12 Surprising Alternative Uses For The Humble Kitchen Sponge
There are certain household items which we all have in abundance, and typically, we think that they've only got one use. Case in point: sponges. Most of us have at least a few floating around our houses, but we only use them for washing and cleaning, when, in reality, they've got an abundance of would-be purposes - many of which have the potential to make our lives a lot easier.
Because let's face it, when it comes to keeping our abodes clean, the dishes are only the beginning. If you've got a furry friend, you'll have pet hair to contend with; if you're a fan of knitwear, you're going to have to deal with the frustrating of bobbles after just one wash, and don't get me started on how much dust household plants can gather. It's a minefield.
But little did we know, until now, that all of the above problems, and more, can be solved with the humble sponge.
1. Sponge art
Entertaining kids is no mean feat, and we all know the headaches which their mess can cause. So if you're stuck inside with your little monsters on a rainy day, why not cut up a sponge and use it to create some fun sponge art? Stars, hearts - the options are endless.
2. Sprout some seeds in a sponge
Fancy yourself as a bit of a budding gardener? Well, your own herb garden could be closer than you think with the help of a sponge. Simply get a plate, put a damp sponge on top, and then add your seeds, leaving some space between them so that they have space to grow. Once you've done this, put it on a windowsill, place a glass bowl on top, and wait for them to grow.
3. Protect your belongings with sponge padding
One of the most difficult parts of moving house, or simply storing your belongings, is the high likelihood of them breaking in storage, no matter how careful you've been. But that doesn't have to be the case with sponges, which make great padding.
4. Make your fridge smell fresh with a sponge
Yes, you read that right. You can freshen up your fridge with a sponge by covering it in bicarbonate of soda. Be sure to keep it away from your food, of course, and it will soak up any nasty smells which might be lingering in your fridge.
5. DIY sponge building blocks
This one's pretty self-explanatory. It's a great idea for young kids if they're bored and you need a quick way to entertain them.
6. Create a DIY nail polish remover jar
Have you ever used a nail polish remover jar before? Then you've been missing out. Instead of rubbing the varnish off of each of your fingers individually, all you have to do is pop them into a pot one by one and the polish off with a remover-soaked sponge.
7. Water your plants with sponges
One of the trickiest parts of being a novice gardener is knowing how much water to add to your plants. That's why this trick is so brilliant: simply cut a sponge to the size of your plant pot and place it at the bottom. It'll soak up any excess liquid that comes from overwatering, allowing the roots of your plant to stay suitably moist without drowning in too much water.
8. Remove pet hair with a sponge
Writing as someone who lives with two extremely fluffy cats, this one is beyond useful. No matter how clean you are, their fur inevitably seems to get everywhere, particularly on your black jeans. So if you're looking to de-fluff yourself, or your clothes, why not use a sponge? The abrasive side is much more effective at removing pet hair than a simple cloth.
9. Sponges can breathe new life into your knitwear
I love knitwear, but unfortunately, even after the first wash, it can be left looking a little worse for wear because of pilling. But it turns out that it's incredibly easy to remove with the abrasive side of a sponge, leaving your jumpers looking as good as new.
10. Clean your plants with sponges
Household plants, especially spider plants, are notorious for collecting dust, and even with the best will in the world, a duster and a cloth often fail to do the job. Sponges, however, are gamechangers, and will leave your plants looking fresher than ever.
11. Sponges will make your soap last for longer
Every bar of soap has an expiry point, which often happens before its entirely used, and simply becomes too small to be effective. With a sponge, however, this doesn't have to be the case. Simply cut a slit in the middle, pop in your soap, and you'll have a cleaning device that dispenses just enough soap as and when needed. And, of course, it's reusable.
12. Use a sponge to wet your envelopes
Young or old, no one likes licking the seal of an envelope. So why not take the pain out of writing cards and simply do it with a damp sponge instead? The fact that this isn't common knowledge is beyond me - it's genius!
So there you have it - 12 surprising uses for kitchen sponges. Have we missed any others? Let us know in the comments section. Oh, and do your friends and family a favor and share these hacks, they'll make everyone's lives a lot easier.