Little-Known Features Of Common Objects That Too Many People Miss

Growing up, our parents and loved ones taught us how to do certain things around the house. Some of us are taught to only clean mirrors with paper towels, while others are shown how to floss their teeth using unknotted dental floss. This early teaching stays with you into adulthood, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s right. There are tons of little household hacks that our parents didn’t know about, and they make life a whole lot easier than the other methods we were shown.

It’s never too late to learn new methods that make life easier. They say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but if someone is willing to learn, then they can learn all sorts of cool new things. After some trial and error, we have developed a whole slew of new household hacks that will make your life go a lot more smoothly. Keep scrolling to find out how to properly floss your teeth, keep your phone dry at the pool, and so much more. You may even develop your own adaptations of these hacks, which are even more efficient than ours. Now start reading and prepare to get your mind blown by some of these hacks.

Backpacks

Backpacks have a plethora of pockets, hooks, snaps, and doodads that appear to have multiple uses but there is one specifically designed for shoes. The front of most backpacks have a diamond-shaped attachment with two holes in it.

This attachment has been designed for you to put your shoelaces through and tie your shoes on to your bag for easy carrying. A lot of athletes use this attachment for their dirty cleats after a big game. This is a great hack if you have children that play a lot of sports, as it will keep any mud from spreading across your foyer floor when they get home from a game.

Keep Milk Fresh

A carton of milk seems like it’s pretty easy to pour. Sometimes when you start pouring with the opening closest to the glass, the milks sloshes in and splashes a bit. This can make the milk frothy, and a bit messy.

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Avoid getting bubbles and frothy milk, by pouring the milk from the carton, with the opening facing away from the glass. That added space makes the whole process of pouring a lot easier.

A Pasta Spoon

Do you recognize what that big hole smack dab in the center of a pasta spoon is for? It’s not there for decoration or drainage. It has actually been designed to be a specific size so that it can be used as a measurement tool.

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That hole is designed for portion control. If you have to make enough pasta for two people, then you should fit two measurements of pasta in the middle of the spoon. This will help you make just enough pasta, rather than too little or too much. You can always just grab a handful of pasta, but if you want to use correct measurements then this is what you should be using.

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Keep Your Phone Dry

Nowadays most smartphones are waterproof, but if you have an older model you definitely don’t want it getting wet. If you plan to spend the day at the beach or by the pool, grab a cleaned out plastic jar.

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The plastic lid creates a watertight seal, and the inside of the jar is big enough for your phone and other electronics. You won’t have to worry about your phone getting splashed, and can simply enjoy some fun in the water.

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Take-Out Boxes

Whenever you order Chinese food, it tends to come in those paper cartons that fold up to look like pretty little boxes. Getting chopsticks in there can be a bit difficult, especially if you need to mix up the noodles or rice with sauce and vegetables.

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The boxes are actually designed to completely unfold to create a paper platter to make mixing a lot easier. All you need to do is unfold the sides and you have a plate. This also means you don’t need to dirty any dishes, which will save you a ton of time during post-meal clean-up.

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A Juice Box

Have you ever really examined a juice box? It has those two triangular flaps on either side of it that appear to have no purpose other than simply being a part of the box design itself. Those flaps actually lift up because they have been designed to be held by children’s hands.

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When you hold the flap it keeps you from squeezing the box and getting juice all over yourself which can be quite the sticky mess. If you have a child that likes to watch the juice squirt out of the straw then definitely start using this trick. It’s always better to avoid sticky situations.

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A Warming Plate

When it comes time to use the oven for some baking, whether it’s delicious lasagna or some other dishes, there is one feature that may have been overlooked. The bottom drawer that most people use to store, pots, pans, cake tins, and so on actually has another use.

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The oven can get quite toasty which makes the stovetop warm but this drawer actually gets nice and hot as well. It was actually designed to be used as a warming plate for food while you wait for the rest of your dinner to continue cooking. Next time you’re getting ready for a big dinner you can simply place the cooked dishes in the drawer to stay hot.

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Arrows

We all know that it is time to fill up our gas tanks once the gauge dips below a certain point but there is a special icon that actually helps with the process. If you have a new car or have rented one you might be a bit confused about what side the gas tank is on.

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The arrow next to the gas symbol will actually be on the left or the right and whichever side it is on is the side the tank is on. No more guesswork, all you need to do is look at the dash.

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Cutting Fresh Bread

Anyone who has ever tried to slice fresh bread will know that it’s really difficult to slice it without squashing the whole loaf. The upper half of a loaf is always nice and moist, but the bottom layer is nice and crispy.

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The next time you have some freshly baked bread why not try slicing it the proper way. By slicing from the bottom to the top you will be able to get a clean slice every time, and the bread won’t get squished while you do it.

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Moving Day

Moving can be a pretty stressful time. You need to box up all of your belongings, and all of your clothing. To make the moving process easier, grab a few sturdy hangers.

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Hang a bunch of your other hangers that have clothes on them from these hangers. That way, when you arrive at your new home, your clothes are ready to be hung up right away.

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A Fabric Sample

Some clothes come with a small swatch of fabric with a button sewn on, which appears to have no use. Clothing companies have actually included these swatches to help you see how to wash the fabric.

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Nobody enjoys accidentally dyeing their other clothes, because they failed to do a wash test. The button is a spare in case a sewn on ones falls off the item of clothing. You can never have too many buttons!

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Tic Tac Time

Tic Tacs are pretty delicious little breath mints, but sometimes it can be difficult to tap out just one. The lid actually has a little built-in measuring tool that you may not have noticed.

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If you flip the Tic Tac container upside down and open the lid, only one Tic Tac will roll out and sit within the flap. Now you don’t need to worry about a handful of Tic Tacs falling out. It’s a lot of work to put them back inside the container.

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Slurpee Time

On a hot summer’s day, there is nothing more refreshing than a nice cold Slurpee. They may be cheap, often costing around $3.00, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get the most bang for your buck.

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Grab one of the plastic lids that’s shaped like a half moon, and place it on top of the cup, but upside down. Fill it up with your favorite icy flavor, and enjoy even more Slurpee goodness.

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Using a Blender

Using a blender seems pretty straightforward, you simply put everything in and blend. Well, it’s actually not that simple. You are actually supposed to put in the liquid ingredients. That helps the blender properly blend the solid ingredients.

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This is because the blades of the blender are designed in such a way that they pull ingredients down towards them. If there are no liquids, the blending process will be a lot slower.

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Heinz Ketchup

Continuing with our condiment trend, glass Heinz ketchup bottles are notorious for being difficult to get the red sauce out of. Usually, you need to tap it at just the right angle which can be hard to find.

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Heinz actually made it easy to determine the angle, as the 57 on the bottle is raised to tell you that this is the exact point you need to tap to get that gooey red sauce flowing. If that doesn’t work you can still stick a knife inside, and swish it around.

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Peeling a Banana

It is hard to imagine that you have been peeling a banana wrong your whole life, but the odds are you have. Instead of peeling the banana from the stem side, you are supposed to squeeze the bottom of the banana.

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The end of the banana closest to the stem is less ripe, which forces the end to burst open. This is a lot easier than trying to peel it open with your fingernails.

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A Soda Can

The pull tab on a soda can seems like it is pretty straight forward. If you want that sugary goodness then you need to crack the tab and thus the can open. The tab itself has a hole built into it which is not purely for decoration though.

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Most people like to use straws to drink from their cans, the hole is the perfect diameter for a straw. If you place the straw through it, it will stay inside and not float out the way it does when it’s loose.

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Aluminum Foil

We have all had that moment where we are pulling out reams of aluminum foil to cover a casserole dish or something else that is cooking away, when the roll of foil simply pops out of the box.

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This can be rather annoying, but the box has a hole you can pop in with your finger. If you place your finger in this hole, it will hold the aluminum foil roll inside the box and keep everything in place.

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Pudding Cups

Pudding is pretty delicious, but if you don’t have a spoon it can be a bit tricky to eat. You might attempt to drink it like a glass of water which tends to not work too well.

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The lid on a pudding is made from a bendable semi-aluminum material though. You can actually bend the lid into a scoop and use that to get the pudding out if you don’t have a spoon. This also works well for Jell-o cups.

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Newspaper

Yes, newspapers are for reading but they are actually a great tool to absorb smells. If you have a fridge that has a bit of strange smelling emanating from it you can simply line the shelves with newspaper.

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It will absorb the smell until it is gone. Also, you can put it in the bins and along the sides. Just make sure to give it a thorough read before you put it in your fridge. You don’t want to miss something important.

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Dental Floss

You will not want to use mint-flavored dental floss for this hack. If you have plain floss, then it can be used to slice certain foods. Gone are the days of needing a knife.

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All you need is a piece of floss held tightly between your hands, and it will quickly slice through cheese to create perfectly even slices. A professional cheese slicer would be proud of these. This can also be used to cut cake if you don’t have a good knife.

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How To Floss

Have you ever watched a proper flossing video? We don’t mean the kind where someone does the ‘floss’ dance, but one where you learn how to floss your teeth. The best way to floss is to make a small loop of floss, with the ends tied together.

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That makes the floss easy to maneuver between your teeth, and get all of those hard to reach places. The circle of floss goes around the entire tooth, which will leave all of them squeaky clean.

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Always Have Cool Water

During those hot summer months, hiking with a water bottle full of warm water is less than refreshing. You go to take a swig, and are greeted with water that tastes like it’s from a bathtub.

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The night before you hike, fill up your plastic water bottle with water to the halfway point. Then, place the water bottle on it’s side and let it freeze. You will be able to fill the other side up with water, and the ice will keep it cooler for longer.

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Perfect Onion Slices

Vegetable peelers are pretty common utensils, but did you know they can help cut onions? Most people cry a little bit as they cut onions, but if you use a peeler it will create perfect little slices and less tears.

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The slicing motion with the peeler, also helps keep the onion away from your eyes, which makes for a slightly less teary eyed experience.

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DIY Ice Packs

We all try to be careful, but sometimes accidents happen that require an ice pack. Children are especially prone to getting some lumps and bumps as they play in the yard.

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If you don’t have an ice pack handy, don’t worry. Just grab a kitchen sponge, soak it in water, and let it freeze in a ziploc bag. Now you have a handy DIY ice pack.

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Keep Your Dress Shirts Pristine

Dress shirts are hard to keep wrinkle-free. They have to be ironed as soon as they are washed, and if you fold them, there will be creases. Dress shirt makers included that little hook of fabric on the back of the shirts, for people who travel a lot.

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Shake out your shirt, and hang it from the fabric hook. This will help the shirt unwrinkle itself, and be ready to wear for your next big meeting.

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A Built-In Coaster

The lid on top of your fountain pop might seem like it’s there to hold your straw in place, but it can be used for so much more. Next time you sit down to watch television, or at your computer, pop the lid off.

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Your cup will sit in the lid that makes a coaster, and keep any condensation from making rings on your desk or coffee table.

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Running Shoe Hack

When it comes to lacing up your running shoes, you usually just thread the laces through the main holes. At the top of the shoe though, there are a couple of smaller holes that have been punched in.

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These are for the runner that likes a tightly fitted shoe, and that actually gives your ankles more support. Lace up, and pound the pavement!

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The Headrest Savior

The headrests in cars aren’t just for comfort and safety. While you should have your headrest angled to support your neck in case of an accident, they might just save your life in another way.

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The headrests can be removed from the back of the car seat, and used as a club to break windows. This can save your life if you’re in an accident, and the car doors are stuck.

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All The Ketchup You Need

Fast food is delicious, especially french fries that are dipped in yummy ketchup. However, having to make multiple trips to the ketchup dispenser is a tad annoying. Avoid this by simply pulling on the sides of the condiment cup.

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It will widen, and allow you to squirt as much ketchup as you want inside of it. Now you can dip as many french fries as you want, and not run out of the tasty condiment.

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Never Get Logged Off

With most of us working from home these days, you do not want your boss to see you logged off or inactive in the office chat. Simply grab an analog watch, and place your mouse on top of it.

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The ticking hands in the watch will trigger the motion sensor in the mouse. That will tell your computer you are still active, and avoid having it go to sleep.

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The Shopping Cart Trick

Shopping carts are very innovative if you really examine them. There are little hooks on the side, which look like they are simply decorative. Those hooks have actually been placed there for a very specific reason.

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Shopping bags with items like eggs, glass, and anything else breakable can be hung off of them. That will protect them from being jostled in the cart. How cool is that?

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Goodbye High Beams

Driving at night comes with it’s own hazards. Sometimes you might miss an animal in the road, or get flashed by someone’s high beams. Those bright lights can make it hard to see, but your front dash mirror is designed to help with this.

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Simply angle it down slightly, and the vehicle behind yours’ high beams won’t go directly into your eyes.

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Oiling Up Locks

Padlocks are locks that require a key to open them, but sometimes those locks can get a bit rusty. If your key won’t turn in the lock, check for a small hole near where the key goes in.

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That hole has been put in place, to allow the lock owner to add some oil. This lubricates the locking mechanism, and helps the key twist it open.

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Multipurpose Bottle Openers

Keychains that also work as bottle openers are a must have for every drink lover. But have you ever wondered what the small metal lip is for? That little lip area is designed to latch onto a can pop tab.

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It lifts up the tab, and prevents you from breaking a nail. Nobody wants that, and this opener will help you prevent it every time.

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Dishwasher Tablets

Dishwasher tablets aren’t just for the dishwasher. These nifty little tablets can be used to clean a wide variety of things in the home, like the bathroom.

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Simply insert a tablet into a sponge, run it under some water, and start scrubbing the grime in the bathtub, toilet, or sink. Soon everything in the bathroom will sparkle, just like your dishes.

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Deodorant Opener

Deodorant containers always have that pesky plastic cover over them, when you first buy them. Trying to pull that plastic covering off can be tricky. Avoid pulling at all, simply by spinning the deodorant knob.

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As soon as the knob has been spun enough times, the plastic lid will come off, and the deodorant will be ready to be slicked onto your armpit.