Household hints

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Want to remove an oil stain, get a showroom finish on your car, stop rust or relieve sunburn? The YOURLifeChoices team has shared its family secrets in this list of handy household hints.

Drew’s sunburn relief
Take two washed potatoes and cut them into small chunks. Place them in a blender or food processor and blend until processed into liquid form. Add water if the mixture looks dry. Apply to burned areas and wait until the potatoes are dry, then take a cool shower.

Debbie’s guide to removing a set in oil stain
Pour some dishwashing liquid onto the stain and allow it to soak in for about an hour. Wash at the hottest temperature the material will tolerate. If the stain has not completely disappeared when the material is dry, repeat. Do not tumble dry the item of clothing as this just bakes in the oil.

David’s tips for getting a showroom finish on your car
In these days when carwashes, both auto and hand, continue to spring up like mushrooms in humus, there may still be some ‘non-believers’ who persist with the old ways: the traditional bucket, hose, sponge and loads of elbow-grease! But if this is you then don’t neglect the finishing touch: the chamois. These are no longer made from animal skins so you need have no qualms about purchasing a quality product and taking good care of it.

This means always thoroughly rinsing the chamois in cold, clean water whilst drying your pride and joy. An old, dry and dirt-impregnated chamois will not produce the best results and could do more harm than good. Always ensure yours is thoroughly rinsed out after each use and rolled up wet in its protective container. Do this, and when you next wash your wheels, your chamois will be ready to produce a showroom finish! And, with all that healthy outdoor exercise, you can cancel that over-priced gym membership and, just possibly, reconnect with your neighbours!

Rachel’s quick tips:

  • Put a piece of chalk in your toolbox to stop the tools from starting to rust
  • Rubbing with cabbage is one of the best ways to clean pewter
  • If you get wax on your clothes cover the wax with a brown paper bag and iron the spot with a warm iron. The bag will draw out the wax in no time.
  • Clean stained coffee cups with a sponge soaked in white vinegar.
  • Remove stickers from walls and items by soaking the sticky traces with a little vinegar, and leaving to stand for ten minutes before wiping away the gooey remains.

YOURLifeChoices subscriber Barbara’s hint for removing chewing gum from hair
Put peanut butter on the chewing gum in your hair and rub it in with your fingers. The peanut butter will emulsify (dissolve) the chewing gum. Remove with paper towel, then shampoo hair.

Have your say
Have you got a handy hit for around the home? Maybe you know the secret to removing grass stains, or how to stop a door squeaking once and for all. Comment below and share your knowledge.

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Total Comments: 13
  1. 0

    sun burn fix …. cut a tomato in half and rub raw side on burned area. Removes heat, sting and any blisters.

  2. 0

    like that one student, sounds good!

  3. 0

    To get your car or caravan glossie i was told by a old spray painter mate what to use and have been for 5 years now, dont buy expensive car wash,use PEARS hair shampoo put some in a bucket turn the pressure hose in to the bucket wash car with soft brush or sponge panel at a time then hose off when done shamios will think its been it for about $2 a bottle, it shines your hair and your car. He has been doing it for 20 yrs and he has a show car.

    • 0

      Hi Cowboy, I was told years ago to invest in a GOOD qualityreal chamios (I’m not sure of the spelling) I’ll remember you tip when next the g/sons wash my car :).

  4. 0

    put white chalk sticks amongst clothes and linen,helps absorb dampness and stops mould.
    take stickers off wall,wardrobes,rub with tea tree oil.

  5. 0

    Guys: forget it all! Go to “” and you are going to be surprised to say the least with the 2000 + uses for WD-40. I would like to hear your comments.

    • 0

      Yes, I have been to this site, and as you say, it is amazing! However, I did get an email circulating that gave some of the tips that were on the WD40 site, but the email wrongly advised that WD40 was made with natural fishoil. This is not the case, it is a petroleum dirived product, so if you get the email, ignore that bit….

  6. 0

    There is a fantastic site called Cheapskates, that provides great tips and ways to save heaps of money. You can subscribe to a free weekly newsletter that is chock full of recipes, tips and great ideas. You can submit all your favourite tips and you could win a membership.

  7. 0

    Thanks Ibis for Cheapskates, it’s great.

  8. 0

    Plant a Aloe vera plant good for sunburn strip the outside and rub the sap on skin,feels sticky at first ,but dries smooth.

  9. Profile Photo

    To get stickers off anything, even books – a few drops of Zippo lighter fluid does the trick. Leaves no trace or smell.

  10. 0

    i use the aldi nappy soaker ,in the blue plastic container ,to soak greasy oven shelves and anything made of stainless steel to bring them back looking like new again.fill your trogh with hot water and add about a half a cup of nappy soaker and leave the items in it overnight .in the morning wipe ,not scrub, the grease and baked on grime off , also great for wall tiles . badly stained baths , toilets and stainless steel cutlery, stainless steel stove tops etc

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