Olive Oil, more than just a salad component...
You've probably heard of all the health benefits of olive oil. From its antioxidant properties to its positive effects on heart, bone and digestive health. It is no wonder olive oil is sought after by health enthusiasts the world over. It is typically used in cooking. But, if you're a homeowner, you should know about all the other uses for olive oil that can help you maintain your home and keep your household items looking their best for a long time. And no, you do not need to use the purest, most expensive, olive oil for this. A simple, inexpensive brand would work just as well.
Uses for olive oil in the kitchen
Believe it or not, there are many uses for olive oil in the kitchen apart from cooking. Olive oil can help to protect or breathe new life into old wooden wares and utensils like cutting boards and salad bowls.
After prolonged use, you may find these items starting to fade, crack or become discoloured. To prevent this, brush a light coating of olive oil over your wooden utensils after each use. Make sure to wash them thoroughly first! After coating, let the oil rest on the wood for a few minutes before buffing with a soft cloth. The coating of olive oil will help to nourish the wood and keep it looking fresher for longer. It will also help to prevent cracking and discolouration.
Olive oil is also an inexpensive way to shine and polish stainless steel, whether it is appliances or items like pots and pans. Simply put a dab of olive oil on a soft cloth and gently rub your stainless-steel items. Buff with a soft, dry cloth afterwards. This will not only bring some shine to your appliances but will also help to prevent water spots, streaks, rust and other blemishes. This can also be done on silverware to keep them polished and shiny and slow the effects of tarnish. Use olive to polish and shine your silver jewellery and valuables.
Here's another hack using olive oil that can save you big on time, money and even help to protect the environment. We all have bottles and jars left behind when a product is finished. For instance, a glass jar that once held jam or jelly. Instead of throwing these jars away, you may want to recycle and use them for storing something else. But how do you get rid of that pesky label? Sticky labels can be tough to remove fully and often leave some gooey residue behind. Olive oil will take care of this with ease. Saturate the label with olive oil and let it sit for at least 15 minutes. You will find that the label will peel off easily afterwards and rinsing with soap and water will take care of any remaining residue. This will work on both glass and plastic containers.
Olive oil can also help you out when cooking, but not in the way you think. If you've ever tried scooping out a spoonful of something sticky like peanut butter to add to a recipe or scooping some sticky cookie dough, you know how annoying it could be to scrape these substances from a spoon. Try coating your spoon or measuring cup in olive oil before you scoop and you will see how easily these sticky substances will release.
Uses for olive oil on furniture
Yes! You can use olive oil to revitalize old, worn-out furniture whether it's wood or leather upholstery. Of course, olive oil won't work any miracles on badly damaged items but that leather couch that lost its shine can benefit from a light rub down with olive oil. Dab a soft, dry cloth with the oil and use to gently wipe away dust and grime.
Wooden furniture can also get olive oil treatment. Wooden tables are prone to scratches and water rings. These can be made less unsightly by using slightly warm olive oil as a polish. In fact, you can make a good furniture polish by mixing 1/4 cup of olive oil with four tablespoons of distilled white vinegar and two teaspoons of lemon juice. Pour into a spray bottle, shake well and use weekly to polish your wooden furniture. This will bring back the beauty of the wood. Make sure to store any extra polish in the refrigerator.
Uses for olive oil in and around the home
You may have a door that squeaks every time you open it. Applying a bit of olive oil to the hinges will take care of that annoying squeak whether it's on house doors or cabinets and cupboards. It will even work to loosen up stiff and squeaky car doors.
You can use olive oil to shine and polish many everyday items you will find in your home. Items made out of rubber or leather-like shoes and boots can be polished with a dab of olive oil. Do not use on suede or cloth-based material.
Metal-based items, like razor blades, will remain sharp for longer and will be less likely to rust.
Use olive oil in your garden as well to prevent wooden garden tools from drying out and splitting. On metal tools, a coat of olive oil will prevent dirt from sticking to the surface of your tools and also guard against rust build-up.
Your plants will also benefit from spraying with olive oil. Spray a couple of tablespoons of olive oil to the base of your plants about once a month to encourage lush, healthy growth.
Finally, if you have outdoor water receptacles like barrels and drums that collect and store water, pour a little olive oil into the water. It will float to the top and prevent mosquitoes from breeding.
Other useful things you can do with olive oil
Although we focused on things you can do with olive oil in and around your home, you can also use olive oil in many other ways.
You've probably experienced having a ring stuck on your finger and you can't get it off no matter how hard you try. In this case, you can dip or coat your finger in olive oil, use a dry cloth to get a grip on the ring and slowly slide it off your finger.
Stuck zippers will also become loose once olive oil is applied. Whether it is a zipper on your favourite jeans, or a backpack or suitcase, you can use a cotton swab to dab the zipper and gently work it free.
Do not underestimate the effects of olive oil in your beauty routine either. There is a reason this is an addition to many well-known beauty products. Olive oil is a natural moisturizer and lubricant that can help to revitalize dry skin and cuticles. You can apply it directly to your skin as you would any moisturizer or add it to the water when you take a bath.
Olive oil is also good for your hair and can be used to add sheen to dry hair. If you're unlucky enough to get chewing gum, paint or car grease stuck in your hair, simply coat the area with olive oil, let sit for a few minutes and gently rub the substance out with a dry tissue. Stains on the skin from permanent marker or paint can be removed similarly by saturating the stain with olive oil and wiping away.
You can use olive oil as a natural make-up remover. It will easily soften and wipe away heavy makeup and leave your skin feeling moist and soft as opposed to harsh, chemical-based makeup removers.
As you can see, olive oil has many uses and is one of the most versatile products you can have in your home. Make sure to keep a bottle handy to eliminate some everyday problems and make your life just a little bit easier.