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10 Unusual Uses for Dryer Sheets

10 Unusual Uses for Dryer Sheets from HousewifeHowTos.com I don’t like to use commercial dryer sheets on our clothes, in part because I prefer to line dry (when we’re not having a heatwave, which seems like a distant memory now), but also because I don’t like their chemicals in constant contact with my skin.* That doesn’t mean I don’t pick up a box or two when I can combine a good sale with a coupon and get them for free. Instead of using them in the dryer, I keep them for one of these unusual uses around the house.

*My dislike of dryer sheets is not really a tree-hugging thing, although I do try to be aware of such stuff. Mostly, it’s because I have psoriasis that flares up when exposed to certain substances in dryer sheets, and I can’t stand the itch!

  1. Get the stink out. Tuck a dryer sheet into your car or gym bag for a fresh fragrance, or pop one into the bottom of your trash can to deodorize it.
  2. Keep mosquitoes away. Hang a dryer sheet from your belt loop and you’ll supposedly jam the odor receptors that mosquitoes use to find you.
  3. Prevent thread from tangling. Trying to embroider or sew on a button with tangled thread is a nuisance. Next time, run a dryer sheet along the thread to keep it tangle-free.
  4. Dust blinds. Use a dryer sheet to dust mini-blinds. They can reach between the slats easily, and will leave a fresh scent, too.
  5. Remove scum in flower vases. Flower vases can get slimy and yucky when the water’s not changed every day. If yours have developed scum, remove it easily by tossing a dryer sheet in the vase and filling it with warm water. Let soak then swish and rinse clean.
  6. Freshen old books. Garage sales are a great place to find old books, but sometimes they come with a horrible smell. Freshen them by putting the books in a plastic bag and adding a dryer sheet. Close it up tightly and let sit for a week, then enjoy your must-read book free of musty smells.
  7. Clean your windshield. Long drives in the summer mean bug-splattered windshields. Loosen the little buggers by rubbing with a wet dryer sheet and they’ll hose right off.
  8. Clean dried-on paint. Did someone forget to clean the brush after using latex paint? Soak it in warm water with a dryer sheet and the paint will lift right off.
  9. Send mice scurrying. If mice are infesting your basement or attic, stuff a dryer sheet in any suspected entry points. They hate the smell of the things, and they won’t chew through them, so off to the neighbor’s they’ll go.
  10. Shine on. Run a dryer sheet over bathroom and kitchen fixtures to give them a quick shine. They’ll leave a nice scent, too, so it’ll smell like you cleaned the whole bathroom.

Know of other unusual uses for dryer sheets? Share in the comments below!


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  • Terry

    I found one by accident! Hair in the bathroom annoys me no end, and between the two of us there always seem to be strands here and there. Of course, we all know that everyone loses a bunch of hairs every single day (I find it especially bad right after washing and brushing my hair … yikes!). One day I pulled some laundry out of the machine and a used dryer sheet fell to the floor. Lo and behold, there were, as usual, stray strands of my longish hair in the vicinity, so I swiped at them with the dryer sheet. The hairs clung to it! Other than using my little hand-held Shark, this is the most effective way I’ve found to pick up those pesky hairs that are always laying around.

    • http://housewifehowtos.com Katie B.

      Ooh, I am going to have to try this, Terry! I shed a lot of hair when I brush, particularly if I’ve been wearing my hair tied or clipped back. And with white tiles in the bathroom it’s hard to keep up with the mess. Plus my husband will probably be shedding quite a bit once chemo/radiation starts (if not all of his hair). This tip of yours will definitely come in handy. Thanks!

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