The funny thing about life is that it doesn’t matter how much time, money, space, or patience you have—you always want, or sometimes REALLY DO NEED, more. So to help you out in the “stretching your resources” department, here are a dozen cool and clever life hacks that’ll help you make the most of what you’ve already got.
1. Charge your cell phone in ½ the time.
When you need to charge your cell phone faster than a speeding bullet (because you’re starving and want to look up a healthy and nutritious recipe on our Blog), switch your phone to Airplane Mode and it will re-juice twice as fast as usual.
2. Heat your food in a hurry
If you’re using a microwave to warm up grub, the quickest way to do it is to spread your food around the plate in the shape of a giant donut. Since microwave ovens warm things up from the outside in, this method creates more outside edges for those microwaves to do their magic.
3. Chill a bottled beverage in 2 minutes flat
If you need a cold drink ASAP and don’t care to water down your beverage with ice, simply wrap a wet paper towel around the bottle, put it in the freezer for 2 minutes and voilà…in no time it’ll be incredibly frosty and refreshing.
4. Get more shaves out of your razor blades
It’s outrageous how expensive disposable razor blades are these days. So to extend their lives (as well as stretch your moola), gently run dull razor blades across a pair of old jeans to re-sharpen them. We said “old jeans” for a reason; we’re not trying to punk out your wardrobe and resurrect the ’80s.
5. Make your own ice pack
When your boo-boo needs some TLC, but shelling out a ton of dough for one of those gel-filled thingy-ma-boppers makes your wallet say OUCH—here’s a tip that’ll create some serious physical, and financial, pain relief: Put a NEW, wet sponge into a baggie then freeze it.
6. Unclog your pipes—without a plumber or toxic chemicals
The only thing worse than pouring money down the drain is to dump toxic chemicals down it. So the next time your sink or shower gets clogged, make your own nontoxic, drain-oh-so-well concoction with stuff you already have at home. Simply sift ½ cup of baking soda into the drain, then chase it with 1 cup of plain white vinegar. A chemical reaction starts to occur, everything fizzes, and the clog goes bye-bye. After 5 minutes of letting this home remedy do its magic, rinse the pipes clean with 2 cups of boiling water.
7. Hang your cleaning supplies on a rod.
Go to the hardware store and have them hook you up with a tension rod that you can easily secure in the cabinet space under your sink. This “2nd story” gets all your spray bottles off the ground so you can use that space for other stuff (like vinegar and baking soda when you have a clogged drain). Plus, you’ll be able to hang your cleaning rags over the rod so they can air-dry while keeping them out of harm’s way.
8. Install a wall table
When you’re tired of eating all your meals on the couch but are challenged for floor space, opt for a wall table. It follows the same concept as a wall bed—when you need it, it’s out and when you don’t, it’s up and out of the way.
9. Get an over-the-sink cutting board
If your kitchen is counter-space challenged it’s easy to get frustrated when trying to prepare a meal. But don’t let the lack of space bum you out. Instead, maximize what little space you do have with an over-the-sink cutting board. And when you’re done chopping, mincing, and slicing, cleanup is just inches away.
10. Easily peel hard-boiled eggs
The only thing not to love about a hard-boiled egg is peeling off its shell. However, if you add a teaspoon of baking soda to the pot of boiling water, something magical happens that makes the eggshells slither off with ease. Also, avoid using super-fresh eggs because older eggs are much easier to peel.
11. Put keys onto a key ring without going crazy
When you have a key to take off or put on a key ring, the easiest way to do so without breaking a nail, or breaking a sweat, is with a staple remover. Align the staple remover between the loop of the key ring, push down, the ring will open up, and you can easily slide keys on or off.
12. Open bananas like a monkey
If you’re tired of fighting with a stiff banana stem (especially when prepping one for your Shakeology®), then peel it the way monkeys do. Simply pinch the nub on the bottom of the banana and the peel instantly splits open. You see, that tough stem is actually the base of a banana that connects to the tree and they grow up toward the sun. So what us humans think is the top of a banana truly is not. Guess monkeys truly do know best.