25 Genius Things You Can Do with Used Tea Bags

My day looks bleak and unsettling if it doesn’t commence with a cup of tea. I like my tea strongly brewed with tad bit of sugar and milk. Tea can be brewed in quite a number of ways; you can add herbs, artificial fruit flavours, ginger root, lime and honey, spices and other agents to enrich the taste of the drink. Store brought ready-made flavoured tea bags are equally pleasant.

Tea has innumerable health benefits, packed with natural fibres, antibiotic, anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory properties, but did you know Used Tea Bags are also loaded with amazing paybacks?

While most of us casually discard the used tea bags, there are actually so many home and lifestyle hacks where old tea comes handy. People like me, who have at least 3 – 4 cups of tea every day, should definitely try these genius things one can do with used tea bags.

If tea is your favourite drink, you may find these equally interesting 11 Healthy Types of Tea & Their Surprising Health Benefits Myths About Coffee and Tea That Seriously Need to Die


25 Genius Used Tea Bags Hacks

1) Say Bye to Grey Hair

Colour your hair naturally with the following dye. In one cup of boiling water add 3 tea bags, 1 tbsp. each of rosemary and sage and let it rest overnight. Spray and spread the water evenly after shampooing your hair and allow it to sit for several minutes. Do not rinse.

2) Soothe Bleeding Gums

Bleeding or swollen gums and tooth ache can be eased out if you place 1 -2 moist old tea bags on the affected side of your mouth.

3) Sachet Perfume

An effective solution to keep your wardrobes and drawers fresh. In dry used tea leaves add few drops of your favourite herbal oil perfume and mix well. Put them back in sachets and place in cupboards and drawers.

4) Fight Aging

Apply a mask of 2 used leaves from tea bags, honey and little lemon juice and leave it for 10 – 15 minutes. The antioxidants in the tea help reduce signs of aging and retain elasticity considerably. Use the mask twice a week for effectiveness.

5) Toe Nail Fungus

Wrap 30 minute refrigerated used tea bags on the affected toe nail for 15 minutes. Repeat it 2 -3 times a day. Tannins present in tea eradicate fungal growth and similar infections.

6) Skin Exfoliator

The rough texture of the tea leaves acts as a natural facial scrub. Make a paste of honey, olive oil and tea leaves from the bag, apply it on face and massage in a circular motion for 5- 10 minutes. Use the scrub twice a week

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7) Heal Wounds, Acnes and Bruises

The antiseptic properties present in the tea works as an amazing natural wound and bruise healer. Dip a cotton ball in infused tea bag water and dab it on the blister, acne or wound. Dry the area and repeat the procedure 2 – 3 times a day.

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8) As a Flavouring Agent

Chamomile and jasmine tea, green tea and Asian cinnamon tea work wonder as flavouring agents. Reuse used tea bags when boiling pasta, rice and other grains.

9) Protect from Rust

Rub used tea bag on cookware and utensils to prevent them from rust. Make sure every inch of the surface is scrubbed.

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10) Carpet and Rugs Cleaner

They not only clean rugs and carpets but also help to de-odorize them. All you need is enough dried used tea leaves to cover the upholstery. Sprinkle baking soda and dried tea leaves on the carpet. Allow it to sit for 20 minutes before vacuuming.

11) Helper in Gardening

  • Enhance Composting Pour strongly brewed used tea leaves bag sufficiently on the compost heap. Acid from the tea will quicken the decomposition process simultaneously providing acid rich compost.


  • Food to the Ferns: Substitute plain water with tea bag decoction while watering any acid loving plant.  The tea not only gives lush and evergreen plants but also prevents fungal growth on and around them.
  • Nutrient to Roses: Sprinkle old tea leaves (in bag or loose) on rose bushes and cover with mulch. When you water the plants, the tannic acid in the tea works as a strong nutrient, resulting in impelling growth.

  • Plant Potting Supporter: While potting plants, place used tea bags in the drainage so that they retain moisture, infuse nutrients in the soil and fertilise the soil efficiently.

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12) Shoo Away Pests and Rodents

Mice, rats, spiders, lizards as well as ants literally hate the scent of tea. Hence hide few bags of dried used tea bags in areas such as cupboards, drawers, pantries, etc. where these rodents can trespass. Alternatively you can also mix peppermint oil for good fragrance.

13) Loosen Grease from Dishes and Counters

Soak your dirty dishes and kitchen counter in warm water infused with soap and tea bag. The grime and grease will automatically come out after 10 minutes and make your scrubbing easier.

14) Veggie Smell Deodorizer

Use old tea bag to scrub your hand after chopping and cooking food. Tea removes lingering smells of veggies such as onion, garlic etc.

15) Removes Foot Odour

Tea is an excellent ingredient for absorbing bad odours. Sweat and dust makes our shoes as well as feet stink at times. Place used tea bags inside shoes and shoe cabinets to eradicate odours. You can also soak your feet and socks for eliminating persistent smell.

16) Glass Cleaner

Surprisingly tea can be an amazing glass and mirror cleaner. All you need is to infuse 10 – 12 used tea bags and re-brew. Store the concoction in a spray bottle and there you go a handy DIY glass cleaner.

17) Create Antique Fashion

You can try a new and handy craft by infusing lace, white apparels and handmade papers in strongly re-brewed tea bags to give antique beige, sepia or ivory look to the things. Make sure you let the material infuse in water for at least 10 minutes. The longer you soak the darker will be the shade.

18) Soothes Skin Irritation and Sun Burn

Tea bags are excellent healers, hence place moist tea bags on affected area and gently massage. Make sure your skin takes in the water from the tea. They instantly lull the affected area relieving you from the burning sensation.

19) Eye Burn, Dark Circles and Puffy Eyes

Tea contains anti-inflammatory and anti-irritant properties. It considerably reduces redness, puffy eyes and dark circles. Place 30 minutes refrigerated tea bags on closed eye lids and let it rest for 20 mins. Repeat the procedure twice a week for effectiveness.

20) Hair Conditioner

Unflavoured used black or green tea adds texture and glaze to your otherwise dull hair. It also nourishes scalp and prevents dandruff. In two cups of water add 3-4 used tea bags and brew. Use the infused water as last wash after shampoo. Make sure you massage scalp with the water before washing it off.

21) Relieve Baby from Injection Pain

Tannic acid is extremely effective in soothing soreness occurred from vaccination or injection shots. Place wet tea bag on the sore skin to relieve babies from the pain.

22) Wooden Furniture Polish

You can easily clean and shine wooden furniture and floors by applying a coat of weakly brewed tea bag. Wipe the area with a wet clot and then pat dry for effective result.

23) Prevents Bad Breath

The anti-bacterial and antiseptic properties keep bacteria that cause bad breath at bay. Infuse tea bag in hot water, cool down and add few drops of tea tree oil or any mint flavour. Swish your mouth with the decoction twice a day.

24) Poison Ivy Itch

Poison Ivy itches are very painful and irritating. Tea can effectively help reduce the itchiness if you dab the affected areas with soaked cotton balls.

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25) Refrigerator Freshener

Finally, keep your fridge odourless and fresh with few bags of tea leaves. Place them in the refrigerator and change every 3-4 days. Tea is great smell absorber. It also keeps veggies fresh.

Although Used Tea Bags are great source for efficient DIY home and living hacks, you should also know how to and how long to store them. Used tea bags can be preserved in room temperature for a day. If you have bigger purposes stock them in fridge.

Any natural and cooked food is prone to fungal, mould and bacterial growth. Hence it is absolutely necessary to not refrigerate for long. Smell the tea bags before reusing. If nasty whiffs persist then the tea has rotted.

Dear Readers,

Hope you liked my easy things that you can do with old tea bags. Let me know if you have any more genius hacks that I can add in the comments.