25 Ways To Use Rubbing Alcohol Every Day When Needed

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Rubbing alcohol is typically 70% isopropyl alcohol or ethanol and 30% distilled water. We probably all grew up with the stuff in the “medicine cabinet” in our homes.

I realized when I showed how to make my HEAT IN A CAN a few months ago that I had to mention to people that rubbing alcohol does not have a long shelf life.

Even so, I store a few bottles for that time when the only thing that will work is rubbing alcohol. Because these bottles are plastic they will degrade faster than a glass bottle and they could eventually leak.

The shelf life depends on whether it is 70% or 90% rubbing alcohol. I realize some government officials make the companies put an expiration date on everything.

I am not here to debate that just mentioning the expiration date. I will keep mine past the expiration date, mainly because it isn’t a product that is used for human consumption.

1. Ice Packs With Rubbing Alcohol:

Start by mixing one part rubbing alcohol and 2 parts water in a freezer baggie-place in the freezer. The rubbing alcohol keeps the water from freezing solid

2. Remove sticky stuff:

You can remove stick stuff from products you buy that have price tags that are hard and stubborn to come off..rub lightly on safe surface and lightly wipe dry

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3. Helps heal:

It helps heal and clean the ears after being pierced

4. Bite/Sores:

Dab some on mosquito bites and cold sores

5. Degreaser:

it’s an awesome degreaser in the kitchen-it is so easy to squirt a little on the stove (be careful with your eyes) scrub and it dries quickly

6. Shiny Mirrors:

Your bathroom mirrors and faucets will sparkle by rubbing a little on faucets to make them shine (make sure your faucets can be cleaned by rubbing alcohol)

7. Germs:

Rubbing alcohol helps eliminate germs from counter tops-I use a diluted with water rag and rub on the counter tops. I have Corian, or whatever it is called..it works great

8. Disinfect skin:

You can disinfect skin but does it not sterilize everything

9. Candle cleaner

you can clean the top of your candles if you have some un-lit dusty candles-clean them with a moistened cotton ball to remove dust

10. Flammable:

Rubbing alcohol is very flammable so be careful when using it

11. HairSpray:

Are you having trouble getting some hair spray off your mirrors? Use rubbing alcohol, it removes it from mirrors

12. Frost:

On your outside car windows, wipe with a mixture of 1 one part rubbing alcohol and 5 parts water–wipe and dry-no more scraping, or much less anyway

13. Stainless Steel Appliances

Wipe down your stainless steel appliances with a non-scratching soft cloth and they shine like new

14. Disinfect

Disinfect your computer mouse with a lightly sprayed soft non-scratching rag of rubbing alcohol (yes, I still use a mouse)

15. Athlete’s Foot:

Rub rubbing alcohol on your feet daily-keep your feet dry afterwards

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16. Laundry Stain

Soak the stain in rubbing alcohol (washable clothes only) for a few minutes before you wash them

17. Makeup Brushes

Soak your brushes at least once a month for about 20-30 minutes-rinse and dry

18. Smelly Shoes:

Lightly spray the inside of your shoes and set outside to dry

19. Air Freshener

Mix one cup rubbing alcohol with 15-20 drops of essential oils

20. Garlic/Onion

Rinse your hands after cutting to remove the odor

21. Nail Polish Remover

You can use this in a pinch if you are out of the usual stuff

22. Jewelry Cleaner:

You can soak some jewelry for a few seconds, remove and pat dry. Do not do pearls…

23. Floor Scuffs

Use a damp soft cloth and gently rub out the scuff-you know those dark black marks we all get right after the floor is cleaned!

24. Dry Erase Boards:

Use a damp rag and clean the boards like new. You know we all have those boards and now the dry eraser markers are dried onto them!

25. Nail Fungus:

Soak your feet or hands in equal amounts of water and rubbing alcohol-hopefully you never have a nail fungus, but if you do, this might work for you.

The great thing about rubbing alcohol is it is fairly inexpensive,  so grab a few bottles and put them in your emergency or first aid cupboard. Let’s be prepared for the unexpected….

Bag Balm

Here is a great website to look at to gain emergency preparedness information in different areas: Centers For Disease Control And Prevention

13 thoughts on “25 Ways To Use Rubbing Alcohol Every Day When Needed

  • June 20, 2014 at 9:13 am

    Will also take away nausea! Place an alcohol pad or a cotton ball soaked with alcohol on the bridge of the nose, and it will ease nausea instantly!

    • June 20, 2014 at 9:26 am

      Hi Aubrey, thank you for that hint…adding it right now! Thank you! Linda

  • June 20, 2014 at 5:27 pm

    Never put it on a piercing or cut. It is too strong and not only kills the bad bacteria but kills the good skin cells and prolongs healing time

    • June 20, 2014 at 6:11 pm

      Hi Gerald, thanks for your comment. I was not aware it kills the good cells. Linda

  • June 21, 2014 at 3:11 pm

    Please remember that isopropyl alcohol is actually toxic and the ethyl alcohol that is marketed as a rubbing alcohol has acetone mixed with it (so no one will drink it) and that is very toxic!!! Use isopropyl very sparingly and the ethyl not at all.

    • June 21, 2014 at 10:42 pm

      Thanks so much for your comments. Its crazy all the toxic chemicals in our world. Linda

  • February 21, 2016 at 6:33 pm

    I discovered this post very late but I wanted to add (especially because Summer is soon upon us) that I personally use it to remove water from the inner ear after swimming. It can be very annoying to have water in the ear and sometimes it can take days for water to exit the ear. I put enough isopropyl alcohol on a cotton ball that allows me to squeeze one drop into the ear. One drop will do! The alcohol will displace the water. Be sure to tilt your head in order to let both the water and alcohol drain out. I’m not a doctor but I have been using the method for the last 20 years with no negative side effects and it’s a lifesaver for my kids who are constantly getting water in their ears. Beats having swimmer’s ear!

    • February 21, 2016 at 6:45 pm

      Hi Cesilia, this is a great tip! My sister used the rubbing alcohol for swimmers ears as well! Thank you, Linda

  • February 27, 2016 at 3:38 pm

    My bottle of 70% Isopropyl rubbing alcohol has an expiration day of 5/2014. Do you know of an ecologically responsible way to dispose of it?

    Although my bottle is not “ancient”, I have read that very old bottles of rubbing alcohol can explode.

    Any suggestions?

    • February 27, 2016 at 4:32 pm

      Hi Shirley, I went and Googled “how to dispose of Isopropyl rubbing alcohol”. This is what I learned (look at page 4): Do not put it down the drain. If this link does not work, the document states to contact your local hazardous waste DEP: Dept. of Environmental Protection or the EPA: Environmental Protection Agency. WOW, I’m glad you asked that question, I had no idea about this! Thanks for asking this very important question! Linda

  • February 27, 2016 at 8:34 pm

    Thanks, Linda– I will definitely follow up on that!

  • June 5, 2016 at 5:36 pm

    Careful with Isopropyl alcohol directly on the skin!
    Isopropyl alcohol is not only a skin irritant, but also a central nervous system depressant that causes flushing, headache, dizziness, nausea, and more. In laboratory studies with rats, inhalation had the ability to paralyze the respiratory system and even cause fatalities. Ingesting it in large amounts poses the biggest harm—the small amount you may inhale from makeup products is less dangerous, but you should definitely still be aware. I wouldn’t soak hands (after onions), feet, nails (for fungus) or use it as air freshener! Please read the label on the bottle!

    I actually came here to see if I could use it to repair my broken eyeshadows, as the alcohol vaporizes, but not sure if it leaves stuff behind, that’s not good for the skin. Mine is 99%, not 70%.

    • June 5, 2016 at 7:27 pm

      HI Sara, thanks for the tips! I have never purchased 99% isopropyl alcohol. think I will keep with the smaller percent, thanks again for your thoughts, Linda


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