March 30, 2018
It’s not unusual for people to take used items from around their home and turn it into something else—whether it’s turning scrap wood into a bird house or last night’s dinner into a different dish altogether. Others have even tried reusing coffee grounds for alternative beauty regimens. However, one underutilized resource within a person’s home just might be tea, specifically used teabags. In case you needed any other reasons to start drinking tea, here are a few strange but helpful ways to put your old teabags to work in less obvious ways.
According to a study published by Journal of Wood, used tea can work well for removing lingering odors within one’s home. The study also found that when added to prepared composite papers, old tea leaves had exceptional deodorizing abilities, especially for trimethylamine gases and ammonia. In fact, the paper samples that contained reused black tea leaves and oolong tea leaves decreased ammonia concentration significantly. Additionally, papers that contained green tea leaves also caused increased antibacterial movement against Staphylococcus aureus. You can try mixing used tea leaves with cat litter or even dropping some dry used teabags into the bottom of your kitchen trashcan to neutralize odors.
Deodorizing Hands or Feet
Another unknown use for teabags is deodorizing your hands, once you’ve finished handling onions, fish, or garlic for odors they may have. You just have to scrub your hands (or even your feet) with the tea leaves from a used teabag, leaving your hands fresh and clean but also exfoliated. Also, you can try placing peppermint teabags into your shoes in order to preserve freshness.
Tenderizing Tough Meat
Regarding black tea specifically, tea leaves could potentially be used for tenderizing tough cuts of meat. To do this, set two teabags into a pot filled with unboiling, warm water, steeping for about five minutes. From there, remove the teabags and add around a 1/2 cup of raw Manuka honey into the water until the honey dissolves. Season roughly three pounds of meat using garlic and onion powder as well as salt and pepper before placing the meat into a Dutch oven. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees, and then pour the water over your seasoned meat. Now, cook the meat until it’s fork-tender, which should take around 90 minutes.
Cleaning and Deodorizing Carpets
While this might sound counter-productive, it’s possible that pre-brewed green tea can be used to both clean and deodorize carpets. First, store the used teabags in your fridge within some water—to prevent them from growing mold—until there’s enough for the particular carpet area. Empty the teabags onto some paper towels, allowing the bags to dry until they’re slightly damp, not wet. Scatter loose tea onto the carpet until it is completely dry. Allow it to sit for around ten minutes, and then vacuum the tea leaves up.
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