Unique Uses for Common Household Items

Your house is brimming with items that can serve multiple purposes – you probably just don't realize it. With just a little creativity and the will to think outside the box, however, you can truly find some interesting and unexpected uses for everyday products. Here are some examples to consider.

While they're not necessarily household items, chances are you have plenty of pennies floating around between your couch cushions. Instead of just sitting on all that change, you can put it to good use. Good Housekeeping magazine explained that you can use pennies to keep flowers fresh. That's right – just drop a penny and a dash of sugar into a water-filled vase and watch your blossoms live longer.

Aluminum foil
Foil isn't just for wrapping up leftovers. It can also be used in place of dryer sheets, explained Business Insider. Simply scrunch a piece of foil so it makes a 3-inch ball, then toss it in with your wet clothes. For larger loads, consider wrapping a tennis ball in foil and throwing that in your dryer. You'll eliminate static and save money.

When the grocery store has a less-than-ripe selection of tomatoes, you might start mentally rescheduling plans to make that delicious salad recipe. If you have some newspaper handy, however, you'll be able to whip it up much sooner than you think. Lifehack explained that by wrapping individual tomatoes in sheets of newspaper and letting them sit at room temperature, you can speed up the ripening process.

Coffee grounds
That strong cup of morning joe produces tons of grounds, so why not find creative ways to use them? Good Housekeeping explained that coffee grounds can actually be used in a number of unexpected and beneficial ways. Grounds can function as fertilizer for acidic plants like azaleas. Additionally, placing a tub of them in your fridge can help eliminate odor. You can also rub them on your hands after touching garlic or onions to mask those harsh scents.

Cereal bags
The plastic bag that holds your morning cereal inside its box can be a great storage tool. Business Insider suggested salvaging the bags and using them to store large quantities of baking supplies like sugar and flour. They're also great when you want to coat poultry with breading. Simply put the meat and breadcrumbs into the bag and shake it. Take the coated protein out and toss the bag. You'll save plenty of money on plastic freezer bags if you're a cereal enthusiast.

Moving is expensive, so it's important to cut corners wherever you can. Instead of purchasing bubble wrap, use socks as padding when wrapping up delicate items. Put small breakables inside them, or use them to create buffers between various items that are in boxes, recommended AOL.

Mustard and soy sauce packets
Instead of throwing away extra condiments once you're done with takeout, pop them into your freezer. They'll harden and become tiny ice packs that you can use to treat minor cuts and bruises.

That bar of soap that's sitting in your shower has the potential to help you in a number of  ways. Good Housekeeping noted that soap's slippery properties make it the perfect tool for unsticking zippers that may have jammed. Simply hold the garment still and rub the bar on either side of the zipper teeth. Once it seems to have loosened, move the zipper back and forth a few times to get it working again.