the light will reflect against the bright colors.
Alleviate A Sore Throat
Using lemon when you don’t feel well is a tale as old as time. Cut a lemon in half and place it over a medium flame until the peel turns golden. Let it cool slightly, then mix the juice with 1 teaspoon of honey. Swallow the mixture and you’ll feel better soon.
Whiten Your Fingernails
This may be something you’ve never thought to do before, but trust us, you’ll be amazed by how much brighter and healthier your fingernails look after you’ve done this! Take a lemon wedge and simply rub it against your fingernails for a few minutes. After you’re finished, wash your hands off with warm water. You won’t believe how much better your nails look.
We’ve all seen copper that hasn’t looked it’s best; take the penny, for example. The difference between a clean and dirty penny is remarkable. To clean your copper items at home, all you have to do is sprinkle some salt onto a sliced half lemon and scrub the copper until you notice it’s clean. The visible difference will blow you away.
Brighten White Clothing
Is there a worse feeling than noticing your favorite white tee is no longer so bright anymore? Forget trying to pour harsh chemicals all over your clothes, either. All you have to do to get your whites back to actually being white is to pour half a cup of lemon juice into your load of laundry. Watch how much better your clothes will look!
Clean Your Cheese Grater
We all love some freshly sliced cheese, but we also all hate the cleanup. Soft cheeses and other sticky foods can easily get caught in the grates of your cheese grater, but with this trick cleaning the tool will be made easy. Take the pulped side of the cut lemon and rub both sides of the grater with it. After this, clean normally with hot water.
Clean Out Your Garbage Disposal
It’s easy to forget that the machine used to clean out our sinks… can also get dirty. Actually, your garbage disposal is quite often the source of the mysterious smells in your kitchen. To clean this, try to save your leftover lemon peels for about a month, and once you have accumulated a good amount, toss them down the disposal. Let them sit for a couple of minutes and then dispose of them like you would any other food.
Sanitize Your Rolling Pin
Just like your cutting board, your rolling pin is likely made of wood, which means it builds up germ and bacteria easily. Especially after you’re done cooking with pungent-smelling foods like garlic and onions, your rolling pin may need a good cleaning. Rub the pin with fresh lemon and wash like normal.
Freshen Up Your Hands
After you’ve been touching things all day, especially if you’ve been in the kitchen cooking, your hands are probably quite dirty. Remove bacteria and bad smells from cooking by squeezing out lemon juice onto your hands, then washing thoroughly with soap and water. Make sure to get the lemon all over your hands, including underneath your fingernails.
Revive Hardened Paintbrushes
If you forget to clean off your used paintbrushes, or even if you simply don’t clean them all the way to perfection, you’ll probably find them hardened and unusable the next time you pick them up. Luckily, there’s a fix for this that won’t require you to buy new brushes. Place the hardened paintbrushes in a pot of boiling lemon juice and lower the heat. Let the brushes soak in the juice for 15 minutes and then rinse off with warm, soapy water.
Keep Bugs Out Of Paint
If you’re painting outside, perhaps sprucing up the white picket fence or touching up the kids’ swing set, you may notice that small bugs flock to the smell of your paint and get stuck in the can upon arrival. Of course, you don’t want this and neither does the bug, so we have a solution. By adding a few drops of lemon juice to your paint, it will ensure that those tiny gnats will stay away.
Avoid A Foul-Smelling Vacuum
After picking up dirt and hair from all around your house, it makes sense that your vacuum may start to give off a weird, undesirable odor. To combat this, put a few drops of lemon oil in your vacuum bag. Your home will smell incredible by the time you’ve finished vacuuming.
Freshen The Smell Of Your Refrigerator
Easily remove lingering odors from leftover rotten food by soaking a cotton ball with lemon juice and leaving it in the refrigerator for a few hours. Place as many cotton balls as you want; the more soaked cotton balls, the fresher your refrigerator will smell!
Wash Your Produce
If your produce is not organic, chances are that it’s covered in chemicals when you buy it. To clean these off, squeeze spray lemon juice onto the produce before rinsing it all off. The citric acid from the juice will get rid of these chemicals.
The dirtier your windows, the more lemon juice you’ll need for this. Simply mix several tablespoons of lemon juice into a cup of water, mix it up, pour it into a spray bottle, and spray onto the glass. For a streak-free shine, wipe off with newspaper.
Make Your Sink Shine
If your sink is made of porcelain, mix Borax with lemon and spread the newly-created paste over stains in your sink. Let it sit for a few hours and scrub it off with a sponge.
Loosen Up Stuck-Together Rice
Rice that got stuck together somehow just doesn’t taste the same anymore. To prevent this from happening, add a few drops of lemon juice to the boiling water before you put the rice in it. Magically, your rice won’t stick together or stick to the pot anymore!
This won’t work if you have too much acid in your stomach, but if your heartburn is from lack of acid, a glass of lemon water will make you feel better. It can also help combat that nausea feeling!
Homemade All Purpose Cleaning Solution
Squeeze a lemon into any spray bottle and add equal amounts of white vinegar and water. Not only will this new solution remove stains, but it will leave your home smelling fresh and clean.
Clean Out Stuck-On Food From The Microwave
If your microwave is coated with bits of old hardened food that won’t seem to come off, here’s a solution. Just mix three tablespoons of lemon juice with 1.5 cups of water in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave on high for 5-10 minutes. The steam will build up in the microwave and cause these foods to loosen up. After this, you’ll just need to wipe the food off with a rag.
Brighten Up Dull Aluminum
Just because your aluminum products have gotten a bit dull, that doesn’t mean they can’t be revived! Take the open-facing half of a sliced lemon and rub it all over the aluminum. After this, buff out the aluminum product with a soft cloth. Your aluminum will be shining again!
Since lemons are so acidic, they actually do a great job of removing rust stains from things. This can be really helpful wherever you store iron cans, like shaving cream in the shower. All you need for this remedy is salt and half a lemon. Sprinkle the salt on the stain and scrub it away with the open half of a lemon. Let it sit for a few hours, and even let the lemon sit on the stain overnight, then rinse it off the next day.
The acidity of lemons can have both a positive and negative affect on your tooth enamel. When used safely and in the correct frequency, lemon peels can leave your teeth sparkling white almost immediately. Rub the inner part of the lemon peel onto your teeth for a few minutes, and you’ll notice that they look whiter almost right away. Don’t do this too often, though, otherwise, the acid in the lemons can have a harmful effect on your teeth.
By combining lemon to your homemade “shampoo” of vinegar–which can actually be really great for the shine and health of your hair–you can help keep the grease in your hair under control and make your hair shine. Simply add the peels from a few lemons into a jar and fill it with apple cider vinegar. Let it sit for up to two weeks and strain out the peels. Add one tablespoon of this mixture to one cup of water and use it as a conditioner after your shampoo. Leave it in your hair for a few minutes and rinse it out.
Brighten Your Skin
The low pH levels in lemons make it the perfect at-home ingredient for a facial toner. You can rub the inside of an already-juiced lemon directly onto sun spots or age spots to lighten them up. You can also use lemons as part of a facial routine by rubbing the inside of a lemon over your entire face, followed by a honey mask on top. Leave it on for up to 30 minutes and rinse with warm water. Your face will be flawless!
Soothe Dry Elbows
Combating dry elbows in the winter is something nobody wants to deal with, but many people have to. After you’ve juiced a lemon, take the two halves and sprinkle baking soda inside. Stick your elbows inside of the lemons and rub it around, exfoliating the skin on your elbows. You can also just let your elbows sit in the lemons for a few minutes, but we think rubbing the mixture into your skin has a better effect.
DIY Vitamin C Powder
Did you know the peels of citrus fruits contain super high levels of Vitamin C? Because of this, you can go through the process to create your own Vitamin C powder. To do this, lay the lemon peels on a sheet of parchment paper and dry in the oven at 200 degrees until they’re completely dried out. Grind the dried peels into a powder with a spice grinder. You can use this Vitamin C powder in your DIY facial toner!
Dry Or Freeze The Peels For Cooking
You never know when a recipe will need lemon peels. You can either dry them as you would to create the powder, or you can freeze them in zipped bags and add them to smoothies, desserts, or even homemade popsicles.
Homemade Lemon Pepper
Who doesn’t love a good lemon pepper chicken for dinner? It’s a simple and delicious spice to add to a regular meal that can really make the flavor pop. Dry your lemon peels like you normally would (200 degrees until they’re completely dried out) and then chop the dried peels into small pieces. Plae them in a grinder with whole peppercorns and coarse sea salt, and just like that you have your own seasoning.
Burn The Peels For The Scent
Next time you’re starting a fire in your living room fireplace, put some lemon peels–dried or fresh– inside. They will give off an amazing lemon scent that will carry throughout your whole house. Dried peels will even aid in igniting the wood’s fire because of a certain oil inside of the lemons.
DIY Air Freshener
If you don’t have a fireplace but still want the fresh scent, you can combine lemon peels, vanilla, cinnamon sticks, and water into a pot. Simmer it over the stove for a while and replenish the water as often as you need. Not only does this sound like something that will make your home smell great, but it also sounds like something you could drink!
Keep Cats Away
It is commonly known that citrus is an at-home cat repellent. If you want to keep your cats away from something, like your backyard garden or your cabinets, scatter lemon peels around the soil or in bowls in the kitchen. You can also spray citrus cleaner around your floors and doorways if you want to keep your cat away from the area.
Make Your Trash Smell Nice
It’s only natural that your trash can might start to smell a bit, after all, it is filled with trash. Placing lemon peels underneath the bag at the bottom of the can will keep your trash can smelling fresh. Be sure not to include pulp in this, as it will rot and mold, creating a bigger problem for you. Replace the peels every few weeks for the best results.
Start New Plants
If you still have the empty “cups” from juiced lemons, you can use them to start new seeds. All you need to do is poke a few holes in the bottom of the lemon peel. Fill the halves with soil and plant your seeds inside. Once it’s been a while and it’s springtime (or the season when you start gardening in your area) you can place the entire lemon cup and the seeds outdoors to be planted.
If you’re someone who prefers natural items for deodorant instead of store-bought deodorants, try this hack! The high concentration of citric acid inside of lemons actually kills odor-causing bacterias. Lemons already smell great, so you don’t need to worry about that. Grab a lemon wedge and rub it on; see for yourself how it works!
During the summertime, it’s easy to lighten your hair without all of the harsh chemicals that come in hair dye. All you need to do is comb some lemon juice throughout your head of hair and sit outside in the sun for at least 20 minutes. The acid and citrus in the lemons will naturally lighten your hair for some beautiful highlights.
Treat Bug Bites
There are so many products you can buy at a pharmacy or drugstore that help with the itchiness and pain of a bug bite, but with those products comes a pretty hefty price tag. Try this DIY at-home remedy instead. Rub lemon or spray lemon juice onto a bug bite and let it sit. You’ll notice immediately how much better it feels!
Put It In Your Water
I’m sure at some point in your life you have tried the amazing thing that is lemon water. It’s really that simple: it’s sliced up fresh lemons placed in a glass of ice water. After being outside on a hot day, there is nothing more refreshing than a glass of lemon water. Not only does it taste great, but it’s also really healthy!
Remove Permanent Marker Stains
Just when you had yourself convinced that permanent marker stains were REALLY permanent, we’re here to say they’re not! To get out those dreaded permanent marker stains, mix lemon juice with cream of tartar onto the stain and watch it disappear before your eyes.
Get Smooth And Moisturized Legs
If you put lemon juice all over your legs in the shower right before you shave, it actually will help prevent dry and itchy skin during those horrible winter months. Not only will it make your legs smooth and keep them from getting dry and flaky, but you’ll smell like fresh lemon!
Clear Out Blackheads
Lemon juice is good as an overall skincare aid, but really specifically, it can work wonders in getting rid of blackheads. Combine a mixture of lemon juice, baking soda, and honey into a bowl. Put it all on your face and steam your pores. Wash it all off after a few minutes and you’ll have glowing skin.