Vinegar has hundreds of uses.

If your use of vinegar doesn’t extend beyond salad dressings, you don’t know what you’ve been missing. Did you know that there are literally hundreds of different uses and benefits of vinegar, and that most of them go nowhere near your mouth?

Vinegar is made by a fermentation process in which the acidic liquid – primarily acetic acid – is isolated. Vinegar can come from a variety of sources including corn, rice, honey, grapes, apples and other fruits. Its use has been traced back thousands of years, being  revered by virtually every culture on earth. A pungent flavoring, it’s often added to foods, but the benefits don’t stop there. It’s as antimicrobial as bleach or triclosan without being toxic; and, it may be the most diverse and inexpensive cleaning product in your home. Here are a dozen uses for vinegar you may not have known about.

1. Apple cider vinegar sprayed on the scalp after shampooing can help reduce dandruff. Leave on for 1-2 minutes, then rinse.

2. Add ½ cup of white vinegar to your laundry wash cycle to prevent lint from clinging to clothes.

3. Full-strength white vinegar poured on weeds and grasses will kill ‘em dead.

4. Polish car chrome with full-strength white vinegar on a soft cloth.

5. Take the sting out of sunburn and insect bites with apple cider vinegar soaked cotton balls (or cloth for large areas). Gently wipe down the affected area.

6. Boil white vinegar on the stovetop to neutralize strong odors in the air such as cooked fish, onions or garlic.

7. Unclog drains with 1 cup baking soda followed by 3 cups boiling water and 1 cup white vinegar.

8. Soak feet in a mixture of 1 gallon warm water and 3 cups apple cider vinegar to help remove corns, calluses, warts and athletes foot. Soak 10-20 minutes. Gently debride skin after towel-drying.

9. For respiratory congestion from the flu, inhale a vapor mist made from steaming water with several spoonfuls of apple cider vinegar.

10. Deskunk pets, clothing, carpets and furniture with white vinegar.

11. Add 2 tablespoons white distilled vinegar to 1 pint water and soak fruits and veggies to clean. Then rinse with water.

12. Clean bathtubs, toilets, sinks, appliances, countertops, floors, walls and most anywhere else with undiluted white vinegar.

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image: cjmartin