The Basics Tips & Tricks

6 Cool Things You Can Do With Booze Besides Drink It

Wasting liquor is a cardinal sin for anyone who appreciates a stiff drink. But every now and then you find yourself in a pinch—and who better to call on than our old friend, booze. These clever hacks make booze an even friendlier friend than usual.

Devin Pratt is a U.S.–based writer and editor who has held various editorial roles at National Geographic, Discovery Channel, Men’s Fitness, FHM and Runner’s World. He’s traveled extensively, including hiking and whitewater rafting in Bosnia and Croatia. When not on assignment, he can be found exploring the great outdoors.

  • 1. Condition Your Hair With Beer

    As strange as it sounds, treating your hair to a beer bath will do wonders for your locks. The natural ingredients in your favorite brew serve as a perfect cleanser for removing dirt and grease, leaving your hair extra soft and shiny. Simply crack open a can and let it sit until it’s warm and flat. Then shampoo your hair as you normally would. After rinsing out the shampoo, pour the beer over your hair, massaging it into the roots. Wait 3–4 minutes before thoroughly rinsing. Finish things off with a little conditioner so your hair doesn’t smell like a frat house.

  • 2. Start a Fire With Whiskey

    Have you heard the old saying, “When life gives you cheap whiskey, make fire?” Probably not, but such an adage could apply to this next trick. Saturate a few small pieces of kindling wood in cheap whiskey (because why would you want to use the good stuff?). Be sure to use 100-proof for best results. Light a match and let the roaring fire commence. Sure, you could use newspaper or other fire tinder to get the flames going, but what fun would that be?

  • 3. Build a Slug Trap With Beer

    Are slugs wreaking havoc on your garden? Try this simple solution. Bury a glass jar or plastic container in your garden so that it’s even with the soil. Then fill the glass three quarters of the way with beer. Don’t be surprised to see a bunch of the slithery slimers in the jar the next morning. It turns out that slugs are attracted to the fermented yeast in beer. If there’s any way to go, it may as well be in a pool of beer.

  • 4. Make Mouthwash With Vodka

    Looking for a quick fix for funky breath? Create a do-it-yourself mouthwash recipe by combining 1 cup of vodka with 8–10 drops of peppermint, spearmint or cinnamon essential oils. Let the mixture infuse in a sealed jar for two weeks before use. The vodka will kill the gnarly bacteria in your mouth, while the oils will keep your mouth feeling—and smelling—fresh for hours.

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  • 5. Clean Metal With Beer

    Add cleanser to beer’s magical list of uses. In a pinch, a bottle of brew can come in handy for quickly polishing metal surfaces. Just pour some onto a cleaning cloth or paper towel and wipe down your sinks, faucets and other fixtures. The suds will cut through minor soap scum, leaving behind a bright polish. Don’t forget go over everything with a wet rag or sponge afterward to prevent stickiness and any boozy odors.

  • 6. Clean With Vodka

    Smudges and streaks can be hard to remove from smooth surfaces, even with a cleaner. Fortunately, vodka saves the day, yet again. Pour some of the liquor into a small spray bottle and simply spritz the spirit on glass surfaces, mirrors, and even eyeglasses. Wipe down with a dry cloth for a perfect shine.