10 Alternative Uses of Coffee that You Didn’t Know About

January 16, 2015
Coffee is not just a satisfying hot drink; it has so many other uses too, and in this article we'll be looking at 10 of them

After drinking a good cup of coffee, a lot of people generally throw out the leftover grounds. And yet, as in so many other cases, the grounds can be used in other ways. Knowing how to reuse them can even help us save a bit of money. Below we are going to show you 10 alternative uses of coffee, all of which are easy to do.

1. Alternative uses of coffee: preventing bad odors

Placing a bit of coffee in a jar and then storing it in the fridge could be a huge help at preventing bad odors. Also, if your hands are smelly, all you need to do is rub a bit of coffee over them, then rinse with warm water. This will remove the odor.

2. Skin exfoliant

Thanks to coffee’s texture, coffee grounds are great for exfoliating the skin and reducing cellulite. For the latter, we recommend mixing used coffee grounds with a bit of coconut oil and then rubbing it on your skin in circular motions.

Use a similar process to exfoliate skin: mix the coffee with half a tablespoon of olive oil and then rub over your skin for a few minutes. Then all you need to do is rinse.

3. Make compost

Coffee is perfect for making compost.  You can also add it to plants that need more acidic soil, because coffee provides a good amount of elements like copper, potassium, magnesium and phosphorus.  Likewise, mixing ground coffee beans into carrot and radish seeds is a wonderful help for these foods.

4. Makes hair shiny

Close up of shiny hair.Coffee can be reused to make your hair shinier. This can be done by creating a coffee and water solution, just like when you want to make a cup of coffee. Do this with cold water, or at least with water that is room temperature. Use the solution after washing your hair, letting it sit for 20 minutes or so. Then rinse.

See also: 5 Tips for Shiny Hair

5. Animal and insect repellent

Coffee is an effective ant repellent, as well as repelling other animals, primarily cats. For ants, just sprinkle a bit of ground, dry coffee in the areas that you have the insects. If you want to repel cats, it’s better to mix the coffee grounds with lemon and orange rinds.

A lot of these animals don’t like this smell, which is why it keeps them away. And if that weren’t enough, rubbing a bit of moist coffee grounds on your pets also helps keep them flea-free.

6. Cleaner

Due to the abrasive and acidic qualities in coffee, it can be used as a surface cleaner, especially in the kitchen. Just mix ground coffee with a bit of soap and water, and apply them to the areas you would like to clean.

7. Air freshener

Coffee halitosis

In addition to preventing odors, coffee also acts as an air freshener, thanks to its strong and penetrating aroma. In this case, just place ground coffee inside a bag or porous fabric, and then let the coffee’s aroma spread everywhere. You could also add some sort of aromatic oil to it, or fruit rind.

8. Dust suppressant

Another of our alternative uses of coffee is for clearing dirt, dirt and mildew, like fireplaces. It is important that the ground coffee isn’t moist, because this could cause the opposite effect to occur. Sprinkle the coffee grounds over the affected area, and it’ll be easy to wipe away.

Read more: 12 Tricks to Rid Your Home of Dust

9. Keeps furniture in good shape

Wood furniture can be kept in good condition, thanks to coffee. Just rub a cloth with coffee grounds on it over the furniture surface, and this will make it shiny.

10. Cooking

Coffee remnants are useful for preparing different cakes and pastries. You could also use it in soil as a bottom layer for growing mushrooms. As previously seen, coffee possesses properties that are very good for soil in general, as well as for cultivating certain plants.

We hope you’ve enjoyed all our alternative uses of coffee! Now you need to try some out!

Xue Li Yeoh, Hamady Dieng, & Abdul Hafiz Ab Majid. (2018). Mortality and Repellent Effects of Coffee Extracts on The Workers of Three Household Ant Species | Request PDF. Pertanika Journal of Tropical Agricultural Science. https://doi.org/10.1021/jm030483s