In an effort to find less toxic ways to clean and garden, I’ve discovered many new uses for salt – yes, salt! The Salt Institute reports that salt has more than 14,000 known uses – many of them not as flavoring!
Here are some green uses for salt in and around the house.
Inside uses for salt:
Greenlivingtips.com suggests using a paste of salt and white vinegar as a polish for some metals.
The site also recommends using salt to scrub grease off of cookware and soak up oil in the kitchen.
Want to make that kitchen sponge last a little longer? Greenlivingtips.com recommends you soak it in a strong saltwater solution to help kill the bacteria. Speaking of bacteria, you can cover your cutting board with salt and let it sit for a while before rinsing to get rid of the bacteria.
The Hippyshopper suggests using salt to clean up foods that spill over inside the oven. If you sprinkle salt on the mess right away (during baking) it will help prevent smoke and odor. Once the oven has cooled, the spot should just brush away.
You can also use salt to test if an egg is rotten. Put your egg in a cup of water with 2 teaspoons of salt. An egg that’s rotten will float, while fresh eggs sink.
Outside uses for salt:
A great article on howstuffworks.com details many uses for salt outside the house.
Did you know a strong, soapy saltwater spray could kill poison ivy? Just mix three pounds of salt with a gallon of soapy water and spray directly onto the plant.
Pour a mixture of 2 tablespoons salt, 5 tablespoons vinegar and a quart of hot water onto weeds to kill them.
And if ants are starting to make their way into your house, sprinkle some salt around the areas where they gain entry.
Want to keep ice off of your windshield? Spray a saltwater solution on your windshield at night. This works because the dew that forms becomes saltwater, which freezes at a lower temperature than fresh water.
Health uses for salt:
The Hippyshopper also suggests using salt to soothe a bee sting. Just wet the stung area and then cover with salt.
You can add some salt to your bath to soothe scratches, rashes and cuts.
If you have a canker sore, mouthache or toothache, dissolve a teaspoon of salt into a cup of warm water and gargle a few times a day. It takes me several mouthfuls to finish the cup. This stings a bit, but definitely helps with the pain and quickens the healing time.
Do you have any other great uses for salt?