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Quick and Easy DIY Car Air Freshener Hack

I use a vent clip air freshener in my car keep the inside of my car from stinking up the joint in between cleanings. My personal go-to is t his Fabreeze car vent air freshener , but I also love the scent of these Yankee Candle car vent air fresheners . Depending on availability and sales, I tend to switch between the two.( Disclosure: I am including affiliate links for your convenience .) I stumbled upon a killer deal on Yankee Candle Sidekick refills. Without hesitation, I snatched them up, even though I didn't have the matching holder (the Sidekick air freshener looks like this ). My brilliant plan was to simply stick the refill in the car vent, similar to the air freshener sticks that look like this . It sorta worked but mostly didn’t. 

12 Practical Ways to Use Cotton Balls You Need to Try Right Now!

I recently opened a new big new bottle of vitamins, and found that three quarters of the bottle I bought was stuffed with cotton wading. Being rather annoyed that I basically just bought a bottle of cotton instead of the necessary supplements,  I reused it bu cutting the nonsterile cotton into smaller pieces and using it to remove my nail polish before tossing it into the trash bin.

Rinse. Repeat. Every time I open a new bottle. Why can't they use smaller bottles instead? Grrrr!

Instead of getting mad, I’m getting even. Obviously I shouldn’t cut down and reuse the cotton packing from pill bottles for anything that requires a clean and sterile cotton ball, like cleaning cuts and scrapes, but there are several ways to creatively use non sterile cotton roll for things other than crafts. Here are a few ideas:

12 Ideas to Reuse the Annoying Cotton Roll Packed in Bottles

12 hacks to use cotton balls
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1. Remove nail polish – This is what I normally do with extra pill bottle cotton.

2. Pedicure toe spacers – You can also unroll a traditional cotton ball to use for this hack.

3. Wrap an unrolled cotton ball or roll around your hairline to protect your skin from dripping hair dye  –  This is a fantastic hack I need to remember when I use bright hair dye because the last time I dyed I had purple skin around my hair line for a month. Whoops!

4. Extend the life of cut hollow stemmed flowers by filling the stem with water and putting a small piece of cotton inside the flower stem. The cotton will also wick water into the stem from a vase full of water to keep the flowers fresh longer.

5. For non sterile household cleaning – basically not medical or health applications

How to use cotton balls for cleaning:

  • Remove sticky jar labels by rubbing a cotton ball full of alcohol or Goo Gone over the label and gently pulling the label off the jar or bottle.
  • Remove mildew from bathroom corners and caulk by soaking cotton roll or balls with bleach and letting it sit and soak for an hour or more before rinsing the area with hot water.
  • Remove lime and calcium deposits around kitchen and bathroom faucets by soaking cotton roll or balls with vinegar and letting it sit and soak for an hour or more before rinsing the area with hot water.
  • Remove craft paint and permanent market from surfaces and clothing by rubbing a cotton ball or piece of roll with rubbing alcohol over the paint or marker stain. I can’t tell you how many times this hack has saved me when accidently dripping paint on my hardwood baseboards (and without damaging the wood surface) when painting a room.

6. Make an air freshener for your drawers, car, or refrigerator by adding your favorite essential oil or scent to a cotton ball and placing it under a car seat, in a drawer or musty cupboard, or refrigerator.

7. For pest control.

How to use cotton ball for pest control:

  • Make a food safe ant repellent by soaking a cotton ball or piece of cotton roll with either peppermint essential oil or peppermint extract (you’ll probably need to use more since an extract is weaker than an essential oil) and putting it in the corners of your food storage cupboards. I have used this with great success in my kitchen pantry.
  • Make food safe rabbit repellent by by soaking a cotton ball or piece of cotton roll with vinegar and putting it around the plants in your garden.

8. Make fire starters with leftover candle wax and either cotton roll a cotton ball. Read the 8 DIY fire starters tutorial on my DIY blog Condo Blues!

This cotton ball fire starter looks a little strange but it works!

What are your cotton ball hacks?

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