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DIY: Alternative Uses for Vodka

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Sure, we all know vodka as that bar staple that makes some pretty killer mixed drinks like bloody Marys, screwdrivers, and cosmopolitans. But did you know that vodka has many other uses, as well? Here are just a few ways that vodka can be used around the house.

  • Add a tablespoon of vodka and a tablespoon of sugar to your fresh cut flowers to make them last longer. The alcohol and sugar combination thwarts the production of ethylene which causes flowers to wilt.
  • Kill mold and mildew. Put full-strength vodka in a spray bottle and spritz on black mold and mildew spots in the kitchen and bathroom. Let it sit for a few minutes before scrubbing with a grout brush.
  • Clean your jewelry. Hard stones like diamonds, rubies, and sapphires will shine like new when bathed in vodka and buffed clean with a soft cloth.
  • Clean glass. For clear, streak-free mirrors, dilute vodka with half water in a spray bottle. You can even use this mixture on eyeglasses.
  • Remove adhesive. Bandages slip right off when dowsed with vodka. And so do those hard-to-remove labels on jars.
  • Vodka as insecticide. Because of the high alcohol content, vodka makes a great bug killer. Have a spray bottle of undiluted vodka handy for picnics and backyard gatherings.
  • Vodka freshens clothing between washes. Not all clothing has to be washed every time it is worn. Spritz your infrequently worn clothing with vodka to kill odor-causing bacteria and keep your clothes smelling fresh and clean.
  • Shine porcelain and chrome. All it takes is a little buffing with a soft cloth soaked in vodka to get your fixtures to gleam.
  • Bring out the shine in your hair. Add about an ounce of vodka to your regular shampoo for extra clean, shiny hair.
  • Treat cold sores. With a q-tip dipped in vodka, dab cold sores to dry them out and help them heal faster.

This is a pretty impressive list of household uses for vodka, don't you think? But my all-time favorite is to make a homemade room spray with it. In a spray bottle, mix about 2 ounces of vodka and about 50 drops of essential oil. Get creative and mix different essential oils to make your own unique scent. Just be sure to use pure and natural essential oils and not synthetic, chemical-laden fragrance oils. Shake well and spray the room. This mixture is great for freshening cars, closets, and linens, as well.

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