The Secret Household Hacks Your Mom Never Told You

Some knowledge is passed on from generation to generation. Family is supposed to teach you life lessons and life hacks that will make your life easier and better.

The Secret Household Hacks Your Mom Never Told You

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Some people don’t have a family to give them good information, so other people share their knowledge in different places.

Someone asked on the Reddit forum R/AskWoman, “What’s one household hack someone in your family taught you?”

The responses ranged from important life-changing lessons to small hacks that make life easier. Here are some of the responses.

1. Marry Well

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“If you marry, marry someone who regards housework as equally their responsibility.”

Marrying well is the best life hack. Marry a partner who understands that responsibilities should be shared- not dumped on one partner.

Related: How Budgeting Saved My Marriage 

2. Clean a Microwave

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“To clean a microwave, put a damp cloth inside and cook for about 1 minute. It will steam up the inside and you can just wipe it all down. No need to scrub or scrape. Also – that glass plate spinner thing can go in the dishwasher.”

What a great idea to keep one of the most-used appliances cleaner!

Related: Messy House? Super Easy Ways to Keep it Clean

3. Clean Your House Before Vacation

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“Clean your house, wash your sheets and remake your bed fresh the day you go on holiday (day before if needs be) and come home to a spotless fresh sheets paradise. You’ll thank me once you’ve tried it and never go back.”

This is such a great idea! Coming home from vacation is always hard. Having a clean house to welcome you back is an excellent idea!

Related: How To Pamper Yourself (Without Spending a Lot of Money) 

4. Shake Your Clothes

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“Shake your clothes out as you switch them from washer to dryer. They dry much faster when not in clumps,” one person wrote. Another added, “It also flicks off bits of paper towel someone left in their pocket that shredded in the wash and stuck to every piece of clothing in there.”

These are such great ideas to help keep your laundry a little more manageable!

Related: 10 Laundry Mistakes You Didn’t Know You Were Making

5. Smash Garlic

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“If you lightly smash your garlic cloves and then put them in a cup and shake them, the peels come right off.”

This is a great hack to know because peeling garlic makes your hands sticky and can be quite time-consuming. I always want cooking hacks to make dinner for my family take shorter!

6. Break It Down

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“Don’t try to clean your whole house/apartment in one day but do a little bit every day, so it doesn’t become so overwhelming.”

Dividing your house into zones is a good way to make cleaning manageable and to make sure you are on top of the cleaning.

7. Freeze Tomato Paste

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“When you just need one tablespoon of tomato paste and open a full can, wrap a plate with plastic wrap, measure out tablespoons of paste from the now open can. Freeze. Once frozen cut the plastic into squares around each scoop, twist and put in a ziplock. Now you have premeasured tomato paste and no food waste. Store in freezer.”

This is brilliant! I love hacks that save me money and reduce waste!

Related: 7 Ways to Reduce Food Waste In Your Home 

8. Use the Egg

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“If you crack an egg and a little piece of shell gets in, use the rest of the eggshell to scoop it out. For some reason, the shell pieces seem to stick well to each other and it’s easier than using a spoon.”

Chasing eggshells around your batter is a pretty annoying thing- this is a great way to make it easier!

9. Vaccum the Hair

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“I vacuum the bathroom before I clean it. Picks up all the dust and hair,” wrote one person.

Another added, “As someone with long hair, my best ever “grown up” purchase was my own dustbuster. I vacuum fallen hair off my bathroom floor every day and it makes a huge difference. It’s actually kinda fun and a small sense of accomplishment…esp on blow dry days.”

Related: Top 10 Frugal Purchases That More Than Pay for Themselves 

10. Streak-Free Mirrors

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“Clean mirrors with water and newspaper for zero streaks”

This works for windows also!

11. Use a Spoon

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“You do not need a man to open a sealed jar. Take the back of the spoon and jam it in the gap under the lid; you will hear a pop and then it’s easy to open.”

This is good to know! Not everyone has a man in their cutlery drawer to use on a whim, so this is a great hack!

12. Use a Grater

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“When you need to chop eggs for things like egg salad and tuna salad, use a cheese grater instead. Easy peasy.”

I will have to try this! It might get messy, though.

13. Keep a Sponge in Your Shower

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“Keep one of those scrubby sponge holders for dishes (the kind you put detergent in the handle) full of 50/50 blue Dawn and white vinegar in your bathtub or shower. A quick scrub of the tub surround or shower walls as you’re getting out of the shower takes 3 minutes, and then your bathing area is always clean.”

Anything that makes cleaning less of a chore is a winner in my book!

14. Extra Trash Bags

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“Put an extra trash bag under the new one you put in so you can quickly put a new trash bag in before taking out the old one. Works really well during Thanksgiving and Christmas.”

This is a great idea if you have people in your house who can never remember to put a new bag in the trash can!

15. Use Cold Water

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“Rinsing dishes with cold water helps the suds clear away way faster than warm/hot water.”

I did not know this one! I’ll have to try it the next time I wash dishes.

16. Use Toothpaste To Clean Jewelry

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“You can use toothpaste to clean your jewelry! Just a bit on a cotton ball and your necklace or ring or anything will be polished!”

Wow! This is brilliant. Keep your jewelry cleaned with this hack, or clean your old jewelry before reusing it or selling it.

Related: What To Do With Your Old Jewelry?

17. Use Salt To Clean Spills

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“It might be wasteful, but it helps with white carpet. If you spill liquid, just immediately pour salt on it. A generous, excessive amount to soak all the liquid up out of the carpet. When it dries, vacuum it up. It’s lazy, but it always worked.”

This works well if you spill something really messy or that might stain, like red wine.

18. Use Dishwasher Detergent To Clean Pans

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“If you have a stuck, burnt food pots or pans, sprinkle cascade or your brand of dishwasher detergent on it (powder works best). Make a paste, let it sit a bit. The gunk will come right off.”

If you do this every so often, your pots will remain nice and clean and won’t look black at the bottom.

19. Toothpaste for Sharpie

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“Toothpaste will remove sharpie from most surfaces.”

I did not know toothpaste was so powerful! This seems like a life hack that every mother of a toddler needs to know!

20. Put a Dry Towel in the Dryer

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“If you put a dry towel (preferably a body towel) in the dryer with your wet clothes, they will dry faster.”

What a great thing to know if you are pressed for time and need your clothes ASAP!

21. Pour Water on Your Bagel

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“If you have a bagel that seems a little dry, run it under the tap for a few seconds and toast it…will taste fresh out of the oven!!”

You can do this with bread as well; it makes day-old or slightly stale bread and bagels taste just as good!

22. Clean as You Go

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“My mom taught me to multi-task, cook, and wash dishes so at the end you finish cooking, there isn’t a huge pile of dirty pots.”

Mothers teach the best life hacks! This is a great way to make sure you don’t have a pile of cleaning to do at the end of the day.

23. Eat a Garlic Clove To Prevent a Cold

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“Eating a pickled garlic clove when you feel you’re getting a cold – Yeah, gross, I know. I have no science to back this up, might just be a placebo, but it works for us!!! ”

Garlic is a very powerful food. If it works, then it works!

24. Invite Friends for Dinner

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“Every few months, invite people over for dinner. This forces you to clean the house more than you would normally.”

This is so smart! Sometimes you need that motivation to clean up, but also great to actively build friendships and relationships. Having people over for dinner is a great way to do that.

25.  Even Out Your Popcorn

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“If you make popcorn, put it in one of those shallow, long casserole dishes instead of a deep bowl. That way, when you put butter and toppings on it gets on all of the popcorn, not just the top. Easy for sharing [with]  others too.”

No one likes it when only the top of the popcorn is flavored! This is a great way to spread the toppings and share it with others easily.

Life Hacks From Your Family

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I hope you enjoyed this Reddit list of household hacks you learned from your family. Check out these 4 Household Hacks That Will Make Your Life Easier and More Convenient.

This post originally appeared on A Dime Saved. 






Hi! I am a millennial mom with a passion for personal finance. I have always been “into” personal finance but got inspired to start my blog after a period of extended unemployment. That experience really changed the way I viewed my relationship with money and the importance of accessible personal finance education.