Healing Cuts, Scrapes, and Bruises with Household Items

Bandages, ointments, tweezers, and ice packs are smart, but sometimes they’re not right at hand. Check out these other helpful healers that might work even better for your needs in certain situations.

Bruce and Jeanne Lubin
3-minute read

Sanitize a cut

You just got a nasty cut on your hand, but don’t have anything to clean it out with before you put the bandage on. Luckily, there’s something in your medicine cabinet that you may not have thought of—mouthwash. The alcohol-based formula for mouthwash was originally used as an antiseptic during surgeries, so it will definitely work for your cut, too.

A sweet treatment

Honey has a long history of healing, dating back to at least Roman times. Modern-day medical experts agree that it’s effective as an antibacterial ointment that also provides a moist, protective barrier—perfect conditions for skin healing. Just dab a little on!

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Paper cut relief

Instantly ease the sting of a paper cut with a bit of white glue. Just dab a small amount onto the area. Once it dries, it creates a liquid-bandage barrier that will seal out germs and make it hurt less.

Easier splinter removal

Got a splinter you can’t get out? Try soaking the area in vegetable oil for several minutes. It should soften your skin enough to allow you to ease the splinter out.

Stick it to splinters

The easiest way to remove a splinter? Just put a drop of white glue over the offending piece of wood in your finger, let it dry, and then peel off the dried glue. The splinter will stick to the glue and come right out.

Keep cayenne nearby! Just a little cayenne powder alone or mixed with hot water can help stop bleeding fast.

Keep finger bandages dry

You put a Band-Aid on your finger to cover up a scratch, but you still have to go through your day full of hand-washing, child-bathing, and dishes-doing. To keep the bandage dry while you work, cover it with a non-inflated balloon—any color will do!

Make ripping off band-aids painless

Before removing a bandage from your child’s skin, douse the area with baby oil. The baby oil will soak into the bandage and make it easy to remove without hurting her.

Instant hand sanitizer

To avoid spending money on expensive hand sanitizers, make your own at home with these ingredients:

  • 2 cups aloe vera gel

  • 2 teaspoons rubbing alcohol

  • 4 teaspoons vegetable glycerin (available online and at health food stores)

  • 10 drops eucalyptus oil

Mix the ingredients well and use like you would the commercially made version.

Ease bruises with a banana

Bananas to the rescue! A simple way to help bruises fade fast is with a banana peel. Just apply a piece of banana peel, flesh side down, to the bruise, cover with a bandage, and leave on overnight. By the morning, the bruise will have faded.

Another bruise cure from the kitchen

White vinegar will also help heal bruises. Soak a cotton ball in vinegar, then apply it to the bruise for an hour. It will reduce the blueness of the bruise and speed the healing process.

Apply green ice

Parsley is a superhero when it comes to reducing inflammation. Combine it with ice to help reduce the swelling of a bruise or a black eye. The recipe for the remedy: In a blender, combine 1 cup fresh parsley with 2 tablespoons water. Freeze the mixture in an ice cube tray. When ready, wrap the cubes in a washcloth before holding them to a bruise for 15 to 20 minutes.

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.