Don’t throw out your used tea bags just yet! Try these 8 uses for your already-brewed bags that can promote good health, save money, and encourage less waste.
Fight eye bags with tea bags!
Banish puffiness and dark under eye circles with used tea bags. Capture a spa-like feeling by chilling them slightly, first, and setting aside your favorite fragrant tea bags to re-use for this purpose. Enjoy the aromatherapy effect while listening to music or meditating.
Soak your feet
Tea is a powerful astringent, closing up pores and ridding skin of dirt and grease. Re-brew used tea bags and use the resulting weak tea water in a footbath. Black tea is best for reducing foot odor, while green tea is soothing and energizing.
Tea can help soothe sun burn, razor burn and minor burns from hot irons or dishes. Keep your used tea bags in the refrigerator for up to two weeks (the perfect way to store them would be in an airtight silicone bag, slightly damp), and pull a few out as needed to treat sore skin. The tannic acids in tea restrict blood flow in your capillaries, fighting inflammation and reducing pain and swelling. You can use tea bags to treat insect stings and bites, as well!
Add some flavor to pasta and grain dishes
Take advantage of every last bit of flavor by hanging used tea bags over the side of the pot when you’re cooking pasta, quinoa, rice, or other grains. Turmeric blends are delicious with rice, Rooibos is delicious simmered with oatmeal, and Jasmine Green tea adds an interesting flavor to pasta!
Prevent rusty pans
Tannins are helpful in preventing oxidation, which means they’re an effective tool to use against rust! Wipe down rust-prone pots, pans, and other kitchen tools and utensils with a used tea bag before letting them dry and re-shelving them.
Household pests like insects and mice generally don’t like the scent of tea. Let a few used tea bags dry out, and tuck them inside cupboards. Mint tea works best for this, and the used tea bags will have the added effect of serving as deodorizers in cupboards that are a bit musty.
Kickstart your compost
Sprinkling the contents of used tea bags into your compost will aid in the decomposition process, helping your food scraps break down more quickly. Adding tea leaves to your compost also encourages the growth several strains of bacteria which are extremely nourishing for plants, making your compost even more beneficial when you add it to your garden or houseplants.
Knock out Grease
Tea’s astringent qualities also make it great for applications where you need to get rid of grease. Throw a few used up tea bags in your dishwater while washing up greasy pots and pans, and even use tea bags as a facial cleanser!
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For more ways to reuse, try our 3 Ways to Reuse Tea Boxes!