17 Surprising Second Uses for Toothpaste

Think you can only use toothpaste to brush your teeth? Here are 17 surprising second uses for toothpaste.

Bruce and Jeanne Lubin
4-minute read

Shine Brass

Shining the brass hinges and knobs of your doors is easier than you think! Apply a white, nongel toothpaste (a mild abrasive) to door fittings with a soft cloth, then rub. Use a fresh cloth to wipe clean, and your brass will sparkle! To protect brass between cleanings, apply a light coating of olive or lemon oil.

Whiten Yellow Nails

Suffering from yellow fingernails or toenails? After removing any polish, bring back their natural luster with some whitening toothpaste! Apply the toothpaste to nails and let sit for an hour (a perfect time to catch up with a good book or TV show).

Get Rid of a Pimple

Toothpaste can help get rid of pimples. Apply overnight and watch it dry out!

Polish Your Faucet

Believe it or not, toothpaste makes a great polish for your bathroom and kitchen faucets. Just rub on and buff off with soft cloth. The white, non-gel variety works best.

Get Rid of a Scratch in Crystal

Notice a scratch in your crystal? You can make it disappear in no time with a spot of toothpaste. After you clean your crystal, squeeze a bit of white, non-gel toothpaste onto a dry cloth, then wipe over the scratch. Rinse it off and dry your crystal—the scratch should be gone! Repeat if necessary.

Get Rid of Mice

If you’re suffering from a mouse infestation and can see the mouse holes, smear a bit of mint toothpaste nearby and the smell will deter them. You can also rub toothpaste along the bottom of your baseboards and anywhere else mice may get into your home. Mice hate the smell of mint and will stay away.

Toothpaste for Burns

Who knew toothpaste could sooth burns? If you’ve sustained a minor burn, cover it with white, non-gel toothpaste to ease the pain and help it heal. Simply dab a small amount onto affected areas and leave overnight.

Fix a DVD or CD Scratch

Unless it’s cracked, skipping blu-rays are usually fixable. First, eliminate any dust and dirt by holding the DVD under running water and rubbing with a soft, lint-free cloth to dry. To fix any scratches, rub a little white (nongel) toothpaste into the scratch, then wipe with the damp cloth to remove any excess. The toothpaste won’t repair the blu-ray entirely, but it will keep it from skipping.

Clean Away Scuff Marks

Have a scuff or scratch on your linoleum floor? A simple solution is at your fingertips: toothpaste, of course. Apply white toothpaste to the scuffs using a soft cloth, buffing until it disappears. Wipe away the paste with a clean, dampened cloth.

Erase Marker with Toothpaste

If your child happens to get permanent marker on the kitchen cabinets, don’t fret quite yet. You may be able to remove it with toothpaste. Add a little of the paste (the non-gel variety works best) to the spot and scrub until the marker disappears. Wipe the area with a clean, damp cloth and no one will ever know that the permanent marker fell into the wrong hands. You can also use toothpaste to clean crayon off walls.

Spackle Substitute

Small holes in your white wall? It’s toothpaste to the rescue! Simply dab a small amount of white (nongel) toothpaste into the hole and you’ll never notice it again—or, at least, your guests won’t.

Get Rid of White Marks on Wood

If you have a white mark on your wooden table and you’re not sure where it came from, it may have been caused by putting a hot dish or mug onto the area. Luckily, you can easily remove this spot with a couple of household helpers. Just grab some toothpaste (as long as it’s not the whitening kind) and place a dollop of it on the table along with a small amount of baking soda. Gently rub the area for a minute, then wipe clean and repeat until the mark is gone. The tiny particles of baking soda suspended in the toothpaste will rub tiny particles of wood off your table until it looks as good as new!

Ease the Itching of Mosquito Bites

Toothpaste is one of the many natural remedies for a bug bite. Fluoride works as an antihistamine, and the mint will soothe the itchiness. Both gel and paste varieties will work equally well.

Keep Glasses and Goggles from Fogging

Most optometrists will try to sell you an expensive cleaner when you buy your glasses. Instead of buying theirs, simply use a tiny dab of white toothpaste (not a gel) on both sides of the lenses to polish them and keep them from fogging up.

Christmas Window Paint

The kids will have fun with this one: Decorate your windows this holiday season with Christmas greetings and drawings using toothpaste! Not only will the bright-white markings look beautiful from the outside, but once the holiday is over, the toothpaste will also serve as a fantastic window cleaner.

Rub off Tarnish with Toothpaste

Easily wipe tarnish off of silver with toothpaste! Place some white (non-gel) toothpaste on a soft cloth and use it to rub solid silver (not silver plate). Then rinse it off gently. Don’t use whitening toothpaste, which can damage the surface. To remove tarnish from the tines of a fork, coat a piece of cotton string with the toothpaste and run it between the tines.

Garlic Smell Be Gone

You’ve been cooking with garlic or onions, and now you can’t get the smell off your hands! To get rid of this or any other kitchen odor, just dab your hands with a bit of toothpaste (the white, non-gel kind works best). Then rub them together and wash off.

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About the Author

Bruce and Jeanne Lubin

Bruce Lubin and Jeanne Bossolina-Lubin are the proud parents of three boys and more than a dozen books. After saving thousands per year using everyday tips and simple lifehacks, they started their own business in the hopes of sharing their knowledge with others. They have been known to go into their friends' refrigerators to turn their eggs upside down so that they last longer.