Brilliant Shampoo Hacks That We Wish We Knew About Years Ago

Despite liquid shampoo existing since the early 1920s, the cleaning agent itself likely originated in India, thousands of years in the past. And we’re grateful to the ancient clean freak who had the brilliant idea for the product because, today, scrubbing your hair isn’t the only way to use it. Shampoo has a surprising number of household applications, including these game-changing life hacks.

Grills make everything taste better. Unfortunately, cleaning them is often an arduous, greasy task. Applying some shampoo to the grates before scrubbing them can help remove the goop from past meals.

Adam’s Polishes / YouTube

If there’s a squeaky door frame or another annoying, loud hinge in your house, try using shampoo on it. Its smoothing qualities help quiet the screeching metal rubbing against itself.

Belinda Arechiga / YouTube

House plants can get dusty once they’ve been inside your home for a while. Mix shampoo and water together as a way to dust their leaves and keep them looking luscious.

Anastasiia Tretiak

Sometimes stains stubbornly cling to clothing, no matter how long you furiously rub that shirt after you’ve soaked it in stain remover. Shampoo could be the answer you’ve searched for.

TheBlazingPhoenix / reddit

If you’ve accidentally shrunk a sweater in the dryer, shampoo could help. Fill your sink with warm water and let the too-small garment soak in a gentle shampoo bath. Eventually, you’ll be able to resize your sweater by hand.

When you invest $20 in a pair of false lashes, you have a vested interest in keeping them clean and useable for as long as possible. Shampoo is quite effective in removing lash glue.

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During the three or so random times a year you remember to clean your oven, shampoo can take on the task brilliantly. The compounds within the cleansing liquid help remove grime.

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Another use for shampoo is as shoe buffer. If your leather shoes are looking scuffed, dip a washcloth in shampoo and rub it into your shoes. This should remove any scratches from the surface. 

Shampoo is a great bubble substitute. On a warm day, fill a bucket with shampoo and water, dip in a bubble wand, and have some fun. This is perfect for anything with kids or any adults who still remember how great bubbles are.

Soap scum and toothpaste residue are only two of the many nasty stains that can accumulate in your sink. If regular cleaning products aren’t working, shampoo might. It’s known to lift the most problematic gunk.

u/Britnorm114, Reddit

Stuck zippers can ruin your favorite bag or outfit. If this happens to you, try loosening it with shampoo. Its lubricating properties can make difficult zippers open and close with ease. This is definitely better than replacing the zipper instead.

u/zkay, Reddit

If you’re unknowingly out of makeup remover after doing a full-face, shampoo can come to your rescue. Water just doesn’t cut it when it comes to waterproof mascara. Shampoo softens your makeup for easy removal.

rocioceja_ / Instagram

Shampoo can masquerade as shaving cream. It’s smoothing, just like the regular stuff, and will give you a close shave, free of irritation and razor bumps. It can gunk up your razor, so make sure you carefully remove the remainder.

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Swimming masks can annoyingly fog up when you’re in the water, completely ruining your visibility. Before your next swim, rub some shampoo into your mask with a cloth and then rinse it with water. You’ll be fog-free!

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Paint thinner and mineral spirits are two of the tried-and-true ways to clean a paintbrush, but they aren’t your only options. Shampoo is another way to remove the remnants of your last painting project from your brushes.

Makeup brushes need to be cleaned on a weekly basis, at least. They harbor bacteria like crazy. Blegh. Scrub the fibers with shampoo and water to remove eyeshadow, foundation, and anything else.

MuchMoreThanBeauty / YouTube

Pantyhose get destroyed when they’re washed in a washing machine — an important FYI for pantyhose lovers out there. Instead, wash them in the sink, using shampoo. It’s a gentle cleansing liquid perfect for hose.

PantyHose Studios / YouTube

If some of your older shirts are getting rings around the collar or a lovely yellow tone in the armpit area, use some shampoo. It’s a great stain remover than can help you squeeze as much as possible from your clothing.

Warner Bros.

Phones are disgusting and definitely need regular cleaning. The next time you remember to sanitize your smartphone, try rubbing your smudged screen with a bit of shampoo to help wipe away the persistent grime.

If you’re out of bodywash, shampoo can be a useful substitute. It’s very similar to a full-body soap and can serve as an effective cleaning agent in a pinch. Of course, if you’re out of shampoo, a bar of soap has strengths far beyond its prescribed use, too.

Better by Today

These spaces can get musty over time, as the confined space doesn’t allow for a ton of fresh air to circulate. Combat the smells with a bar of soap! Hanging a pleasantly scented soap in your closet or tucking it into your drawer can make a big difference.

Beth Hanson / Housewife Harmony

Sometimes we carry more than we can handle. Dropped dishes lead to broken glass and tiny pieces that can’t be seen until they’re lodged in your foot a week later. Wet a bar of soap and glide it over the area to pick up all the glass.

Bug bites are an unfortunate consequence of warmer weather. If you find yourself falling victim to itchy bites after being outside, wet a bar of soap and rub it on the affected areas. The soap coats the area and reduces irritation.

Pests in your garden can put your plants at risk. Sprinkle a strongly scented soap like Irish Spring near your plants to deter unwanted eaters, like rabbits or deer.

You probably wear your favorite pair of shoes all the time, causing them to smell less than fresh. So, when you take them off for the day, put a bar of scented soap in them. Next time you don your kicks, they’ll be fresh as a daisy!

Making leather shoes wearable is a task for only the toughest of individuals. Weirdly, a bar of soap can save you from unnecessary blisters. Rubbing the interior of new shoes with a bar can make them a breeze to break in.

Pee-wee’s Big Adventure / Warner Bros.

If you find yourself not using your bar of soap as often because you prefer liquid soap, you can actually make liquid soap from your bar. All you have to do is mix it with boiling water and allow it to cool!

A Christmas Story / MGM

If your car tires keep losing air pressure, there’s a good chance you could have a leak. Soap can help show where the source is. Just apply soap to your tire and check for air bubbles. Where there’s air, there’s bubbles. Where there’s bubbles, there’s leaks.

Puppies are cute and all, but they can have some very bad habits. If you find yourself with a four-legged friend who loves to chew on furniture, rub your most chewable pieces with soap to make them less appetizing.

carterse / Flickr

If you have a tough time getting screws into wood, soap can be a useful addition to your tool belt. Rub the screw down with a bar to lubricate the threads.

Bunnings Warehouse / Youtube

Painting your home normally results in some stray splatter. Often, glass window panes are the prime target. Next time, wipe down your windows with a bar of soap to protect them from rogue paint.

While hanging up pictures, it’s difficult to get every step right the first time, and a lack of precision usually leads to unwanted holes in your walls. Soap can be used to fill those blemishes on a temporary basis until you paint or spackle.

Dov Harrington / Flickr

Stuck zippers are the bane of everyone’s existence. They’re basically impossible to fix… unless you have soap! Rub a bar along the edge of a broken zipper, and the lubrication will have the head gliding along in no time.

A flea infestation is a nightmare of epic proportions. Luckily, soap can help you make homemade flea traps! Lay out a bowl of sudsy water, and the liquid will attract — and subsequently drown — those horrible bugs.

Keeping dirt from getting under your nails is tough when outside working in the garden. Apply some soap and prevent grime from ruining your manicure. Plus, your hands will smell good!

Using soap to mark fabric is an easy way to make sure you’re sewing project turns out exactly as you imagined. When you’re all done with, the soap just washes out!

Speaking of sewing, any seamstress worth her salt has to have a good pin cushion. Encase your favorite scented bar of soap with wrapping paper, and the block becomes a reliable pin cushion!

Thrifty Fun

Even if you wear the same ring everyday, your fingers can change size based on a number of factors, including hydration and weather. If you find your ring is stuck on your finger, use a bar of soap to loosen it up.

Getting a stain on your favorite shirt is the absolute worst. But before tossing the stained top into the laundry, pre-treat the dirty spot with soap.

Squeaky door hinges are a major inconvenience, and you don’t always have WD-40 on hand. However, you probably have soap. If you apply a bar to any hinges, that annoying squeak vanishes. You should really stock up on WD-40,though.

IG / Flickr

WD-40 can do a lot more than you think. This magic stuff can get scuffs out of hard floors and help remove stains from carpet. WD-40 is basically a cure all, and it has so many uses around the house.


1. Polishing Silver: If you have a collection of silver that always seems to be tarnishing over time, WD-40 can definitely help you out with that. Spray down your silver and wipe it clean. It’s just that easy to keep it looking sparkly and new!

2. Cleaning Shoes: When it comes to sneakers, WD-40 is a person’s absolute best friend. In the winter, you can remove stubborn rock salt spots that build up by spraying them and wiping them down. If you want to make your whole shoe waterproof, spray the entire surface with the stuff.

3. Protecting Bird Feeders: While having a bird feeder in your yard is a great way to keep beautiful birds in plain view, squirrels are notorious for stealing seeds from them. To keep these critters away, spray down the center pole with WD-40 and the squirrels will slide right off.

4. Cleaning Toilets: Depending on the type of water in your house, cleaning your toilet can feel like a pointless task. If you use WD-40 the same way you would use your regular toilet bowl cleaner, you’ll notice that it gets clean quickly and stays clean longer.

5. Unsticking Gum: When gum doesn’t make it to the actual trash can, it can get stuck on shoes, or worse, your pants. If you need to banish hard, chewed-up gum that you accidentally sat in, then go ahead and spray it down with WD-40. That will help it come right off!

6. Removing Crayon Marks: Do you have kids who love to take their crayons and scribble on walls and furniture? Don’t break your back trying to remove the marks! Instead, lightly spray them with WD-40 and they should rub right off.

7. Defrosting Ice: Whether you live in a cold climate year-round or you’re gearing up for the winter season, spray your windows down with WD-40 and then wipe the excess away. Believe it or not, this will keep the ice from sticking to your windows and save you time getting out of the driveway in the morning.

8. Removing Water Stains: It’s so frustrating that the same shower you step into to get clean tends to collect a crazy amount of water stains. If you want to get rid of them fast, follow up your usual cleaning routine with a spritz of WD-40 and watch the water stains disappear.

9. Polishing Scissors: If you use scissors in the kitchen or crafting regularly, then you know just how sticky they can get over time. If you want to keep that stickiness at bay, polish them regularly with a healthy dose of WD-40 and they’ll be just perfect.

10. Removing Stickers and Price Tags: If you have ever tried to peel off a sticker on a window or a bumper sticker on your car, you know what a hassle it can be. Using WD-40 makes it a breeze. Just coat the sticker and gently peel it away!

11. Unsticking Zippers: Is there anything more frustrating than having a zipper on your backpack or your favorite coat get totally and absolutely stuck in place? Here’s good news: if you spray WD-40 on the zippers and gently work them back and forth, they’ll slide right back into place!

12. Removing Tea and Coffee Stains: If you or a house guest have ever spilled a little coffee or tea on a table in your home, you know how hard it can be to ever get it out again. Thankfully, combining your regular cleaning routine with a squirt of WD-40 will banish it in no time.

13. Banishing Far Stains: If your car gets covered in tar, then it’s definitely time to break out the WD-40. Just spray down the surfaces and even the most stubborn patches should melt away like hot butter! How great is that?

14. Taking Off Rings: If you wear a ring regularly then you probably know what it’s like when it gets stuck on your finger. It happens to everyone at some time or another. Don’t panic! The easiest way to remove it is to cover your finger with WD-40 and then slide it off. It works like magic!

15. Remove Lipstick: This cosmetic is always a fun way to make your look for the day pop. Unfortunately, it’s less fun when it transfers onto other items of clothing and settles in to stain. Luckily for you, WD-40 as a pre-wash stain treatment will help remove that lipstick in no time flat.

16. Helps Open Rusty Locks: If you’ve got a rusty key or a keyhole that won’t cooperate, apply some WD-40 and you should be able to gain easy entry.

17. Extends the Life of Shower Heads: This is another little-known household use for WD-40. Shower heads have a tendency to break down over time, but applying WD-40 can extend their life span by years.

18. Removes Mildew From Refrigerator Gasket: We’ve all seen it before: Disgusting gunk builds up on your refrigerator gasket. Well, WD-40 will remove this. Simply apply, let it sit for a few minutes, wipe off, and you’re done.

19. Filters Dust When Sprayed on Air Conditioning Filter: Spray a light coating of WD-40 on your AC filter before installing, and your filter becomes exponentially more effective.

20. Removing Leftover Tape: Whether it is an old sticker or leftover tape from winterizing your home, spraying a little WD-40 on the affected area will make removal easy to complete!

Did you have any idea just how many different uses there were for this household product? Next time you come face-to-face with a seemingly impossible problem, remember to reach for some WD-40 first!

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